Ukraine

dogwatch

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Not surprisingly, given the very difficult situation, there are a range of reports coming out about Ukrane morale. Just for instance, this would be a potential counterpoint to your link (and no, NBC News is certainly not a russian asset). It will simply depend on who and when you ask. How close an army is to breaking is a hard thing, near impossible thing (since it is a 'tipping point sort of dynamic), to assess in the best of situations.

I agree totally with your comment that it is hard to foresee where/how/when this resolves. I also totally agree with the notion that Ukrane can never trust any agreement with russia, and that ofc then makes any negotiated solution extremely problamatic.

The piece I linked was by a refugee who isn't in the country and it did occur to me that might make it difficult for her to report on current morale in UKR, with perhaps an understandable rose-tinted hue. I still thought it interesting and it seems to have resonated with quite a few here.

According to this week's Economist, NATO is now out of RUS-type ammunition, hence there is no more to supply to UKR. Switching to NATO-types means supplying artillery, ammunition and training, which is a big deal. Also, the artillery supplied by France (for instance) is a significant proportion of its stocks and NATO countries are having to ramp up production to supply UKR, against a background of skilled labour shortages. So supplying UKR with its demands is more than a matter of political will. I realise there are others here who know much more about military hardware than I do, still, I thought, interesting. Sorry, I read the Economist on dead trees, so no links to hand.

Finally, another noteworthy long read https://samf.substack.com/p/paralysis-in-moscow this time by a British Professor of War Studies https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_Freedman and the same piece appears in https://www.newstatesman.com/world/europe/ukraine/2022/06/moscow-russia-vladimir-putin-his-strategy

He detects a possibly significant shift in Putin's position a speech at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum in apparently deeming UKR joining the EU as acceptable. This might form the basis of an end-game for Russia in a settlement in Donbas only, however this in itself is unlikely to be acceptable to Zelensky. It's a long piece and I'm not going to try to precis it; well worth reading.
 

Stingray~

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He detects a possibly significant shift in Putin's position a speech at the St Petersburg International Economic Forum in apparently deeming UKR joining the EU as acceptable.
I listened to some of that speech by Putin and this point struck me too. The possibility also struck me that he is dismissing it, given what a long road Ukr has ahead to ever achieve acceptance into the EU, given the fundamental changes required.

About troop morale, well I'm sure it is all over the place - on both sides - and supply lines play a big part in it.

People are getting blown apart, it's f'in awefull.
 
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Mark_K

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Longish piece by a Ukrainian refugee on why Ukrainians want to fight on (and why Zelensky pretty much needs to hang on for the ride). Worth reading.

Everybody says that when wars are young. "We'll never give an inch and woe to the leader who does!" Wars have a way of getting old though, particularly stalemates.
Ukraine should use HIMARS to pound road and rail infrastructure which should now be within reach.
Unlikely they will use the expensive (read: limited ammo supply) HIMARS for such. Roads with one hole are easy to patch, RRs with one gap not that much more difficult. You want a LOT of holes and gaps, which regular artillery can provide. HIMARS will be reserved for military hardware like artillery fire bases, armor and the like.
 

Stingray~

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Unlikely they will use the expensive (read: limited ammo supply) HIMARS for such. Roads with one hole are easy to patch, RRs with one gap not that much more difficult. You want a LOT of holes and gaps, which regular artillery can provide. HIMARS will be reserved for military hardware like artillery fire bases, armor and the like.
And railroad bridges, if there are any being used by Ru. They take a LOT of time to rebuild and must therefore be high-value targets too. And maybe airport facilities if Ru are landing supplies by air.
 
