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kinophile

Separatist push/Ukraine shove back

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JUAN DEAG, I applaud your attempts to debate people who clearly do not mind overlooking reality.  My belief is that it's not worth spending time with people who are clearly out of touch with reality or who are deliberately participating to spread disinformation.  There are other websites for that, this should not be one of them.  Similarly, there are websites to discuss how the Earth is only 9000 years old and aliens are secretly in control of our world's governments.

The fact is that Russia is the only reason there is a war at all.  Anybody who does not believe in this is an utter fool or a tool. Either way, not someone worth trying to reason with.

Vladimir, you know I do not think of you this way :D  While I think you still have a very flawed understanding of the nature of this war and the extent to which your government is responsible for it, you no longer deny that it is heavily involved.  I can work with that :D

Now... back to the casualty and propaganda stuff...

I've seen from the start that some of the loudest critics of Ukrainian information being of poor quality are also the ones who spread and defend even more laughable stuff from the DPR/LPR/Russian side.  "Haha... Ukraine says they killed 50 DPR patriots!  Ukrainians lie so much!  We all know the truth is that they lost 200 men and the DPR has one guy that stubbed his toe!"

The truth of the matter is as I have stated very clearly.  The Ukrainians make an attempt at documenting their losses and they do so in an environment where people can verify the information.  The DPR and LPR do not document anything and they certainly do not allow anybody to double check them.  Russia is even worse, because they deny they are even there in the first place and they don't document the losses of their citizens.  In fact, Russia passed new laws to keep this information a State Secret.

What this means is that the balance of information is inherently unequal.  On the Ukrainian side there is solid documentation with some lies and deceit mixed in.  The DPR/LPR/Russian side has only lies and deceit.  That is a factual statement, not one of opinion.  To prove my point... where are the publicly available casualty figures published by DPR, LPR, and Russian forces?  And who has vetted them?  Nowhere and nobody.

Steve

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1 hour ago, Battlefront.com said:

Vladimir, you know I do not think of you this way :D  While I think you still have a very flawed understanding of the nature of this war and the extent to which your government is responsible for it, you no longer deny that it is heavily involved.  I can work with that :D

Sounds good :D 

1 hour ago, Battlefront.com said:

I've seen from the start that some of the loudest critics of Ukrainian information being of poor quality are also the ones who spread and defend even more laughable stuff from the DPR/LPR/Russian side.  "Haha... Ukraine says they killed 50 DPR patriots!  Ukrainians lie so much!  We all know the truth is that they lost 200 men and the DPR has one guy that stubbed his toe!"

DPR/LPR side has some bad sources where they claim outrageous stuff. I personally do not follow these sources.. However, I will go by Ukraine's claims for their own casualties even though I think they'd hide the total number of losses till say a later date which could happen. It's not that hard to hide losses for a while. Ukraine has done it and so has DPR/LPR, I think we can both agree hiding losses for a limited period of time could be helpful in a war effort, be it propaganda or so the other side doesn't know how effective they've been. 

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Strictly speaking, in English,  'Loyalist'  applies in a civil war context, which the Donbass War is not.

I believe @Haiduk felt this guy was too removed from events and sources,  and overdramatic in his pessimism. I can't say myself. 

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17 hours ago, JUAN DEAG said:

And separatists were pretending to attack to, of course. Everyone was pretending. George Bush also did 9/11. 

 

There were skirmishes and probes, but the Ukrainians were acting as if the separatists were throwing themselves at the defenders

17 hours ago, JUAN DEAG said:

Really? Some obscure and unnamed pilot reported by a tabloid magazine, hardly the Ukrainian president.

On 12/25/2016 at 9:20 AM, DMS said:

Sorry, it wasn't Poroshenko, but the Ukrainian "ATO" spokesman. Poroshenko only threatened to kill hundreds, the actual claim about a thousand separatists killed in airstrikes was said by Lysenko. Here's a Reuters article on it. Satisfied? 

"According to preliminary assessment, Ukrainian pilots ... killed about 500 (rebel) fighters and damaged two armored transporters," Lysenko told journalists.

