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Russia Is Getting Ready for a War to Conquer the Donbas

Ukraine Donbas
Russian tank firing. Image Credit: Creative Commons.

The war for Donbas is about to begin: On day 47 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Russian military is preparing for its promised offensive on eastern Ukraine. The Ukrainian forces are also moving forces and weapons to the Donbas in preparation for the assault.

Meanwhile, reports of war crimes committed by Russian troops in liberated Ukrainian towns and villages continue to emerge.

Donbas: The War In the East

For more than a week now, the Russian military has been repositioning its forces in preparation for an all-out assault on eastern Ukraine in the Donbas region.

The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Monday, Ukrainian forces have killed approximately 19,500 Russian troops (and wounded approximately thrice that number), destroyed 154 fighter, attack, and transport jets, 137 helicopters, 725 tanks, 347 artillery pieces, 1,923 armored personnel carriers, 111 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), seven boats, 1,387 vehicles, 76 fuel tanks, 55 anti-aircraft batteries, 119 unmanned aerial systems, 25 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems.

Heavy Losses as Donbas War Begins

Throughout the war, the Russian military has been very careful to hide its actual losses on the ground from the Russian people. The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense estimates that the Russians have lost up to 60,000 troops killed, wounded, or captured so far. These estimates are partly corroborated by Western intelligence services.

But now, Moscow has come forward and acknowledged heavy losses in Ukraine. In an interview with Sky News, the Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov admitted that the Russian military has suffered “significant losses of troops,” calling it a “huge tragedy.”

The admission comes as the war enters a second phase, with the focus now fixed on eastern Ukraine and the Donbas. The high casualties mean that the Russian military might soon need to rely on reservists. But Moscow can’t call them up because Russian President Vladimir Putin hasn’t declared a war on Ukraine but rather launched a so-called “special military operation.” Peskov’s statements suggest that the Kremlin might be moving toward a more formal state of war that would allow it to fully mobilize the Russian military.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki acknowledged that Moscow’s admission of heavy losses in Ukraine is odd.

“We agree that that was interesting. Rarely do they acknowledge from the Russian leadership, any elements of weakness or any elements of defeat,” the White House Press Secretary said on Fox News.

“It is also significant that the Ukrainians have essentially won the battle of Kyiv. They’ve protected their city and that is because of their bravery, their courage, but it is also because of the supplies, the military equipment, everything we’ve expedited — $1.7 billion worth — from the United States and the commitment and dedication of the American people to this war,” Psaki added.

“Russia has been a member of the P5+1 [United Nations Security Council permanent members]. They have been implementing — played an implementation role. That’s what we’re talking about and what’s been under discussion in these negotiations. We don’t know that we will come to an agreement though it’s ongoing and we’re still considering it,” Psaki added.

War Crimes and Moscow’s Denial 

In the interview, Peskov also took the chance to deny allegations of war crimes. The withdrawal of the Russian troops from the north of Ukraine revealed widespread atrocities and war crimes, especially in the suburbs of Kyiv.

“We deny the Russian military can have something in common with these atrocities and that dead bodies were shown on the streets of Bucha,” Peskov said.

But reports of atrocities continue to emerge. Satellite imagery has shown that the war crimes were committed while the Russian military was in control, shutting down Moscow’s claims that the atrocities were staged by the Ukrainians.

Moreover, the British Ministry of Defense assessed that Russian troops have been engaged in widespread sexual attacks on Ukrainian civilians, in addition to other war crimes.

“Further evidence of alleged Russian war crimes continues to emerge following Russian withdrawal from northern Ukraine. This includes the reported discovery of a makeshift grave containing deceased Ukrainian civilians near Burzova. Allegations of sexual violence perpetrated by Russian military personnel persist,” the British Military Intelligence stated.

Last week, the United Nations decided to suspend Russia from its human rights council following the reports of war crimes.

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.

16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. from Russia with love

    April 11, 2022 at 9:05 am

    What is written here?
    fantasies of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine about the losses of the Russian Federation that do not have actual confirmation … ok. let’s add this for an intro…
    further, a rotten fake about Bucha, according to which a video has already been published where the Ukrainian military lay out the corpses on April 2, before filming.
    hmm.. is that all? where about the preparation of the operation on both sides and at least some analysis of the situation ???
    change the title of the article to “another lie about Russia”, or as it is customary here “Putin is in a panic!! 1 blah blah blah.” 🙂

  2. L'amateur d'aéroplanes

    April 11, 2022 at 9:52 am

    Fifteen French gendarmes from the Criminal Research Institute of the National Gendarmerie specializing in war crimes arrived in Ukraine today. French magistrates will also arrive to help justice.

  3. Peace-keeping nukes of US arsenal

    April 11, 2022 at 10:02 am

    Strange or perhaps odd, ukraine ministry of propaganda in concert with US state dept, british intelligence and western media is giving the impression that ukrainian forces have suffered little or no casualties despite over 1.5 months of being battered by russian firepower.

    Perhaps ukrainian soldiers are wearing magical amulets or super duper flak jackets or both.

    Like their super tank, the oplot/t-84.This tank(according to ukr ministry of propaganda) is protected by super duper duplet armor that affords protection from 125mm sabot strikes and atgm tandem warheads, but mysteriously has seen little combat use.

