moon of alabama

Ukraine Claims Orderly Retreat From City It Lost Days Ago
Moon of Alabama, Jan 25 2023

This is currently at the top of the Yahoo homepage:

Ukraine forces pull back from Donbas town after onslaught
Yahoo News, Jan 25 2023

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukrainian forces have conducted an organized retreat from a town in the eastern region of the Donbas, an official said Wednesday, in what is a rare but modest battlefield triumph for the Kremlin after a series of setbacks in its invasion that began almost 11 months ago. The Ukrainian army retreated from the salt-mining town of Soledar to “preserve the lives of the personnel,” Sergei Cherevatyi, a spokesperson for Ukraine’s forces in the east, told AP. The soldiers pulled back to previously prepared defensive positions, he said. Moscow has portrayed the battle for Soledar, which lies near the city of Bakhmut, as key to capturing the entire Donbas. … Russia claimed almost two weeks ago that it had taken Soledar, but Ukraine denied it.

Reading the headline I was surprised. Did the Ukrainian command suddenly get sense and order the retreat from Bakhmut, which the US has asked for? It would make sense, because Bakhmut is where half of the Ukrainian army currently gets ground into bloody dust. But alas, the second and subsequent sentences prove that it is just another fake news story. It is easy to test who was or is lying here. It was on Jan 13, 12 days and not two weeks ago, that Russia publicly claimed to have taken the center of Soledar. Live UA Map provides a map of Ukraine that shows the daily progress and allows one to look back in time. It is Ukraine friendly in that it does only register Russian claimed progress when it can confirm it through additional sources. Here is its map from Jan 13. At that time the city center of Soladar was in Russian hands:

And here is the map of Jan 15. Across the railway line there are two small villages on the outskirts of Bakhmut that technically are part of the city:

But those were taken by Jan 19, after the railway had been crossed:

There has been further progress made by Russian forces which the LiveUAMap doesn’t yet reflect. But the likewise Ukraine-friendly MilitaryLand site is another source with reasonably current independently made maps. It shows more progress southwest and northwest of Soledar where the town of Karsnopolivka was additionally taken:

To claim that Ukraine has now ‘conducted an organized retreat’ is simply bullshit. Its troops in Soledar were overrun more than a week ago. Many of them lost their lives. Two days ago Larry Johnson had a post on another fake news piece about the fight in Soledar. It spoke of huge losses in the Wagner group that had stormed the city. But videos I saw but will not link showed dozens of dead Ukrainians and no dead Wagner in and around the city. The fight was expensive but not so much for the Russian side.

I can recommend the PMC Wagner video Best In Hell (below) especially for those who have no military experience. It is a realistic depiction of brutal combined arms fighting in upbuild areas. It also explains what is happening on the command level. The 1 hour 50 minute-long video has English subtitles. It depicts Russian and Ukrainian soldiers as equally decent men in equal trouble differentiated only by the white and yellow sides they are fighting on. I also recommend MK Bhadrakumar’s recent piece that summarizes the war so far and looks into its future: Ukraine war’s first anniversary and beyond. As he is ‘neutral’ between the ‘West’ and Russia and has rich diplomatic experience, his view is always of interest.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: