German Army Says Ukraine Is Wasting Its NATO Training

The West is blaming Ukraine's lack of success in its counteroffensive on Ukrainian war tactics

On Tuesday, the German newspaper Bild reported that the German military is blaming Ukraine’s lack of success in its counteroffensive on the tactics of its commanders.

According to a leaked German military report, Berlin’s armed forces think Urkaine’s commanders and battle-hardened troops are not using their Western training. US officials have made similar complaints in comments to the media, saying Ukraine isn’t using “combined arms” tactics, which integrate armor, infantry, and artillery.

The German report said Ukraine was breaking up its NATO-trained bridges into much smaller units. “Some of the troop units are divided up in so many small sections that each troop unit does something, but a joint combat leadership is not recognizable,” the paper said.

While criticizing Ukraine’s tactics, Western officials have also acknowledged that Ukraine did not have enough equipment and training to dislodge Russian troops. Ukrainian Commander-in-Chief Gen. Valery Zaluzhny has pointed out that NATO would never launch an offensive like Ukraine has without air superiority.

After taking heavy losses in the first few weeks of the counteroffensive, Ukrainian leaders have said their forces changed gears and are working to dismantle vast minefields laid by Russia. The New York Times recently reported that US officials were frustrated by how Ukraine is fighting and would prefer them to stick with Western tactics and press harder to breach the Russian defenses despite the risk of major casualties.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.