"Find an antidote": Despite new tactics, Putin's army is struggling in Bakhmut
Created: 2022-12-13, 8:27 p.m
By: Bedrettin Bölükbasi
Russian and Ukrainian troops are engaged in heavy fighting in the Ukrainian city of Bakhmut.
In the Ukraine war, the clashes are concentrated in eastern Ukraine.
The city of Bakhmut is currently in the sights of Putin's troops - although it is of little strategic importance.
Munich – During the Ukraine war, attention was focused on Cherson in the south for a long time.
After the city was recaptured by Ukrainian troops and the situation in the region was now comparatively calmer, the Donbass in the east of the country is once again coming into focus.
The city of Bakhmut in Donetsk Oblast, for example, is the scene of heavy fighting in the war in Ukraine.
For more than seven months, the military of Kremlin boss Vladimir Putin has been trying to take over the city.
The strategic role of the city is limited.
So the question arises why Russian troops are still trying desperately to capture Bakhmut.
Meanwhile, Ukraine speaks of a strategic change in tactics on the Russian side.
Ukraine War: Battle for Bakhmut - Putin's army suffers heavy casualties
Since August, a massive concentration of Russian troops and military equipment has been concentrated around the city of Bakhmut, also known as Artemivsk.
First and foremost, Putin's mercenaries - the Wagner group - are leading the offensive and are supported by air and artillery strikes.
In addition, regular soldiers and recruits drafted as part of the partial mobilization are also involved.
The city was almost completely bombed, so that the Ukrainian President Selenskyj recently spoke of "burnt ruins".
So far, however, there has been no breakthrough.
In addition, Russia loses countless soldiers every day in the battles for Bakhmut.
50 to 100 Russian soldiers die every day at the front in Bakhmut, said Serhiy Cherevatyy, a spokesman for the Ukrainian armed forces in the east of the country, in early December, according to the news portal
In addition, the weather conditions are hard on both sides.
Videos show armored vehicles getting stuck in the mud and soldiers walking knee-deep in the mud.
Bakhmut a strategically important city in the Ukraine war or just important for the Russian image?
But why all the losses on the Russian side in the Ukraine war?
Strategically, according to analysts, Bakhmut is only important for another offensive against the cities of Sloviansk and Kramatorsk in the war in Ukraine, as the English-language opposition newspaper
In addition, the city represents a regional hub due to a key road. Nevertheless, it is obviously not worthwhile for Moscow to accept such heavy losses in the Russia-Ukraine war for the conquest of the city.
“No one understands the meaning of Bachmut.
No one can really explain why the Russians are fighting so fiercely for it,” the newspaper quoted defense analyst Konrad Musjika of Rochan Consulting, a Polish war observation company.
The Moscow Times
provides a possible reason
for the hiring of the Russian military .
Accordingly, the main concern is to restore the military image of Putin's troops, which has been damaged by several defeats.
War in Ukraine: Bakhmut at the center of the battles – Prigozhin probably wants a victory at all costs
The image of the Russian army suffered badly from the expulsion from Kharkiv and the withdrawal from Cherson.
In addition, there has been no decisive progress in the East for months.
The capture of Bachmut could finally put an end to that.
"Russia has been fighting for such a long time that they think they might as well do whatever they can to take Bakhmut," Musjika explained.
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In addition, it should also be about the reputation of Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigoschin.
After all, the mercenaries of Putin's cook are fighting at the front and if Bakhmut were conquered, they might also be the first units to march into the city.
Wagner would claim victory for himself, which would greatly boost Prigozhin's reputation in Russia.
There are also currently fears of an attack by Wagner allies on NATO territory.
Mark Galeotti, an expert on Russian security at University College London, told The
that there had previously been a kind of "military common sense" in Russian advance attempts.
But now it's about "bloody attitudes" and Prigozhin's "desire" for victory.
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Ukraine wants to find "antidote" in Bakhmut - military spokesman tells of new tactics of Russia
Meanwhile, Ukrainian military spokesman Cherevaty confirmed the heavy fighting around Bakhmut.
"The Donbass is the main front in the struggle for Ukraine's independence," he emphasized on Ukrainian television on the current situation in the Ukraine war.
According to him, the Russian military is using new means to succeed in Bakhmut and Avdiivka.
So the Russians want to finally record successes.
"The enemy has changed their tactics," Cherevaty said.
Instead of attacks by larger units, there were now attacks by smaller groups, above all by the Wagner mercenary unit, supported by barrel and rocket artillery.
At the same time, Tscherevatyj assured: "We analyze this tactic and find an antidote for every military poison."