Russia-Ukraine war live updates: Putin prepared for ‘prolonged conflict,’ war could grow more volatile in coming months, U.S. says

A shopping center and warehouse in Odessa were heavily damaged in strikes that Ukrainian officials said were carried out by Russian forces on May 9. (Video: The Washington Post)

Yesterday at 1:18 a.m. EDT|Updated today at 8:07 p.m. EDT

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It’s been 75 days since Russia invaded Ukraine, and as the battle becomes a grinding war of attrition, Russian President Vladimir Putin appears to be preparing for “a prolonged conflict,” a top U.S. intelligence official said Tuesday as Congress was set to vote on nearly $40 billion in additional aid for Kyiv.

With no clear end in sight, the war could grow even more volatile in the coming months, Avril Haines, the director of national intelligence, told the Senate Armed Services Committee, warning of an “unpredictable and potentially escalatory trajectory.” She said Putin’s aims extend beyond controlling eastern Ukraine and include establishing a land bridge connecting Russia, the Donbas region and Crimea.

In Washington, U.S. lawmakers prepared to approve a package of military, economic and humanitarian support for Ukraine — the latest piece of legislation to help the country repel Russia’s attacks. If it passes, the United States will have authorized more than $50 billion in aid for Ukraine, a sweeping show of solidarity.

Here’s what else to know

  • A top U.S. intelligence official said that between eight and 10 Russian generals have been killed while fighting in Ukraine.
  • Russian forces continued to assault the Mariupol steel plant, home to the city’s last Ukrainian fighters, officials said, estimating that about 1,000 holdout soldiers remained, with hundreds injured.
  • The Finnish Parliament’s defense committee recommended NATO membership. The country’s official decision on whether to join the alliance could come as soon as this week.
  • A U.N. official said Tuesday that thousands more civilians have been killed in the conflict than confirmed figures suggest.
  • The Washington Post has lifted its paywall for readers in Russia and Ukraine. Telegram users can subscribe to our channel.