The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) believes that all of the airborne troops are already engaged in offensive or defensive operations in Ukraine and that Russia would need to deploy significant reserves to launch an offensive. Russian troops are exhausted and disorganised.
Source: ISW report
Quote: "The pattern of Russian deployments throughout Ukraine strongly suggests that most of the available manoeuvre elements of all military districts, as well as major surviving Airborne forces, are already committed to either active offensive or defensive operations in Ukraine. Russia will need to commit significant reserves to any discrete axis in order to conduct effective offensive operations, and the generally exhausted condition of troops and the apparently disorganized and fragmented deployment pattern in some areas will likely pose significant obstacles to Russia’s prospects for defending critical sectors of the frontline."
Details: On 23 April, the Institute for the Study of War published a report describing Russia's current order of battle in Ukraine, assessing the offensive and defensive capabilities of Russian groups along the contact line, and discussing the main factors that could complicate Russian defensive operations in the event of a Ukrainian counteroffensive.
The institute's analysts assumed that Ukraine would be able to conduct a coordinated multi-brigade mechanised offensive with the full use of nine brigades.
If the ISW's assumptions prove to be incorrect, then some of its assessments and observations will also be incorrect, and the prospects for the Russians to hold their positions will be better than presented in the report.
Russian troops in Ukraine are reportedly operating in decentralised and largely degraded formations, and the current deployment structure suggests that most of the available units are already engaged in offensive or defensive operations.
As ISW states, Russian troops are currently operating on seven fronts: Kupiansk, Luhansk Oblast, Bakhmut, Avdiivka-Donetsk, the western part of Donetsk Oblast/eastern part of Zaporizhzhia Oblast, the western part of Zaporizhzhia Oblast and Kherson Oblast.
At the same time, the Russians are conducting active offensive operations on at least five of these fronts (Kupiansk, Luhansk, Bakhmut, Avdiivka-Donetsk and the western Donetsk/eastern Zaporizhzhia) and mainly conducting defensive operations in the western part of Zaporizhzhia Oblast and in Kherson Oblast.
The Russian forces currently engaged in offensive and defensive operations in Ukraine are both regular and irregular, and it is likely that most Russian units throughout Ukraine are well below full strength due to losses incurred in previous phases of the war.