It’s been a long day. I did not need a second shooting war in the trans-caucuses today! So I’m basically going to post President Zelenskyy’s address, the on the record press briefing by BrigGen Ryder – the Pentagon spokesman – from late today, one or two other things, and, of course, Patron.
Here is President Zelenskyy’s address from earlier today. Video below, English transcript after the jump:
Good health to you, fellow Ukrainians!
Today I held another meeting of the Staff of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief. The participants, as before, are Reznikov, Zaluzhny, Syrsky, Kovalchuk, Litvinov, Yermak, Monastyrskyi, Kubrakov, Danilov, Lebid and others.
The first and most important issue is the reports of commanders by direction. Oleksandr Syrsky reported on the successes in the Kharkiv region, Andriy Kovalchuk – on the movement of our troops in the south.
We considered the draft budget for defense and security for the next year.
The situation in the liberated territory of our state was analyzed in detail. As of now, stabilization measures have been completed in the districts with a total area of more than 4,000 square kilometers. Stabilization continues in the liberated territory of approximately the same size. Remnants of occupiers and sabotage groups are being detected, collaborators are being detained and full security is being restored.
Border guards are tasked with protecting the state border in the liberated territory.
Once again, I thank all our fighters who ensured such a large-scale and quick defeat of the invaders in the territory of the Kharkiv region!
By the way, today I signed another decree on awarding our warriors. 153 combatants were awarded state awards, 12 of them posthumously. All – for bravery in the battles in the east of our country – in the Kharkiv region, in Donbas.
It is very important that together with our troops, with our flag, ordinary normal life comes to the de-occupied territory. As an example, in Balakliya, in Hrakove, the payment of pensions for five months at once, for the time when we simply could not make payments due to the occupation, has already been started. And all Ukrainian pensioners in the liberated territory will receive payments. Ukraine always fulfills its social obligations to people.
Today I held a meeting with the Defense Ministers of Denmark and Estonia who arrived in Kyiv. Of course, we talked about further support for our state, about further pressure on Russia. I thanked them for the principled and consistent help in protecting people’s freedom and life.
I held negotiations with International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva. I thanked her for the allocation of $1.4 billion in additional support for our state. We discussed a new program of cooperation and, in general, the preservation of Ukraine’s financial stability.
We have a result in our work on security guarantees for our state. Today, a package of recommendations was presented by the international group led by Andriy Yermak and Anders Fogh Rasmussen – these are the recommendations that should form the basis of the future system of security treaties that will give Ukrainians peace of mind and guarantee the prevention of any war against Ukraine.
We are working to ensure that the strongest subjects of the free world become guarantors of the security of our state. So that at the multilateral and bilateral level, it is stipulated in detail who, how and when should react in case of any threat to the state security of Ukraine. React with sanctions, arms supply, all the necessary material and financial support.
The main thing is clear and legally binding steps, specific and timely actions, in particular, preventive actions aimed at preventing war and cooling the aggressor’s intentions. That is, everything that our country did not have before and because of which Russia had the illusion it could go unpunished for the war against Ukraine.
Together with our partners, we have already built a powerful anti-war coalition, which includes dozens of different states. And now we are working to ensure that the most powerful states that are already helping us become a coalition of peace that will last forever.
I spoke today with Prime Minister of Italy Mario Draghi. I informed him about the situation on the frontline, about the successes of our state. We always note: in every victory of Ukraine there is also a victory of those who, together with us, defend freedom and European values. Italy is among the strongest.
Mr. Draghi and I discussed the situation at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant and the Russian provocations in great detail. Thank you for understanding that the demilitarization of the ZNPP is a fundamental condition for the return of radiation safety to all of us in Europe.
I am grateful to everyone who helps our country expel the occupiers!
I am grateful to each of our warriors who do everything to bring victory closer!
Glory to Ukraine!
