HEADS-UP: Sourced from Russian State-Controlled Media
The Vineyard of the Saker
A lot of very big scoops and important updates today.
The biggest news of this cycle is that yesterday was one of the single worst days of the conflict so far for the UAF: in a single day, the UAF lost over 1,100 people total as killed, wounded, or captured.
This is in large part due to massive strikes on various transportation/reinforcement hubs such as Dnipro and Nikolayev, which have taken out an estimated 200-300. As mentioned before due to strict new laws, Ukrainians are not allowed to film or report accurately on this, but on social media channels many “remembrances” from the families of the troops lost have appeared, verifying the damage.
Dnipro has become the major logistics/resupply/reinforcement hub from western Ukraine. Everything going to the cauldron has to pass through there. And Russian reports indicate a lot of the new weaponry and mercenary troops were hit in major Dnipro strikes.
On top of this another estimated 200-300 have surrendered in Mariupol and many more are due to surrender soon. This happened in several phases. Firstly a huge ‘breakout’ was orchestrated by the trapped Marines of the UAF where they took 30-50 civilian vehicles plus some remaining light armor and put ‘Z’ signs on them to try and trick Russian troops, then tried to storm out of Mariupol towards the north as high command in Kiev promised them support if they can just make it towards Zaporizhzhia oblast. But RF had intercepted every part of their plan and captured/killed all of them.
Here Wargonzo shows the destroyed vehicles they used and the aftermath of the escape battle:
Then, separate from that group, another large group of Marines surrendered. Videos here:
Not to mention several groups surrendered on the Lugansk axis:
And dozens of troops were liquidated in battles along the Rubizhnoe / Lugansk axis (graphic 18+)
And Chechens captured/killed a bunch in Mariupol as well:
Chechen units in Mariupol City mopping up buildings, one Azov militant captured (he was shot) and 4 others are presumably eliminated after hiding themselves in the building. pic.twitter.com/8umuEcwhdI
— UkraineMaps (@MapsUkraine) April 12, 2022
Meanwhile some of the remaining Marines trapped in the Illych Plant have made videos
And here’s a Russian soldier giving more details on the foreign mercenaries
#NATO officers from #France, Germany, the UK and "neutral" Sweden are stuck at #Mariupol after frontline defeat, according to Russian press reports, and are attempting to negotiate an evacuation corridor with the forces Russian. #Azovstal pic.twitter.com/0Ge26xd9jR
— REPUBLIC (@_TheRepublic_) April 10, 2022
The most interesting bit of info though, is that we have the first confirmation of foreign mercenaries captured amongst the surrendered in Mariupol. ‘Famous’ British mercenary Cossackgundi, real name Aiden Aslin, who fought for the YPG for years in Syria, had his phone call intercepted where he cried about the likelihood of being ‘used for propaganda’ once he’s captured.
His relatives running his social media account broke the bad news to his tens of thousands of followers:
We’ve gotten word from Johnny. “It’s been 48 days, we tried our best to defend Mariupol but we have no choice but to surrender to Russian forces. We have no food and no ammunition. It’s been a pleasure everyone, I hope this war ends soon.””
At the same time, a video featuring an Afghani mercenary has also appeared: https://twitter.com/MapsUkraine/status/1513841197302919174
“With the following information: “#MARIUPOL #NEW 37 Afghan special forces from the Afghanistan Ghani government are embedded with Azov and stuck in Azovstal. After American withdrawal from Afghanistan they were send to Ukraine by the Americans as PMC.
reports that the Afghani special forces have requested a safe corridor with the DPR units in Mariupol City, however the Azov militants are withholding the Afghanis from leaving.”
By the way here’s what Wargonzo himself reports on the big breakthrough/escape that the Ukr marines attempted:
“On a breakthrough from Mariupol. There are many rumors and discrepancies. Here’s what the @wargonzo project knows, I’m breaking it down into numbers and numbers.
At the time of the breakthrough, there were about 1,500 neo-Nazis (Azov militants and AFU fighters) at the Ilyich plant.
Of these, about 800 were going to go for a breakthrough in the first column, the rest had to go out along the corridor cut by them.
The column consisted of about 120 pieces of equipment, including automobiles. At the head was a tank, 2 Gvozdika self-propelled guns and up to 10 infantry fighting vehicles, as well as MTLBs, armored cars and trucks.