In an earlier air attack on a base near Perevalsk, north of Donetsk, two tanks, 10 armored vehicles and "about 500" rebel fighters were destroyed, he said.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-ukraine-crisis-idUSKBN0FH09720140712

Edited by Nefron

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18 hours ago, JUAN DEAG said:

That are results of famous friendly fire case at Donetsk airport in spring or summer of 2014, when militias destroyed their trucks, evacuating their own wounded. Ukrainan army has no relation to this losses.

Posting that photos just to hurt an opponent, without a need, is disguisting. Why you, ukranians, so like to do it? Sort of necrophilia. By the way, posting that 2 year old photos shows, that you have few proofs.

Edited by DMS

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2 hours ago, kinophile said:

Strictly speaking, in English,  'Loyalist'  applies in a civil war context, which the Donbass War is not.

True, totally not. 

2 hours ago, kinophile said:

I believe @Haiduk felt this guy was too removed from events and sources,  and overdramatic in his pessimism. I can't say myself. 

I think he summed it up pretty good IMO. I am not having a bias in this battle because it's for no reason, whoever launched the offensive I'd say are wrong in doing so. But the claimed assault didn't look like any normal Russian/DPR assault to me, there would be images of burnt out tanks and BMPs already on the open fields. 

 

Edited by VladimirTarasov

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34 minutes ago, VladimirTarasov said:

But the claimed assault didn't look like any normal Russian/DPR assault to me, there would be images of burnt out tanks and BMPs already on the open fields.

Doesn't this support Steve's thought that it was a probe?  Perhaps reminiscent of infiltration tactics in the WW1 than a mechanized offensive.  Beyond that, the terrain from what we've seen doesn't seem very conducive to armoured vehicles - especially Soviet ones with their limited depression.

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10 minutes ago, HerrTom said:

Doesn't this support Steve's thought that it was a probe?  Perhaps reminiscent of infiltration tactics in the WW1 than a mechanized offensive.  Beyond that, the terrain from what we've seen doesn't seem very conducive to armoured vehicles - especially Soviet ones with their limited depression.

A night probe without armor could have maybe worked, however sending infantry during even low light settings on open terrain, at most with a forest to cover them is wrong. Even with the low depression of soviet armor, the terrain here could have been used. Steve's theory that the Kremlin wanted to test DPR guys isn't stupid at all, but it just doesn't fit during this time. Russia has alot to lose from turning the oven on for the conflict, speaking politically. 

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1 hour ago, HerrTom said:

Doesn't this support Steve's thought that it was a probe?  Perhaps reminiscent of infiltration tactics in the WW1 than a mechanized offensive.  Beyond that, the terrain from what we've seen doesn't seem very conducive to armoured vehicles - especially Soviet ones with their limited depression.

Yes, it could very well be that.  As I've said, the DPR action might have been intended to be a small scale infantry only attack.  There are MANY examples of these over the past 2 years.  Ukrainian reports usually refer to them as "diversionary groups".  The intention of these attacks is to keep the Ukrainians busy and, hopefully, catch some off guard.  There have been some successes with these attacks in that sense, but there was never an objective to secure terrain.  Just hit and run sort of thing.

I do agree with Vladimir that I don't think Russia wants to "rock the boat" too much at this point in time.  Therefore, I agree that Russia wouldn't likely conduct a small scale attack like this in order to provoke a wider response.  But a small scale action?  I do not see that being incompatible with the larger political nature of this war.

As for the interview with the Ukrainian LT.  As a historian, and in particular a military historian, I have a very low opinion of single interviews with soldiers who were not directly involved in the events they speak of.  Soldiers tend to have very strong opinions and those opinions are very often more based on personal feelings rather than true facts.  Soldiers also have a habit of speaking about events they have no personal involvement in as if they were there.  This is a universal issue I have seen in my nearly 30 years of studying warfare.  Soldiers are amazingly similar from nation to nation, war to war.

This does not mean the interview can not be trusted, it means it must not be relied upon to form an opinion.  Instead it needs to be combined with other information.  The result might be that the interview is 100% correct, or perhaps it is only 50% correct, or maybe even 0% correct.

Steve

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1 hour ago, DMS said:

Sort of necrophilia.

 

3 hours ago, Nefron said:

Satisfied? 

