The Saker blog now also in Russian!

Читайте блог Балобана по-русски щелкнув на эту ссылку:

The Saker Blog now also in French!

Vous pouvez maintenant lire le blog du Saker en Français en cliquant sur ce lien:

The Saker Blog now also in German!

koennen jetzt den blog des Sakers auf Deutsch lesen - bitte hier anklicken:

Friday, July 25, 2014

Catastrophic Desertions and Losses in the Ukrainian Army - Official Ukrainian Reports, July 19, 2014

Catastrophic Desertions and Losses in the Ukrainian Army - Official Ukrainian Reports, July 19, 2014
Preamble by Gleb Bazov: It is rare that we report on the workings of the aggressor across the battle lines. This item is different. Before you is a translation, kindly prepared by Valentina Lisitsa, of a report from the head of the Ukrainian Security Service, V.O. Nalyvaichenko, to the President of Ukraine, P.A. Poroshenko. It is an important document, which, we hope, you will distribute widely.
No further commentary is necessary, other than the following brief quotation. According to V.O. Nalyvaichenko, "2/3 of the active combat military units currently participating in the ATO will simply cease to exist in as little as 4 to 5 days" due to mass desertions and casualties. To provide context for this letter, provided below is another document recently publicized as an internal memorandum from the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence, which details recent casualties of the Ukrainian army, equally as catastrophic as its desertion rates

Report by Head of SBU, V.O. Nalyvaichenko, to the President of Ukraine, P.A. Poroshenko
Translated by Valentina Lisitsa
Header Left: 
Security Service of Ukraine. 
16, Malopidvalna St., 
Kiev, 01601
Tel: 226-25-64, 256-97-32, July 19 2014, 
No. 5/2/2-1331
Header right: 
Absolutely Confidential (Addendum 1)
Personally to the President of Ukraine, P.A. Poroshenko
Handwritten Across the Top:
"To continue until Victory!"
Signed V.O. Nalyvaichenko 20/7 [July 20]
I am reporting.
In the period from July 14th to 19th, 2014 we witness a catastrophic increase (of 3473 people, or 47%) in the number of deserters in the units of the Army and the National Guard – in comparison with last week’s numbers (1847 people, 25%).
Apart from that, during the stated period the number of missing in action had increased as well (1344 people , 47%, last week – 344 people, 10%).
This phenomenon is connected to increased activity of the enemy in the Donetsk and the Lugansk regions as well as to the increase in the number of casualties in the ranks of the above-mentioned structures. 
This fact [negatively] influences the combat-worthiness of the personnel and makes continuation of the ATO impossible. In the event the negative trend continues at the same level, I estimate that 2/3 of the active combat military units currently participating in the ATO will simply cease to exist in as little as 4 to 5 days.
With the aim of preserving the combat potential of our military structures, I am proposing that we perform a withdrawal maneuver of our militarily units to the area around Dobropil'ya and Smolyaninove. After replenishment of the ammunition stocks, re-grouping as well as rotation of the personnel by at least 60%, we can continue the offensive.
The Head of the Ukrainian Security Service of Ukraine,
V. Nalyvaichenko
The head of the Antiterrorist Centre of the Security Service,
B. Hrytsak

Official Ukrainian Military Report of Losses for July 9-15, 2014(Arsen Avakov, Minister of Interior and V. Gritsak, Head of the ATO)
Translated by Gleb Bazov
... We admit the possibility that all the fighters have been purged by the separatists.
In vide of the concentration of a large number of fighters near the airport, as well as lack of prospects in conducting an evacuation of the members of the National Guard from the Donetsk airport, I propose to withdraw the units of the Ukrainian military to the area of Avdeevka in order to regroup them for a further attack against the forces of the separatists.
An Accounting of the Losses among Ukrainian Military, the Militants and the Civilians in the Donetsk and the Lugansk regions (for the period from July 9-15, 2014)
  1. Killed in Action: 1600
  2. Wounded in Action: 4723
  3. Tanks: 35
  4. Armoured Battle Vehicles: 96
  5. Artillery: 38
  6. Aircraft: 7
  7. Helicopters: 2
  8. Automobiles: 104
  1. Killed in Action: 48
  2. Wounded in Action: 64
  3. Tanks: 2
  4. Armoured Battle Vehicles: 0
  5. Artillery: 5
  6. Automobiles: 8
  1. Killed: 496
  2. Wounded: 762
SIGNED & SUBMITTED BY: Arsen Avakov (Minister of Interior) and V. Gritsak (Head of the ATO)

Igor Strelkov and Militia Briefings, July 24, 2014

Briefings Combined for July 24-25, 2014
Translated from Russian by Gleb Bazov

July 24, 2014 – Report from a Local Resident of Mariupol

Gasoline A92 is 15 hryvnia 85 kopecks. Many companies and small factories only work to 50% of their capacity, many have sent their staff on unpaid vacation. The large factories are holding, but I know for a fact that people at Azovmash have been working an incomplete week since winter.

Vegetables on the market are cheap (after all, we are in the south), but, generally, food has become more expensive. A regular bus ticket is 4 hryvnia. I have not paid for communal services yet, but I know that electricity and hot water have risen in price. Electricity is now 30% more expensive.

The city is controlled by Battalions Azov and Dnepr. They are taking away people’s cars; there are a lot of incidents of people disappearing, drunken shooting, raider takeovers [of businesses]. What is going is that they are completely terrorizing the populace. At the same time, they have painted fences, garbage urns, posts, and benches in the colours of the Ukrainian flag. They are constantly organizing some kinds of flashmobs on the topic of love for Ukraine. The men are terrified, waiting for mobilization. They are figuring out ways to escape to join the Militia or to dig cellars to wait everything out there before it is too late.

01:33 – July 24, 2014 – Briefing from Igor Strelkov

At this time, the fighting is continuing near Marinovka and Dubrovka. Our artillery is conducting strikes against the positions and the concentrations of the enemy’s personnel and military equipment. There are multiple fires in the area of the Marinovka terminal and near the settlements of Tarany and Grigorovka – Ukie armour and vehicles are burning. The enemy artillery fire has been almost completely suppressed.

Over the course of yesterday and today our losses near Marinovka-Kozhevnya-Dubrovka totaled approximately 50 men (almost all of them – wounded), 2 tanks, 2 BMPs, and 1 BTR. Deputy Minister of Interior and commander of Battalion Oplot, A. Zakharchenko, who was personally commanding the attack on Kozhevnya, was wounded in his arm. Today we congratulated him by promoting him to the military officer rank of Major.

The losses of the enemy exceed ours several times over. The enemy sustained particularly large losses to its manpower. Heavy casualties were also inflicted on the freshly-arrived Nazi-scum [National Guard] Battalion Azov. The enemy is severely demoralized, but continues to latch on to the “corridor”, although the latter has narrowed to 1 kilometre.

