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Kyiv Has Not Fallen: Russia’s War on Ukraine Is Not Going Very Well

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Russian TOS weaponry, artist rendering. Image Credit: Creative Commons.

Russia’s Advance Slows on Kyiv, As Death Toll Mounts – Despite heavy shelling and concentrated missile fire, the Russian advance on Kyiv has been effectively slowed by Ukrainian forces.

In fact, the Russians have yet to take any of the major population centers thus far, as the fighting intensifies.

The Ukrainian military has been blowing bridges on the route into Kyiv and the Russian forces have begun looking for alternate routes into the capital from the north. According to news reports, while Russian reconnaissance elements have been fighting in the suburbs, the main Russian line of advance, coming from the north is still some 50 kilometers away. 

However, with Russian troops in the Obolon District, just a few miles from the central district in Kyiv, artillery and missile fire hit the central part of the city, which now resembles a ghost town, when just a few days ago it was a thriving capital hub. 

The Ukrainian Defense Ministry was detailing to citizens online and on social media how to make Molotov Cocktails and firebombs and warned civilians that they’d have to fight to defend the capital against Russian troops. Defense Minister Alexey Reznikov was on a video dated Thursday asking the US for more anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons. 

“We need as much Stinger [anti-aircraft] and anti-tank weapons as possible,” Reznikov said. “In order to provide for reliable procurement of equipment, you may deliver it to Poland. From there we will transport them across the land and quickly saturate our defense.”

Zelensky Says It is a “Make or Break Moment” for Ukraine:

Ukrainian President Zelensky, in a late-Friday night video to the people, said that it was rapidly becoming a “make or break” moment for the country as the Russians continue their advance on the capital of Kyiv. 

“This night will be very difficult, and the enemy will use all available forces to break the resistance of Ukrainians,” Zelensky said, adding, “the fate of Ukraine is being decided right now.” Accusing the Russians of specifically targeting kindergartens and civilian infrastructure, he was trying to drum up more foreign support. 

“There is nothing that could possibly explain why the kindergartens and civilian infrastructure are being shelled,” he said. 

Casualties Mounting on Both Sides, Especially for Russia:

Zelensky said that 137 Ukrainian soldiers and civilians have been killed thus far, but those numbers are expected to rise as the Russians advance on Kyiv. The Ukrainian Defense Ministry has claimed to have killed over 1,000 Russian troops. 

Unconfirmed reports state that Ukrainian forces have claimed to have shot down 7 Russian aircraft, 7 Russian helicopters, and knocked out dozens of tanks and armored vehicles. Graphic videos have surfaced online that have shown Russian armored vehicles and killed troops that were caught in ambushes.

The Russians have denied any losses but Russian proxy separatists in eastern Ukraine have claimed to have shot down 2 Ukrainian helicopters and 2 aircraft. 

Ukraine said it shot down a Russian military transport plane carrying paratroopers near Vasylkiv, a city 25 miles south of Kyiv, which was confirmed by a senior American intelligence official. It was unclear how many troops were on board. However, transport planes can carry up to 125 paratroopers. The Russians were trying to seize the airfield to bring more troops and equipment into Kyiv. Heavy fighting has been reported there. 

Russia’s military seized an airfield in Hostomel, a town just 4 miles from Kyiv, which has a runway long enough to receive all types of aircraft, including the biggest cargo planes. Its seizure allows Russia to airlift troops directly to Kyiv’s outskirts. However, Ukrainian forces claim to have counterattacked and retook the airfield.

Intense gunfire was heard in Kyiv, but Mayor Vitali Klitschko said that Russia had infiltrated saboteurs into the city.  “The enemy wants to put the capital on its knees and destroy us,” he said.

Steve Balestrieri is a 1945 National Security Columnist. He has served as a US Army Special Forces NCO and Warrant Officer before injuries forced his early separation. In addition to writing for 19fortyfive.com, he has covered the NFL for PatsFans.com for more than 10 years and his work was regularly featured in the Millbury-Sutton Chronicle and Grafton News newspapers in Massachusetts.

Written By

Steve Balestrieri is a 1945 National Security Columnist. He has served as a US Special Forces NCO and Warrant Officer before injuries forced his early separation. In addition to writing for 1945, he covers the NFL for PatsFans.com and his work was regularly featured in the Millbury-Sutton Chronicle and Grafton News newspapers in Massachusetts.

4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. Commentar

    February 26, 2022 at 8:23 am

    There has been a raft of dark propaganda over the crisis in ukraine, including reports of ‘unsuccessful’ advance by Russian forces.

    The fact that Russia has closed in kyiv in just two days of fighting is a far better performance than NATO’s three-week battle slog to Baghdad in 2003 after a stupendous shock-&-awe attack on Iraq.

    Very worrisome is the claim by the fascist Kyiv authorities that ‘saboteurs’ are in the city working for Russia, a claim widely used by German army in WW2 to arrest innocent civilians, especially those from minorities.

    This fighting wouldn’t have happened if trump hadn’t been ejected from the white house via a rigged election engineered by the deep state which is in cahoots with the Dems, the DoD, and also wall street and fleet street.

    Ukraine and Europe are now paying the price for the 2020 US sham election.

  2. Slack

    February 26, 2022 at 8:34 am

    Russian sources say Melitopol has fallen and that forces have seized large quantities of weapons believed to be of western or NATO origin.

    It appears that Russian forces are intending to take cities and towns east of the Dnieper, with Mariupol also caught in heavy fighting despite arrogant claims that the city will never fall.

    Let’s see in a week’s time if volodym zelenskyy and his entire neo-nazist clique are still in one piece in ukraine.

  3. Alex

    February 26, 2022 at 9:52 am

    The advance slowed because the order was given to wait. Zelensky asked Russia for negotiations. Then he said he changed his mind. Russia knew that it was just an attempt to distract for negotiations with Washington. Russia gave too many chances, even now it wanted to meet halfway. Now only complete denazification and de-militarization. Believe me, there will be no more negotiations. I know Russia and Russians.

  4. Commentar

    February 27, 2022 at 2:09 am

    Kyiv has not fallen yet.

    But there’s already fighting inside the city while Russian MBTs patiently wait at the outskirts of kyiv for Kyiv soldiers to run out of supplies.

    Kyiv straddles the Dnieper river, so there’re two parts of the city; the best way is to seize the eastern half and flatten the other half.

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