Thank you gentleman, my necrophilia has been thoroughly satisfied. *slurp, slurp* *moans* 

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Meanwhile, Vice News hits up some patriotic Russian burgers at Donmac™ :lol::

 

18 minutes ago, Battlefront.com said:

There are MANY examples of these over the past 2 years.  Ukrainian reports usually refer to them as "diversionary groups".  The intention of these attacks is to keep the Ukrainians busy and, hopefully, catch some off guard.  There have been some successes with these attacks in that sense, but there was never an objective to secure terrain.  Just hit and run sort of thing.

These are usually done in more urbanized areas to lay mines and booby-traps and then retreat. Not really in open fields.

2 hours ago, VladimirTarasov said:

there would be images of burnt out tanks and BMPs already on the open fields.

Maybe they were worried about unnecessarily losing equipment to hidden Ukrainian SPG-9, NSV, and ATGM teams. Also, tracked vehicles like tanks make a ton of noise and would ruin the element of surprise, which appears to be the objective of LNR/DPR troops.

1 hour ago, VladimirTarasov said:

sending infantry during even low light settings on open terrain, at most with a forest to cover them is wrong

Don't forget the snow fall and the dense fog that can be seen in the videos. I suspect that this was just supposed to be a surprise attack on Ukrainian positions to maybe wound and kill some guys in a "diversionary reconnaissance group" fashion and then melt into the fog before the Ukrainians can respond, but it went bad and the Ukrainians took the initiative to take enemy positions further south and the situation just spiraled out of control from there.

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23 hours ago, JUAN DEAG said:

How effective is artillery against infantry in trenches? Are trenches dug to Soviet standards? Are there any specific tactics for the placement of trenches?

Soviet WWII fortification achievments are useful even in this war. In early period of war Ukrainain troops almost didn't dig full-profile tranches, just mostly "foxholes" and chekpoints on the roads from concrete blocks. Even spreading of artillery usage will not forced them to maintain normal positions - summer of 2014 was too hot, engineers units have too low digging vehicles, soldiers was lazy. Only units, which were defending on the border under endless Russian artillery shellings dug in as deep as can. Donbas soil mostly too hard for digging - on the 0,6-1 m deep rocky hard groud lays. Without special vehicles is too hard to build proper defense lines. So our troops about months was under arty and MLRS fire in own foxholes and mostly shovel-made shallow tranches. Just amazing, how with such number of shellings (see Bellingcat report), we have lost relatively so less personnel, though about 2/3 of their vehicles, which were staying on open ground, were destroyed or heavy damaged, personnel was badly demoralized (except VDV units) and many battalion tactical groups completely lost own combat capabilities. First good example of fortifications we have during Mariupol defense in first datas of September 2014. Only three weak equipped national guars and territorial defense battalions defended the city - their positions was heavy reinforced with steel plates, delivered from local steel plants. Russians were hummering their positions with "Grads" and heavy arty and have thougt all fortifiications completely destroyed, but when their forward groups have started to advance, they got lot of lead from "destroyed" defenders. Since the end of 2014 end up to mid of 2015 large-scale works have sterted - three defense lines were built. This is a sytem of company and platoon strongpoints, most of which built for round defense. Concrete buncers, wooden blindages (light and heavy, which can resist 1-2 120 mm hits), full-profile tranches, trenches for armor etc. All of this you can see on Yandex maps, which have newer maps. As you already say Vladimir, relly dangerois weapon now stay mortars. To hit platoon strongpoint with howiyzers from 10-15 km even with UAV correction is very expensive task, wich need hundreds of shells. You can see on maps our positions and dozens of craters around - heh,if enemy artillery has the same accuracy and shells dispersion like in CM, our first line already would be completely grounded :)

 

Ok, back to forest fight. For past day enemy used mostly small arms and snipers. Several 120 mm shots. Typical "Holiday truce". 

Also Intelligence issued a report for 19th-25th Dec - the enemy lost on all frontline 18 KIA, 38 WIA. From which 7th LNR motor-rifle brigade, which has positions on Svitlodarsk direction, has 15 KIA and 32 WIA. I don't know either enemy losses for 18th included or not. If not, as minimum +4 confirmed. Thus, for all time of battle, we lost 10 or 11 soldiers and about 40 were injured and shell-shocked (heavy injured less than 10). But really number of injured/shell-shocked is about 70, just about half of them rejected from hospitalization after first aid. Engineer service of 54th brigade is strengthening taken positions now. 

