Whether or not by battlefield success or strategic Ukrainian retreat, Russia is seeing some success within the Lyman-Severodonetsk axis.
It appears fated Russia finally swallow up Lyman and Severodonetsk, simply off the appropriate fringe of the map above—they’re the final two remaining Ukrainian strongholds north of the Donets River. And given Russia’s extreme troubles fording that river, Ukraine can have extra defensible territory on the southern financial institution when and in the event that they’re pushed again.
That Russian Popasna salient on the bottom-right of the map above could possibly be extra problematic. There’s no river down there to supply fall-back safety if Ukrainian defensive traces collapse. Fortunately, Russia has been unable or unwilling to completely exploit that breakthrough, however they may proceed their drip-drip-drip of of cannon-fodder fees till Ukrainian defenses are worn via. Or at the least, that’s their hope.
Fast apart: Keep in mind when everybody (together with the Pentagon and UK intelligence) mentioned Russia had a giant, large offensive in retailer for the jap Donbas after their humiliating Kyiv retreat? Keep in mind how I laughed off the likelihood, given Russia’s full incapability to display any skill to launch large-scale coordinated assaults? I don’t fake to at all times be proper, however I’m so glad I known as this one accurately. Our largest concern ought to be Russia studying from its errors. (And perhaps nuclear annihilation, on additional thought…)
Not going to lie, I don’t know why Ukraine fights so arduous for Lyman and Severodonetsk. Neither have any notably strategic worth. They’ve each been largely emptied of civilians, flattened by Russian artillery. However Russia’s positive aspects within the space (like in all places else on this entrance) have come at a frightful price, so maybe there’s no motive to desert meticulously created defensive emplacements till they really must abandon them? Russia is actually telegraphing uncertainty about its skill to seize the town, resulting in these disastrous bridging makes an attempt to encompass Severodonetsk.
These rash, determined river crossings underscore simply how Severodonetsk is to Russia’s warfare planners in the intervening time. It clearly wants a victory to parade on state TV, to encourage flagging morale, and to offer its aimless slog function. The victory doesn’t should be strategic. In actuality, it might be an excellent smaller goal than its already shrunken territorial ambitions:
Russia is operating out of troops and heading to the purpose of fruits, a phrase you’ll be listening to increasingly—the purpose the place a military is so degraded that it might not struggle. Ukraine went on the counter-offensive round Kharkiv, and Russia had nothing. This supposedly mighty superpower, the world’s second-best military, pathetically retreated within the face of frivolously armed territorial protection troops. Russia couldn’t even muster any reserves from Belgorod, only a stone’s throw away. They’re operating on fumes.
Russian personal army corporations are reportedly forming mixed items with airborne components on account of vital losses in manpower. Denaturing elite airborne items with mercenaries is stunning, and can be the clearest indication but that Russia has exhausted its out there combat-ready manpower reserves. The Russian 810th Guards Naval Infantry Brigade is reportedly receiving personnel from different Black Sea Fleet items, together with navy ship crewmembers. Newly fashioned or regrouped items are unlikely to be efficient in fight.
Russia has needed to withdraw at the least a few of its forces from the Izyum salient—its largest focus of troops in all of Ukraine with about 20-25% of its complete battalion tactical teams—to protect its crucial provide hub at Kupiansk. Russia shouldn’t overly sweat it, as a result of Ukraine is urgent instantly on Izyum as a substitute from the west and sure its northwest.
NASA FIRMS satellite tv for pc imagery is quiet right this moment, however it’s additionally been raining. Cloud cowl can obscure sensors, and moist circumstances can suppress fires. Or perhaps everybody took Sunday off, who is aware of. Fog of warfare, and all.
In the meantime, Russia is having a troublesome time with individuals doing shit regardless of its threats. There’s Kyrgyzstan:
Finland and Sweden, in fact:
There was Poland.
They’re threatening UK:
They even threaten a singing competitors.
Russia is a bankrupt nation with a bankrupt military and a bankrupt chief who has misplaced his thoughts. They dominated their area and struck concern into its neighbors by pretending to have a functioning superpower-class army. As a substitute, the one acceptable responses to threats like those above seem like this: