The Russian-Ukrainian War Thread

Croc411

New Member
A random thought:
If Putin strikes Ukraine with a nuke, or nukes, how sure are we that this would be a suicidal move?

Many people I've talked to are absolutely convinced this would lead to an American nuclear strike on Russia - but is that really so certain? I don't think so.

If Ukraine gets hit with nukes, that's just Ukraine destroyed, while NATO and other nuclear armed states are relatively safe. Whereas if they retaliate it's MAD.

Agreed, nuclear strikes in Ukraine would not automatically mean a nuclear exchange between Russia and the West.

But: NATO officials have repeatedly stated that in the case of NATO countries being affected by Russian use of WMDs this would force them to rethink their stance of military non-interference in Ukraine. It might even trigger Article 5:

If Russia Uses a WMD in Ukraine, the Fallout Could Trigger a NATO Response, Key Lawmaker Says

Imagine a nuke gets dropped on a nuclear power plant. This would practically force NATO to directly intervene (conventionally) which in turn could further escalate to WW3 and eventually to nuclear war. IMO dropping a nuke on a big city could have the same result.

This thought alone, and I think if it makes sense that none would retaliate for Ukraine, might make a nuclear strike more realistic than we currently think.

I'm with @STURM here - not very realistic. What would that mean for Putin / Russia in the long term?

- In large parts of the world, Putin would probably be regarded as the worst war criminal in history (beside Hitler). I highly doubt that this is what he wants his legacy to be.

- Total trade embargo (for decades) by the West and many other countries would be practically inevitable

- It could well mean that Russia alienates its remaining friends (China and India especially).

- It would inevitably lead to a new conventional arms race, which Russia cannot afford. According to some scholars, inability of keeping up in the arms race with the West was a key factor in the collapse of the Soviet Union. And this was the mighty USSR - now it's Russia alone.

- It would drastically increase the likelyhood of the creation of a common NATO or EU nuclear strike force

- Would nuclear strikes really cause Ukraine to immediately give in or even capitulate? Considering the Ukrainian doggedness, I have my doubts about that.
 
Last edited:

kefalo84

New Member
A random thought:
If Putin strikes Ukraine with a nuke, or nukes, how sure are we that this would be a suicidal move?

Many people I've talked to are absolutely convinced this would lead to an American nuclear strike on Russia - but is that really so certain? I don't think so.

If Ukraine gets hit with nukes, that's just Ukraine destroyed, while NATO and other nuclear armed states are relatively safe. Whereas if they retaliate it's MAD.

This thought alone, and I think if it makes sense that none would retaliate for Ukraine, might make a nuclear strike more realistic than we currently think.
If Russia pulls a nuke in Ukraine, any support they have around the world will evaporate. The only way Putin pulls a nuke, in my opinion, is if NATO gets involved and successfully pushes into Russia. But Putin pulling a nuke now would make no sense. Especially when they are attacking and making progress, however slow we think it may be.
 

msilenus

New Member
@Vivendi, I don’t think UK by itself, with its current military capability, can swing other NATO members to take such a risk (without the backing of Team Biden to move closer to direct confrontation). But I don’t have any data to back up my suspicion.
My understanding is that this is not being held up by Team Biden, but rather that no one is willing to actually take on implementing a transfer that everyone supports. If you go back to the original Polish offer, it was to deliver their MiGs to the United States and presumably let the U.S. handle the delivery:

Vox said:
“We have been in close consultations with the Polish government as well as with our other NATO allies on this issue,” Thomas-Greenfield (ed: US Ambassador to the UN) said at the time. “We have not in any way opposed the Polish government providing these jets to Ukraine, and we’re working, as you noted, to see how we can backfill for them.”

The proposal Poland floated on Tuesday, however, would have involved the US more directly than the plan initially backed by Blinken and Thomas-Greenfield. Poland’s updated plan would have sent the MiG-29s to Ukraine via the US’s Ramstein Air Base in Germany, which also houses NATO’s Allied Air Command headquarters. Such a move could have more directly linked both parties to Ukraine’s war effort.

Every time since then that the issue of transferring jets has come up, the same pattern played out: willingness from everyone, including the US to provide jets. No one willing to take on delivery. It's easy to come away with the impression that the United States is against this, because most of the headlines scan like "US shut down Polish plans to give Ukraine fighter jets," possibly reflecting a media presumption that delivery should be easy for the nigh-omnipotent CIA. This is worth questioning. The U.S. does not share a border with Ukraine and Poland does. So why doesn't Poland just do it? They have agency, and the US is publicly supportive.