Edited by Haiduk

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12 hours ago, ikalugin said:

Report and video:

http://korrespondent.net/ukraine/3791800-voennyi-rasskazal-o-prychynakh-provala-na-svetlodarskoi-duhe

 

Were they discussed here yet?

From them it appears that the attack was conducted by Ukrainian Loyalist forces and failed.

Typical "зрада". If guys from 54th will meet him, which unit was too far from battle, his face can suffer for "failed atatck" 

Edited by Haiduk

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1 hour ago, JUAN DEAG said:

Maybe they were worried about unnecessarily losing equipment to hidden Ukrainian SPG-9, NSV, and ATGM teams. Also, tracked vehicles like tanks make a ton of noise and would ruin the element of surprise, which appears to be the objective of LNR/DPR troops.

Not going to matter if the goal was to capture the objective... Heavy artillery attack with BMP Tank combo would be way more effective than just sending in some guys through the ground. If you think it was a probe to just take out some targets, then instead of risking soft infantry, it'd be better to initiate an artillery duel. I mean let's put ourselves in the shoes of the commander, you'd rather dismount your troops and send them on soft ground through a forest to attack, or would you rather send your armored vehicles and get some cohesion going. 

1 hour ago, JUAN DEAG said:

Don't forget the snow fall and the dense fog that can be seen in the videos. I suspect that this was just supposed to be a surprise attack on Ukrainian positions to maybe wound and kill some guys in a "diversionary reconnaissance group" fashion and then melt into the fog before the Ukrainians can respond, but it went bad and the Ukrainians took the initiative to take enemy positions further south and the situation just spiraled out of control from there.

Could be a possibility, but highly unlikely, what's weird to me is the DPR hasn't launched a counter-offensive yet. They have enough forces to effectively try to do something, but they aren't. Weird IMO, maybe because most of this battle is in the neutral zone. 

1 hour ago, Haiduk said:

To hit platoon strongpoint with howiyzers from 10-15 km even with UAV correction is very expensive task, wich need hundreds of shells.

IMO also depends on the observer and unit's training, as well as the artillery systems used. Ukrainians and DPR/LPR have used artillery very effectively before, God is on the side with the best artillery. 

1 hour ago, Haiduk said:

heh,if enemy artillery has the same accuracy and shells dispersion like in CM, our first line already would be completely grounded

I actually think the CM artillery should be more destructive than it is now, I've observed real Russian artillery fire missions and those things look accurate and devastating. I'm sure Ukrainians have used the artillery effective as well. 

1 hour ago, Haiduk said:

18 KIA, 38 WIA

Sounds realistic considering the intensive bombardment from both sides.

1 hour ago, Haiduk said:

10 or 11 soldiers and about 40 were injured

I have a question, didn't Ukrainian soldiers get encircled at one point, and some attempts to break them out failed? How come the losses are so low. 

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14 minutes ago, VladimirTarasov said:

I have a question, didn't Ukrainian soldiers get encircled at one point, and some attempts to break them out failed? How come the losses are so low. 

Partialy encircled (mostly by fire, than phisically) was only about a platoon sized group on some of middle positions. This happened 19-20th Dec. Further special forces unit (SSO) arrived and have mopped up terrain. When group made own work and prepared to go back, one mortar shell have impacted nearby and slightly wounded two SSO-guys. Overall losses I, think quiet high for about two combined companies (part of recon platoon, part of 3rd coy of 1st battalion, part of 1st coy of 25th battalion), which have participated in this battle. 

Edited by Haiduk

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22 minutes ago, Haiduk said:

Partialy encircled (mostly by fire, than phisically) was only about a platoon sized group on some of middle positions. This happened 19-20th Dec. Further special forces unit (SSO) arrived and have mopped up terrain. When group made own work and prepared to go back, one mortar shell have impacted nearby and slightly wounded two SSO-guys. Overall losses I, think quiet high for about two combined companies (part of recon platoon, part of 3rd coy of 1st battalion, part of 1st coy of 25th battalion), which have participated in this battle. 

