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lordhedgwich

Russian army under equipped?

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Wow I didn't know the Russians sent in T-90's, got a picture or video Steve?

Also what the heck is a T-72 UMG?

 

I believe it's a (Ukranian?) variant of the T-72B. I've only ever seen a few references to it.

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T-72UMG is a variant of T-72AG export modification of T-72. Some of these tanks bought Turkmenistan, but because of their bad quality most of tem were turned back by claim to replacement. Possibly its left in Ukraine. T-72UMG differs from T-72AG by native T-72 engine, Kontakt-5 ERA on turret and wind sensor.  

Edited by Haiduk

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 Second time T-90A were involved in assault of Luhansk airport 30-31 Aug 2014.

Two sets of T-90 pictures (see above link) first show a Russian soldier standing on a T-90 pointed north approaching Luhansk city.  It was taken on a dirt road parallel and adjacent to the M-04 roadway.  This is the primary route from Krasnodon, the main staging area for Russian forces during the counter offensive.  The second set of photos are of three T-90 headed southward on the M-04 back towards Krasnodon, and most likely to the Russian border crossing at Izvaryne (the main crossing point).  The pictures very clearly establish the presence of T-90s in Ukraine as well as corroborate the accounts of them being involved in the Russian assault on the Luhansk airport in late August.

I'm guessing that Russia decided to use the T-90s at Luhansk airport for two primary reasons:

1.  Fairly small, isolated battlefield that was not generally covered by the media

2.  About the closest and quickest entry/exit to/from Russia that was guaranteed easy going up to the intended point of contact

As I said above, my assumption is that primary reason Russia deployed T-90s was to test them under actual combat conditions, not because it wanted/needed their combat power to help reverse Ukraine's gains.  T-72s were adequate for that task and were a tiny bit more deniable.  Also, Russia did not use T-90 for Debaltseve which was a very important battle to win.  There have been no other confirmed sightings that I know of besides the two Haiduk mentioned, so I think it's safe to conclude that Russia got what it needed at the airport battle.

It is possible that only one platoon was involved, but it sounds like it might have been a full company (which would make more sense) staggered by platoon when conducting road travel.

Since I mentioned Krasnodon, here is a rather famous video taken in the area showing an entire Russian battalion sized force lined up on the road.   Cripes, there must be more armor on that road than Ukraine had in the entire northern sector!  This is the sort of thing that makes me have a very low opinion of anybody who insists that Russia didn't send in regular troops during the August/September counter attack.  Aliens transporting the vehicles and personnel from Planet 10 is a more plausible than the Russian government's story about coal minors using captured Ukrainian equipment:

Steve

Edited by Battlefront.com

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Its sad that I can identify most of the vehicles in that column...what am I doing with my life?

Apparently paying attention :D

The great thing about this video is you get a really good sense of what a battalion maneuver group looks like, including the logistics tail.  There's also a pretty good look at the march order of such a force as you can see most of the vehicles fit into logical groupings with the tanks dispersed for security.  You know, exactly what coal miners would know how to do :D

The other thing you can see is why Russia made sure the Ukrainian airforce was knocked out of the sky early in the war.  The Ukrainian airforce was very small at the time (still is), but one ground attack by even one aircraft on this column would have been a disaster.  In fact, this gives an idea of what happened a little earlier when Ukraine scored a hit on a company sized column of the 76th Airborne (Pskov) with concentrated artillery. This was the first large scale loss of Russian servicemen and equipment, as well as the first one to receive widespread and multi-sourced corroboration both in Ukraine and in Russia.  If they were in march order like in this video, it's not hard to imagine why the casualty count was so high (IIRC 40 KIA and double that wounded).

