For today’s post I have two topics, first a battlefield update, and then a “feel-good” story (well, feeling good if you like Cossacks!)
Little joke there. One of the military channels I follow, Defense Politics Asia, Wyatt (who is ethnic Chinese-Malay working out of Singapore) hilariously butchers Slavic place names, and at one point started calling this city Several Donuts; which became a meme.
Anyhow, I saw this piece, the reporter is Alyona Zadorozhnaya. Rodion Miroshnik, who is LPR Ambassador to Moscow, denies that the Ukrainian army re-took Severodonetsk, despite so much speculation (and jubilation) in Westie media: “We have not seen any kinds of counter-offensives on the part of the Ukrainian armed forces in the region of Severononetsk. The main problem we are facing, is the shelling coming out of the Lisichansk and Privolye [Russian Приволье, transcribed Ukrainian spelling Pryvillyia] Platzdarms. But our troops will be there soon enough,” he reassures optimistically.
In above map I marked Privolye with a red arrow (near the top). I also placed an arrow near the bottom pointing to a town called Borovskoye, on the Left Bank of the Severodonetsk River. That’s the place where Military Summary Analysis (one of the main channels I watch for day-to-day battle info) claims the actual counter-offensive took place. Not in Severodonetsk. According to Dima, at said channel, the Ukrainian side, showing some tactical intelligence, noticed the upcoming danger of the Russian flanking maneuver around Lisichansk and decided to try to cut if off. Not having hardly any soldiers of their own to carry out this counter-offensive (Ukrainian soldiers are mutinying en masse and refusing to carry out suicidal counter-offensives), Ukrainian brass had to send in the foreign mercenaries, the International Legion. And that’s what this whole thing was all about. Possibly. Probably. [We still don’t know who won, though, or if the battle is still ongoing around Borovskoye-Sirotine area.]
Returning to Zadorozhnaya’s piece, which now seems all the more plausible, in light of this info flowing in from various angles: Miroshnik reiterates, and reassures, that the entire residential half of Severodonetsk remains under full Russian/Chechen control. Ukrainian resistance has been isolated to the Azot factory in the industrial zone.
Recall that yesterday, in a literal “fog of war” story, we were hearing that the Ukrainians had exploded vast tanks of nitric acid in Azot; and some analysts postulated the Russian forces may have pulled back out of Severodonetsk precisely for this reason (hopefully wearing gas masks). But now that story doesn’t seem so likely any more either. I mean, if the Ukrainians had blown up so many chemicals, then they wouldn’t have stuck around either, but apparently they are still holed up in Azot themselves.
So we don’t really know whom or what to believe. But perhaps we can believe Miroshnik, because he backs up his words with receipts; namely Kadyrov has posted videos on social media, in which his soldiers from the Special Ops group “Akhmat” are seen strolling through the center of Severodonetsk like a walk in the park. I have not seen those videos myself, but presumably they bear timestamps proving that this was after the Ukrainians claimed the Chechens had been driven out.
Miroshnik: “In conclusion, there have not been any Ukrainian counteroffensives or any other kinds of actions that would lead to a change in the overall situation. It’s not if but when we take Lisichansk — that’s just a question of time. Currently there is active fighting going on. Just in the past 24 hours we struck the enemy’s equipment six times. We have suffered some losses on our side, unfortunately; but there are also liquidated militants on the other side.”
Kadyrov: “The Nazis keep yapping and gaslighting Ukrainian people and the world, claiming that Severodonetsk is under the control of the Ukrainian armed forces. But even a blind man can see that there are no Nazis left in the city, so all their pseudo-heroic pronouncements are not worth even a boiled egg. They fled from the city, they are hiding out in the industrial zone, where they, and their foreign mercenaries friends will be slowly, but surely, dispatched to meet Bandera.”
Zaporozhian Cossacks To Discuss Integration With Russia
For this story, the reporter is Evgeny Romanov. Ataman Sergei Yurchenko, of the Zaporozhie Oblast Cossacks, announced that his guys are conducting negotiations to join the All-Russian Society of Cossacks.
Yurchenko: “The Cossacks of the Zaporozhie Oblast have entered into this initiative. We are currently discussing this issue in every city, in every region; the issue is whether we should join the All-Russian Cossack Society. We are conducting negotiations with Ataman Nikolai Doluda of the All-Russian Cossack Society. We are also consulting with State Duma Deputy Viktor Vodolatsky. In the very near future we will be convening a session of the Great Cossack Circle (Казачий Большой круг). We always used to take part in Cossack events on the Don, in the Kuban [peninsula], as well as in Moscow and other territories of the Cossack troops. […] And of course we are currently striving to become a part of the broader friendly family of Russian Cossacks.” Yurchenko also noted that Cossack culture is very much developed in Zaporozhie. Every city and region contains sophisticated Cossack organizations. From the very start of the Russian Special Operation, the Zaporozhian Cossacks have been actively helping the public cope, maintaining law and order, and assisting with humanitarian and social tasks.
Yurchenko again: “We Cossacks, we are not just a social organization. We are also people who [traditionally] come to the defense of the government; who help to keep public order; who work with the youth, just the way it is done in Russia. And the Cossacks of the Zaporozhie Oblast, also support this kind of work. […] We are trying to form Cadet classes in the Zaporozhie Oblast, military cadet classes of the Cossack corpus. We want to re-educate youth who have been brainwashed by Western values, by pseudo-patriotic slogans, we want to help bring them out of that false consciousness, and show them what true patriotism consists of. This is much needed right now.”