cassad_eng (cassad_eng) wrote,

Situation in Donbass as of September 2nd

Recent days clearly demonstrate the consequences of the catastrophe of the junta's Southern front.

1. Militia offensive south of Donetsk continues to gain ground. The junta simply has no forces here to close a huge gap that stretches from Georgiyevka and Karlovka to the Azov sea. All available forces were sent to defend Mariupol, and to the frontlines west of Donetsk - to prevent a cleaving strike through Selidovo on Krasnoarmeysk and Konstantinovka. Such an attack could lead to a deep encirclement of the junta forces besieging Donetsk.

There are simply no forces available to cover this huge hole in the front, so here the Novorossiya Armed Forces (“NAF”) simply move forward, only delayed by the lack of its own forces and the necessity to control the territory already captured. In essence, only the weakness of the NAF turns the catastrophe happening right before our eyes into a drawn-out process. For example, if the mechanized brigades of the Russian army were advancing here, then they could use this operational void to break through all the way to the Dnieper river relatively unhindered – there would be nothing to stop them. Nevertheless, it is expected that in a few days the army of Novorossiya will start encountering some hastily created screens that are supposed to slow down the unfolding catastrophe in this area. Also, this week, 2-3 reinforced armored battlegroups are expected to enter combat on the junta side. The remains of the junta forces by D’yakovo and Ilovaysk are doomed, very few fighters would be able to get out. Needless to say, the NAF will continue capturing a lot of trophies.

By now, NAF essentially put Mariupol in operational encirclement. The morale of the encircled troops is low, support of the population is about 60 to 40 in our favor (among the politically active residents). The hopes for naval supply were dashed by the attacks on border guard boats at sea near Mariupol [I think it would be good to put a picture of a burning boat somewhere here with English caption, or I’ve got a video]. This suggests that a complete blockade of the city was planned and the capture of Mariupol is one of the priority goals. At the same time, the NAF can use this blockade to their advantage – they are now free to deploy their sabotage/reconnaissance groups (SRG) towards the outskirts of Berdyansk and on the territories bordering Zaporozhye. In essence, there is ongoing probing to determine the future directions for continued advance - reinforced SRGs and some of the NAF forces redeploying to the area now will advance in those areas where there are no enemy forces, or where the enemy forces are weak.

One can say that the NAF are currently copying the tactic of the junta forces from July and the first half of August, when the junta similarly looked for gaps in the militia lines and advanced their mechanized groups and SRGs into these gaps. This tactic already achieved a new operational encirclement of the junta forces: a so-called Volnovakha cauldron emerged. A semblance front line between Volnovakha and Mar'inka fell apart once again, and now the enemy will have to either break out with major losses or, once again, surrender vehicles in order to save personnel.

Overall, the offensive is developing very successfully here, which influences the situation on the other Novorossiya fronts. The rout of the South Front of the junta is equivalent to the Stalingrad defeat of Nazi Germany - the war may continue and it may continue for a while, but it is clear that the war machine of the junta is breaking down and it won't be able to achieve a military victory anymore. The tide has turned, and the destruction of Novorossiya is no longer possible.

2. The rout of the South Front of the junta forced it to not only pull all reserves to the breakthroughs south of Donetsk, but also to withdraw forces wedged into the NAF positions elsewhere. The junta already started to withdraw forces from the Donetsk airport. It is still partially held for now, but will clearly be abandoned within a week. There is absolutely no sense in keeping this protrusion - it is no longer useful as an airport (both sides damaged it quite heavily) and it lost its meaning as a foothold for offensives against Donetsk a week ago, when the front to the south of Donetsk disintegrated.

The fierce resistance there is only a sign of operational impotence of the junta in this area, as the previous assault on Donetsk from the north ran out of steam on the streets of Yasinovataya and in the north-western suburbs – although there was a moment when the NAF were quite pessimistic about the perspectives of repelling that offensive. These days, a timid strike of the junta towards Yasinovataya was a shadow of its former might - it ended up weak and futile, the NAF didn't even have to pull serious forces from the south to parry it.

Opening up a corridor out of the encirclement near Yelenovka helped the junta save a part of the encircled forces, but at the same time led to losses in materiel and abandoning important positions that were essential for shelling Donetsk. The junta group holding Debalcevo is in a precarious position, as the NAF strikes towards Svetlodarsk unambiguously suggest intent to encircle all of the junta forces in the area of Debalcevo and Uglegorsk, instead of attacking those head-on. The junta faces an unpleasant choice: either it will have to abandon Debalcevo and Uglegorsk voluntarily and retreat to Svetlodarsk, or it will persist in defending, risking a Debalcevo cauldron forming within several days. Overall, the enemy will be gradually driven off from the positions north of Donetsk, too. Approximately in 7-8 days the shelling of Donetsk should cease, and the capital of Novorossiya will no longer be a frontline city.