BrigGen Ryder gave an on the record briefing today. Here it is with the relevant Q&A, though you may want to click through if you’re interested in the question about the issues with the Basic Underwater Demolitions/SEAL (BUD/S) course:
BRIGADIER GENERAL PAT RYDER: All right, good afternoon, everybody. So thank you very much for being here today. I have several items to provide at the top, and then I will be happy to take your questions.
First, as you’re aware, Secretary Austin and General Milley participated in the fifth Ukraine Defense Contact Group Meeting at Ramstein Air Base last week, along with senior defense leaders from nearly 50 countries from around the world. As Secretary Austin highlighted, these international leaders came into the meeting with a lot of momentum and concluded the session even more united and resolved to keep up the shared support for Ukraine’s right to defend itself.
During the meeting, Secretary Austin also announced the authorization of a presidential drawdown of security assistance valued at up to $675 million to meet Ukraine’s critical security and defense needs, bringing the total amount of U.S. security assistance to $17.2 billion since 2014. And as we’ve seen this week, Ukraine continues to use this aid and that provided by other international partners to great effect on the battlefield in their fight to defend their country.
Separately, I want to highlight a couple of operations-related items. The Department of Defense is in support of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s efforts to provide assistance to Pakistan in the wake of massive flooding and the humanitarian assistance crisis there, and our condolences certainly go out to those who’ve been impacted by this terrible natural disaster. To date, the DOD has supported the U.S. government’s USAID-led response by providing critical airlift and staging support. U.S. Air Force C-17 and C-130 aircraft assigned to U.S. Air Forces Central Command have so far flown 10 missions into Pakistan, delivering over one million pounds of critical humanitarian supplies and equipment to aid the Pakistani people, and we expect this pace to continue over the next several days. Humanitarian relief supplies being transported include emergency food, drinking water, sanitation supplies and equipment, portable shelters, bedding, hygiene supplies and kitchen sets.
Also, on the DOD operations and exercise front, the North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command are conducting Operation Noble Defender this week from September 12th through the 14th over Alaska and Canada’s Northwest Territories. This iteration of Noble Defender is a long-planned Arctic operation that will demonstrate the ability of Canadian and U.S. forces to integrate with defense and security partners for a holistic 360-degree defense of North America. This exercise has been conducted quarterly since 2019.
During the operation, NORAD aircraft, in part — excuse me — in partnership with U.S. Strategic Command, will conduct defensive maneuvers to demonstrate the ability to rapidly deploy military assets and conduct operations in defense of North America’s northern and western approaches.
In addition, UNITAS LXIII began last week in Rio de Janeiro. UNITAS is the world’s longest-running maritime exercises, which highlights our focus on strengthening our existing regional partnerships and encouraging the establishment of new relationships through the exchange of maritime mission-focused knowledge and expertise. More than 5,500 military personnel from 20 partner nations kicked off the exercise during an opening ceremony September 8th, which was hosted by Brazil. This year’s exercise includes 19 warships, vessels, one submarine and 21 aircraft, and is scheduled to run through September 22nd.
Also, here in Washington, D.C. this Thursday, as part of the U.S. Air Force and Department of the Air Force 75th Anniversary Commemoration, the U.S. Air Force will host a 75th Anniversary Tattoo at Audi Field which will include a scheduled flyover of current and historical aircraft representative of our nation’s air power advantage over time. Flyovers are scheduled between 6:45 and 6:55 P.M. Eastern time, and will include the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds and a variety of fifth- and fourth-generation aircraft, plus several historic planes, to include a B-17, B-25 and P-51.
And then finally, earlier this morning, Secretary Austin visited the British Embassy here in Washington, D.C. to sign a condolence book following the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. As the secretary said in his statement last week, our thoughts are with Queen Elizabeth’s family, King Charles III, all those who loved her and with our stalwart British allies during this difficult time.
And with that, I’m happy to take your questions. We’ll start with Lita.
Q: Thanks, Pat. Two things, one — on the NASAMS, can you — my understanding was that none had been delivered yet to Ukraine. Is that still accurate? And do you have any sort of ETA on how long it will take before they get their first one?
