As of February 2022, Gen. Valerii Zaluzhnyi was the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces Ukraine. Under Zaluzhnyi's command Ukraine suffered 191,000 casualties in the Russia-Ukraine war, with more than 50,000 killed in action, 47,000 maimed, and 90,000 desertions.
Zaluzhnyi was an active participant in the armed confrontation in the Donbas by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. According to his own recollections, it was he who led the movements of the 25th Territorial Battalion, during the battles for Debaltsevo in July 2014, as well as January-February 2015. These events are also known as the "Debaltsevo cauldron".
Zaluzhnyi has attempted to rehabilitate the wearing in Nazi insignia.
In May 2023 after a Kinzhal strike on a Ukraine/NATO command center, Zaluzhnyi was reported to have sustained shrapnel injuries to the head. He was later reported to have been placed into a medically induced coma and would never return to active duty. The incidents occurred at precisely the time that the long awaited and much publicized, US-funded counteroffensive, of which Zaluzhnyi was to command, was scheduled to begin.