GUEST BLOG: Ben Morgan – Zelenskyy admits slow progress but Ukraine continues to advance.

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Last week’s article highlighted the ‘tipping point’ that appears to be developing in the land battle. A tipping point at which Ukraine will either be able to prosecute a larger offensive; or will need to stop, consolidate its advances and preserve its reserves. It seems that even with advances in precision-strike technology, vastly superior morale and training; breaking into well-engineered defensive positions may be unfeasible without large losses or total air-superiority.  Ukraine does not have the manpower to suffer large casualties and currently does not have air-superiority, so needs to look for other options. 

The problem Ukraine faces is attrition. In that, Russia’s defending force needs to be attritted before an attack can be made successfully. Enough of its soldiers, artillery and other equipment destroyed in an area so that Ukraine can over-match it in a sector of the front.   Ukraine, is fighting a clever battle using manoeuvre to draw Russian reserves forwards and to locate artillery, so that both can be destroyed using precision-strike weapons and sophisticated counter-battery tactics.  However, progress is slow and it may be that Russia’s defences are just too strong, that Ukraine’s technological and training advantages are not enough to beat Russian numbers. However, the situation is still uncertain as we get near to the tipping point and the offensive either grinds to a halt; or we see Ukraine exploiting a breakthrough.  

Supplying cluster munitions is an admission of United States concern and this decision sharpens tactical considerations because the arrival in country of large numbers of cluster munitions will either provide Ukraine with sufficient artillery supremacy to achieve a breakthrough; or confirm that to break Russia’s lines will require air power.  The term ‘cluster munition’ refers to artillery shells called Dual Purpose Improved Conventional Munitions (DPICM), each filled with dozens of anti-armour or anti-personnel grenades that upon detonation spread over a wide area, vastly increasing the lethality of each shell.  Already, United States DPICM stocks prepositioned in Europe, probably since the end of the Cold War, are moving into Ukraine and are likely to be used in action soon.  DPICM provide a quick way to augment Ukrainian firepower so they can attrit the defenders. The effect of large numbers of DPICM could be significant, especially if Ukraine can achieve artillery supremacy on a narrow frontage. 

Attrition is always a part of war and is well-understood in United States and NATO Manoeuverist war-fighting doctrine that Ukraine is employing. However, historically the United States and its allies relied on air power to achieve attrition; and the interesting tactical discussion from this war regards whether (or not) precision-strike weapons are able to replace conventional airpower.  This week we are starting to see options for deployment of Ukraine’s main effort; or its reserve of 9-10 uncommitted brigades developing in the south and in the east. However, until a hole can be blasted in the Russian line by artillery, deployment of this force would be very costly. 

Meanwhile, Russia’s command problems continue as Putin purges his military’s commanders after the recent Wagner Group coup. Speaking on Sky News this week Professor Michael Clarke, retired director of the Royal United Services Institute, an old and well-respected military ‘think tank’ estimated that 28 Russian generals were being questioned in relation to Yevgeny Prigozhin’s attempted coup three weeks ago.  Further, Professor Clarke said that reports indicated 15 of these officers had already been sacked. This should not be a surprise for anybody familiar with Putin; or dictators generally.  Putin has had a shock, however has quickly re-established control and is now cracking down to ensure that there are no repeats. 

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Putin is also working hard to ensure that he retains the services of Prigozhin’s Wagner Group soldiers. An interview with Putin in Kommersant, a Russian state media channel revealed that he is playing a delicate game of ‘cat and mouse’ with Prigozhin and his senior lieutenants. On 29 June, he met with Prigozhin and 35 of his commanders to discuss the situation and in the interview, Putin confirmed he is working hard to keep this group of experienced soldiers together and fighting in Ukraine, but wants to separate Prigozhin from Wagner Group.  The Guardian reporting on Friday that “The interview appears to be part of a broader effort by the Kremlin to win the loyalty of the Wagner rank and file, even while seeking to discredit Prigozhin by leaking sensitive and embarrassing information about him.” 

