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    In Russia-Ukraine War, More Disastrous Path Could Lie Ahead

    In Russia-Ukraine War, More Disastrous Path Could Lie Ahead

    For , it's been a year of bold charges and bombardments, humiliating retreats and grinding sieges. has countered with fierce resistance, surprising counteroffensives and unexpected hit-and-run strikes.

    Now, on the anniversary of Russia's invasion that has killed tens of thousands and reduced cities to ruins, both sides are preparing for a potentially even more disastrous phase that lies ahead.

    Russia recently intensified its push to capture all of Ukraine's eastern industrial heartland of the Donbas. Kyiv and its Western allies also say Moscow could try to launch a wider, more ambitious attack elsewhere along the more than 1,000-kilometer (600-mile) front line.

    Ukraine is waiting for battle tanks and other weapons pledged by the West for it to reclaim occupied areas.

    What's nowhere in sight is a settlement.

    The Kremlin insists it must include the recognition of the Crimean Peninsula, which it annexed illegally in 2014, along with the acceptance of its other territorial gains. Ukraine categorically rejects those demands and rules out any talks until Russia withdraws all forces.

    While Putin is determined to achieve his goals, Ukraine and its allies are standing firm on preventing Russia from ending up with any of its land.

    Experts warn that Europe's largest conflict since World War II could drag on for years, and some fear it could lead to a direct confrontation between Russia and .

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