3. The NAF forces in the Stakhanov/Alchevsk area are still on the defensive, due to lack of available armor and artillery. They are trying to pin opposing enemy forces in place and using SRGs to conduct reconnaissance by combat in the direction of Severodonetsk and Slavyanoserbsk. Overall, the "Ghost" brigade of Alexey Mozgovoi holds the frontline here, allowing the NAF to perform offensive actions in the vicinities of Donetsk and Lugansk.

However, if additional forces are redeployed to the area of Gorskoe (2-3 armored battlegroups and up to a battalion of infantry with the support of MLRS and tube artillery), the NAF would be quite capable of performing a strike towards Severodonetsk and Lisichansk. But it is more probable that, while the cauldrons elsewhere are being finished off, the militia here will stay on the defensive.

4. To the south of Lugansk, the enemy started retreating from the Lugansk airport and is close to routing, Lutugino is being abandoned as well. In essence, a “wandering cauldron” is forming here, and it will have a very hard time returning to its own side because there is not much to relieve it from the north. The junta pointlessly wasted the majority of its tanks here in July and August, and the last remaining combat capable units were ground to dust in heavy fighting by Khryashevatoye and Novosvetlovka. Of course, the fighting here won't stop immediately, but the retreat from the airport is a clear indication that taking Lugansk is no longer on the agenda. The retreat from Khryashevatoye and Novosvetlovka and the withdrawal from the airport put an end to the junta’s ambitious plan of encircling Lugansk.

The fighting in Stanitsa Luganskaya, which is still partially controlled by the junta, certainly prevents the NAF from putting more pressure on the encircled troops south of Lugansk. However, this only slows down the events without changing their overall course. Having lost the aerial superiority in this area, and having lost the majority of tanks and IFVs on the roads near Lugansk, the junta forces north of Lugansk will be forced to keep passively defending. Meanwhile, the stragglers to the south of Lugansk will continue their attempts to break out. This will continue until the NAF clears everyone to the south of Lugansk, accumulates sufficient forces and strikes Schast’e or, bypassing it, Novoaidar.
However, due to the organizational weakness of the LPR and the issues with joint command (some of the commanders continue to fight on their own), the offensive here is proceeding fairly slowly, even though the configuration of the frontlines favors routing the junta.

5. In general, the military situation is currently favorable for us. The inertia of the offensive and the configuration of the frontline allow us to expect new tactical and operational successes in the coming days, as well as further losses of personnel and vehicles for the junta. In the light of the junta’s losses and new trophies of the militia (plus the work of the "military surplus store"), and also in the light of the influx of volunteers, the ratio of forces continues to improve.

Right now, due to its losses, the junta can deploy no more than 40 000 soldiers against the 29-33 thousand NAF soldiers. The junta advantage in vehicles is currently no more than two-fold, at best, maybe even less than that. The junta air force continues to suffer catastrophic losses. Overall, over the last 2 months of its offensive the junta was stripped of the overwhelming advantage in personnel and vehicles, lost its aerial superiority, and the militia now effectively has as much tubed and rocket artillery as the junta.

Current trend is that the consequences of the collapse of the junta’s Southern Front will lead to the liberation of the majority of the Donetsk People's Republic (“DPR”) and to combat in the Zaporozh’e region. That is, combat may soon enter enemy territory that originally wasn't controlled by the DPR and the LPR.

6. With respect to politics, backstage dealings about the future of Novorossiya continue. It is already obvious that Novorossiya will happen. Yesterday’s news sensation - that the leadership of Novorossiya is ready to agree to "united Ukraine", suggests that the party of "Greater Transnistria" does not abandon its attempts to limit the results of the rebellion to the territory of the DPR and the LPR. This party continues to inject provocative ideas through the Russian media in order to discredit the leadership of the people's republics. The latter obviously cannot go against the sentiment of soldiers and residents of Novorossiya, who are determined to exit Ukraine altogether.

Nevertheless, it is clear that sooner or later it will come down to negotiations, and so it is critically important that the army of Novorossiya capture as many cities and districts of the former Ukraine as possible, in order to ensure a more comfortable position for these negotiations. Honestly, continuing the war is beneficial for us, because currently it looks like the junta will continue to lose more and more ground. For now, the negotiations need to be delayed or disrupted. The fact that the junta is unwilling to negotiate is actually a plus, because this can be used to prevent the junta from getting at least some kind of "honorable peace".
However, judging from official and unofficial announcements, the enemy increasingly understands that this war cannot be won and that it is necessary to save that which can still be saved.

In general, the war will be won by us and Novorossiya will happen within some yet indeterminate borders, as a rather big unrecognized state. So, those who helped our struggle can already feel their involvement in our common victory, which is now assured.
PS. A huge number of photos of captured and destroyed materiel and various trophies.

Original article: (in Russian)

Major corrections to the text of this translations were graciously contributed by tatzhit.
Tags: fascism, junta, novorossia, ukraine, war in ukraine
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