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phill_nz

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Switching to NATO-types means supplying artillery, ammunition and training, which is a big deal.
i see this sentence written a lot
specifically the ( re ) training bit
i however cannot see it
( obviously to state the next bit i need some cred in the area so i will say im ex military and mainly the fire control area )
the longest part of weapons training in my experience isn't learning what one does its learning what order things are done in and why
what one does is specific to each weapon system .. so a conversion is needed but because you already understand the basics .. doesn't take long
the when and why things are done is generic to almost all forms of weaponry ( the command and control orders and structure ) so doesn't really change when you understand them
also there is a lot said about changing to more modern systems
i have found they are almost always a crap ton easier to use than the older types and you require a lot less intimate knowledge of whats happening than you do with more man-draulic stuff .. its now largely done at the push of a button
when you have reached the point where you understand what order things have to happen in .. making the right thing happen at the right time isn't hard .. or difficult to change
 
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enigmatically2

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I don't means this rudely @phill_nz , but IIRC your military experience was pre-Falklands era. That in time is equivalent to the transition from muskets to WW1, and in technology is even bigger. When you left the NZ Navy, what computer did you have at home? So has civil technology moved, military has just as much.

It is true that in many respects this technology makes the systems easier to use, but it brings in a lot of other skills. For example the maintenance of an artillery piece involves more than the choice of a hammer or a bigger hammer.

The shells have different modes, selecting them may be easy, but the training is in why you choose the different modes (or shells) to be most effective.
The training employing (and avoiding) counter battery fire is very different now the timescales are measured in seconds. The training for command and use of artillery now has to be more tied up with the whole sensor-shooter chain.

Yes loading, aiming and firing is easily learned, but that is a tiny part of what is needed
 

phill_nz

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there was always a bit more to it than that
to be fair .. yes today's land arty is a a lot closer to yesterdays naval gunnery than yesterday's arty

for our most common main gun we had >7 types of shell and 4 different fuses for them 1 of which had 4 modes

shooting first and getting out of the way of any reply is not a new concept

they are also coming from today's era not yesterdays .. lots of countries now have computer's at home some even have phones with no cords as well

and it doesn't change .... they will already know why something has to happen and when
learning the what has to happen is easy as they will already know the basics of that


for the not a new concept .... it was what this was about
 
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enigmatically2

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It's gone further than that. For example. You didn't have guided shells. You didn't have to worry which type of guidance to use. Do you know the factors to take into consideration when choosing the type of guidance? No. And neither does anyone trained on Russian type artillery moving to some of this NATO stuff.
Being trained to press the buttons is easy. Knowing which buttons is harder.
Lots of other stuff too
 

LeoV

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Good discussion, and I would guess the needed quick shoot and scoot tactics needs a bit of training too. And inntegrating of UAV to know what you want to hit. Russia stepped up EW measures. Hence you do not hear much of the Bayaktar drones.
 

Steam Flyer

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Good discussion, and I would guess the needed quick shoot and scoot tactics needs a bit of training too. And inntegrating of UAV to know what you want to hit. Russia stepped up EW measures. Hence you do not hear much of the Bayaktar drones.

Shoot 'n scoot requires instantaneous real-time target data. If the Russians are stepping up their ECM/EW game, that's a bad sign of bringing increased resources rather than being worn down.

Still a see-saw war of attrition with numbers favoring the Russians. I'm really hoping the Ukrainians can pull off another offensive and push them back
 

Mark_K

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And railroad bridges, if there are any being used by Ru. They take a LOT of time to rebuild and must therefore be high-value targets too. And maybe airport facilities if Ru are landing supplies by air.
True. HIMARS might be used on a bridge long enough or high enough to be hard to re-build or fill in that regular artillery can't reach, most definitely.

It appears both sides primary goal is attrition. The Rooskies are running out of trained men. The Ukrainians are taking heavy casualties too, and have a smaller population to draw from. The entire Lysychansk pocket fight seems to be that. They are only fighting the Russians there to draw them out. Nothing else makes much sense.

