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Frontline report: Russia’s new tactic fails repeatedly in Kherson forest

Over two days, Russian forces made multiple attempts at a new tactic to flank entrenched Ukrainian units near Kherson. As a result, the Russians lost 10 out of 11 tanks and 28 out of 31 drones.
Screenshot from a Reporting From Ukraine video.
Frontline report: Russia’s new tactic fails repeatedly in Kherson forest

Day 655

On 10 December, there was a lot of news in the Kherson Oblast.

Russian forces did not give up on their plan and made several more attempts to implement their new tactic into practice. The new tactic implies penetrating Ukrainian defenses in the central part of the settlement and forcing Ukrainians to retreat from their fortified positions inside the forest due to a threat of encirclement.

The reason why Russians tried to implement this new manoeuvre is that they failed to push Ukrainians from the forest directly. The first Russian attack that was conducted in the morning time failed before it even started because Ukrainian drone operators detected and destroyed Russian tanks and armoured fighting vehicles at night. Russian soldiers were still sent to conduct the assault, but it was short and unsuccessful.

The fact that the Russian assault units did not use armor meant that the tactic was not implemented, which is why, over the last two days, they tried it again multiple times.

Ukrainian marines gave more insights into what the Russians were trying to do. They said that the actual tactic was to use tanks and armoured personnel carriers to transport Russian soldiers as deep into Krynky as possible.

Screenshot from a Reporting From Ukraine video.

According to this tactic, ideally, Russian soldiers should appear right behind Ukrainians in the forest. To complicate the situation for Ukrainians even more, the Russian assault units are also deploying smokescreens extensively.

Nonetheless, as noted by the Ukrainian marines, Ukrainian drone operators and artillery crews did a phenomenal job of making sure that the Russian assaults never went according to their plan.

Ukrainian drone pilots recently released a video showing the fire of artillery at Russian positions in the forest, where Russians are trying to accumulate heavy equipment for the assaults.

The roads inside the forest can easily be monitored by drones because they are all running north to south, parallel to each other. Flying back and forth above Krynky, Ukrainians spot most of the incoming Russian equipment. Not all Russian equipment was eliminated, and Russian forces made the second attempt soon.

Screenshot from a Reporting From Ukraine video.

The second operation also had a much bigger scale because Russian forces opened two directions of attack: from the southwest and northeast.

When it comes to the northeastern attack, was a supporting attack because the Russian assault unit was much smaller. The goal of this group was to get inside the village and just stand in one region without advancement, passively creating pressure on the Ukrainian fighters in the forest.

Screenshot from a Reporting From Ukraine video.

They did not manage to assume positions in the settlement. Ukrainian drone pilots immobilized the first vehicle, forcing the infantry to flee, while the second vehicle did not see any sense to proceed further and turned around. This allowed Ukrainians to fully focus on the main Russian attack that came from the western side of the forest.

Screenshot from a Reporting From Ukraine video.

Combat footage shows that the attack went wrong from the start. The first two Russian tanks carrying the infantry faced fire the moment they emerged from the forest. The tanks had to engage and started trying to suppress Ukrainian firing points in front of them.

The Russian infantry, therefore, did not manage to get a foothold in the settlement and immediately ran away back to the forest. After firing several shots, Russian tanks turned around and tried to flee before the Ukrainian kamikaze drones reached them. That did not work out very well, as the first tank was destroyed immediately behind the corner, while the second tank was destroyed around 200 meters away from the first one. The close-up footage confirms that many crew members did not survive.

This was not the last attempt of Russian forces to outflank Ukrainians. Ukrainian fighters from the Madiar’s drone detachment reported that the day was saturated with Russian attacks, and they could not get a break until midnight.

Screenshot from a Reporting From Ukraine video.

The developments were the same – Russians sent tanks and armoured fighting vehicles in an attempt to provide cover for the Russian infantry to get a foothold in the area, but Ukrainians initiated engagements much earlier and did not allow Russians to advance.

As a result, that day, Madiar’s drone detachment destroyed 10 out of 11 tanks and armoured fighting vehicles and 28 out of 31 detected Russian drones.

Russians lost around 100 tanks and armoured fighting vehicles during this whole time around Krynky, and Ukrainians destroyed 10% of it in just one day.

Ukrainians have developed a solid defense structure, which, coupled with a high level of coordination with drones and artillery, allows Ukrainians to destroy the most powerful Russian mechanized assaults that were ever recorded in this region.

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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