This situation demonstrates how convoluted and corrupt Putin’s kleptocracy has become.  Putin needs experienced soldiers in Ukraine, he also understands that Wagner Group’s lucrative African operations provide these soldiers with freedom to ‘walk away’ from the war in Ukraine. Further, if they do retreat to Africa, he risks losing his share of the valuable revenue that their operations there produce. Putin is in an unenviable position of having to negotiate with Prigozhin and his commanders to try and find a mutually agreeable solution. It is comical, Putin allowed Prigozhin to build a private army that he has used to enrich himself and to keep political pressure on Russia’s military.  Unfortunately for Putin, his ‘dogs of war’ are now nipping at the hand that feeds them because they know he needs their services.  Putin does not appear to have killed, disappeared or imprisoned Prigozhin so we can infer that it is politically too dangerous to do so and instead, Putin is forced to negotiate.  It is an interesting insight into the confused power struggles that must be taking place within Russia’s elite.

Later, in the week Putin had more problems when Major General Ivan Popov, commander of the 58th Combined Army was sacked.  Popov’s supporters are vocal and powerful, claiming he was sacked for criticising Russian command during the war. The 58th Combined Arms Army is headquartered at Melitopol and is a crucial formation in Russia’s defence of the ‘Crimean Land Bridge.’ Responsible for the section of frontline north of Melitopol it bears the brunt of Ukraine’s push south from Orikhiv. Its failure would be a disaster for Russia. Popov’s concerns are that:

  • 58th Combined Arms Army does not have enough surveillance technology and equipment to effectively contest the artillery battle.
  • Soldiers in the 58th Combined Arms Army are not rotated and rested enough to maintain their combat performance.

Then on 15 July, commander of the 106th Guards Airborne Division, Major General Vladimir Seliverstov was sacked. Like Popov, he is a popular commander and his force is performing well, limiting Ukrainian gains on an important section of the front near Bakhmut.  Although the reason has not been made public there are reports that Seliverstov’s crime is reporting similar issues to higher command.

 Sacking well-respected senior commanders at a critical time is dangerous for Russia; and contributes significantly to Ukraine’s campaign. Popov’s statements also help to confirm assessments made in recent weeks by the United Kingdom Ministry of Defence and by the Institute for the Study of War that Russian forces in the south are tired and not being rotated. Popov’s information about the counter-battery battle is new and provides a contrary opinion to many commentators that have highlighted the success of Russian artillery.   

Throughout Ukraine the battle continues, in the south-west Ukrainian forces are making incremental advances against stiff resistance.  Ukraine’s objective is Tokmak, a key rail junction about 40km north of Melitopol.  Tokmak is also a first step towards capturing Melitopol on the coast and if it is captured Ukraine can disrupt Russia’s ability to supply its forces in Kherson, Crimea and Zaporizhia.   The thrust from Orikhiv, is starting to develop more potential this week.  Ukrainian forces advancing south along the T0408 motorway toward the village of Robotyne, and reportedly capturing an entry point into the first line of Russian defensive trenches.  

When a trench line is breeched, it becomes hard to hold because troops can advance along it and widen the gap.  If these reports are correct then this activity may establish conditions for a Ukrainian advance south along the T0408 towards Novoprokopivka, a more significant town enroute to Tokmak. The Ukrainians will probably ‘bound;’ or pause to reorganise a kilometre or two north of Novoprokopivka, using undulations in the ground to protect them against fire coming from Russia’s next line of defensive trenches approximately two-to-three kilometres south of the town.  The Ukrainian’s assuming their attack formations, securing the local area and preparing themselves for their next push.  Probably south; but possibly west or east to clear a wider gap in the first line of Russian defences.  

