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  #631  
Old 07-18-2023, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Raellus View Post
When I first saw the headlines, I assumed that something like Storm Shadow ASMs had been used to strike the bridge but apparently it was drone boats.

In other news, Ukrainian intel reports a build up of Russian forces (100k troops, hundreds of AFVs) near Kharkiv. This could be bad for Ukraine, as it threatens the flanks of some of their current offensive operations, and it will probably require the UAF to shift forces earmarked for, or already committed to said in order to meet the new threat. On the other hand, it might a positive for the Ukrainians as it will get a substantial number of Russians out of their fixed defensive positions and out into the open (where US cluster munitions could have a really big impact). At this point, I would bet on the Ukrainians to gain the upper hand in maneuver warfare.

https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zon...p-near-kharkiv

WARNING:
If you scroll down through the article, there are links to two video clips of Anti-Russian Chechen fighters, allegedly operating in Belgorod Oblast, ambushing a lone Russian military truck. They blur out the gore (thank goodness), but it doesn't leave a whole lot to the imagination, and some viewers may find it disturbing. I only mention it here because every T2k game I've ever been involved with (as player, Ref, reader, writer, etc.) has featured at least one ambush of a "Russian" convoy of some sort.
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Nice link and an interesting read.

ISW has reported on the build up (though they haven't cited a number regarding personnel AFAIK), and have reported that at least some of it is penal battalions that don't have the experience, morale, or the cohesion to actually pull anything off other than light skirmishes. No matter the case, surely Russia is eager to try to regain the initiative here. It'll be interesting to see what happens.

https://www.understandingwar.org/bac...t-july-17-2023
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  #632  
Old 07-20-2023, 03:26 PM
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Default Sobering Assessment

This sobering, first-hand assessment of the Ukrainian military pulls no punches.

https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zon...from-the-front

The short of it is that the Ukrainian military currently isn't as good as their propaganda makes it out to be- it's just better than the Russians (and not by a very wide margin, at that).

The author of the report gives 16 reasons why the UAF's counteroffensive has not manage to achieve a major breakthrough, including, perhaps the most significant,

"2.) Ukrainian forces have still not mastered combined arms operations at scale. Operations are more sequential than synchronized. This creates various problems for the offense and IMO [in my opinion] is the main cause for slow progress."

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  #633  
Old 07-20-2023, 08:59 PM
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That's a good read. I think the multiple mentions of minefields teases a lede that's a little buried. Whatever other problems the Ukrainians have, the Russians basically mined the whole front. Even in the best cases it makes maneuver difficult and all advances will be measured in meters at a time. Artillery can only make so much progress if infantry can't take and hold the ground artillery just cleared out.

Massed assaults are constrained because minefields limit mobility and even a Mobik can figure out how to aim where the enemy if forced to bunch up.

I think one of the biggest lessons is air power has been a game changer in the century since it debuted. If you don't have air superiority, including clearing out ADA, you're stuck on the ground getting bombed to shit. Air superiority alone won't win a war but if you're going to "win" a war you need to at some point enjoy air superiority.
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  #634  
Old 07-22-2023, 10:52 AM
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Default Sea Change

A lot of potentially big news coming out of Ukraine the last couple of days. We'll start with the bad news first.

Russia has backed out of the Ukraine grain deal, started targeting grain silos with missile strikes, and threatened to impose a naval blockade in the Black Sea. Putin's essentially trying to hold the world hostage by potentially causing famine. Furthermore, Putin's been laying the groundwork for framing the Ukrainian navy for the sinking of any neutral ships in the Black Sea.

Putin is rattling his saber at Poland, accusing her of preparing to attack Belarus. Check out this revisionist history from the Russian dictator:

"I would also like to remind you what Poland’s aggressive policy led to," he said during a meeting Friday of the Russian Security Council. "It led to the national tragedy of 1939, when Poland’s Western allies threw it to the German wolf, the German miliary machine. Poland actually lost its independence and statehood, which were only restored thanks in a large measure to the Soviet Union. It was also thanks to the Soviet Union and thanks to Stalin’s position that Poland acquired substantial territory in the west, German territory."

