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Will Putin Invade Ukraine?

Started by Cassia, January 20, 2022, 01:29:34 PM

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Of course, for operational security, these positions are dated from several days ago and do not accurately reflect current realities.  It serves just to show the high level of activity in that area and highlight the overall momentum.  The Ukrainian brass says that it now has several bridgeheads on the other side of the river, as opposed to the couple it has had recently and the one it had months ago.  There's a definite trend...

Russia for their part has attacked Ukrainian positions with gliding bombs, which Ukraine has little hope of intercepting and therefore must stay mobile or dig in.  They have also largely wasted their remaining military might on defenseless civilians in Kherson city instead of focusing on militarily important targets.  Putin as always, remains a petty and vindictive man, a cowardly and frail man who cannot fight anyone except old ladies and children, and even then only through intermediaries.


Caught 'em napping: Ukrainian forces storm Russian barracks in night raid

QuoteAfter extremely graphic footage of the aftermath leaked into the media space, a Russian fighter posted a video with an explanation. He said that Ukrainians took advantage of the exhausted, understaffed, and underequipped Russian forces and conducted a night raid. He said that Russian soldiers did not have enough men on the watch, creating a lot of blind spots and risk. He also said that even those on the watch did not have night vision, while Ukrainians had.

Moreover, Ukrainians also operated with silencers. As a result, Ukrainians quietly took out the whole guard, got onto the territory of the base, got into the underground barracks, and opened fire from machine guns at the sleeping soldiers, then threw several grenades and escaped.

The guy the motherland tells you not to worry about:


Ukrainian sniper claims new world record for longest shot

He successfully shot a Russian soldier 3.8km away (the previous record was 3.54km)

And with a Ukrainian-made rifle, no less.  Volodar Obriyu, or "Lord of the Horizon."  Basically, it's a very, very, very good .50 cal sniper/antimaterial rifle. 

Suffice it to say that the Russian soldier who got hit with a .50 cal round had quite a bad day.

Now, Ukraine has both the #1 spot and the #4 spot in sniping (2023 and 2022 respectively)

Just fyi, the #2 spot is a Canadian sniper in 2017 in Iraq against Daesh/ISIL and the #3 spot is an Australian sniper in Afghanistan in 2012.  Both happened quite a while ago, while Ukraine is cranking out the hits on a much more regular basis.


The Russians attempted to take advantage of light fog/rain to assault Adiviika.  Didn't quite work out for them.

Ukrainian forces continue making progress on the south bank of the Dniper river, pushing Russian forces 3-8km away.  A Russian milblogger noted that one Russian unit "regrouped without a fight", which is just fancy talk for "pre-emptive retreat"



I saw his telegram post.  The center of the video is misleadingly focused on two Russian soldiers who were NOT hit and ducked immediately before crawling to safety.  However, the third Russian soldier on the right was not so fortunate.

And tangentially related to Ukraine, the Yemeni Houthis (Iran-backed) hijacked a cargo ship in the Red Sea and took its crew of 25 hostage.  Ships carrying Ukrainian grain could potentially also be targeted by Houthis.

And technically, if the fighting stopped now, Russia *could* restore its military capabilities within 6 years...on paper.

For example, Russia could maybe - and I'm really stressing the maybe - crank out a maximum of 90-124 tanks per month.  That's assuming they build 2 new factories and everything goes according to plan, with no problems.  124x12x6, carry the one, and that's 8784 tanks which gives them way more tanks than they lost.  Or 90x12x6, or 6480, which also overshoots but not by much.  So yeah, it's possible.  But those are stock tanks without vital components, which is a whole 'nother process.

So yeah, Russia could technically maintain the same number of tanks, so Russia's military strength in 2029 would seem on paper to be the same as its 2021 military strength.  But man oh man, they absolutely would not have identical capabilities.  For starters, Russia has lost a TON of highly experienced, highly competent troops.  Those don't just grow on trees.  You can't just put some FNGs in Spetsnaz uniforms and call it fully restored.  Same with the navy.  That Moskva ain't getting replaced anytime soon, if ever.  And the airforce.  Russia lost a ton of highly skilled pilots and airframes aren't easy to replace, either.  And Russia is still very much reliant on Western military components, so unless those sanctions are getting cancelled too, it's not likely that those replacements tanks are going to be nearly as effective as the pre-sanctions ones.  And so on, you get the drift.

The point is, the at-a-glance figures don't give realistic view of military strength.  For example, Russia has...correction...had a big navy in the Black Sea.  Ukraine has basically no navy to speak of except some patrol boats on the Dniper.  On paper, Russia should have complete naval supremacy on the Black Sea.  But the reality is that they've been driven from their naval HQ in Sevastopol and have severely limited operations due to Neptune missiles, naval drones, and the occasional Stormshadow.  Paper and reality tell two very different stories.  So yes, Russia could field X units again, but lacking in many important ways from the ones that got their ticket punched.


Additionally, when troops die, Russia obfuscates the casualties, so Russian families often don't get closure.


Ukrainian forces on south bank of Dniper river focusing on silencing Russian artillery, not territory gains

QuoteBratchuk said the most intense combat in the sector currently is in the vicinity of Krynky. Little terrain is changing hands but bombardments on both sides are intense, and currently, the Ukrainian objective is to establish fire dominance by using the Armed Forces of Ukraine's (AFU), longer-ranged, more accurate artillery to force Russian guns and howitzers away from the Marine positions.

