Monday, October 17, 2022

The Man Who Said Ukraine Would Win; Russia Strikes Crowded Market Amid Battlefield Setbacks; Ukraine Says More Than 600 Settlements Liberated in Past Month, Including 75 in Kherson; German IRIS-T Air Defence System Activated in Ukraine’s South, LIVE UPDATES and MORE

Photo: Marc Roussel
The Man Who Said Ukraine Would WinL
‘The real reason Putin has not succeeded,’ says Bernard-Henri Lévy, is that his opponents ‘know why they fight.’
“Victory for the Ukrainians is coming very fast,” says Bernard-Henri Lévy. “And I was the first to predict it.” Mr. Lévy is on his fifth visit to the country since Vladimir Putin launched his invasion in late February; his first was in mid-March.
“I am in the east,” he tells me Wednesday by WhatsApp, the least unreliable way to communicate from the front lines. He’s in Kupyansk, a town “just liberated,” then to Izium, where “Ukrainian families are just beginning to return.” Two days earlier, the Russians had bombed the heart of Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv, including a children’s playground. But he still feels “a strong wind of victory. A sad victory, of course. A victory in the midst of graves, but victory nonetheless.”
Mr. Lévy, 73, is conventionally billed as a “French philosopher.” That’s wholly inadequate to describe a man who’s also a journalist and filmmaker, a passionate crusader for democratic rights, and a freelance envoy of the Western world to war zones on almost every continent. We met last month, after his return from his fourth Ukraine visit, in Mr. Lévy’s exquisitely furnished and commodious apartment in the heart of Paris.
He leads a magnificent life and has no need to risk his neck in Ukraine or elsewhere. Yet he does. He is a wealthy man—heir to his father’s timber fortune and the author of several best-selling books—and he often pays his own way to these combat zones, setting himself the task of highlighting the plight and the needs of the people at war. “I have the means,” he says, “and the time.” He also feels “a duty, as an intellectual whose voice is heard, to ring the bell and warn the world.” He confesses to a kinship with the Ukrainian people. Ever since he visited Kyiv during Ukraine’s democratic Maidan Revolution in 2014, he’s regarded them as “the sentinels of the West,” on the front line with Russia.
We meet days after the Ukrainian armed forces liberated Lyman, a town in the east that the Russians had captured and ravaged. We sit at Mr. Lévy’s dining table, a large map of Ukraine spread out between us. He’s “not at all surprised” by the victory in Lyman. “I was there with the Ukrainians, a few kilometers from the city, a few days before the offensive,” he says. “One could feel the encirclement of the Russian forces, just as one could feel the solidity of the Ukrainian positions. One could see how they were, little by little, transforming from defensive positions into offensive ones.”
Mr. Lévy speaks of the war with the authority of a man who has seen it up close—who has been in foxholes alongside troops as they exchanged fire with Russians. He has been pilloried for this on Twitter by half-wits who dwell not on the great risks he runs to report on the war firsthand, but on the suit he wears under his flak jacket. --->READ MORE HERE
Sofiia Bobok/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
Russia strikes crowded market amid battlefield setbacks:
Russia’s morning strike on a crowded market in Avdiivka killed at least seven people and wounded eight on Oct. 12, Donetsk Oblast Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko reported.
"There was no military logic in this attack – only an unbridled desire to kill as many of our people as possible and frighten others," Kyrylenko said on Telegram.
The governor once again urged the remaining residents to evacuate from the embattled eastern region.
At least 979 civilians have been killed in Donetsk Oblast since Feb. 24. The death toll in the cities that used to be heavily bombarded by Russia and are currently occupied, such as Mariupol and Volnovakha, remains unknown.
Russia’s attack on Avdiivka’s central market comes as Ukraine continues its counteroffensive in the east and south. Ukrainian forces had recaptured 776 square kilometers of land in the first week of October.
The eastern counteroffensive had entered Luhansk Oblast, a mostly occupied region that Russian President Vladimir Putin illegally declared as part of Russia in September.
Luhansk Oblast Governor Serhiy Haidai said Russian forces were trying to build multiple lines of defense, including mining the front line. He added that the first wave of newly mobilized Russians had arrived on the battlefield, and that some of them have military experience.
Ukrainian forces are “moving forward little by little” while their positions continue to be shelled with rocket and barrel artillery, according to Haidai.
In neighboring Kharkiv Oblast, the Ukrainians liberated 91% of the territory that was occupied as of early September, a regional military administration spokeswoman said. --->READ MORE HERE
Follow links below to +++++relevant+++++ and related stories:

+++++Russia-Ukraine News LATEST UPDATES: (REUTERS) (AP) (NY POST) and (WSJ)+++++

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