    Perhaps the opposition is too weak and ukraine military doesn’t need to use it. Or perhaps ukrainian propaganda is similar to joseph goebbels’ garbage, bush’s iraq wmd garbage and obama’s libyan viagra garbage.

  4. Alex

    April 11, 2022 at 10:10 am

    “Great analysis with solid facts.”
    The other day I showed several articles from this site to an independent American journalist. He laughed and asked: “How did you even get on this fake site”?
    I said that it’s fun for me to look at Russophobes and Bandera Nazis, who have their asses in hellfire all day and night 🙂

  5. Slack

    April 11, 2022 at 10:44 am

    Once russian forces fully squelch the ukrainian forces in the donbass region, zelenskiyy will never be able to set foot there. For eternity.

    However, zelenskiyy could play his now well-familiar damsel-in-distress theatrics, and thereby entice US & NATO to intervene in donbass, likely triggering WW3 in the region.

    Let’s see how it ends for zekenskiyy and his patrons, biden, stoltenberg, macron, van der leyen, etc…

  6. CK

    April 11, 2022 at 11:14 am

    Man, it fills my heart to see so many of Alex’s friends here, all at once. Have you guys met Sveta yet? I bet you have, she’s a hoot!

    But more to the point, it makes me happy because you can really sense the panic and utter desperation going on over there to have you guys working OT, through weekends, at odd hours (very obvious from the posting times) to pump out this desperate troll nonsense.

    Enjoy it while you can lads, it’s the front next for you lot!

  7. Alex

    April 11, 2022 at 12:03 pm

    CK: What you think is joy in your heart is just hellfire in your ass 🙂

  8. CK

    April 11, 2022 at 12:43 pm

    Judging by how much you talk about feeling things in the ass and hellfire Alex, are you channeling some inner experience here maybe? Projecting perhaps?

    You don’t need to worry about divine punishment here Alex, we are a civilized society. We respect your orientation and preferences! Don’t tell Sveta though, I hear she likes to commoditize the practice all to herself.

  9. Eric

    April 11, 2022 at 2:01 pm

    More posts from Alex and his Putin-allied buddies aren’t going to change the battlefield. Russia today is a military and moral disaster. Alex called me a “motherfucker” the other day. It seems he is upset that I called out his quoting a fascist Russian “philosopher” and I pointed to his inversion of truth. It must be upsetting to be a true believer and have your “reality” challenged. Alex’s reply: he just sends insults. Russia lost the war for Kyiv. Nothing is guaranteed, including Russia winning any more major victories. Ukrainians already know how to beat them on the battlefield and Russian military’s doctrine has proven inflexible. Killing people and destroying buildings is not winning – it just makes the survivors hate you. In the long-term, Russia’s economy and demographics are collapsing. Hopefully Russia won’t take their neighboring countries and the world down with them with their collapse into fascism. Ukrainians will have very little love for Russia for a very long time.

  10. Alex

    April 11, 2022 at 4:04 pm

    The entire EU has seen the Ukrainian “civilized” society. See how those who look like you lead there. One word – pigs. The EU fines these bastards and deports them back to Ukraine. It’s fine. The Europeans have seen your true face. All this was done with the support of Ukrainian oligarchs. The names are known. All helicopters for the evacuation were destroyed, including the elite American and British special forces. The US sent a request to Russia for a corridor to evacuate its generals and scientists. They were refused. There are many interesting things.

    Another thing is interesting: generals and officers, as well as US and NATO scientists, who are now in Azovstal, could not be evacuated. The United States announced that General Cloutier allegedly died on March 22, 2022. This is great – such a fake is great. Under Azovstal there are catacombs several kilometers deep and 24 kilometers deep. There, it is there that there is a secret US biological laboratory with biological weapons. All will be known soon. Reminds me of the Umbrella movie. Well, Ukrainians and Russians will take this “fortress”. The whole world will learn a lot of interesting things.

  11. CK

    April 11, 2022 at 5:07 pm

    @Eric – yes, he is clearly losing his cool. Maybe he’s lost friends at this point, knows he will soon be conscripted himself, or just can’t bear to keep speaking in lies and falsehoods.

    Case in point, the above post. He must be drunk, because even by his standards, his utterly deranged views are even more divorced from reality than usual.

    So sad. There is a place for Russia in the world, and there always will be. But not this Russia.

  12. Vladolph Putler

    April 11, 2022 at 11:37 pm

    Russia is destroying itself. He should drink. The situation is tragic for Russians as well. Too bad they are spineless and won’t seize control of the situation from their gloriously incompetent overlords. 🙁

  13. Morty

    April 12, 2022 at 1:58 am

    Who is Mr. Bandera that the children here are talking about?

  14. Alex

    April 12, 2022 at 3:31 am

    Ukrainian nationalists continue to hold 6,255 foreign citizens from 12 states hostage as human shields. In addition, 76 foreign ships from 18 states continue to be blocked in Ukrainian ports.

    The Kiev gangsters have two options: either to silence these citizens, or when foreign citizens return home, they will tell everything. The first option is suicide for the Kiev Bandera Nazis. Even the EU will turn its back on them.

  15. Jerome Vilkov

    April 12, 2022 at 4:57 am

    Russia needs an excuse to call up reservists and more conscripts.

  16. Abraham Lincoln

    April 12, 2022 at 12:34 pm

    I see Alex is posting under several different names now. I suppose, now that Russia is going into a severe recession, the 50 cents he makes on each post is quite a sum of money in Russia today.

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