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Frontline report: Ukrainian HIMARS strikes destroyed Russian reinforcement column in Kherson Oblast

The Ukrainian military targeted and eliminated a large Russian column that was delivering additional troops and ammunition, thwarting efforts to reinforce positions in the Kherson Oblast, as confirmed by drone footage.
Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.
Frontline report: Ukrainian HIMARS strikes destroyed Russian reinforcement column in Kherson Oblast

On 10 November, the most substantial news came from the south. Ukrainians conducted a combined strike on Crimea, successfully destroying two Russian warships. Notably, the operation did not require substantial resources but was made effective by a clever tactical approach.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

The operation commenced with a drone attack on Feodosia, targeting a significant fuel depot that gained strategic importance after the relocation of part of the Russian Black Sea Fleet.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

Following this, a second drone was sighted, and at the same time, a Neptune missile was launched towards Sevastopol, the principal base of the Russian Fleet. The Russians mistook the initial drone strike as a diversion and focused their defenses on protecting the bay.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

Russian sources report their air defense failed to shoot down the missile. However, luck appeared to be on their side as the missile deviated from its intended target, landing close to the barracks.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

After the first missile miss, Russian commanders, under stress, alerted all units and directed attention skywards. Then, a second Neptune missile was detected by Russian radar, this time heading towards Chernomorske. The Russians claim to have intercepted this missile. Unfortunately for Russians, it was part of the decoy plan.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

While Russian forces were distracted, four Ukrainian speedboats covertly entered the bay and started targeting Russian warships.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

Ukrainian Intelligence released video footage of the attack, showing the first drone effortlessly parking next to a ship, indicating the Russians were taken by surprise. The kamikaze drones targeted two “Serna” class assault-landing ships, which not only had their full crews on board but also housed an armored vehicle and a TOR-M2 air defense system.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

A Ukrainian first-rank captain commented on the attack, revealing that the boats carried a significant payload of explosives. He noted that the engines of both vessels were operational, suggesting the Ukrainian forces struck just before the ships could be relocated. Satellite images later confirmed the sinking of both ships. The first ship was hit without resistance and sank rapidly, whereas the second ship was the subject of a failed Russian rescue effort.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

These are the same ships that were used by the Russians during the initial invasion to assault Zmiinyi (Snake) Island. Russian analysts have acknowledged the strategic choice of targets by the Ukrainians, as these ships are essential for defending against amphibious operations and marine drones. They deduced that the destruction of these ships would likely lead to an increase in raids on Russian bases along the western coast of the peninsula.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

In total, the Ukrainians used just two drones, two Neptune missiles, and four boats to destroy two assault-landing ships, marking this as the most efficient combined strike on the Black Sea Fleet to date.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

In addition to this operation, Ukrainian reconnaissance drone operators spotted a significant Russian convoy delivering additional troops and ammunition to the Kherson front. Some Russian commanders have yet to learn from past errors, continuing to move their forces in vulnerable long columns. When the column stopped temporarily, the drone operator relayed the coordinates to the HIMARS crews.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

The HIMARS strike targeted the head and tail of the column, effectively immobilizing the Russians. While three drivers managed to escape with their vehicles, the rest were either injured or fled in panic.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

A subsequent strike targeted the center of the column, resulting in the destruction of nearly the entire convoy. The drone operators counted 25 killed and 20 wounded soldiers. Other trucks carrying ammunition exploded, creating a massive fire.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

The convoy was meant to reinforce Russian positions near the island of Velykyi Potiomkin, which is a focal point for the Ukrainians after a series of successful amphibious operations and the establishment of a new bridgehead. More details on these developments will be provided later.

Screenshot from the Reporting From Ukraine video.

In our daily frontline report, we pair up with the military blogger Reporting from Ukraine to keep you informed about what is happening on the battlefield in the Russo-Ukrainian war.

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