Nowhere does Putin mention the Soviet Union's complicity in Poland's "national tragedy of 1939" (i.e. the Soviet invasion and occupation of the eastern half of the country), the murder of hundreds of Polish army officers, Soviet refusal to aid the Polish Home Army's uprising in Warsaw in 1944, or the USSR's interference in Polish affairs for the next fifty years.

Ukraine has started to use US cluster artillery munitions to good effect. According to Forbes, they are properly implementing the tactic of using an HE round to determine the height of the targeted ground so that the DP-ICMs can be set to distribute the sub-munitions at the ideal height above the target. The Russians, however, are already learning what a single round of HE presages.

The US has shifted its policy on the exporting of F-16s to Ukraine from its NATO allies, saying they are going to "push as fast as possible" and that the fighters should start to arrive in Ukraine "before the end of the year".

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  #635  
Old 07-24-2023, 04:34 AM
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There has not been a declaration of war made by Russia, so any threat to target civilian shipping in the Black Sea is straight-up illegal. And I've said right from the start, Russia isn't going to launch nukes (not unless NATO tanks roll across the Russian border). Putin may be an A-grade dickhead and a megalomaniacal narcissist, but his generals aren't suicidal.

NATO needs to grow some nuts and (assuming Turkey didn't close the straits) escort grain freighters right through to Ukrainian ports. Dare the Russians to do anything about it.
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  #636  
Old 07-24-2023, 01:18 PM
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Default UAF

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Originally Posted by Raellus View Post
This sobering, first-hand assessment of the Ukrainian military pulls no punches.

https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zon...from-the-front

The short of it is that the Ukrainian military currently isn't as good as their propaganda makes it out to be- it's just better than the Russians (and not by a very wide margin, at that).

The author of the report gives 16 reasons why the UAF's counteroffensive has not manage to achieve a major breakthrough, including, perhaps the most significant,

"2.) Ukrainian forces have still not mastered combined arms operations at scale. Operations are more sequential than synchronized. This creates various problems for the offense and IMO [in my opinion] is the main cause for slow progress."

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I believe it. It took the Red Army a good three years to master combined arms during World War II and even with massive Lend-Lease aid there were still logistical problems sustaining offensives. The Ukrainian learning curve will probably be much quicker but with a terrible cost in casualties.

There is a greater problem here in my view. To really make Putin or Russia pay attention, a defender would need to inflict the same levels of casualties as the Finns 1939-40. Something on the order of 10:1 or thereabouts. The UAF have fought valiantly and won deserved admiration from much of the world. However there is simply not enough damage being done to the Russian military.

We don't have a clear picture of casualties on either side to be fair-but it's nowhere near the level to make the Russians come to the table or back off. Bear in mind I'm not criticizing the UAF nor am I in a position to criticize them.
Just my 2 cents.
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  #637  
Old 07-24-2023, 01:25 PM
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Default Escorting flagged freighters.

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There has not been a declaration of war made by Russia, so any threat to target civilian shipping in the Black Sea is straight-up illegal. And I've said right from the start, Russia isn't going to launch nukes (not unless NATO tanks roll across the Russian border). Putin may be an A-grade dickhead and a megalomaniacal narcissist, but his generals aren't suicidal.

NATO needs to grow some nuts and (assuming Turkey didn't close the straits) escort grain freighters right through to Ukrainian ports. Dare the Russians to do anything about it.

It's an interesting thought and brings back images of Kuwaiti tankers being escorted during the Iran-Iraq War. I believe there there is less than a 10% chance of NATO implementing such a program even for the best of purposes-bringing grain to a hungry world.