And then second: This question has come up sort of intermittently over time. The Russian battalion tactical groups that are in Ukraine, we’ve heard over time, they’ve got up to over 100 that were in Ukraine. And I’m wondering, even if you can’t give us a very specific total, can you give us a sense of the number of Russian battalion groups or whatever the — the U.S. believes are still in Ukraine, considering the reports that obviously some have left, gone back into Russia?
GEN. RYDER: Sure. Your first question on the NASAMS, I don’t have a delivery time, you know, as part of the USAI process working with industry to have them manufacture that capability and provide it to Ukraine, so certainly, we’ll keep you updated on that front.
In terms of the number of Russian battalions and forces in Ukraine, I’m not going to have a — a high-level of granularity to provide here from the podium other than to say obviously, Russian forces do exist en masse in Ukraine. Certainly this week, we’ve seen a number of Russian forces especially in the northeast, in the Kharkiv region cross over the border back into Russia as they’ve retreated from the Ukrainian counteroffensive. But in terms of specific numbers, I’m not going to be able to provide that.
Q: Well, [inaudible] says, “Do you have a sense that, is this three years down the road, or is it maybe sometime — ” — even a general idea?
GEN. RYDER: Yeah, I don’t — I don’t want to put a timeline on it. I know that it is certainly a priority, but I don’t want to put a timeline on it. Thank you.
Q: Do you have any evidence that Russia has now used Iranian drones in Ukraine?
GEN. RYDER: We’ve seen the press reporting, and certainly seen comments by Ukrainian officials, but I don’t have any information with me right now to corroborate those reports.
Q: And the counteroffensive, would you describe sort of the pace of the counteroffensive as something the department found surprising and unexpected, or is this the timeline you expected it would sort of play out on?
GEN. RYDER: Well certainly, since the beginning of Russia’s invasion into Ukraine, we’ve seen the Ukrainians demonstrate a remarkable adaptability in their ability to use their warfighting capabilities to great effect, so it’s not surprising to us that they have pushed as quickly as they have. They’ve also, again, shown a remarkable ability to take advantages of opportunities that present themselves on the battlefield, and the current counteroffensive in Kharkiv is no exception to that. I think if anyone was surprised, just based on the reports that we’ve seen in terms of the — the Russian military’s response, it was probably the Russians.
Q: Does the Ukrainians’ ongoing offensive make the case to step up the speed and scale of the ongoing weapons deliveries from the U.S., but also from its partners?
GEN. RYDER: Well, I think from the very beginning, you know, as highlighted in my opening remarks, we have been working very closely with Ukraine and the international community to get aid to Ukraine as quickly as we can. And so I do not anticipate that we will let up on the throttle.
Q: The Lithuanian Foreign Minister tweeted some harsh critics to — toward the U.S. recently. He said that Ukraine could have thrown Russia out months ago if they had been provided the right equipment right away. And he said that now, U.S. and the West in general should send them, as fast as possible, all their — their stockpiles of ATACMS and fighter jets. Do you agree with that assessment?
GEN. RYDER: Sylvie, I don’t — I don’t have anything to say in regards to the — the Minister’s particular comments. I will say that Secretary Austin and other U.S. government leaders continue to regularly engage with our Ukrainian counterparts.
I think last week’s meeting at — at Ramstein is a good example of how seriously we’re taking this and that we are constantly engaged in a dialogue to determine what are the needs of our Ukrainian partners, based on the conditions on the ground.
And as we’ve seen and as it — as evidenced by this counter-offensive, they are using the equipment they have to great effect to change the dynamics on the battlefield.
Q: They also ask for ATACMS.
GEN. RYDER: And we’ll continue to have those conversations with them to look at what they need immediately and into the long term.
Yeah, go ahead, Jim.
Q: To follow up on that a little bit. So it’s been six months since these weapons shipments have come on — been going in and the Ukrainians seem to be getting far better at the use and in like the combined use of that. Is that the feeling you got when you were in — in Ramstein?