I'm not an expert in anything remotely relevant, but my takeaway from all these stories is that delivery of jets to Ukraine must actually be, deceptively, Very Hard. Air and sea delivery seem clearly problematic (mission ambiguity/escalation risk, and blockade -respectively). As far as land goes, I've recently been speculating that it could have to do with how weird it would look for huge oversized trucks to be moving through Poland into Ukraine, likely requiring lane closures. It would have an even higher risk of winding up on social media in real time (and becoming a high-priority target) than all the other stuff that pops up on social media.

Whatever the reason: I think what we're seeing with the UK is the same pattern playing out for at least the third time. It's easy to say you support the transfer of MiGs, it's easy to say you're willing to provide them (if you have them), it's easy to say you're willing to help backfill (if you don't). But no one knows how to solve all the problems associated with delivery, so it won't happen.

Edit: I just looked up the wingspan on a MiG-29. It's 11 meters. Road lanes in Poland are 3.5-3.75 meters. So we're talking about something that impinges on enough space to impact three lanes of traffic. Hard to see how you move that without creating significant disruption, much less discretely.
 
Last edited:
Excuse the one-liner but what safeties are there likely to be in the chain of command between Putin and the person who would press the button to launch a nuclear weapon?
 

the concerned

Active Member
I am not convinced they will use one. Even a tactical one creates problems if you use it in western Ukraine you risk the radiation spilling into European countries which will create a response. If you launch one in the east you risk killing more separatists than Ukraine has in the whole conflict since 2014.
 

surpreme

Member
1. The Austrian Army is providing fairly detailed briefs, in German, on the war — Col. (Dr) Markus Reisner, sets a high benchmark for analysis of the ongoing battles— you can get English subtitles in settings. The look back into history with the Kursk-Donbas side by side brief is exceptional at the 13 min mark. The encirclement there will fail for the same reason, based on the explaination given. Really worth the time to take a look.

2. @surpreme, the news report by CBC News tries to explain a small fragment of the bigger fight in a manner suited for an uneducated layman. There are far better resources online on the progress of these battles, if you bother to look. As Col. (Dr) Markus Reisner explains in the prior video, there are two Russian river crossings at the Seversky Donets river for their encirclement attempt. One of the two has been destroyed. I congratulate Ukraine for their effort to destroy one of the river crossings near Bilohorivka, Luhansk Oblast.
@OPSSG I will admit that the video was good and explain what I already said in earlier post about the terrain which is the environment the war is in. The thing is I sat in a lot of briefing during my time in military and the one that I remember the most were plain and simple not long and draw out which made me go in daydreaming land. Remember war can change at any moment and the key is intelligence and one mistake from any force can be costly. Let not get into this fanboy club we all do it at times no matter what military you was in we tend to also go with the military we was in. Remember the U.S. Army faced similar problem in Vietnam but they overcome and defeated the NVA/VC but they did lost men's in the process and yes I know this is not the same as Vietnam.

The video by U.S. Lt. Col was not a video about the detail of the battle of Donbass but a question from a new reporter about a subject. The Austria Col speaking the same thing but in more details about the Donbass battle. I did like the way he brought back the battle before in the same area in WWII wow how history has change and now Russia find itself on opposite of history in offensive mode. Now we will see if history will repeat itself this some interest stuff going on.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
Post 1 of 3: Artillery discussion & basics on the operations order process

The thing is I sat in a lot of briefing during my time in military and the one that I remember the most were plain and simple not long and draw out which made me go in daydreaming land. Remember war can change at any moment and the key is intelligence and one mistake from any force can be costly.

Let not get into this fanboy club we all do it at times no matter what military you was in we tend to also go with the military we was in.
@surpreme, you are either faking your prior service credentials, or cluttering the thread with illogical nonsense in your reply. If you claim service, you must know the difference between a briefing and an order. Lead the discussion, rather than defend the indefensible. Wouldn’t it be better if you contribute, rather than continue with nonsense and face sanctions? Please change your behaviour. You have 24 hours to retract your post or issue an apology.

