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The Ukraine has been dumping 10s of thousands of lives into defending this city, it is clear to everyone on both sides of battle that if Artyomovsk falls, the war shifts aggressively into Russian hands. The Ukraine has spilled far to much blood to lose.
Artemovsk does not even need to fall.
Ukrainian casualties are so high that if this goes on for a few more years the entire war effort will simply fail. What was left of their economy crashed by 30% during 2022, it doesn’t seem to be growing back. For context, the Great Depression was a 50% crash.
A few more years?! It’s only been a year and it’s already tasking
Most likely they’ll either do a Spring Offensive, or if Wagner is fast enough, they’ll be forced to defend Slavyansk and Kramatorsk instead. Either way, the West is running out of stuff to send and Ukraine is running out of cash and men, and inevitable Russia will commit the 300,000 men it’s mobilized in an offensive somewhere. By the end of this summer, NAFO will have absolutely nothing to cheer about except made-up casualty ratios
They spin 360 around if it’s relevant or irrelevant, first they say it’s important, now this, everything points to that they will be in huge trouble and cope after it gets liberated.
zelenskyy literally came to Washington DC and said that the battle of Bakhmut would be like the battle of Saratoga for Ukraine. That aged well…
Bold of him to assume most Americans even know what the Battle of Saratoga was.
Couldn’t all this be avoided if MoD didn’t roll back from Kharkov and Kiev?
Well right now it seems that Russian military (and Wagner) are stuck in a severe grind through dug-in defences, with towns getting wiped off the map (have you seen fresh photos of Artyomovsk?). All the while arms, gear and foreign mercs are still pouring from across the border. Securing the likes of Odessa and Kharkov surely would have limited the options for UA military and the foreign groups
The Russian army would be grinding away at Artemovsk anyway, the Ukrainians have been digging in there since 2014. To destroy the enemy manpower and gain access for the rest of the Donbass, a large battle for Artemovsk is very logical.
And Western aid is decreasing because they do not have much left to send, even Western MSM admits it, so it’s probably worse. Ukrainian MSM admits that only around 16,000 Russian soldiers are dead, compared to 100,000 Ukrainian militant deaths (as per Israeli media) You can bet that many of those deaths occured while the AFU impaled itself charging into Russian artillery, who were already retreating, in their little “Kharkov offensive”.
As for Kiev, depending on who you ask, the Russians either began to have supply issues and just retreated, or it was a feint in the first place. Also note that the offensive force was severely outnumbered by the Ukrainian defenders; artillery grinds are a way for RuMOD to leverage Russia’s own superiorities (artillery) against the Banderites, who locally have more manpower. The consensus is that Russia sent around 200,000 soldiers to invade Ukraine; at most, 100,000 at any given time would be in Ukraine, fighting. The other half would work supplies, be resting and awaiting rotation back in, or be held in reserve. By comparison the AFU numbered hundreds of thousands and then drafted many more, I recall before the “Kherson offensive” Ukrainian generals bragged that there were more than 1 million men defending Ukraine or something of the like.
In the long run, I don’t believe that the withdrawals from Kherson or Kharkov severely hampered Russia’s ability to win the war. In both, Ukraine suffered heavy casualties while Russia did not, Russia did lose territory but especially with Kherson it would have been hard to defend anyway, and the front lines have been shortened and Russia has started a favorable battle in Artemovsk that has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of Ukrainian soldiers at the least. In terms of offensive potential, Russia is increasingly catching up with Ukraine, and once it’s even, Zelenskyy has no hope.
they should have mobilized way earlier for that to be possible.