More than a dozen photos and videos have been published on social media of modern Russian combat vehicles which have been hit by the Ukrainian military or simply stuck in the mud. The most modern Russian tank also did not escape the fate and got caught in Ukrainian soil and mud.
In an intelligence update on Thursday morning, the UK Ministry of Defence said the Russian tanks had made “little discernible progress in over three days” and remained more than 30km from Kyiv.
Images circulating online show Russian tanks and missile systems defeated by the country’s muddy terrain and abandoned by the troops.
Other images appear to show the Russians placing trees under the vehicle’s wheels to keep them out of the sludge.
Once the snow begins to melt in spring, the fields in Ukraine become like a quagmire and travel on unpaved roads or across the country becomes very difficult.
Trent Telenko, a former auditor for the US Defence Contract Management Agency told The Telegraph that the wet and boggy weather experienced in spring and autumn makes cross-country movement extremely difficult.
As well as the “Rasputitsa” – a Russian word referring to both the weather and road conditions at these times – bad tyre maintenance, vehicle overcrowding and lack of fuel have isolated most of this Russian army column from its rear, Mr Telenko said.
The Telegraph reported that russian ground forces “are not performing in the way they believed they would, how they previously have trained or how they would pride themselves to be”.
A Western official told the publication that the “enormously large traffic jam” was partly the result of damaged or destroyed vehicles blocking the road, presenting Russia with “a real problem passing logistics forward to enable that force to actually move at pace”.
He told the publication: “I have confidence both in their ability to adapt to the threat that they face and also their ability to fight effectively as [Russian] forces close.”
However, the inability to continue moving south has resulted in the deaths of a number of Russian commanders as they have pushed forward to “impose their personality” on the situation.
The most senior officer to be killed was Major General Andrei Sukhovetsky, the commanding officer of the Russian Seventh Airborne Division and deputy commander of the 41st Combined Arms Army, reports show.