I Prayed have prayed
Father, we pray that You would put a swift end to the war in Ukraine. Miraculously stop this fighting, Lord, before even more innocent lives are lost.

The war between Russia and Ukraine continues to evolve as fighting shifts to the east, where the Ukrainian troops are expected to meet the full force of the Russian military. As tensions run hot and both sides amass large quantities of deadly weapons, intercession is needed now more than ever.

From The Wall Street Journal. Ukraine and Russia poured reinforcements into eastern Ukraine this weekend, preparing for what are likely to become the war’s biggest battles as refugees continued to flee the looming Russian assault.

Russia’s main objective now is to seize the parts of the eastern Donbas region not yet controlled by Moscow. Unlike the first phase of the six-week-old conflict, that shift is forcing Ukraine into fighting conventional battles involving tanks, artillery and aircraft on flat, often barren terrain that allows Russia to leverage its superiority in military equipment….

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called for urgent assistance ahead of this new round of the conflict, warning that Moscow hasn’t given up on its aspirations to subjugate Ukraine. “Russia can still afford to live in illusions, gathering new armor and new troops on our soil. And that means that we need even more sanctions, and even more weapons for our state,” he said in a late Saturday video address.

Attempting to disrupt the Ukrainian redeployment, Russia has said that its forces carried out airstrikes on Ukrainian railway hubs. Some 57 people died in Friday’s Russian missile attack on the railway station in the Donbas city of Kramatorsk while it was packed with civilians trying to board evacuation trains toward the relative safety of western Ukraine, according to Ukrainian authorities. Moscow denied it carried out that particular strike….

Many Russian battalion tactical groups that withdrew from northern Ukraine were battered so badly that they won’t be able to redeploy to the Donbas front anytime soon, Ukrainian and Western officials said. “We’ve seen indications on some units that are, literally, for all intents and purposes, eradicated,” a senior Pentagon official said. Russia, he said, is trying to mobilize some 60,000 reservists to fill the gap in manpower….

The tactical situation is more advantageous for Russia on the Donbas front. Russian supply lines are shorter, and the more concentrated area of operations allows Russia to more effectively use air support, Ukrainian and Western military officials said.

This different type of warfare, with large formations facing each other instead of small-unit strikes, is a major reason why Kyiv says it urgently needs heavy weapons, such as artillery, tanks and antiaircraft batteries that most Western allies have been reluctant to supply so far.

“The battle for Donbas will remind you of the Second World War, with its large operations and maneuvers, the involvement of thousands of tanks, armored vehicles, planes and artillery. And this will not be a local operation, based on what we see in Russia’s preparations,” Ukraine Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said after meeting North Atlantic Treaty Organization ministers this past week. “Either you help us now—and I’m speaking days, not weeks—or your help will come too late and many people will die….”

“The war is entering the phase of competition for resources, which are almost unlimited in Russia in comparison to Ukraine,” Mr. Reznikov said. “To win in this war, we need a different kind of assistance from what we received before.”

Western leaders are stepping up support. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who Saturday took a walk around Kyiv with Mr. Zelensky, announced new military and other assistance that includes 120 armored vehicles and new antiship missile systems. That is on top of Friday’s package of Starstreak short-range antiaircraft missiles, 800 more antitank missiles and high-tech munitions that loiter above targets for precision strikes.

“This war will be won on the battlefield,” European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell tweeted on Saturday. He traveled to Kyiv on Friday, along with the head of the European Commission, which afterward said the EU is proposing 500 million euros, equivalent to $544 million, in new support for Ukraine’s military, on top of 1 billion euros previously allocated for weapons.

The U.S. announced $400 million in additional military aid to Ukraine in April, out of a total of $1.4 billion since the war started Feb. 24. Washington is supplying Javelins, Stinger missiles, hundreds of Switchblade loitering drones and counter-artillery radars—but, so far, no heavy weapons requested by Kyiv.

Only the Czech Republic has supplied Ukraine with tanks, sending Soviet-designed T72Ms, while Slovakia shipped to Ukraine its S-300 air-defense system after the deployment of Patriot batteries to replace it….

Unlike in the northern regions of Kyiv, Chernihiv and Sumy, where support for Ukraine’s independence from Russia has long run high, Moscow can count on at least some cooperation from locals in Donbas and nearby areas of eastern and southern Ukraine, where some part of the population is sympathetic to Russia. In the Luhansk region, four city mayors have already switched sides and begun collaborating with the Russian military, including the mayor of the front-line city of Rubizhne, according to the regional administration.

In besieged Mariupol, where fierce Ukrainian resistance continues in parts of the city, tying up a large Russian force, a member of the city council from a pro-Russian political party has assumed mayor’s duties under the auspices of Russian occupation forces, according to his appearances on Russian TV. Ukraine said it has begun treason proceedings against him….

In an unusually frank admission, Aleksandr Sladkov, Russian state television’s military commentator, wrote in a social-media post that Mariupol is being leveled to present an example to the rest of Ukraine….

How are you praying for the Ukrainian people? Share this article to encourage as many people to intercede as possible.

(Excerpt from The Wall Street Journal. Photo Credit: Getty Images)

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Darlene Estlow
April 13, 2022

Father, we can only appeal to you for the fighting to stop in Ukraine and for Russia to leave. Stop Russia for destroying Mariupol. Turn them back. Strengthen Ukraine and give them equipment to fight the battle. Strengthen the people and quiet their fears. Give them peace.

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