The back of the napkin analysis of what is happening on the maps sort of reflects what I expected to see except for the direct attempts to enter Kharkov and take the Gostomel Airport. The shocking thing was to see the alleged videos of young conscripts captured or killed by the Ukrainian military; the exact same strategy employed in the Georgia campaign of 2008. It is almost as if Putin was deploying the fodder on day one in some regions to be followed up with his elite troops as only about 60 BTG’s are reportedly in use thus far.
Watch the coastlines west of Odessa the next twenty-four hours, if not overnight tonight, along with developments in the far west reaches of Belarus where rumors of troop movements south of Brest are persisting throughout the internet. If the Russians were to organize two more fronts to the far west reaches of Ukraine centered on Lviv and to the flank 100 km to 120 km west of Kiev, that would essentially cut off any retreating troops and cut the country into tactically easier smaller sections to deal with.
Meanwhile, the race for the bridges over the Dnieper River is on and Dnipro will soon see Russian forces at its gates.
On to the ongoing news flow which is astonishing to say the least…
02.25.22 10:00 UTC UPDATES:
Missile interception by Kiev air defense systems overnight:
Russian artillery unit, allegedly ambushed on highway outside of Kherson; remember, confirmations of any postings are difficult at this time:
Херсонская обл pic.twitter.com/jBWfFh3o46— IgorGirkin (@GirkinGirkin) February 25, 2022
This tweet could be indicative of what I was expecting to happen today:
IF, big IF, this is the start of the Russian thrust towards the Moldovan border to cut Western Ukraine off from the east, then the original strategy I envisioned is under way:
The damage being inflicted on Ukrainian forces may be far worse than western media outlets are willing to admit as this story may well indicate:
It would appear the Russians are now arriving in force around Kherson. Or should I say “Soviets”:
FYI, if one sees a flag of the USSR, it means the hardcore troops are moving into the area. This is not a “joke”, it’s a belief that’s been taught to Russian soldiers in some of the elite units that the West deliberately destroyed the USSR to make the Russian people suffer, instead of the truth that the system was doomed all along.
More from Kherson:
Airstrike in Kherson pic.twitter.com/9NQyGuTtHK— C O U P S U R E (@COUPSURE) February 25, 2022
To east of the Kherson bridge, another key bridge is in play:
It would appear the bridge is close to coming under Russian control:
Russian soldiers just took down the cameras in Nova Kakhovka pic.twitter.com/xmEE88JFaD— OSINTtechnical (@Osinttechnical) February 25, 2022
This is going to kill UK tourism. The cost of flying around Russia is quite expensive, especially since aviation fuel costs will probably double this spring:
That includes flights in transit over Russian airspace so do the math on a flight from London to Beijing or Tokyo.
Meanwhile, in the Black Sea, an eerie pause in the action today (so far):
It would appear that a Ukrainian Air Force Su-27 got up into the air but was shot down:
Еще фото обломков pic.twitter.com/5ywrzGXmQq— IgorGirkin (@GirkinGirkin) February 25, 2022
As expected here is more confirmation that operations on the Western Ukraine front have begun today:
And more from the area:
The Ukrainian military managed to get some shots off at Russia it would appear:
In the Donetsk theater, the battle for this area to the south of Donetsk city is intense:
More just a tad north of Starohnativka:
I almost forgot before I head into the office, the daily UK Daily Mail tabloid headline of the morning:
Russian tanks will hit Ukrainian capital TODAY, with troops already fighting in the city as citizens are urged to make petrol bombs: US intelligence warns of Putin plan to fly in 10,000 paratroopers and ‘decapitate’ government
It’s going to be an interesting day, needless to say.
More to come throughout the day via my Telegram account, link as above on the upper right….
02.25.22 01:01 UTC UPDATES:
Heavy clashes ongoing near Kharkov between the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation and the Armed Forces of Ukraine. pic.twitter.com/ZtVaPegs3h— CaucasusWarReport (@Caucasuswar) February 24, 2022
The fighting around Kharkov is fierce with heavy losses on both sides. Meanwhile on the southern front in Kherson:
Russian Buk Air Defense system inside the captured city of Kherson, Ukraine. Looks like Russia is trying to advance its AD units closer and closer to the center of Ukraine. pic.twitter.com/UFHRd734PV— CaucasusWarReport (@Caucasuswar) February 24, 2022
Odessa is also in trouble should landings occur tonight and link up to the north of the city as this armored group has outflanked the defenders on the coast.
Geolocation of the footage allegedly showing Russian military columns in Mykolaiv, Ukraine. They going towards the city center.— Sargon Courtenay (@CourtenaySargon) February 24, 2022
If the quoted report is true, that means Russia made significant progress towards Odessa and generally towards western Ukraine.
36TVT2393901839 https://t.co/W2kW2gBdFQ pic.twitter.com/ox0409B5bg
Reports tonight indicate that the Ukrainians may have retaken the bridge but I’ll wait 24 hours to see what happens at Kherson:
In the key crossroad city of Sumy, the battle raged on tonight:
Місто Суми, йде пекельний бій. pic.twitter.com/zjBhVcJAgp— Промисловий Портал (@ua_industrial) February 24, 2022
The brief Battle of Snake Island off the Ukrainian coast was preceded by this classic exchange. One has to admire the Ukrainians for their fighting spirit, even in a losing cause:
An approaching Russian warship was heard ordering those on Snake Island to surrender and lay down arms, otherwise, they will be bombed.— Doge (@IntelDoge) February 24, 2022
The Ukrainian force on Snake Island responded, “Russian warship, go fuck yourself.” before the assault began https://t.co/qZStVgkx1F pic.twitter.com/kJWMgf4y3f
More from this attack:
Moment before Ukrainian soldiers defending Serpent Island are targeted by a Russian warship. pic.twitter.com/WyaAxv4dMO— CaucasusWarReport (@Caucasuswar) February 25, 2022
If my hunch is correct, the VDV group lost at Gostomel Airport may not have been in vain. The results of this dramatic airborne assault and the associated carnage against both sides might have just baited the Ukraine into a strategic disaster:
If this verifies in the next 24-36 hours, the Chernobyl rush was a feint, as I expected and the main armored thrust will begin 50-100 km west of Kiev and cut the country up into pieces, isolating units nationwide and eventually surrounding the major cities.
Dnipro apparently does not want an airport battle. Sadly for them, it appears it will be an armored thrust from the southwest and east.
In military terms, the following piece of news is a potential “oh crap” problem for the Ukrainian military command:
An attack that far West expands the battlefield to a point where Ukrainian forces will be spread too thin. Unfortunately for the Russian military, the least friendly and fiercest partisans are in Western Ukraine.
Along with local defense units, apparently the Ukrainians have beefed up their defenses in that region tonight:
Lastly, remember who is Putin’s spiritual and philosophical adviser as this conflict rages on: