Ukraine

P Flados

Anarchist
733
305
North Carolina
Ukraine is somewhat more likely now to be able to get control of Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts than they were before the invasion. Ukraine did not have HIMARS and did not have Western intelligence backing them up - and the dispute simmered from 2014 to the invasion.

Putin has unwittingly created the conditions he wanted the SMO to prevent.

If Ukraine doesn't end up in NATO, how will Ukraine acquire the security guarantees they need to end the war from their perspective? Treaties with Russia don't work unless backed up by Western security guarantees, the best of which is NATO membership.
I agree with the last point, but do not agree with the first point.

In the Donbass, Russia can continually send cannon fodder to the front line, and maintain heavy tube and rocket artillery support. The supply lines come in directly overland from Russia. They are digging in multiple lines of defense to prevent any breakthrough that would allow large encirclements. Even if Ukraine pushed them back some, they would hit very well established defensive lines at the borders of the regions controlled by Russia prior to February.

The good news is that improved rockets such as GLSDB (https://www.saab.com/products/ground-launched-small-diameter-bomb-glsdb) or ER GMRLS (https://lockheedmartin.com/en-us/products/guided-mlrs-unitary-rocket.html), are likely to be in production soon. These should allow Ukraine to hit about twice as far as the GMRLS they are using now. This can reach all Russian ammo dumps / logistic centers on the Ukrainian mainland. However, shooting even a short distance into Russia may be forbidden for political reasons. As such, in the regions controlled by Russia prior to February, they are very likely to maintain some degree of functional overland supply routes from Russian territory.

With well dug in defenses and decent supply lines, pushing Russians out is best done with a very concentrated combined arms approach. This requires Ukraine to gain local air superiority (not looking likely). Without air superiority, advances pretty much require blasting the opposing forces (including bunkers) into oblivion. This is a very slow and costly approach. Even if Ukraine does push the lines back some, are they really willing to level every major city in Russian held territory?

Now, the above does not apply to the region West of Mariupol or to Crimea. With rockets effective at 150 km, Ukraine can first seriously compromise all supply lines on the mainland. This allows advances toward the Sea of Azov. If Ukraine reaches the coast, 150 km puts the Kerch bridge in range. At this point, Ukraine can go after the entire region to the West of their advance and all of Crimea just like they did the Kherson region.
 

EYESAILOR

Super Anarchist
3,728
2,207
I agree with the last point, but do not agree with the first point.

In the Donbass, Russia can continually send cannon fodder to the front line, and maintain heavy tube and rocket artillery support. The supply lines come in directly overland from Russia. They are digging in multiple lines of defense to prevent any breakthrough that would allow large encirclements. Even if Ukraine pushed them back some, they would hit very well established defensive lines at the borders of the regions controlled by Russia prior to February.
I agree that the Donbass will be challenging for Ukraine .

However:

1) I dont think the Russian military can play the Cannon Fodder strategy. The Russian military is massively outnumbered in the field by Ukraine. Even with conscription Russia simply does not have the manpower pipeline to achieve numeric equality with Ukraine. Ukraine is a large country fighting for its very existence. Every able bodied fighting man and woman is ready to bear arms and NATO has made its many training facilities available. Russia is an invading force, They can only conscript a relatively small portion of the population before meeting domestic resistance. Their training facilities are in chaos as the recent conscription showed. They still have not got the additional 300,000 conscripts in the field that Putin promised. Russia is getting further behind in manpower and I dont see how they can possibly just exchange pieces in a cannon fodder battle.
2) In order to defeat Ukraine, Russia has 2 options
(i) Achieve technological superiority with more advanced weapons than Ukraine and better trained special forces so that they are killing 2 Ukrainians for every one Russian.
(ii) Civilian bombardment to destroy morale and supply chain.

I think that # (i) is a fools errand. If anything the support from Nato is enabling Ukraine to catch up with Russia and even gain some technological superiority over Russian forces
Russia has clearly embarked on # (ii). It is their only option.

If Ukraine can gain sufficient air defense systems from NATO and achieve some sort of air superiority, to end the civilian bombardment, then the Russian offense is over. They will only be defending the Donbass and it is a matter of time and resolve before Russia has to seek peace.

If Ukraine cannot counter the civilian bombardment in a timely fashion then they are going to have to negotiate with Russia.

I really think the war now moves to an air war. Miles here or there in the Donbass and Kherson are not going to matter compared to winning the air war. NATO should concentrate its support and efforts to providing air defense systems, training Ukrainian air defense batteries and supplying offensive aircraft and training pilots. If the drones and missiles can be countered then the strategic landscape of the war will change .

A lot has changed since 1940 but when the RAF turned back the German bombers and established air superiority in the short but critical Battle of Britain, and inflicted a severe cost for civilian bombardment....... the seeds for D day had been sown.

If Russia loses the air war, then yes they will dig in deeply in the Donbass and they will have short supply lines....but it is a war they can no longer win. It will make the Russian occupation of Afghanistan look like a walk in the park. Their economy and military morale will take a beating ...for what? 25,000 square kilometers ?

If Russia wins the air war then they keep Crimea and Donbass and get a treaty.

If I was a betting girl, I dont think they win the air war. But that is not clear at the moment.
 

barfy

Super Anarchist
5,229
1,454
^ nice. The air war is now as much an emerging technologies war as a production war. Advantage: West.
 

Signs of Another Humiliating Loss Send Russia Into Denial Mode​

"Russian forces may be preparing to leave the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, which Russia has occupied since the early months of the war this year, according to Ukrainian authorities.

Mykhailo Podolyak, adviser to the head of the Office of the President of Ukraine, said Sunday he believes Russian troops will be leaving the power plant as Ukrainian forces continue to make advances in occupied territories.