1. Please stop with the B.S. on short briefings, when the correct term is orders. Your claim of service does not sit well with your posts, which contain factual mistakes. A point on basic terms:
(a) You don’t get briefings (before a mission), you get ORDERS; and orders is a process that takes time.​
(b) Most officers who attended command & staff college, battalion tactics course, the intel officer’s course, the logistics officer course, and so on, would know how to be succinct.​
(c) When attending at an orders group, a thinking mind is required. Often no matter how tired or dry the topic:​
(i) the line companies, with their officers commanding;​
(ii) the support company officers (like the ATGM platoon, the pioneer platoon, & scout platoon) plus the specialist staff officers; and​
(iii) the task group commander,​
attending orders will pay attention and ask relevant questions — so that they can adapt to ground changes based on intent of higher command.​

2. A commander (CO) of a battalion (or BTG in the case of Russia), must know his own sector well but he must be also aware of any potential ‘spill over’ fights from another sector during his AOP with brigade — handled by block force employment, coordination lines and a brief on limits of exploitation — to make sure a battalion’s troops don’t chase the enemy and enter another battalion’s sector (without prior coordination), as part of the operations orders given.

3. Most collection plans take hours of terrain study to create & it takes a long lead time to emplace recce elements. In this case, Russians underestimated the enemy, who has a vote. Enemy prior collection plan worked & this enabled Ukraine to strike the Russians at the right time.

4. Most operations orders (OPS) for a battalion takes more than an hour, because they need to provide details to enable a mission. The enemy has a vote but prior planning prevents piss poor performance and rapid adaptation, via the timely commitment of reserves. Broadly speaking, the Russians would have a similar planning process.
  • The S2 intel paragraph of any battle procedure takes at least 30 minutes— to explain effects of terrain, the most likely enemy course of action (ECA A), the most dangerous course of action (ECA B) and so on.
  • The S3 operations paragraph takes about 35 to 45 minutes, before the artillery guy comes in to explain in 5 to 10 minutes the fire support coordination plan.
  • OPS orders will not only have the movement plan, the attack plan, the various fire base locations (eg. near fire base and far fire base) and the displacement plan for the battalion mortar platoon. It will also have limits of exploitation and coordination lines and boundaries.
  • If there is a need to move through an area held by another battalion, there will be a need to tie up visual signals and code words for passage-of-lines (to avoid friendly fire).
  • CO will explain his commander’s intent and that of higher command.
 
Last edited:

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
Good news & a shout-out

1. Democracy Defense Lend-Lease Act of 2022, signed. The vote in the US Senate on 6 April 2022 was unanimous; the vote in the House on 28 April 2022 was 417 to 10. The Pentagon also distributed this rundown of U.S. military assistance provided to Ukraine:
BE7C5C7C-D8B9-4916-BDFE-E7A6FD93B219.jpeg

2. The guy recording the video says this is for @OryxSpioenkop so he can document it; a legit shout out at 1:15 for his work tracking all the destroyed vehicles in this war in Ukraine.
 
Last edited:

Twain

Active Member
Vovchansk is in UAF artillery range, hopefully Ukraine can take advantage of it



Unconfirmed reports are that Ukraine has pushed north from Rubizhne all the way north to the russian border


Some reports are that RuAF have 19 BTG's forming up to move on Kharkiv. I find that hard to believe at that point. 19 more BTG's would put russia (at least by BTG count at nearly 120, almost what they had at the start of the war. They may have 19 on paper but it's hard to believe Russia has 19 btg's in reserve and haven't committed them somewhere already.



Either way russia has to push the Ukrainians back or the entire area from Vovchansk to Izyum is in jeopardy.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
The US house of representatives has approved a $40 billion package in aid to Ukraine, more than the $33 billion Biden asked for


Just a guess on my part but I think this will get through the senate largely intact.

