Translated from Russian by J.Hawk
Fighting in Debaltsevo outskirts have been continuing for
several days. Their intensity approaches the earlier fight for the Donetsk
Airport. Considering the length of the frontline, the Battle for Debaltsevo is
increasingly reminiscent of the Battle of Ilovaysk.
The wedge that was pushed into Novorossia defenses during
the summer had strategic sense for the Ukrainian military. In the event the
offensive was continued, one could have launched a disintegrating blow that
would have cut off the entire Donetsk-Makeyevka-Gorlovka urban agglomeration in
one fell swoop. But during the winter, when it became obvious the Ukrainian
military is in no condition to attack, from the military point of view the salient
should have been abandoned.
But that’s the military point of view. As we know, wars are
started and ended by politicians, the soldiers just do the dying. The Ukrainian
politicians, for their part, could not care less about Ukrainian soldiers. The
media, in its attempt to consolidate Poroshenko’s oligarchic regime, inflated
many myths, about the “cyborgs”, the “unbreakable three lines of defense,”
etc., thus luring the Ukrainian army into the Debaltsevo noose out of which
there is no way out.
One could not have thought of a better configuration of the
frontline and the confluence of circumstances (specifically the junta’s
attachment to its positions) in order to destroy the Debaltsevo grouping. Novorossia,
of course, could not pass it up…
But the Ukrainian soldiers could not retreat. They were
forbidden by their commanders, who were told by politicians that they HAVE TO
hold on to Debaltsevo, just as they were told half a year ago that they HAVE TO
hold Ilovaysk. No matter what. Even if it is an ideal target for modern
Just to understand the hopelessness of the Ukrainian
position, one must keep in mind that at Debaltsevo 90% of casualties are caused
by artillery fire. In the last few days Novorossia forces gradually used its
artillery to force Ukrainian units off the commanding heights, took the only
road from Artemovsk under fire. Junta soldiers report that Novorossia artillery
superiority here is simply overwhelming. Even without a full encirclement,
Novorossia can shoot Ukrainian fortified points with impunity.
Thus began the slaughter.
It’s been going for over a week. Most of Ukrainian heavy
equipment (Debaltsevo alone absorbs a trainload of artillery ammunition per
day) was destroyed in the first few days (artillery, armored vehicles, many
In order to save face, the Kiev politicians have thrown new
batches of cannon fodder into the slaughterhouse. In the last few days, only
the Kharkov hospital has been receiving nearly 90 wounded from Debaltsevo. And
that’s not the only hospital receiving them. So do the hospitals in Artemovs,
Kramatorsk, Starobelsk, Slavyansk, Izyum. The official reporting has not
changed (only 23 wounded along the entire front, officially). While according
to a BBC broadcast, Artemovsk alone received 40 wounded soldiers on a single
The recent bombardments of fortified checkpoints near the
village of Luganskiy and Uglegorsk resulted in their complete destruction.
Uglegorsk was liberated by Novorossia forces, and the junta counterattack
ground to a halt as the approaching column was pinned to the ground by Grad MRL
fire, which fell unexpectedly and accurately, as always.
The events of January 29-20 show that the agony of the
Debaltsevo garrison had begun. It is on that day that Kiev junta’s reserves
reached the point of exhaustion and the garrison defense began to break down.
Every day of fighting means new hundreds of wounded and tens of killed
soldiers. Given the absence of heavy long-ranged self-propelled Ukrainian
artillery near Debaltsevo, the upcoming battles will mean the reduction of the
remnants of the garrison by artillery fire and the mopping up of liberated
areas. Sooner or later one of the walls of the salient will buckle, with the
ensuing panic causing the annihilation and capture of the garrison’s remnants.
But it’s not as simple as that.
For Ukraine’s political elite, such a turn of events means
major shifts within the governing elite. Poroshenko is risking not only his
power but also his head. Hundreds of armed militants have (spontaneously?)
assembled in Kiev, which means that the recent pillar of the regime in the form
of several hundred bayonets arrived in Kiev to hear the president report on the
progress of his work. Moreover, it’s obvious from their faces they are not
concerned about any reports. Dmitriy Yarosh is giving interviews about forming
a parallel General Staff, the Right Sector is openly arming its supporters in
Kiev, creating the so-called 13th Reserve Battalion. Kiev is hastily
preparing for the anniversary of the coup.
Meanwhile in the rear areas…
Meanwhile the economy is sinking to the bottom. Industrial
production fell by 20%, December to December. Tens of factories are closing.
Even flagships (for example Yuzhmash) are halting production. The crisis of
budget non-payment transformed itself into a crisis of wage non-payment. The
reason is perfectly banal. The country has no money.
The most fashionable word on the financial markets is
DEFAULT. Everything is so bad that Kiev already gave up on talks with the IMF
and hired an intermediary to undertake the restructurization of Ukraine’s debt.
Ukraine’s Finance Minister Miss Yaresko yesterday proposed Russia (an
aggressor, according to Kiev’s new classification) to also participate in the
restructurization. It’s surprising she did not propose to buy ammunition from
Russia. But I guess that’s the Minister of Defense’s job.
But it will soon come to that, because the ammunition
situation in Ukraine is pretty bad. The endless Soviet weapons stores seem to
be coming to an end. Ukrainian forces are being supplied with ammunition
produced in the 1960s. That’s all that’s left. Ukraine has no ammunition
factories. In a few months the Ukrainian military will experience several “ammunition
hunger”, to go along with the “vehicle, tank, APC hunger.” Military repair
facilities have combed out of the Soviet-era stores everything that could have
been fixed up and sent it to the front. There will be NO new replacements. From
now on there will be fewer, fewer, and fewer armored vehicles, and more, more,
more Bogdan buses build in Poroshenko-owned factories.
The “Debaltsevo collapse” may be the straw the breaks the
back of the Ukrainian armed forces. The consequences will likely include the overthrow
of the entire Kiev regime. Instead of the plutocrats-oligarchs, the wave of
popular displeasure may bring into power in Kiev a purely totalitarian regime
of Ukrainian Nazis.