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Terrorist war of the Russian Federation against Ukraine. Summary for September 7, 2014

By Roman Burko

The third day of the ‘ceasefire’

The Situation Around Donetsk

Either the DNR and LNR have not heard that about the planned ceasefire or they disrespect their political leaders. In any case, they continue to fight for the Donetsk airport. Despite the silence of the Ukrainian heavy artillery, the Russian terrorists use mortars, rocket systems GRAD and self-propelled guns NONA in full swing. One Grad system is constantly shelling the Donetsk airport from the territory of the chemical factory.

Over the past days the enemy had time to prepare their resources for further escalation of the war. Recall that after a successful offensive in the direction of the Donetsk-Kharkiv road the Ukrainian forces were forced to withdraw from Pisky.  This helps to understand why the enemy was able to remove part their forces from this sector and throw them in the Southern sector in the area of Olenivka-Olhynka. Most likely the terrorists are preparing an assault towards Mariupol from the North; either via Olenivka –Novotroitsk or via Vuhledar. The first way is more logical as it allow closing the ring around Dokuchayivsk. The second way is possible, but the enemy most likely do not have the resources for this option.

The Situation Around Mariupol

Having being driven back from the Shyrokino area, the Russian forces withdrew to Novoazovsk, where they have started to regroup and resupply. So the truce has been helpful to them as well. The shelling of the outskirts of Mariupol from the East has been taking place. And as previously reported, Diversionary Reconnaissance Groups (DRG) of the enemy are already acting in the southern territory of the Donetsk Oblast and along the coastal road (E58), which creates difficulties in bringing supplies to the forces defending Mariupol.

We were also informed by the people living around Novoazovsk about the Russian regular army trying to spread panic among civilians. The Russians have been spreading rumours that they have the objective of getting to Zaporizhzhia by Thurshday. This is more bravado than a real threat, but it does have an impact on people’s minds.

We have written before that the Amvrosiivka grouping of the Ukrainian forces, while cut off, is not surrounded. Even with the Russian Army reinforcements it has proved difficult for the enemy to hold and control such a big group of the Ukrainian troops. The residents of Telmanove were therefore pleasantly surprised when the town was liberated by our forces that have been moving west.  Now that the Ukrainian forces occupy towns and residential areas we will see if the Russian-terrorist forces will shell these areas. But I suppose, based on what has happened up to now, we know the answer to that question already.

Northern Donetsk Combat Zone

According to sources in the Horlivka combat zone, it has been relatively quiet there. Terrorists continue to shell Dzerzhynsk, shooting from the South-East direction, likely from Zhdanivka, and also from the South-West direction, likely form Panteleymonovka. Taking into consideration suspicious activity of the terrorists in the towns between Donesk and Luhansk. We can expect preparations to advance on Dzerzhinsk and Debaltseve. There is a high level of activity of terrorists in Alchevsk (where it was quiet before) and in Perevalsk. We had also indicated previously that enemy forces were concentrated in Brianka. And movement of columns of vehicles moving in the direction of Shakhtarsk-Zugres has been identified. These forces are probably gathering in the area of Gornoie and Zuievka. This is why the situation of Debaltseve is still a serious issue.

Luhansk Combat Zone

The Russian-terrorists have managed to gain a foothold on the east bank of the Siverskiy Donets River. The river has provided protection for the Russian-terrorists on the western bank and for the rear of ATO which is situated in Shchastia. So this situation is not a good scenario. In spite of the “truce”, Shchastia continues to be shelled, and DRG units of the terrorists are acting in the rear of our troops.

Panorama of the Siverskiy Donets river

International Military Support to Ukraine?

On the world arena we have the bunch of “refusals”. USA, France, Italy, Poland and Norway one by one refuted the words of President Poroshenko’s advisor Ihor Lutsenko about supplying Ukraine with weapons. There are two options: either Lutsenko was not aware of all the details of world diplomacy (NATO countries do not want to officially display show their intention to supply Ukraine with weapons), or things are really this bad, and no country really promises us military support either formally or informally. In any case we should remember the rule “God helps those who help themselves”. Obviously, every state has its own goals and very few of them want to put themselves into open confrontation with the powerful aggressor terrorizing Ukraine. But we want to remind you of Napoleon’s words about the people and the army: “If Europe does not want to “feed” the (Ukrainian) army, they will have to “feed” the Russian army soon.

Glory to Ukraine!

[hr]Source:, translated by Victoria Field and Eugenia Zlamanukedited by Larry Field

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February 12: ”Normandy Four” negotiations concluded in Minsk with a disappointing result for Ukraine

February 12 – "Normandy Four" negotiations concluded in Minsk with a disappointing result for Ukraine. Putin did not give in on a single point – there will be no withdrawal of Russian troops (they are, of course, nowhere close to Ukraine), no immediate resumption of control over the border, no reinstatement of sovereignty over occupied Crimea or Donbas. There are, however, the obligations on behalf of Ukraine to service social needs of separatists, legalize their armed gangs and hold fake elections under their watchful eye. The situation looks a lot like the surrender of Sudetenland (Czechoslovakia) to Hitler.

February 12 – Total financial assistance to Ukraine from the IMF and other organizations could amount to 40 billion dollars over 4 years, – said IMF's Managing Director Christine Lagarde.

February 12 – Russian Ministry for Emergency Situations has announced the preparations for the 14th so-called humanitarian aid convoy destined for Donbas – more weapons will be transported, no doubt.