Between the settlements of Konstantinovka and Novomikhailovka (to the south-west of the settlement of Marinovka, on the western outskirts of Donetsk), our Saboteur-Reconnaissance Group (“SRG”) “Ptitsa” [Bird], which is part of the 2nd Slavyansk Infantry Battalion, using remotely controlled mines blew up two Kamaz trucks with enemy infantry. Yesterday, the same group destroyed the enemy Grad system that was being transferred to a firing position in order to attack the city.

The battles for the settlement of Blagodatnoye (to the north of Amvrosievka) continue. Supported by 4 tanks and 4 BTRs, the enemy again attacked the village. In the course of the battle, our maneuverable groups, composed of the personnel of the 4th Regiment of the 3rd Semenovka Infantry Battalion, were able to destroy 1 BTR. The experienced commander of the regiment (“Kozyr” [Trump Card]) used prescribed tactical orders, pursuant to which our infantry avoids defending checkpoints and stationary fortifications when faced with an attack by obviously superior enemy armored forces and forces them into a maneuverable battle directly in an urban area or in a forested zone, paying the most attention to eliminating the enemy’s manpower. Frequently, the enemy reacts very nervously to such a tactical maneuver and retreats. What will happen today – the night will show.

Despite attacks, the enemy was unable to move into Gorlovka or into Debaltsevo. Owing to a timely withdrawal from Lisichansk by the main forces of A. Mozgovoi, the enemy could not immediately take the Pervomaisk-Stakhanov-Alchevsk agglomeration, which was previously protected by a very modest force. Now the National Guard will be forced to engage in heavy battles for this territory.

Mozgovoi did what was most important – with his maneuver he covered the theretofore practically “naked” section of the front. At the same time, I can state with full responsibility – the order to withdraw from Lisichansk he received from me personally, and he performed it, despite all the expressed objections.

On the other hand, I would like to remark on the courage and the disregard of self by commander Leshiy and his fighters, which have been defending Lisichansk with a very small force for over two days now, buying us time to organize our defence on new frontiers. I hope that they will managed timely to break through the enemy ranks

July 24, 2041 – Briefings From Locations

The column that was moving toward Svetlodar dug in at the Svetlodar/Mironovka intersection. Apart from Nazi-scum [National Guard] it consists also of female units (snipers).

Also noted were tanks and approximately 15 supply vehicles, only, instead of ammunition and personnel, they were chock-full of dead bodies. “Presents from the front” may not come this time because field morgues have arrived.

In Mariupol, instead of Nazi-scum [National Guard], the checkpoints are now staffed with reserve units with very questionable personnel numbers. The Nazi-scum is being redeployed to the front lines.

In Donetsk, the situation is tense – battles and artillery strikes continue; there are killed and wounded. In Popasnoye, there are continuous sweeps – everything is being searched. Fierce battles continued all day in Lisichansk and in Severodonetsk. Uragan MLRS are shelling Lisichansk and the Lugansk checkpoint. There were also Smerch MLRS volleys (the exact number of the volleys is not known, but there was at least one). In Lugansk, there are also battles, artillery and air strikes are being conducted. Over the course of the day, the Ukrainian Air Force flew about 12 sorties in the skies over Novorossiya.

Artillery strikes were being made at all the centres of resistance to the Junta; as well, in the air appeared MIG aircraft (jet fighters) that were primarily engaged in observation. Antiaircraft forces of the Militia shot down 2 Su aircraft over the course of the day – one over Lugansk and two over Saur-Mogila. In Luganks, the ban on the use of private automobiles was extended to July 25th, counter-saboteur operations are ongoing. In the course of today’s shootings three civilians were killed and approximately 70 were wounded.

In Kramatorsk, they are going to be forcibly enlisting all the men into Ukie punitive units, and, for that reason, all the males were asked to present themselves at the local conscription centre, purportedly for the purpose of verifying something or other. In Slavyansk, they have started to deploy camps for the “unreliables”; construction equipment and cement blocks have arrived.

23:35 (MSK) – In the area of the military base on BOSSE, a battle is ongoing, red signal rockets are being launched, there are sounds of KPVT working, automatic weapons’ fire and explosions.

03:10 (MSK) – Donetsk. It is night and once against Grad volleys can be seen and heard in Petrovka.

11:54 – July 24, 2014 – Briefings from Igor Strelkov

The batters of NONAs of the Slavyansk artillery group, with the aid and correction assistance of reconnaissance units of the 2nd Slavyansk Battalion, advanced to a close distance, conducted a strike at the enemy positions to the north of the settlement of Kuteinikovo, near the settlement of Bondarevskoye. According to preliminary information, as a result of targeted fire, a BTR and a BRDM of the enemy were hit and 1 SAU [self-propelled artillery unit] from the battery that had been shelling Ilovaisk for the past several days was destroyed. In addition, two detonations of ammunition took place.

All night, the enemy shelled Gorlovka’s residential districts using Grad MLRS. There are numerous instances of destruction, fires and casualties in the city. The shelling resumed in the morning. There were no attempts whatsoever to fire on the Militia positions.

The 4th Regiment of the 3rd Semenovka Infantry Battalion reported that they were able to capture a damaged BRDM in Blagodatnoye. Blagodatnoye remains under our control. The BRDM will be repaired and will join the ranks of our armoured units.

July 24, 2014 – Photography from the Battle Lines

This is all that remains of the 79th Separate Aeromobile Brigade of the Ukrainian punitive forces.

July 24, 2014 – Briefing from the Militia

Yesterday, in Lisichansk, a colonel of the Nazi-scum [National Guard], Alexander Radievskiy, was eliminated. For the past two months he was engaged in the suppression of the antifascist uprising in Donbass. The executioners from his unit took part in indiscriminate use of heavy weaponry against civilian objects, in the humiliation and torture of the Militia fighters and of their relatives. According to the information of the counterintelligence of the Novorossiya Militia, the NazGuards of the Military Base No. 3011 distinguished themselves by looting in the captured settlement and on the field of battled. Radievskiy commanded punitive forces in Slavyansk, Nikolayevka and Semyonovka.

13:26 – July 24, 2014 – Commentary from Igor Strelkov
what is happening with the encircled grouping?

Igor Strelkov: For now, they are just sitting there, waiting to be de-blockaded. They are experiencing not only food and water, but also ammunition shortages. I think there wait will be in vain – in Grigorovo, our forces threw back the assault grouping of the enemy that was put together for the purpose, and we are now finishing off the Marinovka terminal.

