The last strongly fortified Ukrainian bastion in Donetsk is about to fall – Bachmut is repeating itself – Ukrainian soldiers are being wasted for political reasons.
Avdiivka is one of the cities that have been turned into heavily fortified bastions with the help of NATO since 2014 and are therefore difficult to capture.
The Ukrainians have been shelling the civilian population from Avdiivka since 2014 – up to the start of the special military operation alone, over 17,000 civilians in Donetsk were killed by artillery fire from this town.
Our blog is not a military blog. Nevertheless, I follow a YouTube channel called Military Summary twice a day to get an overview of the military situation.
In our article “Reliable sources for war reporting” we explained how to get the most reliable information and also mentioned this channel.
Military Summary is a map-based channel that only makes changes to the battle map when it has geo-localized confirmations that confirm a change. The professional approach of the young YouTuber from Belarus has so far earned him 213,000 subscribers and over 104 million views.
I’ve been watching this channel since it started and he’s never had to correct any errors – it’s our recommendation if you want to consume facts instead of propaganda. A bit time consuming, but worth it.
Avdiivka is trapped
Although the encirclement around Avdiivka has not yet been physically closed, it is impossible for the Ukrainian troops to escape due to the range of the Russian weapons systems on all supply routes to and from Avdiivka. There are currently still around 7,000 Ukrainian soldiers in Avdiivka.
No withdrawal out of political calculation
From a military-tactical point of view, the city is lost. It is therefore somewhat surprising that the Ukrainians did not withdraw from this encirclement weeks ago.
A few days ago, General Zaluzhny was replaced by General Syrskyi and people wondered why.
In my opinion, there are three main reasons for this:
First, Zaluzhny, unlike Zelensky, is still popular with the Ukrainian population and thus the general became politically dangerous to the president.
Secondly, Zaluzhny wanted to lead a concentrated offensive towards Melitopol during the preparations for Ukraine’s major counter-offensive in early summer. Zelensky decided – following the great advice of NATO – to launch countless offensives spread across the entire front line; a front line stretching over 1,000 km. The result was a catastrophic defeat, which meant that the counter-offensive never even reached the Russians’ first lines of defense. Most of the carnage took place in the security zones in front of the Russian defense lines. We have already reported on this in our article “Ukraine – a state in agony“.
Thirdly, it was heard that Zaluzhny wanted to clear Avdiivka to avoid a repeat of last spring’s Bachmut bloodbath.
Zelensky got his way, General Syrskyi is the new man. Zelensky obviously wants to prevent Avdiivka from falling before the Russian presidential election on March 15-17. Once again a cynical move by a president who is not acting in the interests of his country. It is uncertain whether Syrskyi will actually follow this insane strategy.
Whether Avdiivka will fall by March 15 is therefore not certain. What is certain, however, is that the Ukrainian leadership – as in Bachmut – will sacrifice thousands of its own soldiers to political calculations until the collapse.
What happens afterwards?
As already mentioned, Avdiivka is possibly the last strongly fortified bastion of the Ukrainians. This also explains why the Russians are taking so long to capture this city. After the capture of this city, Donetsk will be much safer for the civilian population after more than eight years of artillery bombardment, as the Ukrainians are slowly running out of western long-range missiles, which they can also use against the civilian population of Donetsk from greater distances.
I assume that the further advance of the Russians will be faster, as the other cities to the west are less heavily fortified.
Hope dies last and so I once again take the liberty of saying that negotiations must be started in order to save thousands of lives of young Ukrainians and Russians.