Espreso. Global

Destruction of Russian Black Sea Fleet, advance of Ukrainian army near Bakhmut: weekly military summary

16 September, 2023 Saturday

Ukrainian naval drones continue to destroy Russian warships. The Ukrainian army has used all the capabilities at its disposal to attack Russian targets in Crimea. In particular, sea drones, aircraft with Scalp and Storm Shadow cruise missiles destroyed Russian ships in the dry dock of Sevastopol, and then Ukrainian Neptune missiles were used to strike the Triumph air defense system in Yevpatoria

Destruction of the Russian Black Sea Fleet continues

Ukrainian naval drones continue to destroy Russian warships. In recent days, there have been several attacks on Russian Black Sea Fleet ships by naval drones. On September 13, Ukraine attacked the Russian patrol ship Vasily Bykov with 5 naval drones, and on September 14, the ship Sergey Kotov was attacked. It was on September 14 that the most effective attack by the Sea Baby marine drone against the Samum small missile ship was carried out.

It is reported that this particular drone was an experimental model that is adapted to work even in stormy conditions. Actually, if to talk about the Russian missile ship Samum, its uniqueness lies in the fact that Russia has only two examples of such vessels in the Black Sea. Russia can use such ships to launch Moskit missiles. This type of missile can hit targets at a distance of more than 200 km, depending on the trajectory. That is why the use of naval drones to destroy this type of Black Sea Fleet ship is quite positive news.

Explosions on the territory of a shipyard in Sevastopol on the night of September 13.

Situation around Bakhmut: liberation of Andriivka and Klishchiivka

I am convinced that Ukrainian troops have already pushed the Russian occupation forces out of Andriivka and Klishchiivka. There is confirmation from Ukraine's General Staff on Andriivka, as well as details of the liberation of this village. In particular, how the 3rd Assault Brigade liquidated the deputy commander, three battalion commanders and almost all the personnel of the 72nd Brigade of the Russian Army during active operations. There was also a successful destruction of Russian ammunition depots. Therefore, we can confidently say that the Russian troops have been driven out of Andriivka. That is why the main line of defense now runs along the railroad, from Klishchiivka to Andriivka and beyond. This railroad is now the main line of defense for Russia.

Further, the Russians are holding the defense behind the arcade road. Therefore, now, Ukrainian units will use artillery to dilute the Russian forces behind this road. Also, we should not expect further assaults from Ukrainian troops. They will consolidate their positions in the liberated areas. The same applies to Klishchiivka. We understand that the Russian enemy has been knocked out of this village, so we should expect Ukrainian troops to consolidate their positions.

Map of hostilities in the Bakhmut direction as of September 15

Map of hostilities in the Bakhmut direction as of September 15

Russia is deprived of intelligence on the airspace over the Black Sea

The so-called ‘Boyko Towers’ are objects that were used by Russia for military purposes. The Russians placed fuel for helicopters and weapons, as well as special stations to control the airspace and water surface. As a result of a successful operation by the Ukrainian Defense Intelligence, all these devices were dismantled and taken away. In fact, the Russians were left without information to control the airspace in this area.

However, we should not talk about Ukraine's control over these facilities yet. The main reason is the danger. In my opinion, Ukraine will control ‘Boyko Towers’ with the help of the Special Forces. Therefore, to summarize, the operation of the Defense Intelligence of Ukraine was highly successful. Because Russia's intelligence capabilities in the Black Sea have become at least limited. It was after this operation that successful strikes were carried out against Russian military facilities in the occupied Crimea.

Destruction of Russian military facilities in occupied Crimea

This week was very successful for the Ukrainian Armed Forces. The Ukrainian army used all the capabilities at its disposal to attack Russian targets in Crimea. In particular, naval drones, aircraft with Scalp and Storm Shadow cruise missiles destroyed Russian ships in the dry dock of Sevastopol, and then Ukrainian Neptune missiles were used to strike the Triumph air defense system in Yevpatoria. Neptune missiles also destroyed the same Triumph air defense systems on Cape Tarkhankut.

These systems provide air defense for the occupied peninsula. When we talk about the destruction of the S-400 Triumph, it is worth noting that this complex is multi-component. The S-400 has at least 15 launchers, a command center and radar stations. So, first, drones destroyed the radar to prevent the system from detecting air targets, and then Neptune missiles struck the launchers. As a result of the strike, according to satellite images, two launchers of this system were destroyed. In total, the occupied Crimea is covered by six divisions of S-400 Triumph air defense systems. Each of these divisions can provide air protection at a distance of up to 250 km. Therefore, the destruction of these particular SAMs significantly reduces the ability of Russians to protect their military facilities in Crimea.

Sea Breeze exercises in the Black Sea did not stop Russian attacks on Ukraine's grain infrastructure

There were expectations that during the Sea Breeze exercises in the Black Sea, which involved 8 countries, Russia would be afraid to use kamikaze drones to attack Ukraine's grain infrastructure. This did not happen. This suggests that there is no hope for diplomatic measures. Only forceful measures should be used against Russia. This is exactly what Ukraine is proving now. The use of combined attacks by naval drones and cruise missiles against the Russian Black Sea Fleet is the only way to ensure the safe movement of civilian ships carrying grain in the Black Sea.

Operational situation in southern Ukraine

The front line in the south is the most pressing area of hostilities. The Ukrainian Armed Forces continue to fulfill the task of cutting the land corridor to Crimea, which is still occupied by the Russian Federation. This week, there were no major changes on the map of combat actions in the south. I think this is due to the fact that both sides are actively fighting and there is some exhaustion. The redeployment of reserves by the Russian forces from other parts of the front to strengthen their positions around Robotyne had a certain impact on the advance of Ukrainian units. However, I think Ukraine's forces are also reformatting for further combat operations.

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