If it's about territory for Ukraine I think down south is what they most want. Kherson. Some noise this week they launched an offensive due north of Mariople, driving south. The narrowest part. If they can get to the coast, all they need do is blow the bridge to Crimea to cut off the Russian forces there. Only supply would be by sea, and that won't work out well. And the Rooskies have nearly every remaining effective unit in the Lysychansk pocket.
 

Stingray~

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True. HIMARS might be used on a bridge long enough or high enough to be hard to re-build or fill in that regular artillery can't reach, most definitely.

It appears both sides primary goal is attrition. The Rooskies are running out of trained men. The Ukrainians are taking heavy casualties too, and have a smaller population to draw from. The entire Lysychansk pocket fight seems to be that. They are only fighting the Russians there to draw them out. Nothing else makes much sense.

If it's about territory for Ukraine I think down south is what they most want. Kherson. Some noise this week they launched an offensive due north of Mariople, driving south. The narrowest part. If they can get to the coast, all they need do is blow the bridge to Crimea to cut off the Russian forces there. Only supply would be by sea, and that won't work out well. And the Rooskies have nearly every remaining effective unit in the Lysychansk pocket.
Agree.

Another big focus for Ukr must be the goal to keep Odessa. Saw a report today saying they are getting about 20 USCG coastal patrol boats, they are small but it's a start and a sign of probable intention for what will develop at sea.
 
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Mark_K

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Agree.

Another big focus for Ukr must be the goal to keep Odessa. Saw a report today saying they are getting about 20 USCG coastal patrol boats, they are small but it's a start and a sign of probable intention for what will develop at sea.
I suspect they aren't worried about Odessa. They know the key to Crimea's water is Kherson, and Crimea is useless without that water, so the Russians have to defend it at all costs. An effort that might draw out the last of Russia's reservists and conscripts. Recruiting is becoming difficult in Russia.
 

Stingray~

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Russian forces are now in control of the battered city of Severodonetsk in eastern Ukraine, its mayor says.

Lysychansk will be the next to fall, Kramatorsk later.

In the reports I saw today they said Ru is now launching a thousand artillery rounds per hour, round the clock. Yikes...
 

Stingray~

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I suspect they aren't worried about Odessa.
The rest of the world is.. There are 22 million tons of food in silos there, silos that need to be emptied asap to supply a bunch of countries and to then receive and store the spring crops.

Saw one BBC report suggesting there is a bunch of corruption and thuggery going on, among the business interests, about whose side to take over the food supplies, the food transport, whose farms and own silos are getting spared from bombardment, and the profits and payoffs to be made. It's a mess..
 
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Mark_K

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The rest of the world is.. There are 22 million tons of food in silos there, silos that need to be emptied asap to supply a bunch of countries and to then receive and store the spring crops.

Saw one BBC report suggesting there is a bunch of corruption and thuggery going on, among the business interests, about whose side to take over the food supplies, the food transport, whose farms and own silos are getting spared from bombardment, and the profits and payoffs to be made. It's a mess..
The blockade does not require physical possession of Odesa and the Russians are in no shape to stage up a major offensive, so I don't know what the rest of the world is thinking about there.
 

Stingray~

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The blockade does not require physical possession of Odesa and the Russians are in no shape to stage up a major offensive, so I don't know what the rest of the world is thinking about there.
The UN Sec General visited Moscow recently and then Kiev, trying to figure the food supply problem out. Ru is basically holding it hostage, against financial sanctions relief - despite the sanctions having nothing to do with food.

As I have been predicting since months ago, this could get to the point where a naval showdown happens in the Black Sea. The possibility of widespread starvation is obviously a very-very important subject.

The only part of Mariupol Ru did not decimate was the port. Maybe some of the food will go through there.
 

LeoV

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Lysychansk will be the next to fall, Kramatorsk later.

In the reports I saw today they said Ru is now launching a thousand artillery rounds per hour, round the clock. Yikes...
L, yes, Kram, will take a long time. It is on the next defensible ridge.
That Russia needs so many arty, points that if they do not, the Ukrainians would advance.
 

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