Just posted 2 mins after I posted all that :(

The Senate passed the $33 billion package unanimously before it went to the House. Now it goes to Biden for his signature.
 

tonnyc

Well-Known Member
The Senate passed the $33 billion package unanimously before it went to the House. Now it goes to Biden for his signature.
From what I understand of the US system, since the House has amended the bill from $33 billion to $40 billion, the Senate need to approve the amended version. If the Senate doesn't approve it, it goes to conference where the House and Senate tries to work on a version that satisfy both. If they can't, the bill doesn't pass at all. I expect the amended bill to be passed, but this isn't automatic. And if you find elements of it silly, i.e., the possibility that since the House wants a different sum than the Senate both might not get anything, that's how their law works.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
From what I understand of the US system, since the House has amended the bill from $33 billion to $40 billion, the Senate need to approve the amended version. If the Senate doesn't approve it, it goes to conference where the House and Senate tries to work on a version that satisfy both. If they can't, the bill doesn't pass at all. I expect the amended bill to be passed, but this isn't automatic. And if you find elements of it silly, i.e., the possibility that since the House wants a different sum than the Senate both might not get anything, that's how their law works.
Most reps and senators agree on the need so if it goes to conference a compromise will likely be arrived at fairly quickly.
 

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
It appears Russia is preparing for the annexation of Kherson region and possibly southern parts of Zaporozhye as well. The Military-Civil Administration Russia has set up in Kherson intends to submit a request for annexation. A high ranking Crimean official stated that the area should enter Russia as a separate region (as opposed to being a piece of Crimea). Federal authorities responded stating that the request would have to come from the people of Kherson and would have to be legally justified. This may mean another referendum (or "referendum" as the case may be, remember much of the population of Kherson has fled the fighting).
 

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
Post 2 of 3: Artillery discussion & basics on the operations order process

2. …As Col. (Dr) Markus Reisner explains in the prior video, there are two Russian river crossings at the Seversky Donets river for their encirclement attempt. One of the two has been destroyed. I congratulate Ukraine for their effort to destroy one of the river crossings near Bilohorivka, Luhansk Oblast.

3. On one side, Russian troops have withdrawn from several villages around Kharkiv, and now only control a small strip near the border with Ukraine (just West of the Donets River). On the other side, Russian forces were able to capture the town of Nyzhnie along the Toshkivka axis, and are approaching the town of Toshkivka. Russia, for all its operational failings, retains the capacity to wreak extraordinary amounts of damage and pain upon Ukraine. Russian fanboys/supporters who are optimist by nature can hope for a stalemate but that will not be certain for another 2 weeks — there is more hard fighting ahead.

4. Pentagon update on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Day 75:
• US has NOW trained 310 Ukrainian Army gunners on M777 howitzers (they will need to train about 900, so they are at the 1/3 mark to deploying howitzers donated)
• US has sent 85 of 90 howitzers to Ukraine
• US assesses Russia has made "no significant progress" in Donbas
4. Thanks to intelligence sharing, especially of technical intelligence, Ukraine’s S2s are able to predict where the Russians would cross the river and had artillery within range.

(a) Ukrainian units conducted prior reconnaissance on Siverskyi Donets river, and both Russian river crossings were eventually killed by Ukrainian artillery. On 9 May 2022, the 1st pontoon bridge was hit. Russian forces were stuck on Ukrainian side of the river with no way back — when the Ukrainian counter attack started.​
(b) I believe that this marks the start of a true attrition cycle — I predict that within 6 to 8 weeks, Russia will have to transition to defence and select counter-offensives to hold prior gains.​

5. If Russia is able to concentrate multiple BTGs, they can still stage limited offensives, by assuming risk — we now have evidence that the two Russian river crossings at the Seversky Donets river for their encirclement attempt has FAILED. While the failed Siveskyi Donets River crossings do not capture the imagination (as much as the sinking of the Moskva), it is a big event in terms of tactical losses suffered by Russia. As I explained in an earlier post, the roots of this Russian tactical reversal can be seen as an intelligence failure — the failure to anticipate or appreciate the enemy’s course of action.
(a) On 11 May 2022, Russian forces continued efforts to encircle Ukrainian positions in the Severodonetsk-Rubizhne-Lysychansk area but did not make any confirmed advances. For Ukraine, the goal is to make these Russian advances as costly as possible, while avoiding unnecessary decisive battle in the next two weeks. “The Russians aren’t winning, and the Ukrainians aren’t winning, and we’re at a bit of a stalemate here,” said Lt Gen Scott Berrier, director of the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency. As Western 155mm systems arrive and the Ukrainian Army gets trained in using them, we are going to see more and more of Russian operations hit by Ukrainian artillery.​
(b) The Russian T-72 turret being sent to the moon and taken by a Chinese TV station, near the town of Novoazovsk (12km from the Russian border) and in territory that has been under DNR control since August 2014. So how on earth did the Ukrainians blow up a tank this far inside separatist territory? It shows that Russia's worst nightmare in its occupied territory is coming true: a guerrilla war of mines, roadside bombs, drones and loitering munitions.​
(d) Mike Yeo has extracted the key points from the Chinese TV news segment, that he watched in full from the TV channel:​
  • Chinese TV crew was on the way Donetsk-Mariupol to cover civilian evacuation
  • They mentioned the area was still under attack from Ukrainian Tochka-Us and US-supplied loitering munitions
  • Had they been 3 minutes earlier they would have been caught in the explosion
6. Ukraine’s current counter-offensive actions will impede the ability of Russian artillery to target the northeastern suburbs of Kharkiv City. This will also potentially enable Ukrainian forces to threaten Russian rear areas, like Vovchansk. If Vovchansk is in artillery range, it will be a sweet target.