Thanks for the info, very interesting to know. 

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2 hours ago, VladimirTarasov said:

Not going to matter if the goal was to capture the objective... Heavy artillery attack with BMP Tank combo would be way more effective than just sending in some guys through the ground. If you think it was a probe to just take out some targets, then instead of risking soft infantry, it'd be better to initiate an artillery duel. I mean let's put ourselves in the shoes of the commander, you'd rather dismount your troops and send them on soft ground through a forest to attack, or would you rather send your armored vehicles and get some cohesion going. 

Considering that no evidence was found that the diversionary group was GRU or any other regular Russian force, locals and Russian paramilitaries don't always make the best decisions. DPR/LPR probably learned a valuable lesson about not trying to be Rambo with their reconnaissance. Though, Russian doctrine does favor aggressive CRP (combat recon patrol):

FM 100-2-1 The Soviet Army: Operations and Tactics

"Combat reconnaissance patrols in reinforced small subunit strength are employed to attack known or suspected enemy positions to gain information. Their mission is to cause the enemy to react and thereby reveal his dispositions, strength, and fire plan. The patrol conducts its reconnaissance by feints or demonstrations employing fire and maneuver against actual or suspected enemy positions. These positions generally are assigned to the patrol as reconnaissance objectives by the controlling headquarters."

Principle in training in North Ossetia (with zero casualties this time):

 

2 hours ago, VladimirTarasov said:

God is on the side with the best artillery

If he exists, then he has a weird habit of changing sides periodically and with no pattern except that of training and skill. :)

5 hours ago, Haiduk said:

Typical "Holiday truce".

I thought the Orthodox church in Ukraine celebrates Christmas on January 7th.

2 hours ago, VladimirTarasov said:

I actually think the CM artillery should be more destructive than it is now, I've observed real Russian artillery fire missions and those things look accurate and devastating. I'm sure Ukrainians have used the artillery effective as well. 

I assume this is because in real life the dust, explosions, and loud noise is a lot more intense than it looks in a computer game.

 

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13 minutes ago, JUAN DEAG said:

Considering that no evidence was found that the diversionary group was GRU or any other regular Russian force, locals and Russian paramilitaries don't always make the best decisions. DPR/LPR probably learned a valuable lesson about not trying to be Rambo with their reconnaissance. Though, Russian doctrine does favor aggressive CRP (combat recon patrol):

Yes I know of this, but that's not what our Ukrainian colleagues have been proposing, they said there was an actual offensive. Even then, if the recon unit was sent forth to reveal positions, why are there claims that an offensive has been repelled because that would be a feint... 

15 minutes ago, JUAN DEAG said:

If he exists, then he has a weird habit of changing sides periodically and with no pattern except that of training and skill. :)

Rarely I have my doubts, but that's for another forum :D.  

17 minutes ago, JUAN DEAG said:

I assume this is because in real life the dust, explosions, and loud noise is a lot more intense than it looks in a computer game.

That too, but the concentration and shear violence from it is enough to take down buildings fairly quickly. In CMBS, SOMETIMES of course not all the times; buildings take quite a beating and the defenders or attackers inside even come out surviving sometimes. 

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12 minutes ago, VladimirTarasov said:

Yes I know of this, but that's not what our Ukrainian colleagues have been proposing, they said there was an actual offensive.

There was heavy shelling and direct fire with tanks and ZU-23-2 but the diversionary force was pretty small. @Haiduk can probably provide some input on the initial engagement and maybe correct me. Besides, Ukrainian comrades sometimes exaggerate like in the video with the National Guardsman. :)

17 minutes ago, VladimirTarasov said:

Even then, if the recon unit was sent forth to reveal positions, why are there claims that an offensive has been repelled because that would be a feint... 

I think you misunderstood the quote. The key phrases are: "attack known or suspected enemy positions to gain information" and "demonstrations employing fire and maneuver against actual or suspected enemy positions". Feints are not invulnerable to enemy fire, anyways.

FM 100-2-1 The Soviet Army: Operations and Tactics

Principles of Soviet Reconnaissance

Aggressiveness. The decisive actions and initiative used by commanders and headquarters to obtain necessary information by all means available.