QuoteLight Ukrainian bombardment weapons have transferred to the left bank to help, and Marine patrols and drone raids have crossed Russian lines to hit Kremlin rear area targets, he said.

"The Marines are not only holding, but at present we can speak of counter-battery battles, not just firing from the right bank, but from the left bank as well," Bratchuk said. "Behind-the-lines raids, sabotage, attacks against Russian troops and equipment... It's possible to single out the 501st (Marine) Battalion which (used drones and) destroyed several (Russian) vehicles carrying military materiel along the road Oleshki-Nova Kakhovka."
How did Ukrainian "light" bombardment weapons even get to the southern bank, let alone fire and keep firing with regular supplies?  That says a lot about the competence of Russian forces in the vicinity.



At the 7 minute mark 50 second mark...that's a certified Darwin Award moment.

It's right up there with a Russian who survived a Ukrainian kamikaze drone hitting his trench (it was more like a burrow hole than an actual trench) because the drone failed to detonate and his first (and last) thought was to pick up the thing and then throw it a short distance away, and then the drone exploded on impact.  Fun fact: downed kamikaze drones are literally UXOs.  You don't toss around UXOs if you want to live.



Ukrainians getting work done on a Russian airfield.  Afaik, we don't yet know the full extent of the damage, but that whole base looks completely messed up and I'm not sure if anything there escaped destruction.


Quote from: Hydra009 on November 21, 2023, 02:38:34 AMUkrainians getting work down on a Russian airfield.  Afaik, we don't yet know the full extent of the damage, but that whole base looks completely messed up and I'm not sure if anything there escaped destruction.
They almost look like some old biplane crop-dusters or maybe it is just shadows, I can't really tell...I guess there is a runway around there somewhere. Russians, LOL.

PS Ahh yeah, I can see little men running around, those planes are pretty big.


I read that a Ukranian sniper recently set a new distance record of 2.3 miles. That is crazy. The engineer in me has me wondering how high did he aim due to bullet drop if the trajectory was flat? I would have to know the average bullet speed to determine how much airtime, but that drop has to be huge since Newton says things moving horizontally will fall with an acceleration of 32 ft/s**2 and that bullet may take a good second or two.

For example
50 bmg has a muzzle velocity of about 420 meters per second (1480 feet per second). The time for a . 50 calibre bullet to travel one mile at a constant speed of 1400feet per second is around four seconds. After four seconds, the bullet will have dropped around 256 feet.


Quote from: Cassia on November 21, 2023, 11:24:48 AMThey almost look like some old biplane crop-dusters

Your eyes are not deceiving you.  They are indeed old biplanes, but they're fairly durable and useful.  They can take off from and land on bad runways, so naturally, they're a good fit for Russia.

In Ukraine, I'd imagine that they could be used for medevac and transporting much-needed equipment to otherwise out-of-reach areas.  Taking them out is probably related to Ukraine's targeting of Russian logistics.


Meanwhile...Ukrainian pilots doing practical F-16 training in Denmark, the US, and UK.  Romania too next year.

Russia has done its usual "Western equipment is no problem, we'll destroy it no problem" to "fetch my brown pants" to hastily putting together some sort of plan to deal with it.  In this case, trying to more closely integrate radar planes with s-400 anti-air batteries.  The aircraft could theoretically stay within Russian airspace well out of range of Ukrainian anti-air and still pick up F-16s on radar and then feed the location to Russian s-400 batteries.  Maybe with no massacre of friendly aircraft this time.  Fingers crossed!


It Ain't Over Till The Fat Lady Sings

3 angelic cherubs and 3 infernal imps were seen fighting in the concert hall's rafters mere moments before the missile strike.


Interesting diary entry from a Russian soldier in Kherson region:

He says that the weather is terrible and without fundraising appropriate clothing many would have fallen ill (evidently weather-appropriate clothes are not provided, but must be solicited)

Lack of drone reconnaissance - Russian troops are largely walking blind, risk of Ukrainian ambushes is high.

Lack of artillery support.  At best, they fire a couple shots and leave due to fear of Ukrainian counter-battery fire.

Basically no assistance from other units.  Many of their unit are green and very scared.

Basically no confidence in the top brass and plans are based on dated information and/or inaccurate assumptions - so it's a garbage-in garbage-out situation.

The only thing they have going right for them is a Wagner fighter is allegedly training them, improving their competency, saving lives (the unit is incurring wounded as opposed to dead), and making arrangements for the evacuation of the whole unit in a dire emergency.

So in general, the situation strongly favors Ukraine, though they need to apply even more pressure.

Unfortunately, the Russians receive adequate clothes through volunteers.  If such supplies were somehow disrupted, that would be fantastic for Ukraine.

Also unfortunately, some ex-Wagner fighters have returned to Ukraine and they're very helpful for Russian units.  I almost get the impression that they'd be lost without Wagner training.  It would help the Ukrainians a lot to eliminate Wagner help, but unfortunately, they're a lot harder to bag than the normal conscripts.  Therefore, Ukrainian forces should go out of their way to eliminate Wagner soldiers, prioritizing them like Russian officers.