In 1954, the Viet Minh, led by Ho Chi Minh, surrounded the French garrison at Dien Bien Phu. The Viets blocked all the supply routes. The French did not give in immediately. They fought and fought and fought. But in the end, they surrendered because there wasn’t enough ammunition and supplies to sustain the attack.
They hit a gradient and lost.
Weapons. Food. Water. Fuel
If one out of the above mentioned four goes for a toss, there goes your battle. The outcome of any battle is an interplay of various factors. But a lack of resources, or an inability to supply necessary resources to your troops will always lead you to a defeat. Any army that has more resources than the other side has the odds in its favor. Throw in a bit of morale into the mix, the odds will simply shoot all the way to the top.
Being a group of democracies did not help the West mobilize sufficient resources to defeat the enemy, while a supposedly decisive nature of an autocratic regime did not give Putin the strength to over power a much smaller enemy.
One side’s struggle was simply matched by the other side. That is why we are still watching the war unfold for over 14 months and still wondering when all this will come to an end.
From dropping 60,000 artillery shells per day in the first few months of the war, Russia has come down to less than 15,000 shells per month. Secretary General of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg, bemoaned in March this year that Ukraine is chewing up a lot more ammunition than Europe can produce.
“The current rate of Ukraine’s ammunition expenditure is many times higher than our current rate of production,” Jens Stoltenberg, Nato’s secretary general, said in February this year. “This puts our defence industries under strain.”
And the high level of ammunition usage European leaders were talking about, was 3,000 shells per day, way lower than Russia’s daily drop. That is how bad the weapons production capacity is in Europe. Latvia is getting ready to give all the Stinger missiles it has in its possession to…