NATO's navies have suffered tremendously from Post-Cold War penury-our old Oliver Hazard Perry class frigates would have been ideal for this role. They are long gone. NATO, I suspect, would be loathe to strip STANAVFORATLANT to send them into the Black Sea on escort missions even if the political will existed.

I doubt Turkey would close the Straits-although I do see Erdogan notifying NATO that in the event of an attack on NATO forces as a result of their actions in the Black Sea-Turkey would sit it out.

Romania and Bulgaria would probably not risk their limited assets in such an operation leaving the other much larger maritime powers to try to send their slender resources into the Black Sea-which again, I don't think will happen. We'll see. Again, just my 2 cents worth.
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  #638  
Old 07-24-2023, 01:48 PM
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NATO's navies have suffered tremendously from Post-Cold War penury-our old Oliver Hazard Perry class frigates would have been ideal for this role. They are long gone. NATO, I suspect, would be loathe to strip STANAVFORATLANT to send them into the Black Sea on escort missions even if the political will existed.

I doubt Turkey would close the Straits-although I do see Erdogan notifying NATO that in the event of an attack on NATO forces as a result of their actions in the Black Sea-Turkey would sit it out.
I don't disagree with you but it's interesting to note that Turkey is still a user of the OHP class frigate. Their modernized version is known as the G-Class frigate and there are 8 of them in service with the Turkish navy.

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  #639  
Old 07-24-2023, 03:01 PM
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Default Perry Class

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I don't disagree with you but it's interesting to note that Turkey is still a user of the OHP class frigate. Their modernized version is known as the G-Class frigate and there are 8 of them in service with the Turkish navy.

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That's true-Poland/ORP has a couple as well now I think? Australia built several as well if my memory serves me correctly.
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  #640  
Old 07-27-2023, 01:32 AM
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Default Landmines and Counter-mine Warfare

Russian minefields have contributed greatly to slowing Ukraine's offensive operations this summer. From the articles I've read, it sounds like the UAF's main tactics to overcome the obstacle presented by AT mines is to rely on mine roller-equipped tanks or ARVs, or MICLICs, to clear lanes through minefields during an assault. According to a Ukrainian tanker interviewed by the BBC, a mine roller can usually handle, one at a time, up to four mines before it needs replacement, However, knowing this, the Russians have adapted by stacking multiple AT mines, thereby destroying rollers with one massive explosion. The Ukrainians are losing AFVs to mines at a pretty high rate- even their more advanced, better protected Western models- and have seemingly given up on attempts at a major mechanized breakthrough. They've largely reverted to smaller, more incremental (and slower) attacks led by relatively small formations of infantry. The Russians have even started to mine their own trench lines and remotely detonate them once they've been taken and occupied by UAF forces.

What I haven't read a single mention of in this current conflict is the UAF using combat engineers to prep attack lanes through mine belts by moving across minefields on foot, probing for AT mines, and removing them manually prior to a planned assault. I'm both surprised and not surprised by this. I'm not surprised because this procedure is slow and very dangerous to the mine clearing teams. Minefields, to be truly effective, need to be observed by the defending force and covered by fires (direct and indirect) to prevent what I just described. It sounds like, most of the time, the Russians are employing tactics that increase the effectiveness of their minefields.

On the other hand, I am surprised because pretty much every book I've read about major WW2 ground offensives describe the attacker- both Axis and Allied- using the tactic of manual mine detection/removal (almost always at night) in the lead up to a big assault. This is especially true of the Eastern Front. In quite a few cases, this tactic was very successful in getting the attacking force through the first line of defense with much fewer tank losses to AT mines.

I'm not advocating that UAF troops risk their lives by adopting this dangerous but potentially successful tactic. It's easy for me to sit here and suggest they give it a try. I'm just wondering why, AFAIK, they haven't. I suppose that improvements in and the proliferation of NODs and battlefield surveillance tech in the current era make manual demining in a combat area a lot more dangerous than it already was in earlier wars.

Anyway, that was a bit rambling. I just wanted to share my thoughts and wonder if any of you have wondered the same thing or read/seen anything illuminating on the topic.

