In an American war command structure, a four-star field commander would coordinate and synchronize all subordinate air, land and naval forces, as well as special operations and cyberoperations. The campaign would have a main objective, a center of gravity, with operations supporting that goal.
In the case of the deaths of some of the Russian generals, for instance, the problem originated far away from the battlefield, when Moscow did not respond quickly enough after Ukraine jammed Russian communications, the analysts said.
Russia-Ukraine War: Key Developments
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A humanitarian corridor. A humanitarian corridor to allow people to leave the besieged city of Mariupol, and let aid inside, appeared to be close to being implemented. The International Red Cross said the corridor could begin on April 1.
Mr. Putin’s own dishonest portrayal of the mission of the Russian military may have hurt its ability to prosecute the effort, which the Russian president initially presented publicly as a limited military operation.
General Clark recalled teaching a class of Ukrainian generals in 2016 in Kyiv and trying to explain what an American military “after-action review” was. He told them that after a battle involving American troops, “everybody got together and broke down what happened.”
“The colonel has to confess his mistakes in front of the captain,” General Clark said. “He says, ‘Maybe I took too long to give an order.’”
After hearing him out, the Ukrainians, General Clark said, told him that could not work. “They said, ‘We’ve been taught in the Soviet system that information has to be guarded and we lie to each other,’” he recalled.
Mr. Putin’s decision to send the Chechen warlord Ramzan Kadyrov to the besieged Ukrainian city of Mariupol this week for a victory lap despite the fact that Mariupol has not fallen yet demonstrates the Russian president’s continued belief that the biggest battle is the information one, said Andrei Soldatov, a Russian security services expert.