More than 100 Ukrainian marines surrendered. Including the political officer of the 36th Marine Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
More than half of those who were going to break through retreated back to the plant. Several dozen were destroyed by artillery strikes of the NM DPR. Up to 10 groups of 3-4 people were scattered and tried to seep through the environment. The search and elimination operation continues.
Hence the data on the second smaller breakthrough. We are talking about these wandering groups, which the special forces and fighters at posts enter into battle with if they are detected. Hence, a more thorough check of the car on the Volnovakha-Mariupol highway.
So no panic.”
He also reports about 2 retired American “officers” trapped there. Could this be the general everyone is talking about?
“⚡️”Azov” can eliminate 2 US officers in Mariupol⚡️
According to the @wargonzo project from sources on the Donbas frontline, based on an analysis of radio intercepts of enemy communications, there are at least two high-ranking retired American officers in the air raid shelters at Azov-Stal.
According to our sources, they entered Mariupol together with PMC “Academy” and most likely are not active employees of the Pentagon. However, at the same time they are extremely important persons for Washington.
“These officers are aware of many covert US operations in third countries and are the bearer of information that is extremely sensitive to Washington,” a source familiar with the analysis of radio intercepts told the @wargonzo project.
It is also noted that in order to conceal this “sensitive information”, the American intelligence services are ready to order the Azov militants to eliminate these two officers. Whether they are alive at the moment is not yet known for sure.”
With all this news, the end really seems in sight for Mariupol. Troops continue advancing, having fully captured the port and now in the Primorski district in southwest Mariupol. Pretty much all that is left is the Azovstal factory, the Illych factory north of it in the Kalmiuski district, and this last stretch of city in the SW by the port. It’s likely they will wait until the capture of this final piece before focusing fully on the two factory positions and deciding on how to deal with it or whether it should be smoked out in some way.
Meanwhile Basurin has denied the usage of chem weapons but has stated the DPR forces are instead using ‘flamethrowers’ to burn out the trapped Azovs. Although it appears he’s referring to the RPO-Shmel thermobaric launcher, and not the classic flamethrower most people imagine.
Also this information is unconfirmed but this is the rumor going around:
“The Nazi drowning operation is said to begin today in Mariupol..
At least ten fire engines to be either on the road or already at the factory to start pumping water from the river or sea and pumping water to above-ground ventilation shafts that carry fresh air to the cavernous network of tunnels below the Azovstal metallurgical complex..
If Azov close the ventilation shafts, they will drown within a few days. If they do not close the ventilation shafts, they will drown in a few days. In any case, the siege of the factory will be terminated in such a way that the factory itself can remain intact..”
In other news Russian MOD has announced the destruction of the S-300 system supplied by Slovakia
There are some conflicting reports because they said it was destroyed south of Dnipro, but there are videos of a new S-300 system also destroyed around Kiev that claim a Russian special forces unit destroyed it on the ground: https://www.bitchute.com/video/N0mxvnYVX15z/
Could be part of the same system, or something else, hard to tell for now.
Russian MOD has also announced another use of the Kinzhal hypersonic missile to destroy a very fortified underground command center of the AFU south of Kramatorsk. There have been many debates here whether a hypersonic missile can be used as a bunker buster, but clearly Russia is using it as such successfully.
Kadyrov has also stated that all Ukraine including Kiev will be taken. https://news.yahoo.com/chechen-chief-kadyrov-says-russian-003543233.html
Whether one wants to regard that as simple braggadocio or truth, we must understand that not only is that a distinct possibility but is also likely. Too many people have now been propagandized by the west to believe Russia somehow “failed” and is incapable of taking the western part of the country, but that is not even close to reality. Russia is not capable of taking it all at the same time from 5 different fronts. There’s a huge difference and distinction there. But once Donbass and everything east of the Dnieper is cleared, Russia can and likely will take the rest with concentrated forces. There will likely then be only 2 fronts, one coming up from the south that will cut off Odessa and take Nikolayev and one that returns from the north into Kiev. But we’ll save that for another time as either way that’s far off in the future.
In logistical news, Poland has reportedly begun its shipment of (supposedly) 100 T-72 tanks and Bmp-1s to Ukraine. While Australia ships Bushmasters https://youtu.be/hFmMVL5NTNg
In other interesting news which shows that Turkey’s “closing of the Bosphorous” straits was not what it seemed, and was in fact a more than subtle blow against NATO, Turkish defense minister has confirmed that Turkey is strictly prohibiting any NATO ships from passing the straits as well.