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  #641  
Old 07-27-2023, 09:43 AM
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The difference between infantry clearing mines at night in 1943 and 2023 ist night optics and drones, I'd say. Also, clearing mines by hand in darkness is extremely dangerous and costly in terms of personnel.
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  #642  
Old 07-27-2023, 11:23 AM
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Here's the BBC piece that I referenced in the OP.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-66306150

And another piece, in which a UAF sapper is interviewed. This one focuses a bit more on the threat of anti-personnel mines and the challenges faced by shorthanded Ukrainian sappers. The last line of the article offers a tantalizing, if vague, hint of new, more effective tactics to defeat Russian minefields.

"We are learning to improvise and to invent ways to make quick, safe paths through the minefields. But we are fighting a very vicious enemy," [the Ukrainian sapper] said.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-66080652

I'm curious to learn what those innovative tactics are.

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  #643  
Old 07-27-2023, 08:48 PM
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Didn't we send these guys any mine clearing line charges?
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  #644  
Old 07-27-2023, 10:23 PM
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Didn't we send these guys any mine clearing line charges?
Sure, Ukraine's been using them at least since November. But each launcher is limited to 200 meters of charge per hour (half an hour required between launches, each MICLIC clears an area 100 meters long and 8 meters wide). With the depth of some of the minefields, that's a minimum of 80 hours of continuous MICLIC use (and 160 charges) to clear 16 kilometers of mines. Meanwhile, the enemy has made targeting the launchers a priority because hitting one while it's carrying just under a ton of explosives causes a good bit of damage to anything in the general vicinity of the launcher. That makes using multiple launchers to speed things up a bit hairy, because hitting one is likely to take out multiple vehicles.

TL;DR version - MICLICs are great against shallow minefields or ones hastily put together. Against minefields that have been laid in depth over the course of months, they're still useful, but not able to cause total breaches quickly.
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  #645  
Old 07-29-2023, 12:21 PM
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Default Ghost-riding through a Minefield

When I was a kid, my friends and I would do something that we called "ghost-riding"*. We'd ride our bikes to pick up speed and then jump off without stopping to see how far our bikes would go without us, sometimes aiming the bike at a ramp or obstacle of some sort before un-assing. The Ukrainians attempted something similar recently, but with a BMP-1, and across a Russian minefield.

This is an... "interesting" way to detect enemy AT mines. The UAF reportedly sent an unmanned BMP-1 across a suspected Russian minefield. Improbably, it didn't "find" any and, curiously, the Russians apparently didn't bother to take it under direct fire as it approached their positions. It was finally stopped by an AT ditch.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidax...h=1538fbed3769

*I'm not claiming that we invented this term. I'm sure it's pretty common. I included the anecdote in the hopes that you relate to it.

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Last edited by Raellus; 07-29-2023 at 05:26 PM.
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  #646  
Old 08-06-2023, 02:32 PM
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Default Causes for Concern

The news from Ukraine over the past couple of weeks hasn't been great. Yes, there's been vague, tantalizing mentions of a supposed breakthrough at some point in the Russian main defense line, but those headlines have been outnumbered by those lamenting the size of Russian minefields, and their continuing effectiveness in slowing (or even stopping) Ukrainian offensive ops.

A couple of recent articles have claimed that the abridged Western-style training of Ukrainian forces was ineffective- that it was rushed, and didn't give the trainees enough time to absorb and internalize NATO tactics so that they could be implemented effectively. Additional articles have suggested that the UAF is giving up on NATO tactics and making up their own, essentially embracing slower paced attritional warfare. I don't have much confidence in the UAF achieving its stated victory goals if the fighting continues to skew towards attritional warfare. Regardless of any potential long-term outcome, the war looks like it will continue to drag on for some time. That, I believe, favors Russia more than the Ukraine. Will the West maintain the political will, and the popular support that it would require, to support Ukraine if the war drags on thru 2024 (not incidentally, a general election year in the USA)?