July 24, 2014 – Video from the Field of Battle

First Video: The Process of Eliminating a Concentration of Ukie Military Equipment

Second Video: Ukrainian Footage with the Results of the Militia’s Artillery Shelling of the 79th Brigade

July 24, 2014 – The Situation in the Occupied Mariupol

Notes from a local resident with respect to the situation in the largest city of DPR [Donetsk People's Republic] that is occupied by the Nazis.
With respect to the mobilization: there are rumours that the quota for Mariupol was set at 5,ooo – 20,000 conscripts (depending on the source), and for the Volodarskiy district – 2,000. And here is the most interesting fact – All! All of my friends who had served in the army in the past are planning to flee to Russia or to join the Militia (as they are the first on the list to be mobilized). In other words, no one wants to fight for Ukraine.
I do not know the situation with the local Ukies who sympathize with the Junta (there are none among my close friends), but there have been no lineups in front of conscription centres.
The local metallurgy is almost finished. One of the plants has gone bankrupt. Two more are about to, due to the Ukie Nazi Guard [National Guard] destroying the Avdeevka Coke-chemical plant. It is not clear what will happen in the future. Without metallurgy, the city will not last long.
Ukies run around town, wave their flags, organize auto-caravans in support of Ukiestan, draw Ukie flags everywhere they find space.
However, normal, sane people are not asleep either – the Ukie flags painted on posts and other constructions are regularly sprayed with red paint (to demonstrate that the flag has been smeared with blood).
It is remarkable that in certain areas the painted Ukie flags remain smeared in “blood” for weeks – i.e. no one erases or repaints them. This is an indication that those who draw them are not local, but that they were sent in to sweep the area and paint their scribbles wherever they could.
Numerous people have “suddenly” disappeared in the city. There is a ton of “Help Us to Locate” and “He Left and Never Returned” ads posted around.
The city is surrounded with Ukie checkpoints that seem in no hurry to leave the city. Looks like Taruta is terrified. At the checkpoints, there are a lot of Ukie-speakers, but there are also some Russian-speakers present.
Lately, we have noticed a lot of vehicles bearing Kiev registration plates (the AA series). This is very strange.
A great number of very strange “refugees” have taken up residence in the city – they sunbathe at the beach, relax in cafes and clubs, drink, entertain themselves, shoot fireworks, enjoy themselves – not a shred of fear, no concern or anxiety. It is as if they are not refugees at all, and, yet, they keep saying that they are from Donetsk or Lugansk. But not everyone is like that. There are also a great many of those who arrived penniless. These refugees are assisted by volunteers, special organization and concerned residents.

16:26 – July 24, 2014 – Commentary from Igor Strelkov

The enemy again stormed the settlement of Peski on the outskirts of the city and again (for the second time) took control of Blagodatnoye. Ukies military commanders now have something to report for a day’s work – they are “advancing”. Apart from reporting back there is no sense whatsoever in these attacks and “successes”.

July 24, 2014 – Information from Lyashko’s Facebook Account

Battalion Donbass has been surrounded on the outskirts of Donetsk. Our fighters were ambushed by the militants in the western part of the city. They need reinforcements as soon as possible.

17:00 – July 24, 2014 – Donetsk Situation Report from the Militia

In Donetsk, fighting has been ongoing in the suburbs since morning. The Junta is unable to advance in any measurable way, and, when it meets resistance, resorts to artillery strikes, while at the same time feeling out the Militia’s defences with tank armoured units consisting of 3-4 tanks each, as well as with Saboteur-Reconnaisance Groups (“SRG”).

The enemy is prevented from undertaking a more serious offensive by the low quality of their infantry and the lack of reserves, which have been spread to all other directions and without which it would be pure madness to engage in urban combat.

Fighting continues in the area of Peski and Maryinka. The Junta can show no significant advance on this direction either. The Militia continues to shell the Donetsk airport.

July 24, 2014 – Information from a Resident of Mariupol

I am from the city of Mariupol. I would like to share the following – for the second day now there is complete outrage and lawlessness in the city. Men in military uniforms have been stopping buses and taking away young guys without explanations or investigation, as if they are conscripting them, but without summons or anything like that. No one knows where they take them – it looks like they are being mobilized into the army, but, to my great astonishment, no one is writing about it.

July 24, 2014 – Information from a “Strelkovite” Militiaman

By the way, I do not want to worry you without reason, but, in about a month, the Militia will need warmer uniforms. At first – for the rain, and later – for the winter. We will also need white winter camouflage, skis, snowmobiles, and suchlike. The chances of the Militia securing victory before the winter are slim. And it is not in our plans to surrender and suffer defeat.

And what this means is that we are facing an autumn-winter campaign. Russians are the master of winter warfare, and Strelkov, personally, understands it well. But we need warm padded jackets [vatniki]. It’s better to start thinking of this in July then to start rushing around in September.

17:33 – July 24, 2014 – Briefing from Igor Bezler

One of the detachments fighting in the city of Donetsk destroyed an enemy BTR and 2 tanks during one of the Ukie attacks. One of the tanks was captured, is now being repaired and will be ready to go into battle in 2 days! The captured tank is a commander’s machine – on the helmet, the writing states “commander”. We also found documentation with the radio call-names of the tanks crew. The crew was completely eliminated during the skirmish.

16:00 – July 24, 2014 – LPR [Lugansk People's Republic] Militia Briefing (Up to 16:00)

In the course of the day, the situation on the outskirts of the capital of the Lugansk People’s Republic did not change substantially. The opposing sides have remained in their positions.

The artillery of the Militia continued successfully to work over the positions of the enemy. In particular, a checkpoint of the Ukrainian army on the outskirts of the settlement of Georgievka was almost completely destroyed. The enemy lost at least one tank, one BTR and up to 30 men. Severe losses were also inflicted on the enemy column that was stretched out near the village of Bakhmutovka in the direction of Aleksandrovsk. There the enemy lost at least 2 tanks, 2 BTRs, and over 100 Ukrainian servicemen were taken out of commission.

The Republic’s artillery also continued to shell the Radio-Location Station, where the largest grouping of aggressor is located, the Lugansk airport and the enemy positions near the settlement of Metallist.

On the northern direction, the enemy was able to occupy Severodonetsk and partially to enter Lisichansk, where approximately 20 fighters of the Commandant’s regiment continue to hold their positions. Thirty men today withdrew from the city under mortar fire, redeploying in the neighbouring Stakhanov, in order to gather forces to aid those who stayed behind in Lisichansk. During the previous night, the city was again subjected to severe bombardment using Grad MLRS; electrical and water supplies have been disrupted, and the city almost is on the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe.

The situation is also serious in Debaltsevo, located on the border between LPR and DPR, where the city defenders are experiencing severe shortages of ammunition and heavy military equipment.

In Gukovo, the Ukrainian side continues to hold the customs checkpoint, but it is being subjected to constant shelling by the Militia units.

Yesterday, the Lugansk Militia also conducted an attack on the checkpoint of the Ukrainian forces in the vicinity of Makarovo. In return, the aggressor blasted the village with howitzers from the Georgievskiy decline. According to eyewitnesses, certain houses in the settlement are still burning.

Near Sverdlovsk, clashes continue between the units of the LPR army and the Ukrainian army near the “Krasniy Partisan” mine.

July 24, 2014 – Statement from Valeriy Bolotov re Full Mobilizaton

The perfidious military attack of the Nazi Ukraine against our Motherland continues. Despite the heroic resistance of the Army of the Lugansk People’s Republic, despite the fact that the best battalions of the enemy and the best units of its aviation have been defeated and routed and found their graves on the fields of battle, the enemy continues to push forward, throwing new forces at the front.

