This morning, US Ambassador Bridget Brink has returned to Kiev and has clearly accepted the Zelensky-inspired clothing code. The return of the US Embassy to Kiev is, to a large extent, bringing things back to full force on the diplomatic front, with a few exceptions, such as Russia.
Meanwhile, Ukraine continues its counterattack in the northwest of Kherson. By Sunday, Ukrainian forces had advanced at least three points along the line. Some reports indicate that this offensive has spread rapidly 9 km or more behind the positions as they were realized last week.
The big question is whether the Kherson counter-attack is the beginning of a general collapse of Russian forces in the area, as it was in the Battle of Kiev, or whether it is a relatively small counter-attack whose achievements may be impressive but not enough to change the pace. invasion, as in the previous counterattack in Kharkov?
Currently, reports indicate that Ukrainian forces have recovered Mykolaivka at the northwestern end of the Russian-occupied territory and carried out an attack on Russian troops in neighboring Ivanivka. To the southwest of this position, 30 km of Ukrainian forces crossed the Inhulets River near Davidiv Brid, held the town and have moved to reclaim several villages in the area while directing Russian forces to the new front line in Bruskynske. And 30 km southwest of this position Ukrainian forces have moved to recover the city of Snihurivka, located at a significant crossroads north of Kherson. Some reports suggest that Ukrainian soldiers have already captured Snihurivka and even reported that Russian forces have surrendered, but there is almost certainly speculation. Most indications are that the conflict in Snihurivka is continuing.
One thing you can’t see is these actions in NASA’s FIRMS tools. In this case, these blank fire maps do not seem to be weather related. They are empty because Ukraine does not attack these cities with artillery blockages before entering. They try to take positions intact enough; a huge contrast to the Russian technique of blowing everything up to the ruins before trying to capture the place.
Much like the counterattack north of Kharkov that began a month ago, Ukraine seems to be moving fast and at several points. If activities in the Kherson neighborhood reflect what is happening in the Kharkiv region, the establishment of these multiple contact points will be accompanied by consolidation in some areas, but will continue to move rapidly in others. Ukraine will continue to look for weaknesses, seize what can be done, overtake Russia’s strengths where possible, and hit places that may be unexpected.
However, it is not clear how far Ukraine can take this counterattack. North of Kharkov, after two weeks of astonishing progress, with Ukrainian forces pushing Russia to the Ternov border and threatening Russian supply lines east of Staryi Saltiv, Ukrainian movements appear to have come to an end. Ukraine has successfully defended its success, including stopping repeated Russian attacks on Ternova, but it is unknown whether it still has territory on the eastern side of the Siverskyi Donetsk River or whether it has made any further progress in ousting Russian forces. their remaining locations on the west side of the river.
The whole operation in the Kharkiv region took place under the guise of a secret operation. This led to achievements such as the capture of Staryi Saltiv, the race to Ternova and the deployment of Ukrainian forces on the east side of the river. But that makes it impossible to know why the counterattack seems to be over. Has Ukraine suffered enough losses to regroup? Did the AM determine that some of the troops involved were needed elsewhere? Did Ukraine simply achieve its goals by moving Russian forces away from the city of Kharkov and forcing the transfer of Russian troops from Izyum. We do not know.
Is the long-promised counter-attack on Kherson also aimed at achieving limited goals or forcing Russia to withdraw its forces from the conflict in the east? Stay tuned.
It seems less likely than ever to accurately map positions near Kharkov, as reports of activity from both sides have become so rare.
On May 22, Ukrainian forces had apparently pushed Russian troops out of Zarchine and Metalivka north of the Staryi Saltiv bridge and fought for the city of Bukhaviv. The reports first appeared in Telegram statements from Russian forces in the region, and were later confirmed by a Ukrainian source. However, news that Ukraine would have repaired the bridge at Staryi Slativ or built a pontoon bridge near Rubizhny was never confirmed. How they gained considerable power on the east coast is still a mystery. Locations to the east of the river are shown here as still controversial, but as no activity has been reported, Ukraine may have withdrawn from the area.
Meanwhile, it appears that Russia is still questioning the positions of Ukrainians from Vesele and places northwest of Lypci. The area around Kozacha Lopan is fortified. Russia has begun countless attempts to reclaim the areas, but Rubyshnne appears to be the only city that has been re-occupied by Ukraine in the past and is now in dispute. A “cord-sized” clash near Starica has recently been reported, but the site is still under Russian occupation.