• Continuity. The conduct of reconnaissance at all times regardless of the intensity of combat, time of day, or weather conditions. Established contact with the enemy must not be broken and observation must be continuously maintained.

• Timeliness. The gathering and reporting of reconnaissance information in sufficient time to counter enemy actions.

• Reliability. The degree to which the intelligence information accurately portrays the enemy situation. This involves verifying the intelligence with data from other sources and assigning additional reconnaissance missions to confirm or deny the information.

• Accuracy. The accurate determination of coordinates of important enemy targets such as missile installations, nuclear capable artillery, nuclear storage sites, etc.

 

 

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@JUAN DEAG Okay I know this, but typically this aggressive patrols are followed by offensive plans. I don't even see a counter-offensive being launched by the DPR. It just doesn't fit in correctly. What was there that couldn't be identified by drones... The Ukrainians at the start of these hostilities; state that there was assault. I've still yet to see any evidence that there was; now it's that the rebels attacked with small arms. There are many ways intelligence could have been gathered in this situation... The high light from Soviet Army: Operations and Tactics, are not for every case. In this case it would make no sense to recon like this if you aren't going to gather intelligence for an offensive... 

Reasons being:

1) You just initiated a battle

2) You are risking much more than the worth for this scenario

25 minutes ago, JUAN DEAG said:

Besides, Ukrainian comrades sometimes exaggerate like in the video with the National Guardsman. 

Of course, every side exaggerates. But some things aren't exaggerated obviously. I'm willing to go by Ukraine's casualty count, but I'm still very skeptical of the DPR launching an attack first... Anyways, time will tell. 

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4 hours ago, JUAN DEAG said:

I thought the Orthodox church in Ukraine celebrates Christmas on January 7th.

Truce have started from 0:00 of 24th Dec. But clashes is continuing, though mostly with small arms skirmishes. In Ukraine Catholic Christmas also celebrating, though till unofficially (if parliament will vote "for" soon, we will be celebrate two Christmas). There are relatively many catholics in Western Ukraine and in Kyiv and Zhytomyr. 

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9 hours ago, Haiduk said:

Ok, back to forest fight. For past day enemy used mostly small arms and snipers. Several 120 mm shots. Typical "Holiday truce". 

Also Intelligence issued a report for 19th-25th Dec - the enemy lost on all frontline 18 KIA, 38 WIA. From which 7th LNR motor-rifle brigade, which has positions on Svitlodarsk direction, has 15 KIA and 32 WIA. I don't know either enemy losses for 18th included or not. If not, as minimum +4 confirmed. Thus, for all time of battle, we lost 10 or 11 soldiers and about 40 were injured and shell-shocked (heavy injured less than 10). But really number of injured/shell-shocked is about 70, just about half of them rejected from hospitalization after first aid. Engineer service of 54th brigade is strengthening taken positions now. 

Haiduk, how you would explain such loss ratio? Ukrainians were in attack, enemy was dug in in the forest. Enemy shelled captured thenches intensively. After 2 first days - with 152mm guns. It seems that they didn't defend that 1-st line trenches to the last man and retreated quickly, while ukrainians were sitting in that trenches being shelled for several days.

Superior individual skill of Ukrainian soldier and tactical mastership of Ukrainian command, I guess?

Just amazing, how with such number of shellings (see Bellingcat report), we have lost relatively so less personnel,

Yes! Amazing!

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8 hours ago, DMS said:

Superior individual skill of Ukrainian soldier and tactical mastership of Ukrainian command, I guess?

Funny you didn't suggest the most obvious and best documented reason of this entire war... piss poor fighting spirit on the "separatist" side.  Time and time and time and time again even rather poorly coordinated, poorly executed Ukrainian offensive and defensive actions have resulted in a routing of the enemy forces because the enemy simply isn't interested in fighting too hard.  This is why Russia must maintain standard Russian Army units and special forces inside of Ukraine.  Without them, the war would have been lost back in Spring of 2014, Summer of 2014, Winter of 2015, etc.

This is an understandable situation.  For the most part Ukrainians are volunteers fighting for their country.  For the most part the "separatists" are Russian citizen mercenaries fighting for money and/or selfish interests.  When push comes to shove, those motivated by patriotism and a "greater good" will fight harder than those motivated by money and self interests.

