Ukraine Replace: LOL no, Russia is not attacking Odesa. They’re already out of steam within the Donbas


Ukrainian farmers will probably be harvesting bomb fragments (or worse, unexploded ordinance) for many years.

Oh brother …

Jack Detsch is a superb reporter, so truthfully don’t perceive this click-bait piece of shit story predicated on an unnamed “Western official” who claims “the idea is that they might face one other very severe Russian offensive” towards the southern port metropolis of Odesa.

“Assumption.”

Might face.”

I assume {that a} meteor might hit the Earth subsequent 12 months, or that Godzilla might emerge from the Sea of Japan. 

Let’s be clear: There may be no state of affairs during which Russia can or will make a severe effort in opposition to Odesa, similar to it couldn’t handle to take action when it was on the peak of its “shock and awe” part of the conflict, all its shiny toys intact and troops nonetheless alive. Given Russia’s incapability to maintain provide strains various dozen kilometers from the closest railhead, why would anybody faux that Russia would all of a sudden be capable of prolong lots of or 1000’s of kilometers to succeed in Odesa with a Ukraine now armed with each trendy Western tube and rocket artillery and a full complement of anti-ship missiles like Harpoons?

That is like early within the conflict, the place you’d see “Western intelligence officers” say that Russia was on the verge of an amphibious assault on Odesa, and I’d be like, “LOL no.” Then they’d be like “Belarus will invade!” and I’d write, “LOL no.” And there was even the time that Russia was supposedly going to push towards Dnipro metropolis lots of of kilometers west of Izyum, and that one was additional silly. 

I imply positive, in fact we will assume that Russia might goal Odesa subsequent 12 months. However no, it gained’t.

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Will Russia ever transfer once more? The exhaustion from their effort to take Severodonetsk plus HIMARS’ decimation of Russia’s ammunition storage depots has floor their progress to a halt. Per Struggle Mapper on Twitter, there was no notable change on the bottom on July21, July 20, July 19July 18July 17July 16July 15July 14July 13July 12July 11July 10July 8, and July 7. You will have observed July 9 lacking. This was the entry for that day: 

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That replace was based mostly on Russian claims that they managed Hryhorivka. Ukraine by no means bothered to disclaim them. Seems, they by no means captured it. Humorous. So actually, it’s a must to return to July 6 to search out any notable Russian advance. (No Ukrainian advances have been recorded in that point, both. Ukrainian Basic Employees has clamped down on any details about its actions on the entrance.)

Russia has now stalled for over two weeks, with dwindling signal of life. Is that this the fruits we’ve all been ready for, the purpose when Russia runs out of steam and is pressured to shift from offensive to defensive operations? We gained’t know for positive for just a few extra weeks, nevertheless it positive does look that method. 

Fight exhaustion and HIMARS are elements, clearly. Perhaps the Severodonetsk protection was value the fee and broke the Russian advance. However it’s laborious to disregard the very issue that makes the Odesa story above so rattling ludicrous: logistics. Have a look at the map above, with the arrows pushing towards Sivers’okay. What do all of them have in frequent? They’re pushing away from their provide depots. Even with out HIMARS, they’d be simply as caught because the Popasna advance towards Bakhmut, and the Izyum advance towards Sloviansk. Izyum was captured April 1 and Popasna on Could 7, effectively earlier than the arrival of HIMARS or different Western artillery. Each these advances are useless within the water.

(Humorous apart, keep in mind Russia attempting to chop off the principle freeway from Bakhmut to Lysychansk in an effort to chop off provides to each that metropolis and Severodonetsk? Have a look at the map above: Russia nonetheless hasn’t captured that freeway.)

Talking of artillery …

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Ukrainian troopers on the Donbas entrance have been quoted in numerous information articles marveling on the sudden quiet as Russian weapons go silent. We talked about “shaping the battlefield” yesterday—the act of getting ready the battlefield to profit a military’s biggest strengths. For Russia, they form the battlefield by turning it to rubble, however that’s laborious to do when their artillery weapons are out of ammo, gasoline, and spare elements. 

Open Supply Intelligence (OSINT) analyst DefMon on Twitter exhibits most motion taking place on the Russian aspect of the entrance strains

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NASA FIRMS hearth knowledge, July 21, 2022.

It’s eerie simply how quiet the Donbas entrance has gotten, notably on that strategy towards Sivers’okay. For now, many of the motion is occurring down in Kherson space, and quite a lot of it behind the entrance strains. Mark wrote lately about false positives on FIRMS hearth knowledge, notably now that farmers are burning off harvest stubble to organize for the autumn seeding. DefMon filters these out, cross-referencing fires with different satellite tv for pc imagery to verify they’re militarily associated. He eliminated 48 such nonmilitary fires in right now’s map. Nonetheless, nobody is ideal. So both he missed some agricultural fires, or Ukraine is totally decimating Russian provide and command and management deep in enemy territory. 

Yesterday I speculated Ukraine was shaping the battlefield by chopping Russian provides to the swath of territory between Kherson-Melitopol-Tokmak, forcing them to retreat lest they find yourself besieged. This map definitely helps that assertion. 

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A lot of that my son Ari is in superior infantry coaching at Fort Benning, Georgia, proper now. Right here’s video of his unit doing a live-fire train at evening (sound on for full impact). These are 18-year-olds enjoying with stay ammo, therefore the coaching cadre shadowing every trainee intently as they undergo their paces. (The subsequent day they’ve to return to choose up all of the brass casings from the rounds fired. It’s a shit element.)

It takes 22 weeks to coach an American infantryman: 10 weeks for fundamental fight coaching, and 12 for superior infantry coaching. 5-and-a-half months. Then they go to their models for extra coaching underneath expertise noncommissioned officers (sergeants), or to extra superior faculties. (Ari is attempting to earn a spot at Ranger faculty.) In the meantime, Russian volunteers get one week “coaching” earlier than being shipped to the entrance strains, and Ukrainian fundamental coaching doesn’t look like various weeks so far as I can inform. It’s distressing. 

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M109 are self-propelled weapons, superior to the towed M777s the People have delivered. Norway already donated 22 of theirs to Ukraine. Curiously, the U.Ok. doesn’t discipline the M109, so I feel they’re shopping for decommissioned models from Belgium to then ship to Ukraine. 

This bundle is value round £1 billion ($1.2 billion) and consists of “subtle air defence methods, uncrewed aerial automobiles, progressive new digital warfare gear and 1000’s of items of significant equipment for Ukrainian troopers.” Helmets and physique armor aren’t horny, but are among the many most important equipment Ukraine wants. It bodily hurts me anytime I see a video of a Ukrainian underneath hearth with out a helmet.

The U.Ok. can also be coaching 1000’s of Ukrainian troopers in a crash course lasting “a number of” weeks.

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The troopers are totally kitted out with uniforms, physique armor, helmets, and different provides like sleeping baggage and shovels (for trench and latrine digging).

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That is probably the most upsetting video I’ve seen this whole conflict. I don’t know what it’s, however the quiet ache wrecks me. The photographs had been horrid. The video much more so. 

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Ukrainian farmers will probably be harvesting bomb fragments (or worse, unexploded ordinance) for many years. Oh brother … Jack Detsch is a superb reporter, so truthfully don’t perceive this click-bait piece of shit story predicated on an unnamed “Western official” who claims “the idea is that they might face one other very severe Russian offensive” towards the southern…