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Putin Is Creating Hell In Mariupol To Drive Ukraine Out

Ukraine
TOS-1 firing. Image Credit: Creative Commons.

Mariupol on the Edge: On day 59 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the last Ukrainian defenders in Mariupol are fighting a last stand in the Azovstal steelworks industrial complex. Russian troops are shelling their positions constantly in an attempt to bomb them out. 

Meanwhile, the Russian offensive in the Donbas hasn’t achieved a breakthrough thus far. The Ukrainian defenses are holding up, and even reclaiming some territory through counterattacks.

Mariupol and the Donbas 

The fighting in Mariupol continues. Although Russian President Vladimir Putin declared victory in the city and ordered his troops to cordon the Azovstal steelworks plant but not storm it, the Russian forces have continued to bombard the complex, in which the last Ukrainian soldiers and thousands of civilians have taken refuge. 

The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Saturday, Ukrainian forces have killed approximately 21,600 Russian troops (and wounded approximately thrice that number), destroyed 177 fighter, attack, and transport jets, 154 helicopters, 854 tanks, 403 artillery pieces, 2,205 armored personnel carriers, 143 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), eight boats, 1,543 vehicles, 76 fuel tanks, 69 anti-aircraft batteries, 182 unmanned aerial systems, 27 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems. 

The heavy fighting in eastern Ukraine is reflected in the claimed Russian casualties numbers. In the last couple of days alone, the Ukrainian military claims to have destroyed 25 tanks, 87 armored personnel carriers, 16 unmmaned aerial systems, 35 vehicles, and 11 artillery pieces.  

As always these, numbers, coming from an official source, should be taken with a grain of salt. But independent reporting somewhat supports the Ukrainian claims, bolstering their veracity. 

Mariupol and Beyond: A Commitment to Ukraine

The West is committed to helping Ukraine deal with the Russian invasion. That has been evident from the billions of dollars’ worth of weapon systems that the U.S. and its European allies have sent Ukraine. 

On Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin will travel to Germany to host a conference that will address the military needs of the Ukrainian government. The U.S. has invited more than 40 countries to attend, with 20 nations already accepting. 

“The goal [is] to bring together stakeholders from all around the world for a series of meetings on the latest Ukraine defense needs and — and this is critically important — ensuring that Ukraine’s enduring security and sovereignty over the long term is respected and developed,” Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby said

“We don’t know how long this war will last. But as we approach the two-month mark, here’s what we do know: Putin has failed to achieve his grand ambitions on the battlefield. After weeks of shelling Kyiv, Kyiv still stands. President Zelenskyy and his democratically elected government still remain in power. And the Ukrainian armed forces, joined by many brave Ukrainian civilians, have thwarted Russia’s conquest of their country,” President Joe Biden said in a press statement.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who has been publicly vocal—even pushy—about military aid, acknowledged the contribution that Western arms have played in stalling the Russian invasion. 

 “They have been bolstered from day one by an unstinting supply of weapons, ammunition, armor, intelligence from the nations of the free world led by us, the United States. As Russia continues to grind out the military advances and — their military advances and the brutalities against Ukraine, Putin is banking on us losing interest. That’s been my view; you’ve heard me say this from the beginning. He was counting on NATO, the European Union, our allies in Asia cracking, moving away. He’s betting on Western unity will crack. He’s still betting on that. And, once again, we’re going to prove him wrong. We will not lessen our resolve. We’re going to continue to stand with the brave and proud people of Ukraine. We will never fail in our determination to defend freedom and oppose tyranny. It’s as simple as that,” Biden added.

Puma Drone

Puma Drone. Image Credit: AeroVironment.

But the Ukrainian leader requested $7 billion a month for the Ukrainian economy and war effort to keep going. Most of Ukraine’s economy and industry is based in the southeast part of the country. (And that is one of the reasons why the Russian military is trying to capture the Donbas.) As a result, the Russian invasion is threatening to destroy the Ukrainian economy.

Indeed, the World Bank has estimated that the Ukrainian economy could lose as much as 45 percent of its gross domestic product this year alone as a result of the war.

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.

12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. CK

    April 23, 2022 at 2:20 pm

    Putin doesn’t seem to know what he wants in Azovstal (So like with the rest of Ukraine and this war, I guess) – one day, attack, attack, attack, not one step back. Another day, please surrender, please please please. Third day, OK, we seal them off, nobody attack. Day four: Attack! Attack! Attack!

    57 days and he can’t even take a factory.

    If the tactic is to drive the Ukrainians away from former Ukrainian cities (and repopulate them with Russians) then I feel sorry for the poor sods that are transplanted to live there. Who is going to rebuild these cities? Russia? With what money?

    Well into the 1970’s huge parts of Stalingrad were still a pile of rubble. Wonder how long it will take for Mariupol if god forbid, the Russians are still in charge in the decades to come.