“Turkey will not let NATO warships into the Black Sea,” said Minister of Defense of this country Hulusi Akar. At the same time, he referred to the Montreux Convention and said that the passage would be closed to warships of countries that do not have access to the Black Sea, A Haber TV channel reports.
Akar also admitted that the presence of mines in the sea could be deliberate: they could have been fired as part of a plan to pressure Ankara to let NATO minesweepers into the Black Sea, which is contrary to the Montreux Convention.
“We have a suspicion that the mines were deliberately introduced. Perhaps they were fired as part of some plan to put pressure on us in order to let NATO minesweepers [through the straits] into the Black Sea. But we are committed to the rules of the Montreux [Convention] and do not Let warships enter the Black Sea,” the minister said.
So much for NATO solidarity.
Also, the first formal appeal for the following: “In the State Duma of Russia, Crimean deputy Mikhail Sheremet today proposed to unite the Republic of Crimea with the Zaporizhia and Kherson regions into the Tauride province within the Russian Federation. “Residents of the regions do not seem to mind – they raise Russian flags everywhere and complain about the attitude of the Ukrainian authorities.”
American Secretary of Defense Lloyd addresses Ukrainian troops: https://twitter.com/SecDef/status/1513205552700174340
This comes on the heels of new revelations of how deeply embedded U.S. and NATO command structures (and troops) are in Ukraine. A French journalist here describes what he saw in his time in Ukraine: https://www.bitchute.com/video/aVZeyycQgXBk/ (video with translations)
In short, he says he was shocked to see American generals running the entire show on the ground, and he says the names of them will be revealed in his new exposé in the French Figaro newspaper this week.
This is further proof that this conflict is truly NATO vs. Russia, and NATO is losing badly.
Another report states: “the United States is moving its advanced headquarters units to the western borders of Ukraine. In particular, the 5th Corps is being relocated. This suggests that it is not the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine that controls military operations, but NATO officers. And we are at war not with some puppet regime in Kiev, but with the collective West.”
Of course as things progress towards a potential showdown, we continue to hear how badly unprepared NATO really is: https://twitter.com/Navsteva/status/1513149802527313929
But a new 8 mile convoy of Russian reinforcements is heading towards the northern front: https://twitter.com/Dr_ShahidPk/status/1513115975847223296
And other videos pour in of the long lines of Russian reinforcements in preparation for Phase 2
By the way, we were told to believe that these same Russian troops were “out of ammo, fuel, food” etc. Only further proof of the utter laughable propaganda from the west and Ukraine.
And to speak a little more on Phase 2, as continuation of the last report. Here is some further corroboration of things I’ve been saying:
Mi-6 warned the Office of the President and the General Staff that Russia is changing the tactics of warfare, now there will be no deep breakthroughs into the interior of Ukraine, but a methodical sweep of squares with phased campaigns. The new commander of the Russian troops will use the experience of the war in Syria, transforming it under Ukraine, in order to achieve success in specific military operations.”
There is a video that is a must-watch as companion piece to the last SitRep where we discussed the Fort Benning internal U.S. Army report about the superiorities that Russian BTGs have over American equivalent BCTs.
This video is a must watch from about the 27 minute mark to the end https://youtu.be/_CMby_WPjk4?t=1578
This army specialist gives a talk to West Point, detailing his discoveries and insights into Russian operations in Ukraine. He basically confirms every single point of the Fort Benning report but in greater detail and with explanatory visual aids, etc.
Some of the highlights of his presentation:
- Russia has the most advanced and dense, data-linked air defense on earthenware
- In a war against Russia, U.S. army cannot expect much air assistance for at least the first several weeks. Even stealth aircraft will not be of much use for various reasons he explains
- Russian EW (electronic warfare) is much more advanced and more ‘combat-ized’ than in the U.S. RF utilizes it in combat squads whereas U.S. barely has any and only at the divisional level
- Russian EW shuts down all communications in huge areas along the front, no cellphones, military radios etc. They break GPS links with drones, making them useless and can even fry the fuses on artillery shells midflight.
- U.S. army produces 10x the frequency emissions of a Ukrainian brigade, which would make it extremely visible to all sorts of Russian EW, drones, advanced weapons
- Russia has far more artillery than U.S. and far greater variety of munition types
And there’s much more.
