The Ukrainian military has mounted an unexpectedly fierce defense against invading Russian forces, which have been dogged by logistical problems and flagging morale. But the war is barely two weeks old, and in Washington and European capitals, officials anticipate that the Russian military will reverse its early losses, setting the stage for a long, bloody insurgency.
The ways that Western countries would support a Ukrainian resistance are beginning to take shape. Officials have been reluctant to discuss detailed plans, since they’re premised on a Russian military victory that, however likely, hasn’t happened yet. But as a first step, Ukraine’s allies are planning for how to help establish and support a government-in-exile, which could direct guerrilla operations against Russian occupiers, according to several U.S. and European officials.