Ukraine has the potential to resume counter-attack in the region. Compared to the line west of Kherson, the area between the Kharkiv and Russian borders is a very compact battlefield, where small changes in resources could cause big changes. For the time being, however, the area appears to be relatively stable, as both sides are busy in eastern Ukraine.
About a week later, news was received that Russian forces were moving from bases around Kursk to the border with Sumy near the Russian city of Suja. These actions took place when Russian-controlled media repeatedly said that Russia was still going to return to Kiev and occupy all of Ukraine.
Is it an absolute fake in the style that Belarus is constantly changing its troops but never crossing the border? It seems possible. It makes no strategic sense for Russia to open another conflict zone around Sumy as an attempt to divert Ukrainian forces from significant territories. And it could be as simple as “they continue to distract us with Kharkov and Kherson, now we’re distracting them!”
Ukraine is unlikely to deploy significant forces to address these threats unless it has intelligence to show real action. There are territorial defense forces in the region, so Russia does not intend to simply drive on the highway to Sumy without confrontation.
Izyum stands here not only as the most remarkable place in Izjum, but also in the whole of Eastern Ukraine. And the world is focused on that right now.
Ukrainian forces appear to have occupied the town of Velyka Komyshuvakha west of Izyum. This could be the beginning of turning what was a counterattack in the area into the same jolt that was first seen in Kharkov and now in Kherson. There were 27 tactical groups in the Russian battalion, but now more than half of these BTGs are not present. Some were sent north when it seemed that Ukraine could threaten supply lines. Some have joined the shocks in Severodonetsk. Some have simply been forced to leave and regroup after these Ukrainian attacks devastated holy hell.
Russia is still moving out of Izhya, being able to occupy small territories in both the south and the east, moving towards joining forces in Laiman. But, if nothing else, Ukraine’s attacks could make them turn around and look west.
However, the big campaign remains around Severodonetsk. Russian forces are reported to have occupied between a third and a half of the city. Ukrainian troops have published several videos showing them moving peacefully around the city to fight Russian propaganda that Severodonetsk has already fallen. However, there is no doubt that the pressure cooker is at a critical point. Russia controls the suburbs from all sides, and the balance of power is high.
Writing in the Ukrainian edition Forbeswar reporter Ilya Ponomarenko draws a moment with words that can only be described as awful (translated by Google):
In weeks without progress, Russia has made significant progress and brought Ukraine to the brink of a major disaster
The actions of the Ukrainian troops forced the Russians to take part in the extremely bloody and tiring city battles in Severodonetsk. Russia’s tactical success in the Popasnaya area at the end of May is truly worrying. Russia managed to strengthen its naval units, as well as the 57th Motorized Rifle Brigade and Wagons, to break through the Ukrainian defenses and pass Popasna.
While Ukraine has since suppressed some of Russia’s success from Popasna, Ponomarenko cites Russia’s speed in the area. very dangerous development. “Russia, he reports, enjoys superiority in the workforce, heavy weapons and air support ”, which makes the situation unbearable for Ukraine.
According to Ponomarenko, the possibility that as many as 10,000 Ukrainian soldiers could be “imprisoned, separated from unoccupied Ukraine and possibly depleted and destroyed” is very real.
If so, it would be a real disaster, not only in terms of lost strength, but also in terms of victory, it would be handed over to Putin and the clear defeat it would bring to Ukraine. This would show that no matter how poor their equipment has been, no matter how badly they have juggled logistics or command, and no matter how many times rumors have spread that Russian forces are desperate, Russia can still pursue its common tactic: blow it up. . with artillery, then go over it.
As there are still reports of Russia occupying Severodonetsk, perhaps the most frightening sign is how little space the city is currently being hit by artillery, according to NASA FIRMS. In other areas, such a reduction in the number of shocks showed that Russia was disarming and rolling in tanks. Russian forces are reportedly moving around the city this quarter (12 noon Tuesday).
On the other hand, there is something interesting about FIRMS data – it seems that a set of hits was found recently about 9 miles north of Borovenko. It doesn’t make sense for Russia to shoot at this place … so who is? Of course, the whole area is located in a convenient artillery radius across the river near Lysichansk.
Several reports have been received on Tuesday that Ukraine is probably about to leave Severodonez, which is a territorial loss that is clearly very important to both sides. However, it is not worth losing a large part of the Ukrainian army. Losing Severodonese would be bad. The loss of the Severodonese guards would be a real disaster.
But in any case, this is not a good day on the far right of the Ukrainian map.