February 12 – Russia has transferred another lot of military equipment and artillery to the territory of Ukraine, controlled by militants – approximately 50 tanks, 40 "Grad", "Uragan" and "Smerch" multiple rocket launch systems and 40 armored vehicles crossed Russian-Ukrainian border at border crossing point Izvaryne, – said NSDC spokesman Andriy Lysenko.

February 12 – The transfer of the amphibious assault ship "Vladivostok" (Mistral-class) to Russia could begin as early as next week.

February 12 – EU High Representative for Common Foreign and Security Policy Federica Mogherini does not expect sanctions against Russia to be discussed during the summit of EU member-states leaders to be held on Thursday.

February 12 – Secretary General of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) Lamberto Zannier hassaid that at present it is impossible to determine whether the militants in Donbas are also soldiers of the regular Russian army. OSCE has completely exhausted itself as a security-oriented organization.

February 12 – Agreements reached in Minsk during the meeting of the leaders of the countries of the "Normandy quartet" are absolutely weak. This was stated by the President of Lithuania, Dalia Grybaskaite, to journalists in Brussels before the EU Summit. "The fundamental part of the resolution is the control of the borders. It was not agreed upon and not resolved," she noted. "This means that the border is open for crossing by whatever soldiers and whatever artillery," remarked Grybaskaite. "This means that the resolution is totally weak," emphasized the President of Lithuania. She is also not very optimistic about the agreements on the cease-fire.

"Five months ago we already had one agreement about a cease-fire which was not implemented. Let's see what happens with this one," underlined Grybaskaite. "We will observe in the next few days how at least these partial agreements will be implemented," she added.

War is hell! (photo report from occupied Vuhlehirsk)

Russia lies... great start to Minsk agreement (Savchenko cannot be released!!)

Timothy Ash

Ukraine – deal thoughts

I guess with hindsight, a deal was always going to be done. Merkel was not going to get on a flight to Minsk, after Kyiv, Moscow, and Berlin, and not get something. And Putin needed to try and rebuild some bridges with Merkel, after seemingly upsetting her at Brisbane. Merkel is probably the honest broker in all this. She really feels for the Ukrainian position, but understands the real threat from Russia – she reads Putin better than any other Western leader, and cannot be bought. But it is Bismark-style real politik for Merkel, and she was desperate to stop the fighting – almost at any cost, which is entirely understandable. Hollande will likely get his aircraft carriers delivered, and sees all this as offering the hope of ressurection in terms of his presidency at home – a global leader, strutting the international stage and making Cameron, et al look like poodles, or rather a bulldog with no teeth. Putin gets his aircraft carriers, which will no doubt have a nice shiny berth now awaiting in Sebastopol. Putin also fended off near term threats of sanctions from the West, and can sell himself to allies in Europe (there are many) as a peacemaker – again heading off further sanctions threats. He has also not agreed to very much, as I don't think his signature is on the document, so if it fails (and it likely will) he can blame others. He has also headed off the threat of the US arming Ukraine – and therein he is in cahoots with Obama himself, who will see this deal as being useful in fending off calls from the DC consensus (including within his own administration) now to arm Ukraine – and can return to his own "splendid isolation" or "strategic patience" as it is now called stateside. That's a nice term for doing as little as possible. Poroshenko gets his IMF programme, and can try and roll out reforms attached to this to try and assure the supporters of Maydan that this team is really the Real Deal in terms of the reforms they so desire. Note the IMF press release was timed for 10am, just as news of the Minsk deal broke – so my sense is that someone was telling the Ukrainians that an IMF deal was contingent on a Minsk ceasefire deal. No ceasefire – no IMF deal. And the IMF gets to roll out its new programme, which it has been working on for months. Poroshenko probably also thinks that the ceasefire will buy time for Ukraine to regroup, rearm against the clear and present danger of further Russian intervention. But will it all stick/last? I just do not think so, as I still fail to see from this deal what is different to Minsk I in terms of delivery on Russian strategic objectives in Ukraine. Minsk I clearly did not deliver for Russia, hence that ceasefire did not last long, so let's see what is really different this time around. The issues of real autonomy/federalism, and border control don't appear to be properly addressed in this document. Constitutional reform towards the Russian agenda will be impossible for Poroshenko to deliver. And finally and fundamentally why I do not think that the status quo is sustainable – one year ago Russia felt the need to annex Crimea, and intervene in eastern Ukraine. But one year ago Ukraine was no threat to Russia as a) it was non aligned; b) popular support for Nato membership was low single digits, and there was little support in parliament or amongst political elites to drive Ukraine NATO membership. C) the west really did not want Ukraine in NATO as they saw this as a red rag to the Russian bull, and as events have proved could not defend Ukraine under NATO's TOR; c) the Ukrainian military had limited fighting capability as was proven in the early days of the conflict, but subsequently changed; d) the govt in Kyiv was weak and disarray and the Ukrainian economy on the brink of collapse; e) and as events have proven Russia had de facto control of Crimea via the stationing of 26,000 troops and the long term BSF agreement. And f) and finally Ukrainians were not anti-russian or even particularly anti-Putin. If Moscow was not a real threat a year ago, but Moscow felt compelled to intervene, look at the risk from a Russian perspective now from Ukraine – a) Ukraine is no longer non aligned. B) it now wants to join NATO and opinion polls now show majority support for this. C) Ukraine is rebuilding military capability and the military doctrine is now against the threat from Russia; d) Ukraine has a reform admin in Kyiv, which has a real chance of succeeding now with imf support. It can offer a rival and successful model of development to Putin's power vertical and sovereign democracy. E) Opinion polls show strong ukrainian opposition/distaste for the Putin regime. So, net-net the above still suggests the risk of further future Russian intervention in Ukraine.

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