And here’s another corroboration of what I wrote previously, about how artillery is the only real effective force Ukraine has left, and is how Ukraine has created the vast majority of its kills against Russian forces. Pretty much all the western supplied weapons have been proven near worthless and the legacy soviet artillery systems continue to be the workhorses creating results. https://voenhronika.ru/publ/vojna_na_ukraine/artillerija_glavnaja_opora_vsu_zachem_na_ukraine_gotovjat_tysjachi_minometnykh_raschetov_dlja_letnikh_bojov_2022/60-1-0-11858
As for NATO and the U.S., many people don’t seem to know that the U.S. is really not as trained or powerful as they’d like you to believe. I’ve previously highlighted how in the past month alone the U.S. has almost suffered more aircraft losses than Russia, and U.S. is not even in a war. Multiple F-22, F-35, F-18s, Awacs, and Ospreys all lost in the last month. Another good example is, the U.S. has held tank competitions in Europe for the past decade called the Strong Europe Tank Challenge
You can check the results yourself. The highest that the U.S. team ever scored was 3rd place. Other years they were 6th and 7th place, damn-near last place – bottom of the barrel.
Meanwhile, in Russia’s own Tank Biathlon hosted as part of its International Army Games (over 30 countries), here are Russia’s results for the last few years https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tank_biathlon
Gold in every single year.
And as many of you have probably seen several years ago India, operating the Russian Su-30’s, badly humiliated and dominated the British RAF piloting NATO’s most advanced ‘Typhoon’ jets.
You can see many articles on this https://www.rediff.com/news/report/defence-news-iaf-sukhoi-vs-raf-typhoon-controversy-in-the-skies/20150811.htm
The most shocking part about the humiliation is the fact that there were different rounds, first 1v1, then 2v2, and then 2v1 of each variety. Not only did India win with a 12-0 perfect score, but even when 1 Indian Su-30mki faced off against 2 simultaneous Eurofighter Typhoons, it beat them both 2 on 1.
But the western public is so propagandized they can’t even imagine that their equipment might be inferior, or worse – that their actual personnel may be inferior to those of other ‘lesser’ countries.
What most people don’t know, and wouldn’t know unless they followed the Ukraine events intimately since the 2014 days, is that when U.S. instructors first started pouring in, in the subsequent years, they were often viewed as laughing stocks by the Ukrainian veterans of the Donbass war. They felt they had nothing to learn from the “elite” U.S. instructors and in fact knew more about combat/warfare than they did.
The fact of the matter is, many Ukrainian troops are much more experienced and trained than even U.S. equivalent troops, AND the Ukrainian troops are better armed. This fact is corroborated by the video posted above in the West Point presentation, where he explains that most U.S. units don’t even have anti-aircraft systems and even Manpads in the modern U.S. army are in fact not widespread. There are videos like this one: https://www.bitchute.com/video/UUidj4zPmDAV/
Which show a Georgian legion in Ukraine, and they are FAR better armed than any U.S. equivalent army combat unit. They have every of the latest weapons, bristling with firepower. There are other photos showing 4 soldiers, each one of them armed with a manpad of a different type. The fact is, Ukraine is so flush with advanced ‘western’ weaponry that many of their teams are simply armed better than any standard western counterpart.
So this goes back to the concept that Russia is truly fighting not only a NATO equivalent force here, but arguably a force stronger than most NATO countries. The only thing Ukraine is missing is the U.S. airforce, which is at the end of the day by far the most powerful and important weapon the U.S. has. In every other category U.S. stands no chance against Russia.
I’ll leave with this map of the Donbass cauldron that can give a good idea of the force dispositions there. The circled red is where the Kinzhal was said to have struck a command bunker by the MOD. If you consider each one of those blue crosses as a company of about 300 men, it would roughly give a disposition of 40-50k in the cauldron. If you believe the higher figures as Basurin himself has stated over 90-100k for the cauldron, then count each blue stroke as a battalion.
The white lines represent breakthroughs, like the one south of Niu York (north of Donetsk city) and near Svitlodark towards Bakhmut by LPR forces. At the NW end where you see Kramatorsk and Slavyansk, Russian forces are pushing in towards Krestyshche. But for the most part not much progress is expected until Phase 2 begins in full. With all the things happening in Mariupol now, that finally seems to be closing in.