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Smart Bombs: Military, Defense and National Security

Russia Has Problems: Putin’s War in Ukraine Is Now a Bloody Stalemate

Russia MLRS in Ukraine
Russia MLRS TOS-1. Image Credit: Creative Commons.

Why can’t Russia win in Ukraine? On day 13 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Moscow’s forces have made little progress as a bloody stalemate is now characterizing the conflict. Despite heavy shelling from the Russian forces, the Ukrainian Military continues to put up fierce resistance.

Russia Has a Problem: The Stalemate Continues 

The situation on the ground hasn’t changed considerably over the last few days for either Russia or Ukraine.

In the north, the Russian forces are still struggling to make meaningful advances toward Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital. The 40-mile long convoy that had received so much publicity over the weekend is still stuck to the north of Kyiv, the result of logistical issues and Ukrainian resistance. Russian forces are trying to advance from the east and encircle Kyiv. But the same combination of Ukrainian resistance and resupply issues are slowing down any Russian advance on that side too.

However, Russian forces have been using long fires, artillery, ballistic missiles, and multiple launch rocket systems, to target and strike the Ukrainian capital.

The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Tuesday, Ukrainian forces have killed, wounded, or captured approximately 12,000 Russian troops, destroyed 48 fighter, attack, and transport jets, 80 helicopters, 303 tanks, 120 artillery pieces, 1,036 armored personnel carriers, 56 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), two boats, 474 cars, 60 fuel tanks, 27 anti-aircraft batteries, and seven unmanned aerial systems. As always, the accuracy of these numbers is shrouded in a fog of war and expected hyperbole. However, independent reporting of Russian military losses that the Ukrainian numbers aren’t too far from the truth. Indeed, independent sources have visually accounted and verified almost 1,000 Russian vehicles of all types destroyed, abandoned, or captured.

The Siege of Mariupol 

Mariupol on the south has become a place of heavy fighting. Russia’s forces coming from Crimea have linked up with troops coming from Donetsk and have managed to encircle the city, and heavy shelling is causing significant civilian casualties.

“So coming up out of Crimea to the northeast, we do assess that Mariupol is isolated now. There is still a stiff Ukrainian resistance there. It’s not taken. We don’t see that Russian forces are in Mariupol in any significant way. We assess that they have isolated Mariupol, and they continue to, again, the long-range fires in there. And this isolation of Mariupol is basically from two directions: the north coming out of Donetsk and from the south, or basically, the southwest, coming up the—up the coast. So that’s the situation there. Again, we think that, you know, they are making generally more progress in the south than they are in the north,” a senior U.S. defense official said on Tuesday.

The Ukrainian military has shown superb defensive qualities but it has yet to display potent offensive attributes. Mariupol is surrounded, and only a Ukrainian counterattack, a ceasefire, or a complete breakdown of the Russian supply system would save the city. But Mariupol’s proximity to Crimea means that the Russian supply lines are shorter than in other parts of the battlefield. Should the city fall, it would be the largest urban center to be captured by the Russian forces. Thus, the fight has a psychological aspect too.

In the middle of all of this are the innocent Ukrainian civilians who continue to be killed and wounded by the indiscriminate Russian shelling.

1945’s New Defense and National Security Columnist, Stavros Atlamazoglou is a seasoned defense journalist specializing in special operations, a Hellenic Army veteran (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army HQ), and a Johns Hopkins University graduate. His work has been featured in Business InsiderSandboxx, and SOFREP.

1945’s Defense and National Security Columnist, Stavros Atlamazoglou is a seasoned defense journalist with specialized expertise in special operations, a Hellenic Army veteran (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army HQ), and a Johns Hopkins University graduate. His work has been featured in Business Insider, Sandboxx, and SOFREP.



  1. Alex

    March 9, 2022 at 10:49 am

    Russia cannot win quickly because the Bandera Nazis are hiding behind civilians as a human shield, using terrorist tactics that they have been taught by the Pentagon and the CIA. Russia foresaw this, and therefore the cleansing is not going as fast as the United States would have done – with cluster bombs, napalm and uranium shells. Destroying everything and everyone. And no one from the Western world would say a word to them.

