Sitrep & Forecast: Big Fighting to Resume – Russian ‘Vacationers’ Will Return

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August 13th, 2015

By: Alexander Zhuchkovsky at Novorosinform

Translated by J. Arnoldski for Fort Russ

“On the Situation in the Militia of Donbass and Possible Events
in the Near Future”

As I recently reported, I often can’t write because of
side-travels and because I stopped using mobile internet. Therefore, like
always, instead of frequent and short reports, I’ll try to make more or less
detailed reviews once a week.

For the past several days, I went around different sectors of the
front, including southwards. Overall, I can confirm the rumors, statements, and
updates of the last few days: the situation has gravely worsened, the number of
shelling and casualties has risen, and the resumption of full-scale activities
is predicted on all levels. Don’t forget that on the 24th, the so-called “day
of independence of Ukraine,” the possibility is not excluded that the UAF will
try to present Donbass with some nasty surprises.

The accumulation of enemy forces and equipment has continued for
several months, and seems to look completed, regroupings are taking place
(“realignment in the order of battle”) and a large group of heavy weapons are
being pulled up close to the line of contact. An unprecedented activation of
UAV’s is visually observable, as the enemy is trying to scan and evaluate our
battle positions before any active measures are taken. The Armed Forces of
Novorossiya are also more actively using drones (our devices are working near
Donetsk), trying to timely pinpoint movements and maneuvers of the enemy, new
weapon emplacements, and units of armored vehicles. It’s necessary to say that
this task hasn’t been so difficult, since for many months we’ve been scanning
the enemy territory near Donetsk and have studied in our field of
responsibility practically every square meter, so all changes in the line of
contact are immediately visible. Now I won’t delve into this topic. After a few
days, I’ll prepare detailed materials on our work with UAV’s in order to show
the specifics of this work and report back to our donors who will gather aerial
reconnaissance.

Practically all units are now combat ready, not only on the front
line of defense, but also in the “second tier” and among internal services. The
biggest enemy forces are concentrated in the district of Volnovakha and the
scenario of an attempt to break through from the south is most likely. Combat
reconnaissance in Belokamenka already spoke about this particular, and there
the day before we lost four guys and had up to 10 were wounded; the enemy had
more than a hundred injured and lost three units of armored vehicles.

If we talk about short-term perspectives, a total bombardment
of Donetsk, Gorlovka, Dokuchaevsk and major centers is expected before the
start of a possible attack. Several sources are talking about the possible use
of aircraft. There are three most probable strike directions: on Donetsk from the
South via Telmanovskiy district and on Gorlovka from Marinki-Krasnogorovki (a
possible attempt to encircle Gorlovka and cut it off from Donetsk). 

From the
south, a frontal attack is unlikely, and is more likely to be wedged “in the
joints” (through Granitnoe to Starobeshevo and between Donetsk and Elenovka).
The tip might follow a diversionary strike on Pesk district. Also expected is a
serious revitalization of Ukrainian sabotage and reconnaissance groups in
Donetsk, whose activities after the winter campaign were almost frozen.

Regarding “military trade” – here I can reassure (hopefully not
in vain). Quite a large group has come, exceeding even that that participated
in and covered the Armed Forces of Novorossiya in the winter campaign. Without
naming specific figures, I can assume that in the case of large-scale
deployments of BD (rus.: боевое дежурство, eng.: combat duty units) on the level of
last summer, the number of “vacationers” and vehicles will not be smaller than
in august of last year (when the danger of cutting off the people’s republics
from the border with Russia was averted and the Ilovaysk cauldron was “brewed.” 

The grouping was divided into two parts, covering the NAF as a minimum in the
south of the DNR and in the dangerous areas in LNR. A lot of “curators”,
recalled to Moscow two months ago, have returned to the front. 

There are no
problems now with the militia’s supply of ammunition, but as for now there are
few “fuels”, as the majority of commanders are complaining, and the fuel is
being strictly dispensed “under task.” As for our heavy weapons, those which
were just recently given back as a “peaceful demonstration” are being returned
back. As an example, the case of Viking Battalion in Telmanovo district: guns
even less than 100mm were set aside, but after the incident near Belokamenka,
weapons have been promptly rushed back. 

The “demonstration of peace”, carried
out unilaterally, turned out to not be needed either by the West or Ukrainian
“partners,” and in some places could expose our fighters to greater risk in the
case of a failure of reconnaissance and a real breakthrough of the UAF.

Since the hottest direction is expected in the south, here
(Telmanovskiy district) our best forces from the Slavyansk Guard are
concentrated – first of all Viking (the backbone of the battalion is up to 60
soldiers who fought back in Slavyansk) and the company under the command of the
legendary “Small,” which defended Shirokino six months ago. At this time, first
and foremost, we’re trying to maintain and support equipment and vehicle
resources, especially these divisions. The other day, we delivered more than
half of a batch purchased at the end of July to Viking, and in this month we’ll
try to provide all that’s necessary to “Small.”

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