However, manpower resources are not infinite. Give it some more time, and the Ukrainian Nazis will have no men in any way able to fight.

What is necessary to finally defeat the enemy?

We need the people to understand this and to cease being carefree, to mobilize themselves and to move to a new, to a war footing, which knows no mercy to the enemy.

We are conducting a full mobilization to reinforce the Army. We call upon every person who can bear arms to join the ranks of the LPR Army. Voluntarily, honestly and conscientiously.

All the forces of our people will be committed to bring about the enemy’s defeat!

Forward, to our victory!

The Head of the Lugansk People’s Republic
The Commander-in-Chief of the LPR Army
V.D. Bolotov

20:28 – July 24, 2014 – Commentary from Igor Strekov

Igor Strelkov: Battles are ongoing near Marinovka, in Blagodatnoye and in Peski. The latter two are divided in half between Ukies and the units of Cossacks, supported by the tanks of Battalion Vostok. I will report with respect to the outcome of these battles later, in the evening.
Can you please tell us why Igor Strelkov has not given interviews to journalists in a long time? Is this connected with the consistently difficult situation on the front, or are there other reasons?

Igor Strelkov: I will tell you a terrifying secret: Igor Strelkov does not like to give interviews and is not at all thrilled with the public recognition that has “descended on his head”. He gives interviews only when it is particularly necessary or when he is forced to go in front of the cameras. You can trust me – I know him well … :D

21:40 – July 24, 2014 – Situation Report from Militiaman Prokhorov

The results of the night battles:
Over the course of the night, the positions of the punitive forces near the settlement of Amvrosievka were shelled using artillery, as well as BM-21 “Grad” MLRS. In addition, a BRDM-2 of the ATO [Anti-Terrorist Operation] forces was blown up with a radio-controlled mine in this area. The information with respect to the enemy losses is being confirmed.
The positions of the punitive forces near the settlement of Ilyinka (DPR) were shelled twice. Once – using “Grad” MLRS, and once – using artillery.
Punitive forces on the territory of the Lugansk airport and near the settlement of Kamyshnoye (LPR) were also shelled using “Grad” MLRS. Same with their positions near the settlement of Berezovo – BM-21 “Grad” was used. The enemy positions near the settlement of Avdeevka were shelled using mortars.
The ATO checkpoints near the settlement of Severodonetsk and Smolyaninovo (LPR) were shot at using light arms.

Today, closer to the evening:
Positions of the punitive forces near the border crossing checkpoint “Marinovka” were shelled using artillery.
Positions of the punitive forces near the settlement of Dubrovka, Debaltsevo, Semigorye (all – DPR) were also shelled. The strike were conducted using light arms and grenade launchers.
The positions of the punitive forces were on the territory of the Lugansk airport were fired upon using two tanks.
In Lisichansk, battle clashes between the punitive forces and the Militia continue.

In the western part of Donetsk, the mercenary battalions Dnepr and Shakhters have been encircled. In Lugansk, the settlement of Yubileyniy is under the Militia’s control.

22:40 – July 24, 2014 – Commentary and Answers from Igor Strelkov
Igor Ivanovich, have there been incidents of the Militia permitting the wounded from the 79th Aeromobile Brigade to leave the “southern cauldron” to rejoin their main forces, and did they surrender their arms when doing so?

Igor Strelkov: They have not been surrendering to us. They are too afraid. Right away they run across the Russian border. There are “nice guys” sitting there – they evacuate the wounded … to help the non-wounded hold out longer.
have the Cossacks been fighting well, or have they been fleeing as usual?

Igor Strelkov: We have very of them. At least, very few of Kositsin’s Cossacks. It’s too “hot” where we are … they can be killed, you know! They are the “elite” – it not proper for them to die like “common militiamen”!
in Krasniy Luch, information is actively being spread that the “remnants from the cauldron” will in the nearest hours (days) be attempting to break through the encirclement through Antratsit and Krasniy Luch. Do you have any information to that effect?

Igor Strelkov: Their fuel tanks are dry. They’ll have to break through on foot.

23:46 – July 24, 2014 – Information from Militiaman Prokhorov

Near Volnovakha, guerillas destroyed 2 buses with equipment for the punitive forces. There is information that a commander of Praviy Sector from the city of Gorden’ki also was eliminated and that another pravosek [Praviy Sector militant] was wounded.

July 25, 2014 – Photography from Militiaman Motorola

Photograph: Motorola’s Equipment – Traces of Fragments Are Clearly Visible

Motorola, himself, continues to treat his broken arm in Crimea. Now you can understand what modern bulletproof helmets are, and why they are so important to the Militia.

01:16 – July 25, 2014 – Briefing from Militiaman Prokhorov

Militiamen conducted mortar shelling of the positions of the Ukrainian forces near the village of Kozhevnya in the course of the entire July 24, 2014. The enemy has been surrounded, cut off from supply lines and, according to our intelligence, is preparing a counterattack with forces numbering approximately one and a half thousand soldiers. Apart from that, several Ukrainian BTRs have been dug in inside the ravine.

In the area of the summer camp, there is a BTR and infantry personnel. It looks like they are preparing a counteroffensive on the village of Kozhevnya. According to the defenders of Donbass, the encircled Ukrainian units have been backed into a corner, and their ammunition is running out, and that is why they have been opening return fire less and less frequently.

Similar situation is developing on the other flank, near the village of Marinovka. The Militia artillery continues to shell the customs terminal, on the territory of which enemy soldiers remain blockaded. Shelling is conducted also using recoilless guns.

According to reports from LifeNews, on July 22nd, the armoured vehicles of DPR entered the settlements of Kozhevnya and Chervonaya Zarya, which are located on the border between Ukraine and Russia, and closed the ring of encirclement around the forces of the 25th, the 72nd and the 79th Aeromobile Brigade of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. The attack was successful due to a joint strike from both flanks, with the support of artillery.

With respect to Lisichansk: Ukies entered the city and even hoisted their rag over the mayoralty. The Militia continues to hold positions from the centre of the city to the Rubber-Technical Plant. The local area is called the same – RTI. There is substantial destructions in the city [Note: a list of damaged buildings follows in the original, which has been omitted from this translation, but can be made available upon request. Ten separate buildings are noted as having sustained serious damages, and at least one person is noted to have been killed].

In Donetsk, Battalion Shakhtersk of the punitive forces has, unfortunately, broken out of the encirclement – with losses. The fate of the Battalion Dnepr regiment is unknown.

On the border, the Militia is engaged in battles with Ukies in Dolzhanskiy, Birukovo and Krasnopartizansk.

At approximately 23:50 (MSK), Ukies started to shell Debaltsevo.

Below are photographs of Lisichansk after shelling by the Ukrainian army.

01:55 - July 25, 2014 – Information from Journalist A. Krasnoshekov

Just now, for the first time in over a day, I could hear war in Donetsk. A far-away 20-second large-calibre cannonade made glass panes rattle on the 9th floor in the centre of the city.