GEN. RYDER: Well, again, since the beginning — I mean, if you go back in time and you look at the situation that the Ukrainians found themselves in February and you look at the situation that they find themselves in today, it is just that remarkable adaptability on the battlefield to be able to take advantage of the opportunities that exist, to use not only equipment that they’ve already had in their inventory but the equipment that has been provided to them by the U.S. and other international partners.
And so it is very evident that they continue to figure out ways to — to fight and to do it well. Thank you.
Q: So it’s been reported that the Ukrainians see — seized several thousand square kilometers of territory previously held by the Russians. Is the DOD, however, concerned that if there is not a decisive victory by the Ukrainians in this counter-offensive that Russia might seek to escalate the conflict, namely by, say, declaring a war and mobilizing its forces fully?
GEN. RYDER: Yeah, so I don’t want to speculate on what Russia might do next. Clearly, they’ve demonstrated their intent to keep fighting in — in Ukraine and to prolong their illegal occupation. We obviously, on our end, will continue to monitor the situation and — and our focus will continue to be on working with the Ukrainians and the international community to provide them with the support that they need.
But I will highlight that it is — you know, that President Putin could deescalate the situation tomorrow by withdrawing Russian forces, but as long as that doesn’t happen, we’ll continue to stand behind Ukraine.
Q: I just want to follow up on the — the aid shipment that was discussed. So specifically on those longer range munitions, has the successes that Ukraine has seen in this counter-offensive changed any perspectives within this building on what Ukraine might need for the successive offenses.
GEN. RYDER: Well, I think it’s — it’s an ongoing dialogue, right? And, you know, a couple of weeks ago, we had Dr. Kahl in here, who — he talked to the fact that part of those discussions are looking at the medium and long term for the — for the needs that the Ukrainians will have in order to defend their territory and their sovereignty long term.
And so — so that will be an area that we’ll just continue having that dialogue, in terms of what does that include and how best can we support them.
And let me do one more from the phone here. Jeff Seldin, VOA.
Q: Hi, thank you very much. Two questions, one on — on Ukraine and one on — on Afghanistan.
On Ukraine, we’ve heard from a number of — of senior Ukrainian officials warning Russia’s likely to launch a new wave of cyber-attacks, again going after Ukraine’s energy sector, financial sector, and that Russia is preparing some new cyber weapons that could be used beyond Ukraine. I’m wondering what the U.S. has seen on this front and — and — and what the Pentagon is doing to support both Ukraine and other allies who might become targets?
On Afghanistan, CENTCOM earlier put out a release about Exercise Eager Lion 22, noted participation of troops from Kazakhstan. I’m wondering, have there been any developments in — in the negotiations we heard about so long ago with Central Asian nations for possible basing agreements or permissions to help the U.S. counter-terrorism mission now that troops are no longer in Afghanistan?
GEN. RYDER: Jeff, on your second question, I’ll come back to it because I was having a hard time hearing specifically what you were asking about.
On your first question, in terms of Russian tactics in Ukraine, beyond what we’ve already seen both in Ukraine and elsewhere certainly cyber is a capability that Russia maintains. I don’t have any specifics to provide from the podium in terms of what exactly we’re seeing on the battlefield in Ukraine other than to say they have — that it is a TTP that they’ve employed, as you well know.
And then, I’m sorry, your second question about Afghanistan. What was the specific question?
Q: Thank you. First, can you give us sense of the Ukrainian casualties and how much equipment they’ve lost? I know we’ve heard some reports about how many have casualties the Russians have had. But which really interested in the Ukrainian side in this phase of the conflict?
GEN. RYDER: Sure.
Q: And then — and then also, my second question is can you comment on reports that Ukraine has captured several Russian generals?
GEN. RYDER: So on your first question, no, I’m not going to be able to provide details on Ukrainian casualty numbers nor lost equipment, especially while they’re engaged in — in active combat, nor — you know, as I’m sure you can appreciate, I — I don’t want to provide an intelligence assessment from here.