Steve

Edited by Battlefront.com

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The 76th getting clobbered?  Oh yeah, there's tons of stuff about it, though most is about Russia's attempts to hush it up.  That effort culminated in Putin having the law changed that reporting on any death of a Russian serviceman was an act of treason:

http://www.themoscowtimes.com/article.php?id=508089

https://www.bellingcat.com/news/mena/2014/08/27/revealed-around-40-russian-troops-from-pskov-died-in-the-ukraine-reinforcement-sent-in/

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-28949582

And plenty of others.  It was massive news at the time because it was the first evidence of Russian servicemen dying in Ukraine at a time when the Russian state hadn't totally clamped down on reporting.  A similar event happened to the 18th Motor Battalion in fighting near Donetsk.  In that case a bunch of men were billeted in an old factory and Ukraine caught wind of it and pounded them with artillery, killing and wounding a large number.  This article talks about both incidents:

http://www.newsweek.com/killed-action-ukraine-putins-secret-funerals-336762

As for details, there's still not a lot known because there were no Ukrainian observers directly involved in the action.  Of course since Russia states they weren't there, Russia is not going to provide details nor allow its soldiers to.  So there's only tidbits of information here and there.  Here's one of dozens of articles talking about the evidence recovered by Ukrainian forces:

http://www.planetputin.com/another-smoking-gun-russias-76th-vdv-division-fighting-in-ukraine/

Remember, this was early in Russia's counter offensive (August 18th-20th).  They were either an advanced force or (my theory) Russia hoped a minimal footprint of some 4-6 companies spread out along the front would be enough to arrest and reverse Ukrainian advances. Either way, Russia launched it's massive counter offensive the following week.

Here's a pretty good summary of Russia's escalation of force over the months.  Note that it specifically mentions the BTR-82A, though there's a debate about if they were indeed Chechen or not (some feel they tried too hard on the video to appear Chechen).

An Invasion By Any Other Name: The Kremlin’s Dirty War in Ukraine

Very recently a group has published the names and some details of 2000 Russian service personnel who were either KIA or MIA in Ukraine since the start of the war.  Apparently it draws no distinction between the various types of Russian soldiers fighting in Ukraine, presuming instead that all of them were fighting on behalf of the Russian state.  That's a little questionable, but it is splitting hairs:

http://uatoday.tv/politics/online-group-posts-names-of-russians-killed-fighting-in-eastern-ukraine-605006.html

Steve

 

 

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kinophile,

An not sure whether this is quite what was being referred to by you, but I believe you may find it of real interest. This is an account (with several devastating pics) of a t6th Guards Airborne Assault Division BMD-2 captured by the Ukrainian Army near Luhansk.

http://en.censor.net.ua/photo_news/298926/airborne_assault_vehicle_of_russian_76th_airborne_division_captured_near_luhansk_photos

Here's the story of Ukraine's destroying much of a Russian convoy. It was all over the news at the time.

http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/15/world/europe/ukraine-crisis/

Here's one of the destroyed, a BMD-2.

http://s.newsweek.com/sites/www.newsweek.com/files/styles/md/public/2014/08/15/ukraine.jpg

This BTR series AFV appears to have been blown clear off the road. Note the pic is tied to a GeoRef.

http://liveuamap.com/e/2014/2-of-august-ukrainian-forces-destroy-russian-convoy

Wish I had more to show you.

Regards,

John Kettler

Edited by John Kettler

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kinophile,

Happy to help! Also, it occurred to me a few minutes ago that since you do have a GeoRef to work from, maybe there is Google Earth imagery available of the scene of the pummeling of the Russian convoy. If so, that might prove most informative.

Regards,

John Kettler

 

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Do you have a link to that event? 

I can tell more in details. So, target of Russian troops was the height "Sarmat" near Heorhiivka settlement in 9-10 km to the south from Luhansk. Near this height on territory of fish factory and around situated positions of many Ukrainian's artillery and MLRS batteries, which support our troops throughout almost all sector A. This artillery concentration made a life of separatists too hard. Also Putin already have gave order to invasion and for success in sector A Russians need to destroy Ukrainain artillery. 19th Aug two companies of 234th air-assault regiment of 76th air-assault division with support of motor-rifle company tactical group of 15th motor-rifle brigade crossed the border and via Luhansk and Rozkishne moved along the road to Heorhiivka direction. They also have arillery suport - 2S9 "Nona" battery of 76th division and 2S19 "Msta-S" of 15th brigade, also MLRS and artillery of separatists. On own way their steam-roll with artillery support eliminated two checkpoints of 24th mech.brigade (one on the main road and one on the road to Luhansk airport), we lost several pieces of armor.