Donetsk is full inhabitants. Almost everything in the centre is open for business. By the vehicles, camouflaged with aerosol paint, that rush across traffic remind you of a different city … Just in one of the Donetsk hotels there are as many foreign journalists as there were in Slavyansk in the days of the referendum. I suspect that it is very different in Lugansk.

In the centre of Donetsk a strange clap did not cause alarm among passerby, nor did it make them move faster. A woman speaking on the phone nearby said: “They are blasting away, so what! I am not afraid of anything anymore.”

Some of the cafes in Donetsk, where I dined back in April-May, are reporting that they will be closing indefinitely. At the central market in Donetsk only about one third of the stalls are occupied. The press is not permitted to photograph fighters and checkpoints. It is unclear whether it is permitted to be in the area of hostilities. For now, prior DPR accreditations are recognized, and almost every European here has one.

02:50 – July 25, 2014 – Briefing from a Donetsk Militiaman

Ukies are now “showering” Gorlovka using “Grad” MLRS. This is right next to us.

Today we have a lot of trophies – every fighter brought back 3-4 Kalashnikovs and an RPG. Tankists are pumelling Ukies, and the infantry have taken a break to eat. We are sitting here and polishing of the canned goods we got from Ukies. A local man brought some bread, onions and cucumbers. He said: “Take me with you.” A half-kilometre away, I can see Ukie military equipment burning down. I can hear whistling and a joyful cheer from the guys: “Yes! Yes! Take it, Nazis!” Gorlovka fighters burned down Ukie armoured vehicles with mortar fire, and we helped with our tanks! That’s how we help each other out.

Important appeal for help from the "Russian Team"!

Dear fellow followers of The VineyardSaker,

As you know our community of volunteer translators is growing. Almost every day we receive offers from people around the world to help us spread Saker’s articles around. We are truly growing into a great community of like-minded people who want to do something to spread just and fair information to the world. All our linguistic teams work very closely together to produce important material for Saker and our respective websites in a professional and timely manner.

But we still need help! We, the Russian team, appeal to those of you who have the time and enthusiasm to join us.

Since most of us have English as a second language, we need native English speaking people to edit and proofread our translated material. This will tremendously speed up the whole process. With events in Ukraine and other hot spots around the world developing so rapidly, the importance of preparing this urgent material has even more significance.

Please write to us at

Sincerely yours,
The Russian Team

Note from the Saker:

As somebody who can appreciate the absolutely amazing professional-grade work the Russian Team is doing, I want to add my own voice to that plea for help.  I honestly think that there is no overstating the importance of what these "unsung heroes of the information war" are doing to fight the Empire's propaganda.  Also, please keep in mind that not only does this blog get between 38'000 and 48'000 visitors per day (numbers for 17-23 July), but that the documents posted here often get picked up elsewhere in the blogosphere and by some *real* and *honest* journalists and reporters who then use them for their own articles.  In other words, while we cannot compete with multi-million dollar propaganda machines we are making a difference.  So please help us and, especially, help the Russian Team!

Many thanks to all,

The Saker

The Catastrophe of #MH17: BBC in the Search of the “#BUK” – The Video Report Censored by BBC

Translated from Russian by Gleb Bazov
Note: Videos & a PDF of the Google Web-cache Have Been Preserved and Are Available Upon Request

Preamble: Why did the BBC delete this report by Olga Ivshina? Is it because the BBC team was unable to find any evidence that a rocket was launched in the area that the Ukrainian Security Service (“SBU”) alleges to be the place from which the Novorossiya Militia launched a “BUK” missile?

Or is it because every eyewitness interviewed by the BBC team specifically indicated the presence of Ukrainian military aircraft right beside the Malaysian Airlines Boeing MH17 at the time that it was shot down?

Or is it because of eyewitness accounts (like the one posted following the transcript of the BBC report) confirming that the Ukrainian air force regularly used civilian aircraft flying over Novorossiya as human shields to protect its military aircraft conducting strikes against civilian population from the Militia’s anti-aircraft units?

I reserve the final judgment to the readers of this blog. This entry is broken down into:
  1. introductory paragraphs to the BBC video report;
  2. English-language transcript of the BBC video report; and,
  3. a video interview with Elena, a Militia fighter, recorded in Slavyansk on or about June 18, 2014, or one month prior to the MH17 catastrophe, wherein she states that, even then, the Ukrainian military aircraft would customarily hide behind civilian aircraft to bomb civilian targets on the ground.
In the last part of this entry Elena predicts that the Ukrainian military will stage the horrible catastrophe like the MH17 crash - she makes this prediction one whole month prior to the disaster.
Video: The Catastrophe of #MH17: #BBC in the Search of the “#BUK”

Original BBC Video Report: Preserved by Google Web-cache
Introductory Paragraphs to the BBC Video Report

The “black boxes” of the crashed Malaysian Boeing have finally been transferred into the hands of the experts. However, how much can they tell us?

The recorders logged the coordinates and the heading of the aircraft at the time of the incident and may have recorded the sound of the explosion. However, they will not tell us what exactly caused the explosion.

The inhabitants of the nearby villages are certain that they saw military aircraft in the sky shortly prior to the catastrophe. According to them, it actually was the jet fighters that brought down the Boeing.

The Ukrainian government rejects this version of events. They believe that the Boeing was shot down using a missile from a “BUK” complex that came in from Russia.

The Ukrainian Security Service has published photographs and a video, which, in its opinion, prove that the Boeing was shot down with a “BUK” missile.

BBC reporter Olga Ivshina and producer Oksana Vozhdayeva decided to find the place from which the missile was allegedly launched.
Transcript of the BBC Video Report

DPR Representative: Here it is.

Olga Ivshina, BBC: The black boxes from the crashed Boeing are finally being transferred into the hands of the experts. However, how much can they tell us?

The recorders logged the coordinates and the heading of the aircraft at the time of the incident and may have recorded the sound of the explosion. However, they will not tell us what exactly caused the explosion.

The inhabitants of the nearby villages are certain that they saw military aircraft in the sky shortly prior to the catastrophe. According to them, it actually was the jet fighters that brought down the Boeing.

Eyewitness #1: There were two explosions in the air. And this is how it broke apart. And [the fragments] blew apart like this, to the sides. And when …

Eyewitness #2: … And there was another aircraft, a military one, beside it. Everybody saw it.

Eyewitness #1: Yes, yes. It was flying under it, because it could be seen. It was proceeding underneath, below the civilian one.

Eyewitness #3: There were sounds of an explosion. But they were in the sky. They came from the sky. Then this plane made a sharp turn-around like this. It changed its trajectory and headed in that direction [indicating the direction with her hands].

Olga Ivshina, BBC: The Ukrainian government rejects this version of events. They believe that the Boeing was shot down using a missile from a “BUK” complex that came in from the direction of Russia.

