Fierce fighting continues around Bakhmut in Donbass. Meanwhile, Russia’s attacks on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure are showing their effect. Power outages are the order of the day.
Bad weather, heavy rains and deep mud hinder both sides. The fiercest fighting continues in Donbass, around Bakhmut. In recent weeks, both Russia and Ukraine have gathered significant forces here from the Kherson region.
Russian breakthrough is currently not possible
Despite strong Ukrainian resistance, Russian forces captured some villages south of Bakhmut last week. The intention of the Russians is probably to encircle Bakhmut from the south. However, well-prepared Ukrainian defenses, unfavorable terrain and bad weather make larger operations difficult, so a Russian breakthrough is not possible at the moment and will not be in the foreseeable future.
Losses are heavy on both sides. Due to adverse weather conditions and months of continuous shelling, the Bachmut front line already resembles the war-ravaged landscape of Verdun in the First World War.
In the eastern part of the Kharkiv region and in the northern part of the Luhansk region, conflicts are intensifying along the Svatove-Kreminna line. Russia has repeatedly tried to push back the Ukrainian armed forces, but so far largely to no avail. Russian troops managed to recapture small areas, but suffered heavy losses in the process.
Premature death of mobilized reservists
It seems common practice in the Russian Army to deploy newly mobilized (i.e. poorly trained and equipped) troops on the first line and deploy more experienced troops on the second and third lines. This approach helps Russia maintain more combat-ready forces, but incurs high casualties among mobilized troops.
Clashes continue around Kherson
The city of Kherson is still within range of Russian long-range artillery. The city is regularly bombed, causing civilian casualties and further damage to the city’s infrastructure, which has already been largely destroyed by the retreating Russian forces.
Ukraine is reportedly conducting a small operation on the Kinburn Peninsula, which is geographically linked to the Russian-controlled areas of Kherson. Further details about the scope and purpose of this operation are unknown.
Infrastructure attacks also affect the railway
Russia has repeatedly attacked Ukraine’s critical energy infrastructure across the country with rockets, cruise missiles and drones. Continued pressure makes it increasingly difficult for Ukraine to operate its electricity grid as a unified system; The repair job is getting more and more difficult because spare parts are also getting scarce. Planned and unplanned power outages have become commonplace in many parts of the country.
As electric locomotives become less and less available, Ukrainian rail infrastructure is suffering as a result. Kiev is considering several options, including a possible (temporary) revival of old steam-powered locomotives.
Confusion over Ukrainian casualties
On 30 November, the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, announced that 100,000 soldiers died in the war. After widespread public outcry, a commission spokesperson announced that the 100,000 figure was a rough estimate of Ukraine’s military losses, which included both dead and wounded.
This interpretation is largely in line with the regular reports by US officials of Ukraine’s total military losses. The Ukrainian leadership did not respond to von der Leyen’s statement by publishing its own figures, only stating that data on casualties were classified.
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I am Timothy Glover, a professional journalist and content creator. I specialize in writing and editing for news websites, specifically covering politics. I have been working as an author at News Unrolled for the past five years and have built up a reputation for producing quality content that is both informative and engaging.