We have seen the reports, you know, in — in social media, on — in media about captured Russian generals. I don’t have anything to provide, again, to corroborate that information from here. Thank you.
Let me go to Tom and then back out to the phone.
Q: Thank you, sir. Two questions. One is a follow up on a briefing yesterday. Lara asked a question regarding Pentagon, Defense Department, U.S. support of Ukraine if they would go into Crimea and the response was “we support” — I’m paraphrasing slightly — “we support any areas the sovereignty of Ukraine.” I just want to make sure that Ukraine — I’m sorry — if it’s — Crimea is considered sovereign Ukraine.
GEN. RYDER: Well, again — yeah, so, I mean, Crimea was part of the — part of Ukraine that was invaded by Russia back in 2014, so certainly Crimea is part of Ukraine.
Q: I thought so. I just wanted to make sure cause that’s what had been said before, so thanks for that clarification.
Q: Over the course of the past six months, we’ve seen, on occasion, a reshuffling of — of Russian military leadership in Ukraine. For example, General Aleksandr Dvornikov was made the Theater Commander a couple of months ago, give or take. I was wondering, first, is he still the Theater Commander? And second, have you seen continued or more reshuffling of leadership as Russia tries to figure it out or — or improve its battlefield success or tactics?
GEN. RYDER: Yeah. Thanks, Oren. So as I’m sure you can appreciate, I’m — I’m not going to discuss the chain of command of Ukraine here. I think that’s really more appropriate for — I’m sorry — for Russia, same thing. I’d — I’d refer you to Russia to talk about their military and their staff and how they choose to organize. But thank you.
Q: Thank you. If Ukraine maintains this kind of shift in momentum and stays on the offensive, does that change the equation as to what types of weapons the U.S. might offer in future rounds? And what types of weapons would that maybe expand to?
GEN. RYDER: Yeah, so, you know, I’m not going to speculate, but certainly we will continue to have that open dialogue with Ukraine, in terms of what their needs are. And so certainly, I — I think — I don’t think it’s unreasonable to think that as the situation on the ground changes — and — and, you know, on that point, Ukraine has made some progress but there’s still a very tough fight and — a tough fight ahead. So I think we also need to keep that in mind.
But to answer your question, I think it is reasonable over time to continue, as we have that dialogue, to — to hear what their needs are, to work with the International Community — because, again, it’s not just the U.S. that’s providing assistance — to make sure that they have what they need, not only in the immediate term but also the — the middle and the — the long term. So…
Q: Could you give us a sense of what types of weapons that might include? Is that, you know, possibly tanks or — what other types of weapons?
GEN. RYDER: Again, I don’t want to do that from the podium right now, other than to say that will be an area for continued dialogue. And as we have updates, we’ll make sure to — to provide those.
So — OK, I’ll — you know what, it’s — let me take a few more. All right. OK, let me go to Luis and then we’ll go to the back of the room here. Luis?
Q: Thank you, sir. Can you confirm that the United States held tabletop exercises with the Ukrainian military about this counter — counteroffensive over the summer and provide us some input about what would work, what would not work?
And also, with regards to the current situation there on the ground, is it the — the assessment that the Ukrainians would need a larger force in order to retain the — the gains that they’ve made territorially up in the northeast?
GEN. RYDER: So on the first question, what I would tell you, Luis, is that we do engage with the Ukrainians, you know, at a — at a variety of levels on the military side. As we’ve said previously, we do provide time-sensitive information to enable them to conduct operations and defend their — their homeland. I’m not going to get into the specifics of — of what that might look like.
In terms of the Ukrainians and their ability to hold the territory that they’ve taken, you know, certainly that is a question for the Ukrainians. I will say that the battlefield — as always, any battlefield, is a dynamic and fluid place.
We’ll continue to — to monitor from our end and continue to keep our focus on supporting them, in terms of the equipment and the resources that they need, but really, they should be the ones to talk about what their game plan is to secure and hold the territory that they’ve gained.
OK. Yes, sir?