 This area is one to watch in the next few days because when it is secured, Tokmak will be within artillery range; and the extensive trench systems in the area can be engaged with DPICM.  It may be an opportunity for us to assess the effectiveness of DPICM.  Another option, is that the Ukrainians may decide to push west or east and clear the first line of Russian trenches expanding the breech and developing a firm base from which to attack the next line of Russian defences.   Last week, the perception that this area’s defences are ‘brittle’ was discussed. Essentially, that although the forward defence lines are strongly held, they are not supported by adequate reserves able to counter attack and contain a breech. This means that if Ukraine can break the line then exploitation of the break through will be possible. 

Further east, Ukraine’s efforts are paying dividends against the Velyka Novosilka salient, a bulge that once pushed north into Ukrainian lines about 40km east of Huliapole.  The operation continues to progress and the salient is slowly being flattened. Ukrainian forces pressing the Russians back up-to nine kilometres along a roughly 30 km frontage.  This represents significant progress and puts Ukraine’s forces 10-11km from the single line of Russian trenches that protects this sector of the frontline.  A line that if breeched could allow an advance to the T0518 motorway leading to Mariupol.  Another, interesting option because deployment of DPICM against the relatively thin defence lines here could create the breech that Ukraine is trying to achieve. However, the ground in this area is quite undulating and bisected by valleys, canal and rivers so may be difficult to advance through quickly making exploitation of a break through harder. 

This week’s most interesting tactical developments were near Bakhmut. Ukrainian forces are advancing incrementally both north and south of the city slowly encircling it.  Ukrainian soldiers have advanced about five to six kilometres both north and south of the city and continue to advance this week threatening Klishchiivka an important village in the south. Klishchiivka is important because if the high ground around it can be secured it provides a firm base for an advance north towards Bakhmut.  

The place to watch on this section of front is around 15km north of Bakhmut where a new Ukrainian offensive is developing from a village called Rozdolivka.  Ukrainian forces are pushing south from here towards Soledar, the historic salt mining town that was a critical first step for Wagner Group’s operation in Bakhmut.  The advance is on a frontage of about three kilometres and is about two kilometres deep, if it keeps going it will soon hit a Russian trench line; another potential opportunity to observe the impact of DPICM on the battle.  If the trench line is broken then Ukrainian troops can advance south towards Soledar threatening to link up with their comrades operating to the north of Bakhmut and encircle troops from Russia’s 6th Motor Rifle Regiment, 60th Separate Motor Rifle Battalion, 200th Separate Motor Rifle Brigade and 9th Motor Rifle Regiment; approximately 6-7,000 soldiers.   Or more likely force their withdrawal.  

In summary, regardless of Russia’s political problems the ground campaign is reaching a tipping point.  Ukraine’s tactics are working, drawing out Russian reserves and artillery so they can be destroyed.  Ukraine certainly has the initiative, setting the timing and tempo of operations and potential cracks in Russia’s defences are starting to show.  However, Ukraine’s attrition of Russian force is not yet significant enough to create conditions for successful deployment of its large reserve to break through the defensive trench lines. The United States recognises this situation providing DPICM to increase Ukrainian firepower. Over the next week or two we will see if this decision influences which way the scales tip.  


Ben Morgan is a bored Gen Xer and TDBs military blogger

85 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks Ben, keep them coming!

    I think Ukraine is doing the right thing. This isn’t Baghdad, and the West cannot expect a cavalry charge, because this isn’t a movie.
    Instead, the Ukrainians are very carefully and incrementally taking trench lines with small, fast-moving operations. This forces the Russians to use their artillery thus exposing them to counter-battery fire. These artillery pieces are the real target of these trench assaults, because only when the Russian artillery capability is degraded can the Ukraine make more rapid progress. In the last couple of months literally hundreds of Russian artillery pieces have been destroyed and cruise missiles have taken out enormous amounts of Russian ammunition.

  2. Ben – NATO has refused Ukraine membership…Ukraine is simply cannon fodder for NATO…end the war

    • Of course we should end Putin’s aggressive war against Ukraine.
      How do we help Ukrainians achieve this objective?

      • JKT – Ukraine ask Russia for ceasefire, then terms, then sign the Treaty…the same Treaty Russia offered them 2 years ago, before Boris Johnson informed Ukraine NATO would protect them…

        • What Treaty is this?
          The one that the Russians did not sign as they choose not to be a party to the agreement?
          Or the one that was worked on at the time Russia invaded Ukraine?

