Key Takeaways

  • Ukrainian officials continue to signal that Ukrainian forces are prepared to start counteroffensive operations.
  • Wagner Group financier Yevgeny Prigozhin escalated his feud with the Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD), likely hoping to draw criticism back to the Russian military leadership and downplay his ongoing conflict with Chechen Republic Head Ramzan Kadyrov. Prigozhin’s flamboyant allegations are also likely an attempt to retain his heightened initiative within the Russian information space following the capture of Bakhmut.
  • Prigozhin seized on general Russian discontent with security on the Belgorod Oblast border to threaten that Wagner Group forces may operate in Russian territory without approval from the Russian military command.
  • A Russian Duma Deputy stated during a public forum on June 1 that Russia has failed to accomplish any of its articulated goals for the “special military operation” in Ukraine.
  • Russian forces continued limited offensive operations along the Kupyansk-Svatove line and northwest and south of Kreminna.
  • Regular Russian forces have likely largely relieved Wagner Group forces in Bakhmut amid a low offensive tempo in the area as of June 3.
  • Russian forces focused offensive operations on the Avdiivka-Donetsk City line near Marinka.
  • Russian sources claimed that Ukrainian forces continued limited ground attacks in western Donetsk Oblast.
  • Russian forces continued efforts to establish defensive positions in Kherson Oblast.
  • The Russian military leadership is attempting to create and staff new military formations.
  • Likely Ukrainian partisans assassinated a Russian collaborator in occupied Zaporizhia Oblast.

Authors: Riley Bailey, Grace Mappes, Karolina Hird, and Fredrick W. Kagan.

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