Sunday, May 21, 2023

Where does RUssia expect UKRaine’s counterattack? Overview of defensive lines; The Offensive Before the Offensive: UKR Strikes Behind RU Lines; UKR reports new advances near eastern city of Bakhmut; Damaged Patriot missile system is already repaired, LIVE UPDATES and MORE

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Where does Russia expect Ukraine’s counterattack? Overview of defensive lines
As Ukraine gathers forces for the counteroffensive, Russia continues to build defensive lines on a massive scale.
The lines are especially formidable in the southwestern part of Zaporizhzhia Oblast, where many observers expect the main Ukrainian assault to strike.
But defenses have been prepared along pretty much the entire front; in occupied Crimea and inside Russia. They incorporate trenches, bunkers and strongpoints, infantry and vehicle shelters, anti-tank ditches, pyramidal concrete tank barriers called dragon's teeth, and minefields, as well as terrain and water features.
When properly manned, these lines could pose a tough challenge without an easy solution.
Russia’s ability to properly man them is debated. The Russian military can’t hope to defend the entire 800-kilometer front line with equal vigor. During the defense, large Russian formations may have to fall back to prepared positions in a coordinated fashion — Russia’s shown that its large-scale maneuvering capability isn’t the best.
However, fortifications may allow Russians to put up heavy resistance in key areas, possibly slowing down the Ukrainian forces long enough for reinforcements to arrive.
Here is an overview of what Russia’s defenses and troop concentrations look like at different parts of the front and what that can tell us about the battles to come. --->READ MORE HERE
Stringer/Zuma Press
WSJ: The Offensive Before the Offensive: Ukraine Strikes Behind Russian Lines
Early this month, four drones attacked a Russian oil refinery almost 300 miles from Ukraine. The next day, another drone hit it. Not long after another drone bombed a fuel depot on the other side of Russia, near Belarus.
Call it the offensive before the offensive. Strike by pinpoint strike, Ukraine is taking aim at ammunition stores and caches of other supplies that Moscow’s forces need to fight, seeking to weaken them ahead of a broader ground campaign to push back the Russian invaders.
Ukrainian leaders say they are waiting for more Western weapons to arrive before launching what has been billed as a “spring offensive” that is now likely to play out over the summer, spearheaded by newly trained units equipped with Western-supplied tanks, armored fighting vehicles and artillery.
To set the stage, Ukraine has stepped up attacks on positions well inside Russian-held territory, part of what strategists call shaping operations, which are aimed at undermining the enemy and probing for gaps to exploit.
Ukraine staged similar attacks last year using U.S.-supplied Himars rocket systems before retaking territory in the Kharkiv region and the city of Kherson. Now it is reaching farther, using drones as well as newly supplied British long-range Storm Shadow cruise missiles.
For Ukraine, which is battling a larger military, the attacks are important to chip away at Russia’s battlefield resources.
Any engagement longer than a few days becomes a logistical contest, say commanders, so destroying stores of ammunition, fuel and spare parts can be more significant than taking out individual tanks or artillery pieces, because the impact can be broader. A tank without fuel or shells is of little use. --->LOTS 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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