7. If Ukrainian forces are able to further advance the counter-offensive, this has the potential to unhinge Russian offensive operations around Izyum. At this stage, Ukraine may be hit by Russian counter-battery work during their counter-offensive, but it’s a risk they need to take — to push back on the Russian advance by conducting shaping operations, for their own broader attack to come.
 
Last edited:

Twain

Active Member
A question for everyone, With all the pictures out there I have yet to see any M113's or any of the polish tanks, has anyone seen any evidence of these so far? Maye I am just missing these pic's but there are an awful lot of them headed for Ukraine for there to be zero photographic evidence. If they are not already in Ukraine why not and of they are, where are they?
 

Feanor

Super Moderator
Staff member
A question for everyone, With all the pictures out there I have yet to see any M113's or any of the polish tanks, has anyone seen any evidence of these so far? Maye I am just missing these pic's but there are an awful lot of them headed for Ukraine for there to be zero photographic evidence. If they are not already in Ukraine why not and of they are, where are they?
Pictures of Polish T-72s were posted in one of my update posts. Nothing yer on the M113s.
 

Señor Pomidor

New Member
The video of today by the "War in Ukraine" youtube channel goes over artillery use in this war and the role of support performed by drones in both sides:

 
Last edited:

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
Post 3 of 3: Artillery discussion & basics on the operations order process

Apparent firsthand account of the battle

No idea how many casualties but they have to be significant and for all practical purposes, at least one BTG rendered ineffective
8. @kms_d4k’s account does not ring true (or at least it is inaccurate on the staff work done). An army is an profession of arms, with different specialists doing their respective tasks to achieve a mission. Having worked closely with intel specialists, most collection plans take hours of terrain study by the S2 shop to create and it takes a long lead time to emplace recce elements at crossing points (and these hidden recce elements are not engineers). Spooks don’t brag, they just do their job and most of the time, they worry about being wrong.

9. Ukrainian forces on their side of the river did an ‘engineer appreciation’ to find likely crossing sites. These will be high priority areas to cover in their recon and surveillance plan. In this case, Russians underestimated the enemy, who has a vote. Enemy prior collection plan worked and this enabled Ukraine to strike the Russians at the right time.

Q: Could a Ukrainian bridging engineer have play a role, to study the river bank?​
Ans: Of course but the stay behind force is not the same engineer who did the survey of the river bank.​
A EOD should take credit for blowing fixed bridges but not for the pontoon’s destruction.​

10. The Twitter account of @kms_d4k says he is EOD, when the specialist to send is a bridging engineer. An EOD engineer officer is precious resource — his time would be better used to create chain IEDs and minefields. Engineers can’t help themselves. If you deploy them, they will set up obstacles, pressure plates or tanks traps — they are digging all the time or finding new places to dig.

11. Normally, a Singaporean brigade (or 3 Russian BTG) conducting a river crossing would have at least two crossing sites with a 3rd in reserve. If you send an EOD guy, who predicted a landing point, the area near the crossing would be full of mines. As a commander, I will not let an EOD sit around to wait for Russian forces to cross the river — they should have recce elements (whose job it is to play hide and seek) or infantry patrols to provide eyes on the river.

12. IMO, the most important person is the FO needed to call in the artillery rounds and to make adjustments. Don’t understand why he is trying to claim so much credit for what I see as a call on artillery — it is not his job, nor will he be given the signal net to call for fires. He is not qualified to do that.
 
Last edited:
Top