Elite Russian forces attempting to take the Ukrainian city of Vuhledar have been decimated by defenders. Politico Europe reports:
As Russia probes Ukraine’s defensive lines ahead of an expected offensive, it might have lost an entire brigade of the elite 155th naval infantry while storming Vuhledar, a coal-mining town in the Donetsk region.
“A large number of enemy forces, including the command staff, were destroyed near Vuhledar and Mariinka in Donetsk Oblast,” Oleksiy Dmytrashkivskyi, head of the united press center of the Tavriskiy District of Ukrainian defense forces, told POLITICO. “In addition, over the past week, the enemy lost about 130 units of equipment, including 36 units of tanks.”
Russian forces also were losing 150-300 marines a day near Vuhledar, Dmytrashkivskyi said. He estimated the brigade to have comprised some 5,000 soldiers in all, whose members had been killed, wounded or taken prisoner.
Russian tactical failures around Vuhledar have likely further weakened the Russian ultranationalist community’s belief that Moscow’s forces are able to launch a decisive offensive operation, the Institute for the Study of War reported in its latest update. Pro-Kremlin military bloggers have been mourning huge losses and criticizing the Russian command for sending the elite troops in frontal attacks.
The Ukrainian marines also published a video of Russian troops panicking and piling up on a battlefield near Vuhledar. “Go make a cemetery! Gosh, the first column went there and blew up, and then the second one went exactly the same route,” Ukrainian artillerymen can be heard saying while watching Russians approaching Vuhledar.
“The 155th brigade already had to be restaffed three times. The first time after Irpin and Bucha; the second time they were defeated near Donetsk — they recovered again. And now almost the entire brigade has already been destroyed near Vuhledar,” Dmytrashkivskyi said.
Russian military and nationalist community met the defeat near Vuhledar painfully. The Institute for the Study of War reported that recent footage of failed Russian assaults near Vuhledar has pushed some Russian military bloggers to call for public trials against the high-ranking officers as they continue to repeat the same mistakes.
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