Q: Thank you, sir. Two questions. One, there is a debate going on as far as who is a winner and who is a — a — who is a loser in Ukraine. But my question is that always innocent people, whether they are military or civilians, are the losers always and there are — they pay the price, like here. Thousands have been killed and millions are now homeless. So what do we learn as — for in the future if a superpower like Russia invades a smaller, tiny nation? So where do — where do we go or what we learn? What is the message, sir?
GEN. RYDER: Well, certainly, as it — in the case of Ukraine, as has been said by many, this invasion was unprovoked, illegal, and to your point, many innocent people have died, and — and that’s a tragedy. And so, again, from a Department of Defense standpoint, we’ll continue to do our part to work with our international partners and our allies to support Ukraine in their fight to defend their country.
And as I mentioned before, President Putin has the ability to end this conflict tomorrow by withdrawing his forces, but if he chooses not to, then we’ll continue to support Ukraine for as long as it takes.
OK, last one.
Professor Gundmundsson is an Icelandic political scientist/data scientist who is doing yeoman’s work tracking and performing data analysis on losses in Ukraine. From casualties to KIAs to equipment.
⚡️ COUNTER-OFFENSIVE: 🇺🇦 LOSSES AS OF SEP 13
65 🇺🇦 equipment losses have been visually confirmed in the counter-offensive, compared to 541 🇷🇺 ones
+3 equipment losses added between days
— Ragnar Gudmundsson 🇮🇸🇺🇦 (@ragnarbjartur) September 13, 2022
Here’s the link to his site with all the fancy tables and charts and graphs, oh my!
Here’s yesterday’s translations from Russian media that were posted today by Dmitri:
🇺🇦 officials reporting liberating over 6000 km², which is understatement due to reporting only verified and cleaned areas.
— Dmitri (@wartranslated) September 13, 2022
🇷🇺 did not manage to set up defense along river, the same did happen near Borova.
🇷🇺 did retreat past Oskil, and set up defenses just behind river. One of main lessons in this war, is that defensive line along natural obstacles is great, especially if they go along settlements. There are photos of 🇺🇦 forces near Sviatohirsk, this creates dangerous situation for 🇷🇺 forces near Oskil.
🇷🇺 sources reporting that 🇺🇦 has crossed Siverskyi donets river near Zakitne, other sources mentioning that Lyman is barely holding. If that is true, and Lyman falls to 🇺🇦, then it opens road to Kremina and later Sievierodonetsk.
🇷🇺 and separatist forces complaining of bad situation near Spirne and near Bilohorivka
🇷🇺 holding defense, even attempting some useless probing attacks, thus destroying their infantry.
rumors of 🇷🇺 doing bad near Yehorivka
🇷🇺 very afraid of offensive to Melitopol, it’s constantly getting reinforcements. Recently 4-6 BTGs have arrived there, setting up defenses. For 🇺🇦 to attack there, it would need a lot of forces, but it’s not impossible scenario.
Oleksandrivka near sea is already confirmed in 🇺🇦 control. Posad-Pokrovske also appears to be in 🇺🇦 control. Most interesting is situation near Davydiv Brid, new ground seems to be gained by 🇺🇦. From official reports, there are also advances at norther most part (Vysokopillia)
🔥 Kharkiv operation
continues, but it’s not going to be fast and easy anymore, more like Kherson, using natural borders. 🇺🇦 has resources to continue.
🔥 Internal conflicts:[ audio recording, where 🇷🇺 military blaming LNR forces for fleeing and leaving equipment – 20 tanks, while generals begging to defend ].
However, intel reports that those were not LNR forces, but 11th corps from Kaliningrad. Now there is conflict between regular 🇷🇺 army and LNR.
In another report, Kadyrovites got in conflict with regular 🇷🇺 army near Kherson.
🔥 Ukraine bombings:
🇺🇦 keeps attacking warehouses and command posts. Recently high level headquarters of 🇷🇺 VDV were hit in Kherson.