Vitaliy Naida, Department of Counterintelligence of SBU [Ukrainian Security Service]: This was a BUK M1 system from which the aircraft was shot down. It came to Ukraine early in the morning on the 17th of July. It was delivered by a tow truck to the city of Donetsk. After that, it was redeployed from Donetsk, as part of a column of military equipment, to the area of the city of Torez, to the area of Snezhnoye, to the area of Pervomaisk.

Olga Ivshina, BBC: The Ukrainian Security Service has published photographs and a video, which, in its opinion, prove that the Boeing was shot down with a “BUK” missile. We attempted to verify these photographs and information at the location.

One of the photographs showed a landscape not far from the city of Torez, on which smoke could be seen coming from the presumed location of the missile’s launch. We attempted to find this location, and it appears that we were successful.

We are now on the outskirts of the city of Torez. Behind me, approximately five kilometres away, is the city of Snezhnoye. And the landscape here matches the landscape that we can see on the photograph published by the Ukrainian Security Service.

To find the place from which the smoke was allegedly coming from, we adopted as markers these three poplars and the group of trees. Presumably, this is the place that can be seen on the photograph published by the SBU. And here are our markers: the three solitary poplars and the small group of trees in the distance.

The smoke that can be seen on the photograph came from somewhere over there [pointing behind her], behind my back. The SBU believes that this is a trace coming from the launch of a “BUK” missile.

However, it must be noted that there are here, approximately in the same place, the Saur-Mogila memorial, near which the fighting continues almost unabated, and a coalmine. It turns out that the smoke with the same degree of probability could have been coming from any of these locations.

Having circled around the nearby fields, we were unable to find any traces of a missile launch. Nor did the local inhabitants that we encountered see any “BUK” either.

At the ruins of an apartment building in the city of Snezhnoye, the topic of the jet fighters that may have been escorting civilian aircraft comes up again. A bomb dropped from above took away the lives of eleven civilians here.

Sergey Godovanets, Commander of the Militia of the city of Snezhnoye: They use these civilian aircraft to hide behind them. It is only now that they stopped flying over us – but, usually, civilian aircraft would always fly above us. And they hide [behind them]. [The experience in] Slavyansk had demonstrated that they would fly out from behind a civilian aircraft, bomb away, and then hide, once again, behind the civilian aircraft and fly away.

Olga Ivshina, BBC: The commander of the local militia emphasizes that they have no weaponry capable of shooting down a jet fighter [flying] at a significant height. However, he says that if such weaponry were to appear, they would have tried to.

Sergey Godovanets: If we know that it is not a civilian aircraft, but a military one, then – yes.

Olga Ivshina, BBC: So, could the Boeing have been shot down by the militias that had mistaken it for a military aircraft? There is as yet no unequivocal confirmation of either this or any other version [of what took place]. The international experts are just beginning their work with the information obtained from the crashed airliner. It now appears that it is difficult to overstate the importance of this investigation. Olga Ivshina, BBC.
Militia Elena: Ukrainian Military Planes Hide Behind Civilian Airliners

Video: Recorded at least one month prior to MH17 Crash, published with ENG subs on June 18, 2014
Note: Pay close attention starting at 01:10

Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov again, this time in English

I consider the Russian version much better but, hey, just for the fun of a typical Russian accent, I will post this one too (-: besides, I am sure that Antonov's English is better than Hagel's Russian :-)

The Saker

Ukrainian SITREP and important statement of the Russian Deputy Defense Minister

First, I want to begin by posting the video of an important statement made by Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov who is calling the USA's bluff and challenging those who made accusations against the Novorussian Resistance and Russia to show their evidence. A special thank you! to the fantastic translator teams who managed to translate and subtitle this video in less than a day: you guys are literally providing a priceless service in the struggle against the Empire's propaganda machine!

(Please make sure to click on "captions" next "to settings" for subtitles)

The next item today is a Ukrainian SITREP based on Colonel Cassad LiveJournal and translater by Gelb Bazov to whom we all also owe a huge debt of gratitude for his top-quality work in providing us with timely and detailed translations of documents which would never exist in English otherwise.

The Saker
The following are the key points about the situation in Donbass as of the evening of July 23, 2014
DPR [Donetsk People’s Republic]

In the course of the battles of July 21-23, the enemy has effectively taken the advance line of defence – Dzerzhinsk, Karlovka, Maryinka, and Netailovo and, from the north-west, pushed the Militia into the urban area, partially de-blockading the Donetsk airport, where it was previously sustaining heavy losses. Having concentrated their mechanized reserves and their small numbers of artillery, the Militia is expecting a repeat strike in this area. The Junta will need 1-2 days to transfer in its artillery, regroup its forces and to commence an offensive aimed at surrounding Donetsk and Gorlovka.

The city is continually being shelled, and the strikes are terroristic in character. On the part of the Militia, almost all the reserves have been entered into battle; the Junta also has also engaged almost all the available reserve forces. It still has no strategic reserve despite the yet another wave of mobilization.

Despite the withdrawal, the Militia continues to conduct active counterattacks using its Saboteur-Reconnaissance Groups [“SRG”]; today 1 or 2 SRGs entered Dzerzhinsk, as a result of which fighting resumed in the city, while the checkpoints on its outskirts were subjected to severe shelling.

The Lisichansk Protrusion

Yesterday, the main forces of the Militia in the area, commanded by Mozgovoi, were withdrawn from the Lisichansk Protrusion to Alchevsk, following which small covering forces of the Militia (totaling 300-400 in Lisichansk) and SRG were left to defend Lisichansk and Severodonetsk.

While in Severodonetsk sporadic battles between the Junta forces and LPR [Lugansk People’s Republic] SRGs are currently ongoing, Lisichansk itself was mostly retaken today by the forces of Mozgovoi acting jointly with reinforcements sent from Lugansk. The centre of Lisichansk is firmly in the hands of the Militia and is systematically being shelled by the enemy artillery. The infantry of the Junta has been forced out to the outskirts of the city and is in no hurry to get back into direct combat. 

Battle Report (Information from the Militia)

When yesterday Mozgovoi announced that the Militia were to withdraw for Lisichansk (apart from several groups that refused to follow the order and abandon the city), and Bolotov’s evening “order of counteroffensive” was yet to come, I was warning that not everything should be taken at face value. In addition to the military operation, there is also its informational component. At night Mozgovoi will return to the city.

Which is exactly what happened. LPR militiamen have already reported that they were able to reestablish control over Lisichansk, which is 90 kilometres to the north-west of Lugansk. According to the commander of the fast-reaction unit, who goes by a radio call-name Krot [Mole], self-defence fighters destroyed the artillery batteries of the Ukrainian military, as a result of which the shelling of city stopped.

A militiaman reported that, “in the night of July 22-23, 2014, the forces of the Militia attacked the positions of Ukrainian punitive forces on several directions. The enemy army sustained significant losses in manpower and armoured vehicles. Also destroyed were several Ukrainian artillery batteries, following which the shelling of the city stopped.”

