On Wednesday, more explosions were reported in the Russian occupied city of Melitopol. This time, the site of the attack appears to be the Russian command center for the region. It follows attacks over the past two days that have damaged the Russian headquarters that was set up in Lysychansk, electricity infrastructure for Melitopol, rail lines serving most of Crimea, two Russian airports in Crimea and a The huge supply depot containing both ammo was taken over. and vehicles. These attacks continued the Ukrainian strategy of attacking well behind lines to hit high-value targets. And in the case of Lysychensk, Ukraine had very accurate targeting information.
That place looks a little different after Ukraine’s latest display of precision-guided munitions.
Meanwhile, Russia launched an extended campaign of both shelling and missile launches overnight. Both Kharkiv and the Zaporizhzhia region saw some of the heaviest attacks in weeks, with Russia lobbing long-range MLRS missiles into the city of Kharkiv. The northern side of the city, closest to Russian-controlled territory, has taken a particular beating overnight. Russian ballistic missiles once again hit Ukrainian cities from sites inside Russia as well as Belarus.
However, for whatever reason, either a lack of sufficient weapons or half-decent intelligence, Russia continues to make errant blind swings, targeting populated areas rather than attacking high-value military targets. In the six months since Russia’s illegal and unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, Russia has fired more than 3,700 missiles into Ukrainian cities. That’s an absolutely staggering number, and it’s produced some absolutely astonishing levels of damage in places like Kharkiv — and even in cities like Krivy Rih and Odessa that aren’t on the front lines of the war.
But what may be most surprising, 3,700 missiles later, Ukrainian government offices in Kyiv remain intact. Ukrainian military bases are still operating in several locations across the country. Ukrainian planes are still flying from Ukrainian airspace. Volodymyr Zelensky is still freely walking the streets, greeting foreign dignitaries, and visiting sites around his country, including some that are within miles of the front lines.
Look again at the image at the top of this page. The size of the pit is very large and indicates the use of a significant weapon to damage some houses? There is no indication that the attack hit any targets that would have a measurable impact on the Ukrainian war effort, which makes it very specific how Russia has used thousands of missiles and bombs in this war.
At one time, it may have been possible to believe that Russia, for some reason, was backing down, but this point has been reversed. Russia is not targeting high-value targets in Ukraine Because it can’t. Sure, they can occasionally manage to hit a shopping mall, and they’ve been dedicated shooters of hospitals. But they cannot take targets that allow the Ukrainian military to remain supplied, trained and organized. They just can’t. Or they would have done it by now.
Anyone who has spent their life in America, or any of the 99% of the world exported to American culture, will find it hard to avoid some level of exposure to one of those longtime staples of American cinema – the boxing film. Those old enough to remember the days when boxing was one of the most followed sports in the nation probably still have memories of Muhammad Ali and Sonny Liston, Ali and Joe Frazier, Ali and George Foreman… In fact Ali is a kind of beautiful and intelligent violence with someone who was to be remembered forever for falling.
In both real life and film, there is a frequent pairing that makes for a classic confrontation. On one side is the dreaded slugger. The guy who throws a punch that can take down a bull and whose frowning face marks a brutal, straight-forward confidence that no one can stand against them. In the opposite corner is a boxer who can “pinch and move,” but, more importantly, keeps his mind busy as well as his fists. A few rounds later, the bull cutter is really confused as to why this guy refuses to go down past him, and that other guy is getting ready to attack.
That seems to be where we are with Ukraine. Russia continues to press forward, throwing only wild haymakers, while Ukraine jabs, sidesteps and looks for an opening. Maybe it’s no coincidence that Sonny Liston’s nickname was “Big Bear.” Ali won that fight as an 8-1 underdog. Liston conceded defeat in the seventh round. It is not clear what phase we are in now, but it is clear that the pace of action in Ukraine is no longer being dictated by Russia.
When it comes to operations on the ground, in the Kharkiv region, Russia has claimed control of the village of Udi, near the Russian border, northwest of Kharkiv. However, Ukrainian military photographs from the site on Tuesday show that this is something that did not happen. Russia has also claimed control of the village of Odnorobivk, which is kilometers to the west and away from any areas of conflict in the last few months. Whether this is a real attack or not is not clear.
Near Kherson, Russia has attacked a bridgehead across the Inhulets River that Ukraine installed in June, and which Russia has already claimed to have destroyed at least three times. It is difficult to tell how the fighting is going at the moment, but it seems that Russia has moved against the Ukrainian forces all along. The location of Ukraine’s pontoon bridge (which lies south of Davidiv Bridge) is unknown.
As has been true every day for the past several weeks, the Russians launched attacks at several points along the line between Sivransk and Bakhmut, but no major change was seen. Further south, the Ukrainian military reports that Russia achieved “partial success” near Novomykhailivka, but further Russian attacks south of Donetsk were repulsed.
By the end of today, I hope the maps will be updated so that the next Ukraine update May indicate current conditions. Oh, and there are unconfirmed reports that Taiwan is shipping 800 (!) of these to Ukraine.
Drones are playing a big part in this war, and the different roles and types of drones are evolving rapidly. It’s a pretty safe bet that the outcome in Ukraine is being closely scrutinized by every military in the world. From surveillance drones to guide precision weapons, to large drones that launch missiles at targets dozens or hundreds of kilometers behind enemy lines, to weapons-carrying drones with varying levels of AI, drones like “revolvers” up to that can drop explosives directly on enemy troops and vehicles. , the battlefield is becoming more and more dangerous. How it all works is changing in real-time, and the winner of this war may be the side that is smart enough to incorporate these technologies in the best possible way.
It’s probably not a big bear.
(Side note: The current heavyweight champion of the world is Daniel Dubois, or Tyson Fury, or Oleksandr Usyk, depending on which organization you believe. Of all of them, Usyk is best known because, in February, he returned. The native spent a few months in Ukraine and the regional defense forces, but has now left to train for another match. Anger is best known for comments he made about hanging his sister. threatened, to warn that abortion is “Biblical calculus,” and to a string of anti-LGBTQ statements as well.)