09:00 UTC UPDATE:
Kramatorsk starting to see some action:
#Kramatorsk hit by Russian strikes pic.twitter.com/g2BlsiXykl— marqs (@MarQs__) March 18, 2022
The Ukrainians are still trying to strike at Russian targets with their remaining short range missiles:
Ukraine Military Tochka missile. pic.twitter.com/4jep0671t9— Aldin 🇧🇦 (@aldin_ww) March 18, 2022
Reportedly Ukraine Tochka missile struck Melitopol last night. pic.twitter.com/svJvRDIVdq— Aldin 🇧🇦 (@aldin_ww) March 18, 2022
Voznesensk now getting heavier strikes from the Russians to prepare for softening up the central Ukrainian regions for a ground assault:
Multiple strikes also on Voznesensk ammunition storage site. pic.twitter.com/F20ixsBPUE— Aldin 🇧🇦 (@aldin_ww) March 18, 2022
Add in Lviv getting struck again and the Russian air and missile campaign definitely seems to be following a more logical and expansive pattern.
In just one day, it would appear that the Russian military’s consolidation in the Eastern portions of Ukraine are starting to dislodge the entrenched Ukrainian forces. In Rubizhne, Russian forces were confirmed to finally have control of the town:
Visual confirmation of Rubizhne now under full control of Russian Forces and Luhansk separatists. https://t.co/H2AGbxWPa0 pic.twitter.com/Jcrq0b3w5a— Aldin 🇧🇦 (@aldin_ww) March 17, 2022
Rubizhne was reportedly captured by Russian (LPR) troops today pic.twitter.com/cUGg2Uu5Vl— marqs (@MarQs__) March 17, 2022
Also the key city of Izyum has fallen per US defense officials:
Izyum, eastern Ukraine pic.twitter.com/oyOopaOn3x— OSINTtechnical (@Osinttechnical) March 17, 2022
Based on the OSINT community’s reporting, this is how that map in Eastern Ukraine looks at the moment:
Kramatorsk will be next, the Pokrovsk, and then once consolidated and re-supplied a full on push towards Dnipro to seal off the rest of the east leaving Kharkov and other smaller towns no choice but to surrender. It’s a workable strategy but quite costly going one town at a time, one major city at a time.
In the South, Mariupol’s defenses appear to be falling slowly while attacks towards Mykolaiv continue:
Russian troops in the outskirts of #Mariupol pic.twitter.com/vKw5p5XyWW— marqs (@MarQs__) March 17, 2022
In boring old Odessa, an anti-tank mine explodes for some strange reason:
Odessa beach. pic.twitter.com/pp996rUcuU— Aldin 🇧🇦 (@aldin_ww) March 17, 2022
The siege guns have the range of Kharkov now, thus meaning the Russians will probably seal it off and starve the fighters out:
Video of a Russian 2S7M Malka 203mm heavy artillery piece firing on Ukrainian positions in Kharkiv. https://t.co/TroN5rIi55 pic.twitter.com/otZpm75ec3— Rob Lee (@RALee85) March 17, 2022
Russian Smerch MLRS firing on targets in Kharkiv. https://t.co/y2o8MmhQsW pic.twitter.com/IvyRmqjvIT— Rob Lee (@RALee85) March 18, 2022
Some ground action, date and location unknown per poster; others have said February 24th:
Russians come into contact with Ukrainian forces pic.twitter.com/jimisl8kno— OSINTtechnical (@Osinttechnical) March 17, 2022
More ground action, date and time unspecified:
Ukraine Military HMMWV came under fire during the patrol. pic.twitter.com/eSnKnRPV5L— Aldin 🇧🇦 (@aldin_ww) March 17, 2022
Something else worth watching, especially if all six subs put to sea at the same time:
Here is Sentinel-2 imagery of Gadzhiyevo yesterday, the 16th.— The Lookout (@The_Lookout_N) March 17, 2022
Looks like 6 x SSBNs were alongside at that time and that activity at the missile loading pier has finished.
Normal Sentinel caveat applies. https://t.co/CVPe148yny pic.twitter.com/T7CHkrF7bI
Lastly, in total relation to the posting above and yesterday’s thread, the Pentagon seems to confirm what many of us fear. The Russians may well threaten to and use tactical nukes to force a Ukrainian surrender or even Western interests if they persist in re-supplying Kiev.
More to come in the morning along with updates throughout the day via my Telegram channel as events and time allows.