My biggest concern ATM, however, is Ukraine's use of drone warfare against targets of questionable military value inside Russian territory. I understand why it is important, strategically and diplomatically, for Ukraine to show Putin and the Russian people that the war is upon them, and not insulated within Ukraine. However, I think the cost of inflicting Russian civilian casualties could tug Zelensky down from the moral high ground he's occupied since February 2022, and reduce foreign support for the UAF (especially in the form of much needed combat aircraft and additional long-range strike weapons). Russian civilian casualties would also reinforce Putin's whole "we launched this 'special military op' to in self-defense against NATO-backed Ukrainian aggression" line that he's been shoveling since ordering the invasion of Ukraine in February, 2022.

Slava Ukraini!

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  #647  
Old 08-06-2023, 09:16 PM
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The news from Ukraine over the past couple of weeks hasn't been great. Yes, there's been vague, tantalizing mentions of a supposed breakthrough at some point in the Russian main defense line, but those headlines have been outnumbered by those lamenting the size of Russian minefields, and their continuing effectiveness in slowing (or even stopping) Ukrainian offensive ops.

A couple of recent articles have claimed that the abridged Western-style training of Ukrainian forces was ineffective- that it was rushed, and didn't give the trainees enough time to absorb and internalize NATO tactics so that they could be implemented effectively. Additional articles have suggested that the UAF is giving up on NATO tactics and making up their own, essentially embracing slower paced attritional warfare. I don't have much confidence in the UAF achieving its stated victory goals if the fighting continues to skew towards attritional warfare. Regardless of any potential long-term outcome, the war looks like it will continue to drag on for some time. That, I believe, favors Russia more than the Ukraine. Will the West maintain the political will, and the popular support that it would require, to support Ukraine if the war drags on thru 2024 (not incidentally, a general election year in the USA)?

My biggest concern ATM, however, is Ukraine's use of drone warfare against targets of questionable military value inside Russian territory. I understand why it is important, strategically and diplomatically, for Ukraine to show Putin and the Russian people that the war is upon them, and not insulated within Ukraine. However, I think the cost of inflicting Russian civilian casualties could tug Zelensky down from the moral high ground he's occupied since February 2022, and reduce foreign support for the UAF (especially in the form of much needed combat aircraft and additional long-range strike weapons). Russian civilian casualties would also reinforce Putin's whole "we launched this 'special military op' to in self-defense against NATO-backed Ukrainian aggression" line that he's been shoveling since ordering the invasion of Ukraine in February, 2022.
Slava Ukraini!

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I think most people realize that Ukraine can't really win a war of attrition with Russia long term, all other things being equal.

And in a realpolitik sense, Western leaders probably don't want a decisive Ukraine victory that destabilizes Russia and sees someone more unhinged than Putin taking over. Nor do they want a greater Russia that has a stranglehold on most of the world's wheat exports either, so they are trying to traverse the knife edge of keeping Ukraine in the fight and bleeding Russia but not so fast that Russia collapses and loses control of some of their nukes.

Interesting time to be alive.
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  #648  
Old 08-07-2023, 01:01 PM
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UAF cannot fight Western type combined arms campaigns for three reasons:
  1. We trained tactical leaders and soldiers (including vehicle crews etc.) in crash courses. That's all you can train in the available time. What we could not train were officers and especially staff officers. Some battalions in the UAF are commanded by literal privates or corporals. People who have distinguished themselves in battle, but never gotten any formal training. Those people do not have the ability to think combined arms. There is a reason, we send staff officers to college, military academies, army colleges and institutions of higher learning and then polish them for 10+ years before they become majors or even battle captains. UAF personnel never had that time and they also suffered massive casualties among their best in the early months of the war.
  2. We never sent them modern fighter bombers to achieve at least local air superiority and wear down enemy integrated defense networks as well as entrenched positions.
  3. All we did and give, which was plenty and really a lot - though not always in time, maybe - still came not quick enough to prevent Russian Armed Forces to entrench deeply and in multiple, often formidable, layers.