Height "Sarmat" defended by 9th company of 3rd battalion of 24th mech.brigade and volunteer special police battalion "Shtorm" (in real about company with small-arms). 24th brigade infantry were mostly poor trained mobilized, system of fortificatins on the height almost not existed (was too hot and soldiers were laizy to dig a hard soil). Before direct attack Russians hammered the height with artillery. Ukrainan infantry withdrew from there (two BMPs were destroyed by arty fire). Commander of 24th brigade quickly evaluated situation and without concordance with Sector HQ ordered immediately move out artillery from fish factory (only battery of 2S3 was there at that moment). Russians took the height by force of one company, second company hold positions in Heorhiivka. 15th brigade's company tactical group was nearby ready to support. Unknown now what Russians wait, possibly own artillery arriving or reinforcement, but their didn't advance in fish factory direction. So, 20th Aug UKR troops counter-attacked. Our artillery openeed fire on Fabrychne area where were positions of Russian artillery. Later two tanks of 30th brigade with infantry support recaptured checkpoint on the road to Luhansk airport. Possibly during this action was destroyed T-72B and BTR of Russian 15th brigade. Artillery after forcing Russians vis-a-vis to shut up opened fire to the height. From other side height was shelled by tanks from checkpoint. Two Mi-24 was sent to strike on enemy positions, but from Rozkishne MANPAD was launched and one chopper, which flew on low altitude crashed on the groung - both pilots got killed. Second Mi-24 made evasive maneuver and flew away. Russians on the height sufferd heavu losses from artillery fire and begun to fled to Luhansk direction. One their BMD was destroyed, one captured. Our troops to the mid of day captured height again. This on first look ordinary engagement in real save whole sector A from catastrophical consequenses if our artillery would mostly destroyed. Our troops in airport, Novosvitlivka and other would stay w/o artillery support and Russians after invasion by several battalion tactical groups would to get overhelming advantage. But desperate defense of Luhansk airport and deadly artillery work allow our troops in Sector A to withdraw in organized way and evade a fate of Sector D and Ilovaisk froup. In this case military defeat of Ukraine would be total and Minsk agreements would be more heavy to us...

Edited by Haiduk

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Thanks very much for the details!  Some of it sounds familiar, but most of it is knew to me.  Do you have a good breakdown of the losses?  I have seen a wide range of losses for the Russian side, probably because of the usual problems of one source thinking "casualties = killed" and another source thinking "casualties = killed + wounded + missing".  This is a typical source of error.

I have not gone over the reports in detail myself, but from my quick look a few days ago the total losses seem to be around 125 for the Russian side.  That is roughly ~40 killed and ~85 wounded.  However, I've seen other reports where it was ~85 killed and ~40 wounded.  I think the first scenario sounds more likely.

I am glad you brought up the importance of this battle.  Russia's counter attack was focused on destroying both the southern and northern Ukrainian forces, which could have ended the war on Russia's terms.  However, the counter offensive in the northern sector made only modest gains at significant cost to Russia and its proxy forces.  Russia's counter offensive in the center (western) part of the front also did not achieve much and the Azov front stiffened up very quickly and with significant losses to Russian and proxy forces.  Only in Sector D did Russia score a significant victory, though I speculate the fight was harder than they expected.

Steve

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I provided plenty of links already in terms of the casualties and some interviews with 76th soldiers who were there.  While that doesn't establish the details of what happened on the battlefield, it does establish the basic facts.  If Haiduk has some links to the low level details that would be great.

Unfortunately for historians, the official Russian position is "there were no casualties because there was no Russian troops in Ukraine".  Since we know that is a flat out lie, we have only the Ukrainian and scattered independent Russian media reports to go by.

One of the other units that got hit pretty hard was the 106th (Tula) Airborne.

Steve

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Perhaps you guys could provide some more information on this? Just a link would be fine, I can read Ukrainian no need for translations.

Here it. I desribe on base of this article. If you read Lostarmor discusion board, this LJ wrote СБУшник (JagD in twitter) 

http://feldherrnhalle.livejournal.com/8148.html

Edited by Haiduk

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Thanks Haiduk!  I should have figured that's where you'd point us to.  Unfortunately for English speakers this information is generally only referenced in English as nobody, that I know of, has translated all this stuff.