  2. Igor

    March 9, 2022 at 1:01 pm

    What is wrong with Nazis in Ukraine.

    First a few facts:

    1. The results of the presidential elections in Ukraine immediately after the Maidan in 2014:
    “The leader of the nationalist party “Svoboda” Oleg Tyagnibok and the leader of the radical “Right Sector” Dmitry Yarosh won 1.16% and 0.70% of the vote, respectively, and
    placed 10th and 11th.”

    Hence, together, the leaders of the nationalists won less than 2% of the vote.

    The results of the presidential elections in Ukraine in 2019:
    Right-wing parties did not nominate a single candidate.

    2. “Kyiv junta.”

    The meaning of the word “junta”:

    “The military reactionary terrorist group that seized power and established a terrorist dictatorship.”
    There has never been a military group in Ukraine that came to power by force through a coup. You can view by the year starting from 1991.

    3. Parties in the Verkhovna Rada

    The nationalist party “Svoboda” currently has 1 (one) deputy out of 450 seats in the Verkhovna Rada.

    4. Ukraine is the only country in the world besides Israel in which the president is a Jew (Vladimir Zelensky), and his relatives died in Holocaust.

    For those who think with their head:

    – if right-wing presidential candidates in the country did not gain even 2% of the votes together (see paragraph “1” above);

    – if there has never been a junta in the country (see paragraph “2” above);

    – if only one nationalist candidate out of 450 possible is represented in the legislature of the country (see paragraph “3” above);

    – if the country’s president is Jewish (see point “4” above)

    Then what kind of Nazis is Putin talking about justifying the outbreak of war in Ukraine?

  3. Chris Kyle

    March 9, 2022 at 5:10 pm

    russian troll farms tears so delicious. moar pls.

  4. Alex

    March 10, 2022 at 11:19 am

    Chris: Don’t forget about xanox and psychiatric appointments.

    Bandera Nazism in Ukraine can be seen from the photos and videos that the Ukrainians themselves make. Indeed, there are not so many Bandera Nazis, but they were the tame dogs of the last presidents of Ukraine. The tragedy of May 2, 2022 in Odessa was just the beginning. For 8 years, the Bandera Nazis killed many thousands of people in the Donbass. They were proud of it and posted their disgusting photos and videos. As soon as a special Russian military operation began in Ukraine, these jackals decided to put on sheep’s clothing. But it won’t work. All of them will answer for their deeds.

  5. Alber Speer

    March 10, 2022 at 4:41 pm

    Moar Alex. I have cup to fill with troll tears as well.
    Incidentally, didn’t your managers tell you that you need to at least sound conceivably legitimate. This sounds like news report from CCCP3.
    Not even CCCP tv 1, but 3.

  6. Sirozha

    March 10, 2022 at 5:55 pm

    Chris, just imagine for a moment:

    1) Russia sponsors a coup in Mexico, puts a puppet in charge
    2) States of Chihuahua and Sonora do not like that and declare their independence.
    3) for eight years the rest of the Mexico bombs these 2 states, killing 14000 civilians.
    4) Meanwhile, there’s a new trend on Mexican national TV – mariachis who sing something like “I’m gonna get me a shotgun and kill all the gringos I see”, which is widely supported by the population.
    5) Russia says that it plans to place its military bases and nuclear weapons on Mexican soil

    What would the US do?

    This is pretty much what happened with Ukraine, and I haven’t even mentioned the neonazis. Imagine WW2 nazis being honored at Arlington cemetery on Veterans day along with US heroes. This is what happens in Ukraine.

  7. Michael Veritas

    March 10, 2022 at 9:38 pm

    The Ukrainians have drafted everyone 18 to 60 now who is desperate? Ukrainian troops in Mariupol are using the civilians as hostages. They know once majority are gone they’re toast. Russia has similar bombers as us if they wanted to carpet bomb them not a single building would be left standing. Kiev is the same. Zelensky says he’s not afraid and is winning; whilst hiding in bunker like Adolph Hitler.

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