According to him, as a result of the night battles, the forces of the punitive army that managed to enter Lisichansk have fled the city; however, they did not retreat far. Pursuant to Bolotov’s order, several units from Lugansk came out to assist Mozgovoi’s fighter. They relieved the units that had been previously engaged in combat and had suffered substantial losses as a result. The Militia also reports that battles for Severodonetsk in the western part of LPR continue unabated.

After a powerful counterstrike, the fighters of LPR regained control over Lisichansk. The city militia, which heroically remained in complete encirclement for almost two days, has joined the main forces of the LPR Militia. The forces of the Ukrainian Nazi barbarians disorderly retreated.

Mozgovoi’s retreat spawned an altercation between Bolotov, Mozgovoi and Strelkov that left many observers agitated. In reality, everything is far simpler that it would appear to some. The conflict between Bolotov and Mozgovoi has existed for a long time (dating from the time of their imprisonment by the SBU [Ukrainian Security Service]) and, in fact, has not dissipated.

Both Mozgovoi and Bolotov made claims to leadership in the LPR. In the end, owing to his control of Lugansk, Bolotov gained access to cross-border supplies of aid and significantly increased his political weight. Together with his unit, which gradually grew to the size of an entire battalion, Mozgovoi first left for Stakhanov and later advanced to the Lisichansk Protrusion. After Strelkov’s arrival in Donetsk, Mozgovoi for all intents and purposes locked on to Strelkov.

The information suggesting that Mozgovoi was experiencing catastrophic shortages of equipment was coming in for 2-3 days prior to the retreat from the Protrusion. In Donetsk, Strelkov has only 5 tanks and several BMPs and BTRs. Understandably, he could not spare any armoured vehicles to help Mozgovoi.

After Mozgovoi’s retreat, Bolotov complained, saying that it was still possible to keep the city. Some time following his statement, Strelkov responded, to the effect that in order to keep it with confidence, Bolotov should not have been hoarding all the military equipment, but, instead, should have shared it with others. Judging from the relative successes of Bolotov’s counteroffensive, he did have equipment in reserve. Why it did not arrive in the area of Lisichansk or Debaltsevo earler is a topic for discussion.

Overall, this altercation has showcased the continuing contradictions among the military command of DPR and LPR. Essentially, it is possible to positively state that, at this time, the following units and field commanders have subordinated to Strelkov and his staff: Bezler, Mozgovoi, Battallion Oplot, Battalion Kalmius, the Russian Orthodox Army, Brigade Vostok, and the forces operating near Saur-Mogila and Marinovka (DPR).

It is unknown whom the militiamen in Debaltsevo obey. It is also uncertain to whom Ataman Kozitzyn subordinates, and, considering that he is not on good terms with both Bolotov and Strelkov, it is clear that he does not obey them.

Bolotov commands the large part of the Militia units on the LPR territory. In other words, the issue of unified command has not been resolved to date, which is what has been causing public controversies among field commanders. 

The Transportation Network

Control over Debaltsevo and the retreat of Mozgovoi’s units to Alchevsk have enabled the Militia to safeguard the Donetsk part of the key highway connecting DPR and LPR, Accordingly, in this area, the primary risk for the communications network of Donbass would come from the Junta forces breakthrough to Lutugino in LPR’s zone of responsibility.

The road that passes through Antratsit and Torez also continues to function, and, although its throughput and length leave much to be desired, overall it remains a kind of a reserve communications line in the event the Militia is unable to retain the highway that passes through Debaltsevo. 

LPR [Lugansk People’s Republic]

Battles for control over the highways connecting the Lugansk region to DPR continue to the west and to the northwest of Lugansk. Both sides are contesting control over the highway near Lutugino, where heavy fighting using armoured vehicles and MLRS has been ongoing for 3-4 days.

Battles in the surrounding villages, like Roskoshnoye, have a tendency to be positional in nature, without generating decisive outcomes. The Junta continues to be unable to punch a stable corridor through to the surrounded Lugansk airport, and the transfer of a part of the force from the Lugansk front to the Lisichansk Protrusion has seriously weakened the offensive capabilities of the Junta – which is why the situation on the LPR territory remains sufficiently stable.

The city is continues to be subjected to systematic artillery shelling, but these strikes have terroristic, rather than military objectives. After the elimination of 2 enemy SRGs within the city limits, the situation on the streets of Lugansk became calmer, which is what enabled Bolotov to throw a part of his forces into an offensive in the Lisichansk Protrusion and in the area of the highway to Donetsk. 

The Southern Cauldron

The Junta forces remain encircled. This includes the battered 79th and 24th Brigades and the remnants of the 72nd Brigade, as well as the remains of the punitive Battalion Shakhtersk.

For several days now, the bottleneck near Marinovka (DPR), occupied by the Militia, has been under continuous attack by the Junta forces, which are seeking to de-blockade their surrounded troops, but the militiamen have been steadfastly repelling the attacks. At the same time, fighting continues on the interior ring of the encirclement, where the Militia is attempting to narrow the cauldron. However, due to insufficient troops, the offensive here is primarily of a tactical nature and has yet to lead to a breakup of the surrounded forces.

Because the surrounded troops have nowhere to advance, most of their military equipment has been destroyed, and they experience severe difficulties with supplies of fuel, their primary hope for salvation lies either in a breakout through Marinovka (DPR) or in overall success on other fronts. Accordingly, if the militiamen manage to stabilize the front on the northwestern direction and to sweep and purge the Lugansk airport, they will be able to free up sufficient troops to finish the cauldron once and for all. Generally speaking, the situation here is one of unstable equilibrium. 

Description of the Fighting from Igor Strelkov

A heavy battle continues near Marinovka. Our forces continue firmly to hold Dubrovka and to attack on both the western and the southwestern directions. Our artillery continues to conduct strikes at the concentrations of enemy troops near Grigorovka and in the area of the customs terminal Marinovka. Right now, units of the Battalion Azov bastards have been drawn there, along with some other Nazi skunk [National Guard] rabble.

Over Saur-Mogila a ground attack jet of the Ukrainian Air Force was shot down. The pilot catapulted out. Another plane may have been damaged.

In the morning, an SRG of the 2nd Slavyansk Battalion attacked the checkpoint of the enemy on the outskirts of Starobeshevo. They were able to lure a ZU-23-2 unit mounted on a truck out from the checkpoint and to thrash its crew. The Ukies sustained known losses of 2 “200s” [KIA/Killed In Action] and presumed losses of 3 wounded. On our side, one of the militiamen was wounded in his arm. 

With Respect to the Fighting Near Kozhevnya
(Which Has Been Passing Back and Forth)

According to Zakharchenko: “Yesterday there was an assault in the area of Kozhevnya, Dubrovka and Chervonaya Zarya. Strelkov’s units, Battalion Oplot and Battalion Steppe took part in the operation. By the end of the day, Kozhevnya was liberated from the enemy forces. At the very least, the settlement and the river crossing were freed. This morning, according to my information, Dubrovka was also taken. The Dubrovka-Kozhevnya direction is practically in our hands. The enemy has taken position on the heights near the border. That is where they have their strongholds, pillboxes, bunkers, artillery, and the border crossing checkpoint near Maryanovka. I believe that their liberation is only a question of time – it will be done today or tomorrow.”