For those that want to have a good laugh at the nonsense that the "separatists" use only captured Ukrainian equipment, check out this article:

http://feldherrnhalle.livejournal.com/8571.html

Pics below show 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Battalions, each with three Batteries.  4th Battalion is Grad based.  Other pictures in the above link shows the Brigade has most of its other formations, including ATG Battalion (apparently all towed and not missile based).

125135_900.jpg

119818_900.jpg

121101_900.jpg

121756_900.jpg

Yup, totally plausible that they captured all of this equipment... and it's totally plausible I will win the lottery jackpot even though I don't buy tickets.  OK, so Putin usually says that if it isn't captured it was bought on eBay or at a surplus shop.  Well, I don't believe that either.  Yet Russia didn't provide this stuff because they're not taking part in the conflict.  Therefore, I have another theory about where these things came from:

Since the stuff wasn't captured, purchased on eBay, bought at a surplus shop, or supplied by Russia I think some coal miner probably found a listing in some newspaper's "For Sale" section.  It probably read "For sale... slightly used SP Artillery Brigade. Low mileage, matching paint jobs, and unit/vehicle designations already painted on.  Runs good.  Only been used for little old ladies on Sunday drives.  Will throw in a Novorussian battle flag for free".

Yup, that's got to be it since there's no other logical explanation for it.

Steve

Edited by Battlefront.com

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Good link Haiduk, Better then other ones I have read. 

Steve, Those artillery pictures do bring up a few questions to my mind. I'll have to do some research into how these artillery pieces were acquired.

I'm curious as to what research you think is needed?  Either the DPR captured an entire Brigade's worth of equipment and ammo or it was supplied by Russia.  Is there any other possibility other than the silly alternatives that we've heard from Putin?

Steve

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None if you have already decided. However, a staggering number of 432 documented vehicles (!) have changed sides during the conflict. February 2015 alone saw 150 Ukrainian vehicles trophied by LNR/DNR republic. About 23 SPG's have been captured altogether, which I think is what is shown in your previous picture. 

I'm sure you heard of this site before, it is very well documented by both Uk and Ru sources: http://lostarmour.info/analytics/ 

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Heeeeey pay no attention to the embarrassing pile of Russian hardware in the Ukraine, HERE IS AN ARMATA OOH AND AAH OVER IT.

Frankly the only way I'll take it as a serious project is if Russian separatists in Donbass capture a battalion sized elements of T14s from the Ukrainian Army.  Then I'll know it's actually in service.  

Edited by panzersaurkrautwerfer

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None if you have already decided.

Well, there is quite a mountain of evidence in addition to this... but I'll play along for a bit just because it's a lot of fun :D

However, a staggering number of 432 documented vehicles (!) have changed sides during the conflict. February 2015 alone saw 150 Ukrainian vehicles trophied by LNR/DNR republic. About 23 SPG's have been captured altogether, which I think is what is shown in your previous picture. 

I'm sure you heard of this site before, it is very well documented by both Uk and Ru sources: http://lostarmour.info/analytics/ 

This website is well known to me and it documents destroyed as well as fully functional vehicles.  It also does not accurately track a vehicle that switches sides more than once.  It does not show what became of the vehicles.  So it is an interesting source of information, but it is not definitive.  It also can't explain T-72, T-90, and T-80, etc. being in Ukraine.  So at best it only shows that SOME of the vehicles that the DPR/LPR use were captured from Ukraine.  A point that nobody disputes.

So let's see.  What you're saying is that the DPR and LPR combined captured all 23 SPGs of several types, none of which were destroyed beyond use, and then never lost a single one under any circumstance (even to mechanical failure)?  Then the DPR managed to get all of these SPGs for their own selfish uses, managed to convert the non-2S1 SPGs into 2S1 SPGs, and on top of that put a couple into a dark warehouse to mate so they could produce offspring S21 to fill out an entire single Artillery Brigade?  Oh yes, you have opened my eyes to a different possibility for sure! 

OK, so just to make sure I understand your position correctly.  Do I understand you believe Russia has supplied absolutely nothing to DPR/LPR?  If you do not think this, then what do you think Russia has supplied?

While we're on this subject, do you agree or disagree that Russian armed forces have fought in Ukraine?  Before you answer that...

Steve

Edited by Battlefront.com

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