Especially the last item, the deep and multi-echelon defense networks are something that modern or even peak of their time (think: Desert Storm) Western militaries would struggle with, especially on such a long front. It's just an insane amount of mines and trenches to cover. I think, Desert Storm showed what was possible, but we have neither the troops nor the spare issues of AFVs, MICLICs, personnel and frankly: corps, to do it ourselves.

This war must be fought and Ukraine must win, but it's not something that will come this year. At least not on the battlefield alone.
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  #649  
Old 08-10-2023, 02:40 PM
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Default Disconnect

Here's a revealing quote from a senior intelligence sergeant from the UAF's 41st Mechanized Brigade. He goes by the nom de guerre, "Dutchman".

'"For the most part, [Western instructors] have fought wars in cities and towns – urban settings. We are on flat ground a lot of the time,' said Dutchman.

The tactics that Ukrainian officers and commanders badly want their troops to learn while being trained abroad are either only part of the syllabus or not featured at all.

'We need people to understand how to effectively clear trenches, enter them, how to throw grenades effectively, how not to trip on booby traps, to understand what grenades the [Russians] throw – essentially to understand the enemy,' explained Dutchman."


https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zon...sians-approach

So it's not just the duration of training that's been lacking, it's the type of training.

“'It would be better if either [the instructors] came here to see what we’re facing or we went there to train their instructors to train our troops,” Dutchman told openDemocracy, adding that he recognizes that NATO preclusions about putting boots on the ground would not allow them to visit Ukraine.

Members of the 41st Brigade told the publication that their instructors often used examples of NATO operations in the Middle East, where the objective is to clear houses and identify potential insurgents among the local population.

But “that’s not really relevant to us,” said Dutchman.'


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  #650  
Old 08-14-2023, 05:06 PM
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It's a Russian line-charge vehicle that appears to have been abandoned, but this article (and the video in the linked Twitter thread) shows why you want to be extremely careful about exposing MICLICs to incoming fire.
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  #651  
Old 08-23-2023, 12:43 PM
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Default Wagner boss Prigozhin feared dead after Russia plane crash

We called it weeks ago. I'm surprised he lasted this long.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-66599733

I'm also a little surprised at how non-subtle the method of assassination was. I would have expected something that Putin could blame on the Ukrainians or NATO. At least Putin can claim that the Motherland's air defenses are working.

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Last edited by Raellus; 08-23-2023 at 01:12 PM.
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  #652  
Old 08-23-2023, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raellus View Post
We called it weeks ago. I'm surprised he lasted this long.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-66599733

I'm also a little surprised at how non-subtle the method of assassination was. I would have expected something that Putin could blame on the Ukrainians or NATO. At least Putin can claim that the Motherland's air defenses are working.

-
Kill Prigozhin and help rein in other oligarchs by publicly showing what happens to those that betray you at the same time? It was a two for one special.
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  #653  
Old 09-18-2023, 09:26 PM
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The most recent Perun has an interesting look at Russian tank losses by family, grouped into three-month time periods since the start of the Ukrainian invasion.

Feb-Apr 2022
T-90: 3%
T-80: 23%
T-72: 71%
Older: 3%

May-Jul 2022
T-90: 1%
T-80: 22%
T-72: 68%
Older: 9%

Aug-Oct 2022
T-90: 3%
T-80: 33%
T-72: 53%
Older: 11%

Nov-Jan 2023
T-90: 5%
T-80: 34%
T-72: 49%
Older: 13%

Feb-Apr 2023
T-90: 8%
T-80: 40%
T-72: 46%
Older: 7%

May-Aug 2023:
T-90: 5%
T-80: 53%
T-72: 36%
Older: 6%

There are a few interesting things here.