          Unfortunately, the Ukrainians and most of the Eastern Europeans distrust Russia, not to speak of the Baltics. The only Nato member willing to talk to the Russians are the Americans.

    • @Nathen – Yes the objective appears to be weaken Russia so it is no longer a geopolitical competitor to the US, but not weakening it to the point of collapse. It’s an open question to what degree this is succeeding or failing. What is clear is that the US strategic doctrine either side of the soviet collapse has been abandoned in favour of the PUNAC/Neocon militaristic consensus. The lessons of the earlier era having been completely ignored and detailed regional knowledge forgotten.

  3. I’ve been reading the map. For Ukraine it’s not pretty, four weeks without even making the first lines of defense. Worse Russia is advancing in the Kharkov sector. The Ukraine is losing badly.
    Speculation about Russian generals doesn’t seem to be hindering their success. Cluster munitions are neither a game changer nor good PR, rather they smack of desperation.

    I’m wondering if reality can ever get into the craniums of those pro war cheerleaders on this site.

    • Cheerleader in chief for Putin says….? How does that sit, bro?
      Those who oppose Putin’s war are not cheerleaders of war!

      • JKT Do you think the war started in 2022? Some would argue it started in 2014. Others would add the path to war was being laid from the early 2000s or even earlier.

        Be cautious of being so sure of yourself, like those who cheered the invasion of Iraq in 2003. You may find the conflict is far more complicated, dirty and opaque than you think it is.

        • Of course the conflict is complicated.
          But, that does not change the fact that it is Putin’s war as much as it was “George Bush’s” war that was fought in Iraq. Also a very complicated and complex conflict.
          Many Iraqi’s supported the war, others not so much.

          • @JKT Really?
            George Bush’s Iraq war was fought due to spurious claims of WMD and links to 9/11 it was unilateral and not that complicated.

            Putin’s Ukraine war is fought, in part, due to very concrete encroachment, reneging on multiple formal and informal agreements including the Minsk accords and about 8 years of civil war in Eastern Ukraine. I could go on but you get the idea. This is the US establishment’s war as much as it is Putin’s.

      • Bro JKT? Not yours. How does it sit being deliberately blind to reality? Wake up and smell the coffee.

        • Russia is growing stronger with every passing day. Russian foreign affairs are blossoming.
          The Russians are more mobilised behind their leader, Putin, than ever before.
          Russia is better equipped to deal with any foreign or internal disputes than ever before.
          Russia is consolidating the Russian empire.

          At the same time Russia is demolishing NATO, NATO is on the brink of collapse, Russia has demonstrated that NATO is an Alliance without the ability to defend their borders. NATO is literally a sitting duck……… yeah, right.

    • Reading the map NJ, how clever of you! What map exactly though?
      You are the pro-war troll NJ – you and your cronies.
      It is Putin waging the war. If Putin gets the hell out of Ukraine, the war will end!

    • A source I am watching pointed out that the generals dismissed have been the most experienced and successful in the field. He thinks they are being moved onto a new operation, rather than dumped,
      It will be interesting to watch.
      D J S

    • Those who cannot see that Western efforts are aimed at frustrating Putin’s war machine choose to ignore the reality that this war was created by Putin.

    • A gift from Putin that allows the West to upgrade their military.
      It is a shame, we could have done so much more with that money to manage the planet better.

  4. To take a few snippets
    “It seems that even with advances in precision-strike technology, vastly superior morale and training;”
    Forever-war propaganda

    “breaking into well-engineered defensive positions may be unfeasible without large losses or total air-superiority.”
    Not ‘may’ it ‘has’ not been possible and casualties are very high on both sides.

    “Yevgeny Prigozhin’s attempted coup three weeks ago”
    If this is was a coup then, in a country where one can slip and fall out a window, one has to ask why Prigozhin is still alive? Further why is he reportedly still in Russia and most of all, why did he and a few dozen Wagner officers have a 3 hour meeting with Putin?

