The Ukrainian army is in deep trouble in Donbass. Massive artillery fire and air raids keep the army in check within the fortified defenses. Meanwhile, the many smaller defensive posts, often manned by poorly trained militiamen, are being overrun. “Russia has changed tactics,” according to experts. While Putin’s troops have tried to penetrate quickly, narrowly and deeply into Ukraine, the offensive in the Donbass region is much broader.
“The fight for the Donbass is very similar to the fighting in World War II,” says Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba. “Some villages and towns, they just don’t exist anymore,” he said on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos. “They were reduced to rubble by Russian artillery fire and Russian rocket launcher systems.” Sieverodonetsk and Lysychansk. These are the last two major cities still held by Ukrainian troops in the Luhansk region.
From circles of pro-Russian fighters, who support Moscow’s soldiers, it was said on Wednesday evening that Syerodonetsk was “encircled” from three sides. The only bridge to leave the city is now under Russian control.
The poorly trained militiamen in particular are completely overwhelmed by the situation. The Russian firepower seems too great. Many fighters are leaving their posts, fleeing in panic from Putin’s troops. Kyiv fears mass panic. And most importantly, the moral-psychological impact of such on the entire country.
“In some directions, the Russian groups undoubtedly have tactical successes, that’s basically no secret,” Defense Ministry spokesman Oleksandr Motusyanyk said in Kyiv. But it is not correct to speak of a withdrawal. The Ukrainian army is trying to maneuver to improve its position and attack again, trying to reassure Ukraine.
According to Kuleba, Ukraine “urgently” needs rocket launcher systems to resist Russian attackers. Kiev’s troops would have the greatest disadvantage with multiple rocket launcher systems.
But arms deliveries to Ukraine are not without problems. Armed Forces specialist Colonel Markus Reisner, top expert of the Armed Forces, explained in eXXpressTV that many of the delivered weapons did not even come into the hands of the Ukrainian soldiers, but were destroyed in the collection depots of Russia’s bombs before they were delivered to the front.