The older tanks (T-55, T-62, T-64) had a spike after the first three months of the war and have slowly declined since, probably because ones that could be refurbished quickly were thrown into combat while better tanks in deeper storage made their way to the factories for rebuilds. As the refurbishment system has worked out its early kinks, those tanks are less numerous at the front.

The T-72 and T-80 have flipped in importance. T-72 losses as a proportion of total losses have basically halved, from 71% to 36%, while T-80 losses have gone from 23% to 53%.

T-80 losses also aren't particularly new T-80s. Russia has three-ish main models, the T-80B/BV (1978/1985), T-80U (1985) and T-80BVM (2017). The BV is a B with Kontakt-1 ERA. The U has a more powerful engine, revised turret armor, Kontakt-5 ERA, and an upgraded gun and fire control. BVM has Relikt ERA and upgraded gun, fire control, and optics.

Early on (in the first three-month period) T-80 losses were 23% B/BV, 59% U, and 18% BVM. For the most recent four-month period, they were 82% B/BV, 2% U, and 17% BVM (equals 101% due to rounding). The BVM has remained pretty constant as a percent of T-80s lost even as the T-80 losses have grown, but the U has been steadily replaced by the less capable B/BV. Basically, they're upgrading as many as they can to BVM standard and then shoveling the rest of the B/BV to the front without upgrades to maintain numbers.
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Old 09-21-2023, 01:33 PM
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Thanks for sharing, Vespers. Really interesting data and analysis in that video - I thoroughly enjoyed watching it.

If I had a single critique, I wish he had included the overall numbers of losses of certain categories of vehicles on top of just the ratios. For example, understanding if T-80Bs were becoming much more prevalent as a part of the makeup of Russian tank forces, but also that the overall trend in MBT losses over time was shifting downward, or upward, or oscillating, that would have provided a lot more insight into exactly what's happening. It would also give us a better idea of the delta between what Oryx has reported as visually confirmed losses vs. what Ukraine typically reports on their daily losses stat roundup.
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  #655  
Old 09-21-2023, 10:48 PM
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Back in March I had used the Wayback Machine to pull the last Oryx report for each month and track losses, although there are a few caveats:
1. Some losses ascribed to a particular month could be older Unidentified Losses that became Identified during that month.
2. I grouped tanks by relative age, so the T-80B, T-80BV, and T-80U were all grouped as "old T-80" and the T-80BVM as "new T-80." In general, a Soviet upgrade is "old" and a post-Soviet upgrade is "new."
3. In September 2022 Oryx changed from just listing tanks as Unidentified to listing them as an Unidentified type if possible (e.g. Unidentified T-80). This makes the numbers for Unidentified tanks in that quarter weird.

Using the same time groupings that Perun used:
Feb-Apr 2022
595 total losses
0 T-62, 16 T-64, 175 Old T-72, 187 New T-72, 94 Old T-80, 19 New T-80, 19 Old T-90, 0 New T-90, 85 Unidentified

May-Jul 2022
325 total losses
1 T-62, 19 T-64, 73 Old T-72, 62 New T-72, 47 Old T-80, 10 New T-80, 1 Old T-90, 2 New T-90, 110 Unidentified

Aug-Oct 2022
507 total losses
39 T-62, 8 T-64, 87 Old T-72, 157 New T-72, 72 Unknown T-72, 118 Old T-80, 25 New T-80, 6 Unknown T-80, 5 Old T-90, 3 New T-90, -33 Unidentified

Nov-Jan 2023
240 total losses
24 T-62, 7 T-64, 34 Old T-72, 64 New T-72, 10 Unknown T-72, 50 Old T-80, 14 New T-80, -2 Unknown T-80, 11 Old T-90, 5 New T-90, 23 Unidentified

At some point I need to go through and scrape the rest of 2023.

Even in this shorter period, the T-62 losses show a huge change, with 1 positively identified as lost out of the first 920 tank losses, and then a full 10% of losses in the last time period being identified as T-62.