In addition, Zakharchenko stated that today, near Dmitrovka, DPR fighters were able to shoot down a Su ground attack jet of the Ukrainian Air Force. One more was shot down near Snezhnoye.

According to the militias’ reports from the scene, one of the pilots landed in the “green.” The parachute was found; the pilot remains to be captured.

According to Zakharchenko, the Ukrainian army primarily uses heavy military equipment and artillery and avoids entering direct combat. During the night, hand-to-hand combat frequently broke out during fighting.

“Unfortunately, we also sustained losses. We know what we are fighting for,” – said Zakharchenko. He remarked that communications with other DPR units were interrupted, and that, accordingly, detailed information will become available later.

He remarked that he is still not in possession of concrete information with respect to the losses of the Ukrainian side in yesterday’s battle.

“I am able to confirm that 2 Ukrainian BTRs were hit in Kozhevnya. Four mortar crews, together with mortars, were eliminated. With respect to the work of our “neighbours”, I will speak to it later.” – concluded Zakharchenko.
With Respect to the Tank Battle in Kozhevnya on July 22, 2014

I received a concussion, but I am alive …

Established communications with Donetsk.

“We engaged in a seven minute duel with two Ukiefritz tanks. As you can imagine, our forces were far from equal. As a result, we were pierced with a cumulative shell from a tank. However, I was able to take our vehicle out from under fire, along with the crew. Every one of us suffered, but everyone is alive. Except for one infantryman killed in action, who begged to come with us to bring back the wounded.

That yesterday’s battle for Kozhevnya almost became my last one.

On the photo, it look like the crew of a BMP numbered 138, which was noted on the yesterday’s video of the Militia’s offensive.

Video: The Moment of the Militia Commencing an Offensive on Kozhevnya, July 22, 2014

Seven minutes on a BMP against 2 tanks is sobering experience.

The shot-down Su-25 aircraft is in the Dmitrievka area. Today, the Junta lost 2 aircraft, although, according to its statements, 1 was shot down and another one was severely damaged.

Video: One of the Su-25s Shot Down by the AA Forces of the Militia with MANPADS, July 23, 2014

The information was respect to the Junta’s aircraft losses is becoming clearer – since the beginning of the war, 12 aircraft were lost. 

The Border

Photograph: A burning vehicle on the Lugansk-Krasnodon highway.

At this time, the hole on the border is approximately 60-80 kilometres and has a tendency to expand. The collapse of the Junta’s offensive against the border crossing checkpoints ended up with a heavy defeat and large casualties.

As the border guard service has fallen part, and the Junta has no capacity quickly to grow its forces on the border (they have all been drawn into battles on various directions), then, overall, the border has been safeguarded and the aid continues to flow. What will happen if foreign drones are introduced to border control is still a mystery. As the Cassad team is itself engaged in supplying across the border, then I will advise separately in the even we face serious difficulties.

The 72nd Brigade, encircled to the south of Izvarino and Krasnodon, has, by the looks of it, ceased to exist as an organized unit. A part of its personnel has fled, a part has joined the encircled 24th and 79th Brigades. Practically all of the 79th Brigade’s military equipment has been destroyed or damaged (needs repairs either in field workshops or in factory conditions); there are large manpower losses. It can be confirmed that this is the first completely routed unit of the Ukrainian army itself, apart from the punitive Battalions that had been destroyed earlier. In general, the situation remains difficult, but the character of the fighting is such that for now there is no suggestion of a DPR’s and LPR’s complete defeat.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Short message from the Saker

Dear friends,

I am still on the road, but I want to tell you all that things are looking much better for the Resistance and infinitely worse for the junta in Kiev.  I will write an analysis of all that when I get all the facts (and the couple of hours behind to sit my keyboard), but already I will tell you that we might well have reached a turning point in this war.  Hence this hate-laced hysterics of BHL in the NYT.

Also, I hope to get a very interested statement of the Russian Deputy Defense Minister translated and subtitled very soon.

As for the Khodakovskii interview hoax, the Reuters reporter apparently never realized that his entire "one on one" conversation with Khodakovskii was video taped.  I have not seen it yet, only excerpts, but this video proves that Reuters is guilty of a gross hoax and political manipulation: they tried to do two things simultaneously a) make it look like they had THE proof that the Resistance had (working) BukM1s and create a conflict between Khodakovskii and Strelkov.  Now that their forgery has been uncovered it leaves is most "prestigious" and "respectable" organization looking like just an CIA/MI6 front.  Good.

I hope to get a military SITREP either from Gelb or from Juan soon, but I think I can already tell you the following: there was some *very* heavy fighting almost everywhere, the Ukies gave it their very best, there are heavy losses on both sides, some villages have changed hands, but all in all, I think that I see the contours of a comprehensive failure of the Ukie plan.  If I am correct, then there is a very real change of a Ukie collapse along the entire combat area.  Don't take it to the bank quite yet - but I think we can begin to hope that the Resistance has succeeded absorbing and repelling the Ukie assault.

I am going offline again for a few hours and I leave you in the tender care of my trusted friend /dev/null who will keep an eye on the open thread.

Kind regards,

The Saker

Short news items & open thread

A couple of quick things:

1) The so-called "interview" with Alexander Khodakovskii (not Mikhail Khodorkovskii) is a fake made by Reuters in which different parts of the real interview were re-mixed together in order to make it sound as if Khodakovskii was saying that the Resistance had a BukM1.  Video and audio proof of that fact that this was a fake was shown on Russian TV today.

2) The "new, democratic and free Ukraine associated to the EU" has just banned the Communist Party from the Parliament.  Welcome to the "civilizational choice" of Europe.

Not SITREP from Mindfriedo today (yes, he too has a life in meatspace), but hopefully one from Strelkov via Gleb Bazov, but later today.

I will be back in a few hours, in the meantime, open thread (with my friend /dev/null keeping an eye on the proceedings).

Kind regards,

The Saker

France's #1 Zionist bashes Putin and Europe in the NYT

Yup, you probably guessed it.  It's BHL, Bernard Henri-Levi, the so-called "philosopher" and France's ArchZionist who after declaring war in Libya and, before that, Serbia, is now declaring war on Russia.  Normally, I would post the article in question.  But for BHL I will make an exception and only post the link:

If you can do that and keep your breakfast down, I urge you to read his piece.  His racist hatred of Russians is not even subtle: "vodka-soaked rabble army" "undisciplined louts who know only the law of the jungle" "dogs of war who follow no creed and no law".  He does not even need to say "subhuman" like Iatseniuk did - it is already quite clear.

It's 1917 (hiding behind a thin veneer of 1941) all over again.  The Trotskists want their genocide again.  But this time around Russia understands it and is ready.

The Saker