“Russian servicemen will leave the Zaporizhzhia NPP, as their line of defense is gradually moving towards the borders of the Russian Federation,” Podolyak said in an interview with Freedom TV.

Russian news outlets have also been hinting at a possible withdrawal from the plant, Petro Kotin, the head of Ukraine’s state nuclear energy company Energoatom, said Sunday.

“There are some signs showing that they might be going to leave the Zaporizhzhia NPP,” Kotin said. “There have been a lot of publications in the Russian press saying that the Zaporizhzhia NPP could be left and handed over to the IAEA's control.”"
 

Rain Man

Super Anarchist
7,609
2,373
Wet coast.
This is why the Russians have already lost the war - sorry Sluggo, but it is true. Note the difference in morale between a Ukrainian soldier and the mobiks who are complaining about lack of food, shelter, proper equipment and competent leadership, and spend most of their time trying to figure out how to get out of the war.

 

dogwatch

Super Anarchist
17,536
2,006
South Coast, UK
Ukraine must have existed as a society and polity on 23 February 2022, else Ukrainians would not have collectively resisted Russian invasion the next day. What does it mean for a nation to exist? Timothy Snyder explores these and other questions in a very timely course.

Yale class, something around 18 hours. I'm onto #3. Recommended if you are interested enough and like podcasts. Actually videos but might as well be podcasts.

 

enigmatically2

Super Anarchist
4,260
2,233
Earth
Slug is amazingly partially correct. We are running out of some types of missile that we have been sending to Ukraine. That is because a lot of the types we have been sending are obsolete. Still better than the best Ru kit, but last generation obsolete kit. Since we stopped manufacturing them a while ago, we will run out (the alternative would have been to destroy them when they hit their Lifex.
The bad news for Slug is that when they do run out, we might have to send new kit, which is of course even better. And then NATO can out produce Russia by a factor of many tens. Especially given that sanctions are now starting to hit Russian industry quite hard. Planes crashing through lack of maintenance, trucks stopping, factories failing.

Which at some point will be key in the Donbass. In a battle of attrition, Russia will eventually lose.
 

LeoV

Super Anarchist
13,444
4,347
The Netherlands
Fito1-VXEAAbE7N

The first 152 mm shells of Ukrainian production. Produced by Ukroboronprom.
 

chesirecat

Super Anarchist
1,406
817
Shoebox on M'way
I agree with the last point, but do not agree with the first point.

In the Donbass, Russia can continually send cannon fodder to the front line, and maintain heavy tube and rocket artillery support. The supply lines come in directly overland from Russia. They are digging in multiple lines of defense to prevent any breakthrough that would allow large encirclements. Even if Ukraine pushed them back some, they would hit very well established defensive lines at the borders of the regions controlled by Russia prior to February.

The good news is that improved rockets such as GLSDB (https://www.saab.com/products/ground-launched-small-diameter-bomb-glsdb) or ER GMRLS (https://lockheedmartin.com/en-us/products/guided-mlrs-unitary-rocket.html), are likely to be in production soon. These should allow Ukraine to hit about twice as far as the GMRLS they are using now. This can reach all Russian ammo dumps / logistic centers on the Ukrainian mainland. However, shooting even a short distance into Russia may be forbidden for political reasons. As such, in the regions controlled by Russia prior to February, they are very likely to maintain some degree of functional overland supply routes from Russian territory.

With well dug in defenses and decent supply lines, pushing Russians out is best done with a very concentrated combined arms approach. This requires Ukraine to gain local air superiority (not looking likely). Without air superiority, advances pretty much require blasting the opposing forces (including bunkers) into oblivion. This is a very slow and costly approach. Even if Ukraine does push the lines back some, are they really willing to level every major city in Russian held territory?

Now, the above does not apply to the region West of Mariupol or to Crimea. With rockets effective at 150 km, Ukraine can first seriously compromise all supply lines on the mainland. This allows advances toward the Sea of Azov. If Ukraine reaches the coast, 150 km puts the Kerch bridge in range. At this point, Ukraine can go after the entire region to the West of their advance and all of Crimea just like they did the Kherson region.
If Ukraine get into controlling the approaches to Crimea if not Crimea itself - a distinct possibility, then they control the Black Sea Fleet even in their current semi-safe harbour Novorossiysk. That will be a huge strategic loss and loss of a key trading route. It will severely impact Russia's maritime trading ability.
 

LeoV

Super Anarchist
13,444
4,347
The Netherlands
These flights are happening since Covid, China only wants foreigner planes to land on a specific airfield. Intel is not sure this is about military stuff.
 

Stingray~

Super Anarchist
13,149
3,637
PNW
These flights are happening since Covid, China only wants foreigner planes to land on a specific airfield. Intel is not sure this is about military stuff.
Speaking of Covid, has there been anything in the news about it affecting troops?
 

EYESAILOR

Super Anarchist
3,728
2,207
If Ukraine get into controlling the approaches to Crimea if not Crimea itself - a distinct possibility, then they control the Black Sea Fleet even in their current semi-safe harbour Novorossiysk. That will be a huge strategic loss and loss of a key trading route. It will severely impact Russia's maritime trading ability.
Its the air war!
In the next chapter, this is all that matters.

The Black Sea fleet will not determine the outcome of the war in Ukraine.
Ukraine will not control the Russian Black sea fleet even if they have some success in Crimea. Ukraine has no way of denying access to and from Novorossiysk. Ukraine cannot attack that deeply into Russian territory without alienating their allies.

Its the air war now. If Ukraine can win the air war, then the dominoes will start falling.
 
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