T-72 losses are cyclical, being 60-67% of total losses in the first and third quarters and 42-45% in the second and fourth quarters. They may have been used to spearhead assaults during the good weather months and hoarded away for unit reconstruction during the bad weather months.
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Old 09-25-2023, 03:38 PM
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Thanks again for the data. I went ahead and graphed it out to get a more visual representation of the tank losses over time. Not sure if this is helpful/useful or not, but I thought it was interesting to see how the assortment changed over time. I find it interesting to note how much the tank losses slowed during the second quarter, only to increase again with the Russian summer offensive before petering out during winter. I'm definitely super curious to see how it's further changed during the Ukrainian counteroffensive in Q2 and Q3 of '23.

*disclaimer - this is only based on the data Vespers provided, meaning that it's Oryx's visually confirmed tank losses.
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  #657  
Old 10-18-2023, 05:05 PM
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Default ATACMS have arrived

https://apnews.com/article/atacms-uk...b82d57d6ccab22

ATACMS which will always be “Assault Breaker” in my heart, have arrived and made a splash. 5 units taking out at least 9 helicopters.

What would be an estimate of what the US could provide in terms models available? The cluster versions seem like a given given that the US would not want the bad press of being a major power using them. Ukraine gets a pass as the plucky underdog.
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  #658  
Old 10-19-2023, 02:57 AM
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The boards been as quite as i can ever remember for a number of weeks now.

If not Ukraine as a plucky underdog, i'll take Israel as the flavour of the month re cluster munitions.

Just devastating news re wars around the world (Ukraine and Israel). This may/may not be why its been quite here.

My own T2K work has progressed a bit in the last few weeks, having been made redundant again. Mixed feelings. Being out of work is never good. No longer working at my last place of work has been such a relief. There are great job prospects on the horizon so i am positive i will be employed again soon. In the mean time, my own solo T2K campaign is progressing using the FL rules, which i am enjoying.
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Old 10-19-2023, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kato13 View Post
https://apnews.com/article/atacms-uk...b82d57d6ccab22

ATACMS which will always be “Assault Breaker” in my heart, have arrived and made a splash. 5 units taking out at least 9 helicopters.

What would be an estimate of what the US could provide in terms models available? The cluster versions seem like a given given that the US would not want the bad press of being a major power using them. Ukraine gets a pass as the plucky underdog.
The best numbers I've seen:

M39 - 1,650 built for US, 411 expended
M39A1 - 610 built for US, 74 expended
M48 - 176 built for US, 58 expended
M57 - 513 built for US, 57 expended
M57A1 - 220 converted from M39/M39A1, 7 expended

There are another 900 M57A1 that have been purchased by international customers that would be converted, so out of 2,260 M39/M39A1 produced for the United States, 485 have been expended and 1,120 (at least) are scheduled to be converted, so at most 655 of those two models would be available for transfer to Ukraine.

With PrSM having entered LRIP, I would hope all the ATACMS could be considered available for transfer if needed.
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  #660  
Old 10-20-2023, 04:36 PM
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Default Too Little, Too Late?

It's hard not to conclude that the Ukraine's summer 2023 counter-offensive might have been much more successful to date if ATACMS had been provided to the UAF prior to its commencement.

https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zon...u-k-intel-says

Russian rotary combat airpower was often cited as a key factor behind heavy early UAF AFV losses during said counter-offensive. Russian attack helos were able to engage successfully engage UAF AFVs from beyond the range of most available AAA and MANPADs. In most sources, the impact of Russian attack helos was assessed as second only to that of massive Russian AT mine belts. Heavy AFV losses resulted in a slower, more methodical scale, scope, and pace of UAF offensive operations.

ATACMS could have largely degraded the effectiveness of Russian attack helicopters, both by destroying them on the ground where they were based, and by pushing those rotary aviation bases further from the front lines, thereby reducing the combat range of their helos.

I'm peeved that the US didn't provide Ukraine with ATACMS much earlier.

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