  2. Vladolph Putler

    April 23, 2022 at 9:12 pm

    It is rather doubtful that Russia can ultimately hold Ukrainian territory militarily without doing things that are scales stupider than the stupidest of stupidity they have already engaged in.

    Every day Russia’s military capabilities decrease, while the opposite is true for Ukraine. The sinking of the Moskva was a sign of things to come. Conservative as Ukraine’s offensives have been, they have predominantly been successful.

    Cannon fodder doesn’t win wars. It doesn’t matter how many conscripts Putin heaves into the meat grinder if they cannot gain or hold territory. And Russia’s Navy is at risk- and will be at MUCH much more risk shortly here.

    Russia has historically been very good at losing its entire Navy. But if it cannot keep its Black Sea Fleet, it also cannot protect the Kerch Strait Bridge. And if cannot protect the Kerch Strait Bridge, it cannot hold Crimea. For that matter, Crimea becomes pretty useless if Ukraine takes Nova Kokhovka, as it will have zero water. Other territories are simple bread and butter maneuver warfare. Though the current attrition warfare aint’ exactly nice to Russian forces either. These highly maneuverable new rapid fire 155mm guns (various sources) are gonna make things even less nice for the Conscripts on the front lines. Dropping MRSI volleys in bursts of TEN instead of the traditional 3. And some use highly accurate rifled guns. Accuracy nearly that of PGMs, but using standard, cheap 155mm shells.

    As to Mariupol, it would be foolish to not assume that the Azov battalion is not laid up quite well. And nearly impossible to contain, or destroy, due to the VAST and uncharted catacomb of amateur mines below the city. Which almost certainly were heavily fortified prior to the invasion.

    Russia is in quite the pickle.

  3. Alex

    April 24, 2022 at 4:02 am

    Wake up, Mariupol is completely under the control of the people’s militia of Donbass and Russian troops. The flags of Russia, Chechnya and the Donetsk People’s Republic hang all over the city. Odessa is next.

    This afternoon, high-precision long-range air-launched missiles of the Russian Aerospace Forces disabled a logistics terminal at a military airfield near Odessa, where a large batch of foreign weapons received from the United States and European countries was stored.

    In just a day, 22 military facilities were hit by this type of weapon, including two battalion command and observation posts and one brigade control post, 11 strongholds, as well as places where manpower and military equipment of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were concentrated. Another 79 objects were destroyed by aircraft.

    The losses of the Bandera Nazis amounted to 200 people and more than 30 armored vehicles and vehicles.

    Near Ilyichevka and Kramatorsk, three warehouses of weapons, military equipment and ammunition were destroyed. Near the settlement of Novaya Dmitrovka, the Buk-M1 anti-aircraft missile system and three radar stations were eliminated.

    While lies and propaganda are being written, all the goals that Russia and Donbass have set themselves are systematically achieved and no squeals from either the West or the Bandera bastards help.

    • mcswell

      April 25, 2022 at 12:23 am

      Hey Alex, can you do me a favor? Can you get me added to Putin’s list of people who are forbidden to enter Russia? You know, the list that Kamala Harris and Mark Zuckerberg are on. I want to hang the announcement on my office wall for people to admire.

      • CK

        April 25, 2022 at 7:26 am

        Mine too please!

  4. CK

    April 24, 2022 at 5:35 pm

    I think you don’t understand what “completely” means. So you can add that to the list, together with “truth”, “facts”, “reality”, “competence” and “Sveta’s love”.

    @Alex – deny, deflect, obfuscate. Seriously, that’s you in a book.

    Don’t look at Putin! Look at Biden! Don’t look at what we’re doing in Ukraine, look at your country! Recession, CNN, political division, look elsewhere, but please, don’t look at what is happening in Russia! Internet Research Agency script in a nutshell.

    Also, poor you man, they are making you work on Orthodox Easter? The night money Sveta brings not enough to keep you guys afloat anymore? Let me know if you need any donations. I’m sure I have a few cents lying around that will be worth a fortune in roubles!

  5. Alex

    April 25, 2022 at 10:32 am

    Yes, Russia has big “problems”:
    There is the Donetsk People’s Republic. There is the Luhansk People’s Republic. Kherson applied to Russia for a referendum to establish the Kherson People’s Republic. God bless the Ukrainians of Donbass!

  6. CK

    April 25, 2022 at 10:55 am

    Yes Alex, and Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Romania also re-applied to join the Russian Federation. In this reality, Putin has conquered his hemorrhoids, and you and Sveta live happily ever after.

