Sunday, January 18, 2015

Novorussia SITREP: Intensive combat operation all over the line of contact in Novorussia

Things look very bad today and very intensive combat operations, in particular artillery strikes, are reported everywhere in Novorussia.  At the very least, in the following locations:

1) Donetsk Airport: the Ukrainians attacked with a fairly large concentration of armor and under heavy artillery fire.  As for tonight (local time) all of these attacks have been successfully repelled but intelligences sources are reporting a sharp rise in the number of tanks and armored vehicles all around the Donestk airport.  The Novorussians are expecting attacks from Peski and Avdeevka.

2) The Ukrainian artillery has opened for almost everywhere along the front.  The Ukrainian airforce has also dropped several 500kg bombs from high altitude on the city of Gorlovka.

3) Novorussian units are returning fire and the outskirts of Mariupol have come under Novorussian artillery attacks.

4) The Chairman of the Novorussian Parliament, Oleg Tsarev, has declared that his sources indicate that the Ukrainian plan submitted to Poroshenko looked at a spectrum of options: the best one was to totally free Novorussian from all Novorussians, the minimal one was to cut-off Donetsk from Luganks and both of these cities from the Russian border.

5) Plenty of US made weapons have been recovered in the New Terminal of the Donestk airport.

6) There are reports that the Ukrainian forces are attempting to encircle Debaltsevo.

7) Putin's spokesman Dmitrii Peskov has declared that the Ukrainian side had rejected all Russian offers and presented no counter-proposals.  He concluded that the Ukrainians have chose the option of going to war.

8) Please click here for an high res updated map of combats.

9) The Ukrainians are now accusing the Novorussians of using "super-weapons" in Peski.  No, no nuclear devices (as the Ukie defense minister claimed were used south of Lugansk), but heavy-flame throwers of the Buratino TOS-1 type.  The Ukies speak of a "bloodbath in Peski" which, as J.Hawk, the translator for ForRuss noticed, is a sure sign of panic.

10) Initial reports seem to indicate the the Novorussian military has entered the town of Peski.

11) The head of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the NAF, General Petrov, has declared that the Ukrainians have resumed ballistic missile strikes and that several Tochka missiles were fired today.

12) Zakharchenko has declared that "we are now engaged in a heavy counter-attack operation from Mariupol to Gorlovka".


It appears certain is that Nazi junta as decided to resume combat operations.  Whether this is "an" attack or "the" attack remains to be seen, but the fact that ballistic missiles and bombers have been used seem to indicate that this one is qualitatively different.  My therefore leaning more towards the "the" attack option.

The situation around the airport has resulted in many poorly informed comments.  The following needs to be clarified.

a) The Donetsk airport has zero military value other then being a heavily fortified location near the city of Donetsk.  The main importance of the airport is symbolic as it was the place where by far the toughest and best Ukrainian units were sent into combat.

b) I am pretty sure that when the new terminal was taken over by the Novorussians (this indisputable as there is *a lot* of footage of this even) the junta generals grabbed their phone and began screaming into it demanding an immediate and massive counter attack.  This is what happened today.  According to Novorussian sources a total of 6 attack waves were repelled and 15 Ukrainian MBTs used in the attempt to retake the new terminal.

c) It is not surprising that this attack failed.  Heavily fortified objectives like the new terminal cannot be taken by tank and artillery fire, though they can be damaged by them.  Such objective can only be taken by very well trained and heavily armed infantry assault groups capable and willing to fight in very dangerous and difficult conditions.  Such groups, often called "assault/storming groups" are composed of experienced fighters which include machine-gunners, demolition-sapper combat engineers, snipers, anti-tank weapons, mortars, grenade-launchers, etc.  These are not the kind of units which the Ukrainians have a lot of, nor are these the kind of units which can be trained in a few weeks or even a few months.  This is why the Ukrainian assault have failed and most likely will continue to fail.

If this is indeed "the" much expected Ukrainian attack, then it fully confirms what everybody has been predicting: the Ukrainians are betting on large numbers of tanks, armored vehicles, artillery pieces and infantrymen to overwhelm the Novorussian defenders.  This is a losing strategy because not only will the by now highly experienced and combat hardened Novorussians perform infinitely better than the terrified and/or brainwashed Ukrainians with just a month or so of bootcamp under their belts, but because the inevitable bloodbath resulting from this kind of attack will rapidly break the willpower and morale of the Ukrainian side.  

The single most important factor here is not whether the Ukrainians will lose, but whether the Novorussians will be capable of winning without an over Russian intervention to support them.  My personal feeling is that yes, the Novorussians will succeed in beating back the Ukrainian assault and that Russia will not have to intervene openly (from what I hear the Voentorg is already working at full capacity, hence the TOS-1 in Peski).

I have to confess that I am nervous when I see Zakharchenko, Givi and Motorola at the very front lines quite literally within reach of the Ukrainian assault rifles.  I do fully understand why they feel that they have to do that, but I also get a knot in my stomach when I see them, especially all together a standing a few feet from each other.  If you are religious, please pray for these courageous men.

The Saker