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Uh so has Debaltseve fallen?

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Personally, I imagine that any Russian mercenaries (and forgive me for using such a seemingly blunt term as mercenaries) would NOT be involved in attacking the cauldron.  They'd be the ones allowing the withdrawal and standing by in position.  Any attempts to close it were probably by Serperatists whom were not in favor of the truce and thus operating without a recognized chain of command.

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I'very found some official info. Ukraniand admitted 22 KIA, 150 injured "during last three days"

Googled for that tweet, found none. But there are numerous Ukranian sites copying same scary story about Russian special force fighting rebels for trucks to move bodies away :)

Looks like this text is basis of that "tweet" was mentioned.

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I am not so sure there will be much in the way of ceasefire violations for the short term. The two most important objectives the separatists/Russians wanted were the Donetsk airport and Debaltseve. They now have both. The offensive north of Luhansk city went nowhere and the distraction force against Mariupol has suffered a serious bloody nose (something I don't see anybody talking about here). I think the significant losses and expense of logistics taking the airport and Debaltseve is going to force a bit of a lull for the time being. Possible exception being continued counter attacks against Ukrainian gains along the Sea of Azov front. Even then, they might just be content to leave the front where it is since the assault towards Mariupol was never more than feint.Steve

Well the problem when you say one thing in public and another in private is you confuse your rabid attack dogs and they tend to keep straining at the leash.

http://news.yahoo.com/rebels-attack-ukrainian-government-troops-despite-ceasefire-kiev-094026119.html

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Personally, I imagine that any Russian mercenaries (and forgive me for using such a seemingly blunt term as mercenaries) would NOT be involved in attacking the cauldron.  They'd be the ones allowing the withdrawal and standing by in position.  Any attempts to close it were probably by Serperatists whom were not in favor of the truce and thus operating without a recognized chain of command.

This appears to have been the case prior to Minsk. Reports from the field said that, by and large, it was separatists (i.e. mostly Ukrainians) doing the fighting. However, coordination and artillery fire were Russian regulars. Many of the forces being pushed at the Ukrainian lines were "unreliable" separatist militias. This included at least one problematic Russian Cossack unit and the remains of Bezler's group (c.300 fighters) after he was deposed in the leadership purge of December and January.

However, in the last week Ukrainian forces said this changed and that regular Russian forces were directly involved in the fighting. This makes sense to me given the short amount of time allowed to secure Debaltseve before the ceasefire went into effect. It also makes sense because if you look at what was going on about 1-2 weeks ago, the separatist units that were fighting against Debaltseve were largely spent.

Another thing to consider is the initial assault against Debaltseve was made at the "neck" of the pocket, since it made sense to pinch off the pocket at the weakest point. Once cut off then the bulk of the forces in Debaltseve could be wrecked more easily. After making sone initial gains, at significant cost, the attacks stalled. In large part due to a major deployment of Ukrainian artillery in the area. When separatists went to form up for an attack, they were hit and hit hard by grade and cannon fire. Then Ukraine engaged in a few local counter attacks that took back a little bit of territory, but mostly just kept the front stable.

Because of this the strategy was altered to direct assaults against Debaltseve while keeping the supply routes under fire. The hope was to break the Ukrainian positions and send them fleeing as happened it Ilovaisk. The primary reason, in my view, was because they were outside of effective Ukrainian artillery and counter battery fire. This meant the forces could form up without as much risk of annihilation, but also that they could pound Ukrainian positions without a big risk of having their artillery knocked out.

This change of strategy was quite good and it obviously worked in that they got Debaltseve. It didn't work in that the Ukrainians withdrew most of their forces in good order. I know some think that I have no respect for the military leadership of the separatist/Russian side of things, but that is absolutely not the case. This was a smart move on their part given that their initial plan (though theoretically sound) failed to work.

Steve

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So, separatist faction confirmed for first CMBS module? ;)

That is our plan :D We see two different types, similar to CMSF. One type is barely organized and poorly armed fighters, the other type is decently organized somewhat well armed militias.

Steve

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Nice.

 

For the red side right?