    It’s nice to sit back and daydream, isn’t it? 🙂

  7. Alex

    April 26, 2022 at 2:01 am

    Slowly, in order to avoid unnecessary casualties, but confidently and kilometer after kilometer, the people’s militia of Donbass liberates Ukraine from Bandera Nazis. And all because this is the “whole world” with the Ukrainian regime:

    The West failed to turn much of the world against Russia after the military operation in Ukraine began, columnist Howard French wrote in an article for Foreign Policy magazine.
    According to him, many states did not support sanctions against Moscow, including such large countries as India and China.

    “In fact, when counting the population of these countries, it becomes clear that the states representing the majority of humanity have not taken a position in this conflict, seeing in it the familiar echoes of the former rivalry between East and West,” said French.
    According to the observer, the international political system that took shape at the beginning of the twentieth century from the very beginning gave the countries of the “third world” the status of second-class states. As an example, he cited the colonization of Africa by European countries.

    “It was the work of the enslaved millions of people who grew sugar and cotton in huge quantities, cleared the land and did all other unpaid work that made the American colonies profitable for Europe, and the so-called “Old World” new and rich,” the author emphasized.

    French urged not to ignore the heightened sense of justice among the former colonized peoples.

  8. CK

    April 26, 2022 at 7:34 am

    “Slowly, in order to avoid unnecessary casualties…” 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀

  9. Alex

    April 29, 2022 at 9:18 am

    If someone wants to know the truth about the civil war in the Donbass, about all the atrocities of the Bandera clean-ups and why Russia was forced to intervene, then it is better to watch films by independent journalists. There are already many such journalists who fight for truth and freedom. For example, a documentary by the German journalist Wilhelm Domcke-Schulz.

    A documentary film about the war crimes of the Bandera Nazis during the period of Russia’s special military operation to denazify and demilitarize Ukraine is in production. It will be a real information bomb, where the war crimes of Bandera Nazis will be shown and proved.

    The documentary “Remember Odessa” tells how the Bandera Nazis burned Ukrainians alive and other heinous war crimes.

    The documentary “To Live and Die in Donbass” tries to fill this gaping information gap in the West. He looks into the tormented soul of the inhabitants of Donbass, who really want only one thing – to live self-determining according to their own rules and values. Not submitting to foreign forces and ideologies.

    In the east of Ukraine, in the Donbass, a war has been raging since the beginning of 2014. A civil war that claimed more than 15,000 lives over the years, including several hundred children. They had to die, because the national-fascist coup government in Kyiv, funded by the West, trained and militarily heavily armed, would not tolerate any resistance to their illegitimate rule, no matter the cost.

    Therefore, in April 2014, the putschists deployed the Ukrainian army, supported by dozens of right-wing extremist volunteer battalions, and have since bombed city centers, residential areas, schools, hospitals and infrastructure, killing civilians.

    This perennial crime has gone completely unnoticed by the Western public. Politicians and the media avoid this topic and reports about how the devil pours holy water. Because a public discussion about the crimes of the Ukrainian regime would reveal only one thing – with what mass murderers and terrorists the so-called “west of values” in Ukraine has a common language, if only to defend their goals and interests.

    Lend-lease is a commodity loan, and not cheap: for all the ammunition, equipment and food supplied by the United States, many future generations of Ukrainian citizens will pay. Zelensky is driving the country into a debt hole.

  10. CK

    April 29, 2022 at 1:49 pm

    Ah, I see your tactic. You add a little shitty first paragraph so it doesn’t detect your duplicate post. Is this what it has come to now, you just posting the same exact post 2, 3, 4, 5 times per article?

    Wow, did they run out of paper in Russia, Alex? You guys can’t print new material? Literally using the same lines, over and over again, and now in duplicate in every post!

    Are you so defeated you can’t even come up with anything new? How sad. Now the idiot is talking about lend-lease at the end of his post, because he literally just copy + pasted it from another thread, with zero relevance to this one.

    Here’s a reminder:

    If someone wanted to know the truth about anything in Ukraine Alex, the last person they would go to is you.

    Paragraphs and paragraphs of bollocks, dubious claims about “independent journalists”, random documentarians, conspiracy theorists, deluded claims that of course, have no backup, lie after lie after lie.

    Classical Kremlin troll approach. Just flood the internet, the comments, the media, with tosh, doesn’t matter what it is, just make sure you write some old nonsense. Make sure to say the claim is supported by some dude in Germany, France, the states. If it’s a “documentary” (usually from youtube) then the better.

    Anything that victimises Russia, always the victim, always the bullied, never the problem. It’s always the Nazis. It’s always some pseudo-historical point.

    Anyone that has had the misfortune to study your “tactics” sees the forest for the trees, the pattern of lies, disinformation, blanketing of random claims, deflection, obfuscation, and other words beyond your vocabulary.

    It’s hopeless Alex. Your lies are as short as your intellect. What a pathetic job, to sit in your government shed, spreading your pathetic, government lies.

    A pathetic job for a truly pathetic man. A better match could not be made in heaven.

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