Sector D: the handful of soldiers securing the success of the ATO, surrounded from all sides

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2014/07/29 • War in the Donbas

Surrounded between the terrorists at the North and the Russian border on the South, a handful of soldiers from the 72 and 24th mechanized brigades, the 79th airmobile brigade, the State Border Service, the 3d Regiment of the Special Forces  are securing the success of the whole ATO, cutting off provision of Russian weaponry to the Russian-backed militants. Constantly being shelled from all sides, the Ukrainian soldiers say they would rather die than retreat. Cut off from reinforcements, the soldiers in Sector D hold their positions in hope that the Ukrainian command will be able to mobilize their troops to make a breakthrough. 

Wings Phoenix, a volunteer working to provide the soldiers of the brigades carrying out the most difficult tasks, wrote on the situation in Sector D:

“I have three friends in sector D (between rebels and the Russian border). One has been lightly wounded, one contused, and the third one is unscathed so far. I spoke to them this morning, and they all say the sale thing:

  1. They are very scared. Not as scared as in the first days, they got used to danger somewhat, but a normal person cannot completely get used to it.
  2. They are spending as much time underground as over it. They are being shelled continuously, everybody around has casualties. But the information online that ‘everyone is dead’ is not true. 
  3. It is very hard to hold defence lines. There is almost no communication between various groups of forces, but they don’t feel like they are being left to die. Food, water, munitions are being delivered, with problems, but they are being delivered.
  4. Most importantly, about a week ago the morale of the soldiers has changed. The feeling has changed from ‘why the hell are we sitting here, we are the being left to die, get us out of here’, to the understanding that their role, their positions are strategically important. Both officers and soldiers understand that. Moreover, they are now asking to punish the politicians that are asking for troops in sector D to be withdrawn.

Firstly, to leave now would mean that their colleagues, their friend have given their lives in vain, the whole operation was in vain, and there will be more casualties going forward. Moreover, sitting in trenches is safer than trying to retreat under crossfire from both sides. Secondly, by sitting in these trenches and conducting careful operations, they are solving a twofold strategic task: they control key routes via which terrorists are getting weapons and reinforcements, and at the same time they are restraining the movement of the terrorist groups

People don’t talk about this enough, but all the successes of the counterterrorist operation in the north and west would not have happened if there would not have been 3 brigades and army special forces dug in this narrow straight between terrorists and the Russian border. Nobody would be able to liberate Rubizhne, Popasna, Severodonetsk, Lysychansk. Nobody would be able to close in on Donetsk, or unblock Luhansk airport.

The importance of their position is illustrated by one simple fact: when one of the brigades around Scerdlovsk showed signs of moving north, there was mass hysteria around separatist leaders and Russian forces, who in several unprepared artillery strikes have managed to destroy several of their own checkpoints and camps.

The guys are living with one hope there: that our generals can mobilize enough troops in the north and west to lift the blockade before they all get killed one by one.”

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  • Invictus Infidelis

    Слава Украины

  • Mellow Jessica

    From America, with Love, please tell those heroic Ukrainian warriors to keep up the good work and defend their motherland from the criminal terrorists and Russian invaders!

    Putin’s evil imperialism MUST be resisted if Ukraine and other states are to have a future free of Russian domination! You can deal with traitors in Kiev – if there are any – AFTER you’ve secured the country’s borders and crushed the terrorist insurgency!!

    Courage!!

  • Marko

    SLAVA HRABREMU UKRAJINSKEMU NARODU!
    SLAVA MOGOČNI UKRAJINSKI VOJSKI!
    SLAVA UKRAJINI!

    SMRT PUTINU!
    SMRT RUSKIM TERORISTOM!
    SMRT RUSKIM IZDAJALCEM!

    SLOVENIJA JE Z VAMI HRABRI NAROD UKRAJINE.

  • Erik Gullman

    I will pray for you!