Also some recoiless rifles please. I don't think they are in the game now or are they? But they seem pretty ubiquitous.

No specific plans, but yes the two forces I mentioned are for the Red side. However, I think we'll probably add more "National Guard" options for the Blue side.

Steve

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Also some recoiless rifles please. I don't think they are in the game now or are they?

 

I think someone did a screenshot with Ukrainian units and a SPG-9. Heck, I skinned the darned game and I didn't realize that it was in there! Let me look... yup, they're in under "Specialist teams". Steve can tell you I'm notorious for getting lost in the TO&E, always having to ask "Where did you put those mortar carrier, again?"   :)

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No specific plans, but yes the two forces I mentioned are for the Red side. However, I think we'll probably add more "National Guard" options for the Blue side.

Steve

 

Excellent.  I've been mapping out some details of some scenarios I want to make but don't have the forces yet from CMBS to do it properly.  Looking forward to the additional modules with this specific content.

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Steve, thanks for ringing in on this topic.

 

What are some good sources (English-language) that one can follow these events on?  

 

There are not any reliable English -language sources, and majority are counter-informative. Only reliable information can be only obtained from vkontakte (russian/ukrainian version of FB), mostly from soldiers and their families. Friends and their relatives near combat zone can be informative but still limited in their military knowledge. Local media can also be helpful.

 

 

HAHA! That guy should do standup comedy. He's about the least reliable source of information out there.

Nope. Ukrainian military is still less reliable. According to numbers they have been providing since beginning of the conflict Russia must have lost half of its population.

And to be honest: since the Ilovaysk battle it is pretty obvious that when separatists talk about 'cauldron' or 'encirclement' they are not far from truth - premature and overoptimistic in their reports, but still more accurate than total denial presented by Lysenko.

 

Concerning Debaltseve and the cauldron:

 

It is increasingly difficult to find reliable information in Ukrainian media too as censorship is running rampart but here you can see col. Yuri Sinkovsky, dep. commander of the 'Krivbass'  batallion. He claims he risks the martial court to bring attention to dramatic situation of his troops surrounded in Debaltseve area. Low on ammunition and supplies and with no contact with HQ. Legal considerations whether surrender with no ammo is treason punishable by martial court or it is not follow.

 

Edited by Ashez

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About Ukranian (and sometimes Russian meida). There is a one guy in youtube - Anatoly Shariy. He is regularly exposes fakes in media. He mostly is focused on Ukraninan sources but occasionaly slams Russian news as well :) 

 

Overll conslusion from his videos is that current news from these sources generally should be dismissed as intentional fakes or instances of incompetent journalism. 

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 Losses are said by several sources to be around 50 dead and 200 wounded. Which added to what they pulled out is pretty close to 3000. So it seems the numbers are at least reasonably accurate.

Polish edition of the Newsweek writes about people welcoming Debaltseve defenders at Kiev Rail Station. Journalists who asked soldiers about dead were told about 'several hundred dead' 

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Polish edition of the Newsweek writes about people welcoming Debaltseve defenders at Kiev Rail Station. Journalists who asked soldiers about dead were told about 'several hundred dead' 

 

There is Russian proverb: "He is lying like a witness" 

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Basically when the separatists fail to take Debaltseve, they are useless and incompetent and weak.

When they seize the town, they are equally as hopeless and it somehow becomes a tour de force achieved by the Ukrainian military.

 

 

 

It think you are right, they are most likely quite incompetent. Separatists are thrown to battle with very little or no military training at all. That's quite obvious if you look at their small unit actions and tactics in various combat videos. Poor fire control, poor use of cover, environment and camouflage, grouping up too often in improper situations, poor use of spotters to cover rear and flanks. These for example. 

 

Although they seem to have good morale and willingness to fight, and strong supporter as a backbone. Russian goverment supporting them materially and russian citizens immaterially, at least as military advisors.  

 

Without mentioned russian support, separatist uprising would be futile and it will collapse soon after russia and (some) russians cut down their support, especially material.

Edited by wee

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It think you are right, they are most likely quite incompetent. Separatists are thrown to battle with very little or no military training at all. 

