War in Ukraine will be over by end of year, head of military intelligence predicts The war against Russia will reach a turning point by mid-August and be over by the end of the year, Ukraine’s head of military intelligence has told Sky News. Major general Kyrylo Budanov said: The breaking point will be in the second part of August. Most of the active combat actions will have finished by the end of this year. As a result, we will renew Ukrainian power in all our territories that we have lost including Donbas and the Crimea. He said Russia was suffering huge losses – although he would not be drawn on Ukrainian casualties – and said he was not surprised by their scale, given Russian power was a “myth”. Europe sees Russia as a big threat. They are afraid of its aggression. We have been fighting Russia for eight years and we can say that this highly publicised Russian power is a myth. It is not as powerful as this. It is a horde of people with weapons. Budanov said Russian forces attacking the north-eastern city of Kharkiv had been pushed back almost to the Russian border and that their much-reported failure to cross the Siverskyi Donets river several days ago had resulted in “heavy losses”. I can confirm that they suffered heavy losses in manpower and armour and I can say that when the artillery strikes happened many of the crews abandoned their equipment. He also claimed that Russian defeat in Ukraine would lead to the removal of Russian president Vladimir Putin and that a coup was already under way against him. “They are moving in this way and it is impossible to stop it,” he said. He provided no evidence to support the claim. Furthermore, Putin was in a “very bad psychological and physical condition and he is very sick”. Rumours of Putin’s ill health have circulated recently but the Guardian has been unable to substantiate them.