Battle in the East and South – “So the war becomes a real horror”

Updated on 05/13/2022, 18:50

  • Ukraine’s Black Sea coast is increasingly becoming a combat zone.
  • In the Battle of Snake Island, Ukraine relies more and more on its air forces.
  • The situation for the soldiers trapped in the Azovstal steel plant in the port city of Mariupol has not changed.

You can find more information about the war in Ukraine here

The Ukrainian coast off the port city of Odessa remains dangerous for Russian soldiers and their attack plans. If they were to position themselves to take control of other sections along the Black Sea – as announced from Moscow – they encountered considerable resistance for days. With Turkish-style Bayraktar combat drones, Ukraine initially prevents Russia from expanding its positions on the strategically important Snake Island, which is only 35 kilometers from the coast, as observed by the services British intelligence.

The Ukrainian Air Force spectacularly reported on the Battle of Snake Island – that’s how it feels in kyiv. Apparently, the Ukrainians first managed to destroy the Russian anti-aircraft defenses on the island with drones, and then bombard them with their own ground attack aircraft. The Russian military says four fighter jets and 10 helicopters were shot down, but Russia’s reputation has taken another hit. After the sinking of the missile cruiser “Moskva” (Moscow), the island was of great importance to the Russians for the control of airspace.

Attacks on civilian targets are no coincidence

In eastern Ukraine, even the new approach adopted by the Russian army is not having the success Moscow hoped for, says the chief strategist of the German Ministry of Defense, Lieutenant General Gunter Schneider, in the “Interrogated” internal military format. One of the reasons is the demanding terrain, which “channels” troop movements and does not allow deploying a large width and full firepower – that is, all tanks next to each other . Instead, the tanks would have to drive in a long line, breaking through several defensive rings of well-prepared Ukrainians.

According to Schneider, the Russian army is trying to destroy these positions with artillery and airstrikes. Attacks on civilian targets – infrastructure and residential buildings – are not random, in the general’s assessment, nor are they a failure. This is done deliberately in order to break the will of the Ukrainian civilian population to defend themselves. “Then war becomes a real horror,” says Schneider.

However – and this is also part of the picture – Ukrainian troops also use abandoned or cleared buildings for their own purposes. Schools and homes can then become shelters and military positions.

Read also : All current information about the war in Ukraine in the live ticker

From the Ukrainian point of view, the successful pushback of Russian troops from the borders of the eastern Ukrainian metropolis, Kharkiv, has been highlighted in recent days. The objective was to put the city out of range of Russian artillery and thus end the bombardment of the city by millions. Some observers consider this to be the first real gain of territory by the Ukrainian armed forces since the outbreak of the war.

However, the successes seem to be based mainly on the fact that the Russian army has only deployed poorly trained fighters from the separatist regions of Lugansk and Donetsk to the sector. A recently published video of the capture of two soldiers from Khrustalnyj (Krasny Luch) seems to support the thesis.

Kremlin: the “liberation” of Luhansk and Donetsk counts

Nevertheless, Ukrainian military expert Oleh Zhdanov expects progress to continue, also with regard to incoming Western weapons. However, the Russian army will probably be reinforced there, the 56-year-old said of his expectations on Ukrainian television. It refers to Putin’s May 9 speech. The head of the Kremlin attached particular importance to the “liberation” of the Lugansk and Donetsk regions.

Heavy fighting is currently taking place, especially around the Luhansk region towns of Sievzherodonetsk and Lysychansk. Despite the losses, the Russian forces apparently managed to cross the Siverskyi Donetsk River west of Lysychansk. And from the south, more troops come to them from the conquered Popasna. The supply route from Bakhmut in the Donetsk region to Lysychansk appears to be in acute danger. Lugansk’s military governor, Serhiy Hajday, wrote: “The situation has deteriorated significantly.”

Equally intense fighting is raging on other sectors of the front in the Donetsk region near Marjinka, Avdiivka and Lyman. However, the Russian army can only show minor territory gains.

The situation for the soldiers trapped in the Azovstal steel plant in the port city of Mariupol has not changed. The daily shelling and bombardments worsen the already desperate situation. The approximately 1,000 defenders, including the wounded, tied up around 2,000 enemy soldiers.

According to Zhdanov, there is still a risk of an attack from the Belarusian side – something some Western experts have recently described as increasingly unlikely. “I would give it a 50/50 rating,” Zhdanov said. He is particularly concerned about the movement of Belarusian special forces to the Ukrainian border. A dangerous moment would come when the Russian forces in Izyum needed an operational break. A “relief attack” in northern Ukraine would then be more likely. (best/dpa)

Putin and Scholz phoned Ukraine

Long after the Bucha massacre, Chancellor Olaf Scholz did not see fit to speak to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Now he is breaking the silence.

Leave a Comment