    “reports indicated 15 of these officers had already been sacked.”
    It is strange that so many senior offices are being questioned and sacked given how few (apparently zero) supported the Wagner convoy to Moscow. Prigozhin’s ongoing compliant is about the prosecution of the war (mixed with the self aggrandisement of a social media star), he wanted a shake up of senior officers.
    Given that he is still alive and 15 senior officers have been sacked, a more efficient explanation than the narrative Ben spins above, might be that whatever Prigozhin was attempting (unlikely a coup) he has got some of what he was after. Further confirmation would be if the Russian forces take a more offensive stance (advances to Kharkov) rather than simply letting Ukraine destroy its army on Russian fortifications.

    Following Ben’s blog and the western news narrative, one could be forgiven for wondering why the poorly led, under resourced low morale Russian forces have not yet been kicked out of Eastern Ukraine and Crimea by the plucky, well trained and highly motivated and modern Ukrainian army. Or could it be that most of what we are being told about the war is boiler plate propaganda. Propaganda that prolongs this war and the dying, entrenches new regional animosities and generational conflict, enriches those for whom war is business, makes compliant Ukrainian elites very wealthy and has heavily armed a small group of ultra right-wing nationalists within the Ukrainian army.

    My comments are not pro-Putin, they are anti BS forever-war propaganda like Ben’s blog. Best case, whatever emerges from this conflict it will not be a ‘free, liberal and democratic Ukraine’.

    • Tui your remarks are pro Putin. It is obvious that you are captive to Putin’s propaganda!
      You and that other denier NJ are actually supporting Putin to the hilt! Ordinary Russians do not agree with this war – they see Ukrainians as friend and family. It is the corrupt, criminal rulers of Russia in the Kremlin that are prosecuting this war and the peasants in the Russian provinces – mainly non-Russians – Dagestanis, Chechens, Buryats, and other minorities that are bearing the brunt of the casualties.

      • “Ordinary Russians do not agree with this war”
        Logic dictates if that was true Putin’s approval rating would be on Par with Biden’s but Putin’s approval rating is in the 80% range. Your statement does not fit facts.

        • Political polls taken under a dictatorship are never factual. According to many informed Russia watchers, including Vlad Vexler, 20% support the war, 20% oppose the war and the other 60% are indifferent. This is because they know it is dangerous to get caught up in politics and they feel totally disempowered. They may tell the pollster what they want to hear but is not what they really believe.
          Anyway you are confusing Putin’s approval ratings with approval of the war. They are not the same!

      • @Ovod
        I’m anti the BS one sided analysis that Ben serves up but believe what you want darling. I agree with that many of the authorities in Russia are criminal rulers, but here’s a shock, the same is true in Kiev.

        I know it’s hard not to see everything as a zero sum game of good vs evil. You already know that both Russian and Ukrainian people have more in common than not for all the right reasons. Now try really really hard and perhaps see that Washington and Moscow also have more in common than not for all the wrong reasons.

    • Tui, you are so naive believing all of the Kremlin’s propaganda bs. Prigozhin is a marked man – Putin never forgets. I’d give him 6 months at the most.

      • @Ovid
        I agree about Putin, hence my comment about slipping and falling out of a window. Let’s loop back in 6 months and see who is correct.

  5. To Ben, if the US really recognised Ukrainian problems they would not merely supply cluster munitions, they would expedite the supply of F16s, F15s and some attack aircraft A-10 Thunderbolts and even heavy bombers – B52s perhaps. Also attack helicopters such as Apache Longbows to shoot down the Kamov Alligators that are slowing the offensive.
    Also NATO should have suspended Article 5 and admitted Ukraine forthwith. Poland and the Baltics should be listened to – they are so much closer to the frontline. Also I think Hungary should be suspended from NATO until they elect a less Putin-friendly president. Let them take their chances with Russia and see how far they get!