When talking about larger groups of fighters, group morale is almost democratic.  If the majority aren't willing to fight, then the overall morale is low.  Even among fighters who are personally motivated.  This is understandable because if you are in a group of 9 guys and 5 of them say "screw this, I'm not dying here!" and leave... the remaining 4 tend to go with them even if one or two would rather stay and fight.  At a larger level this same thing tends to happen. 

This is why countries with conscript forces tend to concentrate their best soldiers into "elite" units instead of spreading them out.  Putting motivated, trained soldiers in with poorly trained or poorly motivated soldiers is a total waste.  It is also why DPR/LPR have organized "elite" units within their force structure.  The units which are more reliable are not sitting in trenches in sectors of front that are generally quiet.  The Russian Army units in Ukraine are also not sitting in trenches.  The one sitting in the trenches on the DPR/LPR side of the line tend to be "bottom of the barrel" fighters.  They are there to occupy space and occasionally take pot shots at the Ukrainians. 

Simply put, the average DPR/LPR fighter sitting in a trench (especially in the winter) are not well motivated to fight and certainly not to die.  It doesn't take a well executed Ukrainian offensive action to get them to retreat.  The Ukrainians simply have to show up with enough men and determination, that's all.

Steve

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Just now, Battlefront.com said:

Funny you didn't suggest the most obvious and best documented reason of this entire war... piss poor fighting spirit on the "separatist" side.  Time and time and time and time again even rather poorly coordinated, poorly executed Ukrainian offensive and defensive actions have resulted in a routing of the enemy forces because the enemy simply isn't interested in fighting too hard.  This is why Russia must maintain standard Russian Army units and special forces inside of Ukraine.  Without them, the war would have been lost back in Spring of 2014, Summer of 2014, Winter of 2015, etc.

This is an understandable situation.  For the most part Ukrainians are volunteers fighting for their country.  For the most part the "separatists" are Russian citizen mercenaries fighting for money and/or selfish interests.  When push comes to shove, those motivated by patriotism and a "greater good" will fight harder than those motivated by money and self interests.

When talking about larger groups of fighters, group morale is almost democratic.  If the majority aren't willing to fight, then the overall morale is low.  Even among fighters who are personally motivated.  This is understandable because if you are in a group of 9 guys and 5 of them say "screw this, I'm not dying here!" and leave... the remaining 4 tend to go with them even if one or two would rather stay and fight.  At a larger level this same thing tends to happen. 

This is why countries with conscript forces tend to concentrate their best soldiers into "elite" units instead of spreading them out.  Putting motivated, trained soldiers in with poorly trained or poorly motivated soldiers is a total waste.  It is also why DPR/LPR have organized "elite" units within their force structure.  The units which are more reliable are not sitting in trenches in sectors of front that are generally quiet.  The Russian Army units in Ukraine are also not sitting in trenches.  The one sitting in the trenches on the DPR/LPR side of the line tend to be "bottom of the barrel" fighters.  They are there to occupy space and occasionally take pot shots at the Ukrainians. 

Simply put, the average DPR/LPR fighter sitting in a trench (especially in the winter) are not well motivated to fight and certainly not to die.  It doesn't take a well executed Ukrainian offensive action to get them to retreat.  The Ukrainians simply have to show up with enough men and determination, that's all.

Steve

Steve, DNR soldiers report the same about Ukrainians. :) Poor morale, poor training e.t.c. No approoval of great motivation and patriotism from the other side. By the way, Ukraine has conscript forces! While in DNR there is no draft, only volunteers. Great salaries of "citizen mercenaries" are 15 000 rubles per month, 250$. Not much money for Russia. Good enough for DNR. I don't think that money is the main motivation. Man can easily earn twice more without any risk. Specialists and advisors get much more, but they are few.

But you are right, those men in forward position didn't fight to last man and retreated quickly. Because of poor motivation or because it was planned. (And their decision war right, I think. Single squad can't stop mechanised platoon, no need to die for an observation post) So question is why DNR lost much more men, if they really lost more men. There was no claudron for defenders, no use of vehicles against infantry without AT weapons, no artillery superiority. I am intersted how Haiduk and JUAN DEAG explain it. :)

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