 

 

Thank you for your expertise.

First separatists' units were trained in Russia months before the conflict exploded. I think now their level of training varies but still it is far superior to Ukrainian militias.

They are well armed and rotate regularly .

I read about a man from Slaviansk who claimed that ammo and supply crates were stacked and hidden weeks before unrest started.

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First separatists' units were trained in Russia months before the conflict exploded. I think now their level of training varies but still it is far superior to Ukrainian militias.

 

Could please you provide links?

 

It seems to be interesting reading material.

 

EDIT: As far as I know from unofficial publications in Russian social media (doubius source, I know) real support from Russia came no sooner than August 2014 for rebel counteroffensive.

Edited by Alexey K

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Gentlemen, I've been watching this thing unfold over the last two weeks. Everyday, I've seen news footage of the battle area that is not well

distributed, especially in the US.

 

I can tell you, the Ukrainians were surrounded, many of them left ****e loads of equipment on the field and surrendered. These POWs have been surprisingly well-treated by the rebels. They have been given good food, lodgings and medical attention. I saw one tanker who's tank was hit, was badly burned, saying how well his wounds (badly burnt) have been treated. Hell, the rebels are even calling up their parents to come and get them!!!

 

They left a ****e ton of tanks, missiles, IFVs on the field. The rebels were towing them away because there were too many and not enough drivers!

Hundreds surrendered and their officer's bolted and left them to the rebels. The Ukrainians have been forthcoming with information.

 

They really had their asses kicked...by coal miners and truckdrivers.

 

It may be news to some and possibly a bit of a shock, but the Rebels have Germans, French ex-mil, Afghanis and even Chechens fighting for them as mercs. Its quite a mixed bag.

 

They do have training, not from Russians per se, although there are many ex military among them who train the citizens in heavy and light weapon use. They have many women in their ranks.

Edited by Icecold

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If you want to see at least what vehicles have been shown to be lost, here is a web community that has been aggregating this information since the beginning of the conflict: lostarmour.info

That is a list of destroyed / severely damaged vehicles: http://lostarmour.info/armour/

(press the 'Показать весь список' long blue button to see the whole list)

Captured vehicles: http://lostarmour.info/spoils/

The site is in Russian, but it is not hard to navigate. The content of columns is, left to right:

- number of the entry on the current sorting of the list (not fixed)

- type of the vehicle (easily translatable, or in many cases immediately obvious from the numerical parts)

- vehicle's tactical number (if it was identified)

- date of the photo/video source capture

- place of capture

- owner of the vehicle (yellow-blue - Ukraine, red with blue cross - DPR/LPR militia)

- specific unit which owned the vehicle (if known)

- source material

- source link

- vehicle's unique ID in the database (fixed)

- map reference (if available)

The green background is for the entries that have been added / updated in the last 24 hours (there was a huge addition of captured ones today from Debal'tsevo area, and the reports are only starting to pour in (they still occasionally add vehicles from last summer pockets that have not surfaced on the photos until now, for example)).

I suggest that you sort the list by date (4th column), so it is easier to see the ones from recent fighting at the end of the list. Also note that the date format is year-month-day (not year-day-month like it is in the US).

Edited by Krasnoarmeyets

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Gentlemen, I've been watching this thing unfold over the last two weeks. Everyday, I've seen news footage of the battle area that is not well

distributed, especially in the US.

 

I can tell you, the Ukrainians were surrounded, many of them left ****e loads of equipment on the field and surrendered. These POWs have been surprisingly well-treated by the rebels. They have been given good food, lodgings and medical attention. I saw one tanker who's tank was hit, was badly burned, saying how well his wounds (badly burnt) have been treated. Hell, the rebels are even calling up their parents to come and get them!!!

 

They left a ****e ton of tanks, missiles, IFVs on the field. The rebels were towing them away because there were too many and not enough drivers!

Hundreds surrendered and their officer's bolted and left them to the rebels. The Ukrainians have been forthcoming with information.

 

They really had their asses kicked...by coal miners and truckdrivers.

Would this be the same coal miners and truck drivers that the other poster above was saying were being trained in Russia for months?

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