🔥 Russian military:
Leaked intel shows 🇷🇺 ceasing to send new units to 🇺🇦, many refusing. Top 3 reasons are: disbelief in command, huge losses, not understanding perspective of war.
Commander of 🇷🇺 Western military district replaced after 15 days in position. Position now taken by Lapin. This illustrates collapse of command chain, and previous chaos in Kharkiv direction.
🔥 Kharkiv Thermal Power Plant:
As usual, when 🇷🇺 cant win in battlefield, they take revenge on civilians. Light was restored in 2 hours at some areas. 🇺🇦 has created HQ on fixing emergency energy issues, there are significant reserves available. This attack won’t stay without response.
West reacted strongly, expecting tightening of sanctions, including responsible persons, increased speed of weapons delivery.
🔥 War crimes:
Newly liberated territories have war crimes already discovered.
Collaborators and immigrants in occupied territories can face up to 12-15 years in prison, and they do not get exchanged in POW exchange. Best action for them, is to flee to 🇷🇺 now. Let everyone remember – there won’t be 🇷🇺 here.
🔥 Kadyrov sends more troops
They don’t participate in battles, but try to catch deserters, participate in filtration, harass local population while searching for artillery spotters. Right now some are located on West bank of Dnipro river, uncertain if they will make out of there.
Each day fewer Russians continue buying the Russian Ministry of Defence crap and appear to be opening their eyes. This text has been shared by a bunch of channels, it blames MoD for reporting single strikes while the army is retreating, and is financed by regular citizens. pic.twitter.com/jqzLYcqxIc
— Dmitri (@wartranslated) September 13, 2022
The video in this tweet below shows just how messed up the Russian military is:
-Where were you going?
-Advancing or retreating?
-Why are you in Ukraine?
-I am a dumbfuck.
-Seaman First Class
-F L O A T I N G T A N K S???
-I was reasigned to a tank, given a week of training.
-You are lucky to be alive. pic.twitter.com/NzMOA6n8xB
— Horesmi🚩🇺🇦 (@Horesmi) September 12, 2022
I have no adequate words.
But it does explain this:
This regiment takes part in the invasion since the very beginning, and has tens of confirmed POWs and God knows how many KIAs.
— Mark Krutov (@kromark) September 12, 2022
Nearly all reports contain "physical and mental fatigue" as a reason to leave "special military operation" area. No wonder – this unit (31135) is known for "unique practice of after-lunch nap for soldiers". (https://t.co/U6Zg5avgHL) pic.twitter.com/fSJY0KoOpD
— Mark Krutov (@kromark) September 12, 2022
I showed these reports to my Ru mil source and he says they look pretty authentic to him: "It's alright, common practice in the army. Some clerk can sit down and write a report for many". pic.twitter.com/rJ3mlH5nVZ
— Mark Krutov (@kromark) September 13, 2022
Ukrainian partisans are on the hunt!
“Be ready! We know the paths that you patrol! Kherson – it is Ukraine 🇺🇦.”
Partisans against occupation. pic.twitter.com/G7RgAuZ0Ko
— Jason Jay Smart (@officejjsmart) September 13, 2022
Here’s former NAVDEVGRU Squadron Leader Chuck Pfarrer’s most recent assessment of the situation in Kharkiv:
IZIUM/1330 UTC 13 SEP/ UK Intel discloses that the prestigious Russian 1st Guards’ Tank Army has been destroyed. This top-teir force is the largest single unit lost by Russia since World War II. Information is evolving, but captured RU troops may number in 10s of thousands. pic.twitter.com/QhXUgCHtzr
— Chuck Pfarrer | Indications & Warnings | (@ChuckPfarrer) September 13, 2022
My understanding is that after the Kharkiv offensive over 50% of the remaining tanks in the 1st Guards Tank Army had been destroyed. The British MOD’s assessment for today has more details:
It is important to remember that the “Guard” part of their name is there because one of their primary mission essential tasks is guarding Moscow. Which they won’t be doing much of anytime soon.
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