    • Think that this might be wishful thinking Ovod but yup just imagine the impact that the A-10’s alone could make.

    • Stating the obvious, enjoy.
      https://original.antiwar.com/david_stockman/2023/07/16/villainy-in-vilnius/

      On the Russian threat to the USA. Today, Russia’s $1.8 trillion GDP is a veritable joke when arrayed against the $45 trillion of GDP resources embedded in the US and the balance of NATO; and its $85 billion defense budget amounts to not even 7% of the $1.25 trillion combined NATO defense budgets.

      Stated differently, serious military threats in today’s world of advanced weaponry require either an overwhelming nuclear first strike checkmate capacity or the vast industrial might and $50 trillion of GDP that would be necessary to breach the great ocean moats and deliver an invasionary armada of massive conventional forces to the New Jersey shores – backed-up with vast air- and sea-lift capacity and gigantic logistics arrangements that have scarcely been imagined by even the most fervent writers of futuristic war fiction. You might ask what is the US doing way out east in Russia’s back yard?

      On “the Russian threat to Europe” Russia has no nuclear checkmate capacity at all, and has now thoroughly demonstrated that it doesn’t have the industrial and conventional military capacity to conquer and occupy even what has been its own borderlands and vassals – lands with a pre-February 2022 GDP of, well, barely $200 billion. Can’t say fairer than that, they haven’t simply overrun Ukraine.

        • That unfortunately is the thing so many people don’t get. There are many people in Russia that still view Ukraine as being “Little Russia” and see any move away from Russia as a betrayal. A couple of Russian friends said (in their opinion) that Putin hates Ukraine for their move to the West. If it was really about Nazis and Nato he would be at war with Finland (you know, the actual Nato country that fought with Nazi Germany in WW2)

          Look at the Maidan Revolution, a clash between Ukraine working with the EU (the West) or Russia.

          And that’s what people who demand “peace” don’t understand either. Ukraine wants to be a free nation, not part of Russia. They are not going to accept Russian control ever again. Even if Putin took Kyiv tomorrow he would never hold it.

          It seems many commentators here hate the USA so much that they want Putin to win. Some even have said on this blog he should nuke Kyiv. For me, as I said since the first time I posted on this topic, I just want Putin to stop firing missiles at my friends. But apparently that makes me pro-war.

          • Totally agree Vlad. I remember my Russian tutor saying: ‘Ukraine is ours’ long before the war started. Even my own Russian father used to call Ukrainians: ‘peasants’ and that was a generational thing or though to be fair his mother’s family was thrown out of their Poltava estate by peasant farmers.The difference between my dad and Putin is that Putin calls Ukrainians: ‘Nazis’. So myths are made.

      • As I said Putin needs to get the hell out of Ukraine and there will be no more war! You support a war thirsty tyrant! Shame!
        A Hungarian friend of mine has heard rumours that Poland might put troops into Ukraine! All power to Poland’s elbow I say! Poland hated Bolshevism and hated Russians and who could blame them? I was there in 1990 and was surprised how westernised it was.
        Ukraine wants to be another Poland and who are we to stop that?

    • So Western “Democracy” only counts if Poland does what the West wants in Ovods world?
      Ukraine: We want F-16 planes.
      Russia: Since F-16s are Nuclear capable we will treat them as a “Nuclear threat”
      Ovod: Send F-16s

      • Bollocks FG.The Ukrainian Mig 29 Fulcrums, Su-24 Fencers and Su-25 Frogfoots are nuclear capable as well. So what? In case you forgot, Ukraine gave up its nuclear arsenal in the 1994 Budapest memorandum.
        What a spurious argument! A total red herring!

      • What a dumb argument!
        The best way for Ukraine to fight this war is not to shoot back! Yeah, right. Brilliant tactic.

        Russia is growing stronger and NATO weaker every passing day!! Yeah, right!

  6. Russia announces they are pulling out of the grain export deal. Turning their words into deeds, Russia bomb the grain export facilities in Odesa.

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/world/494019/odesa-port-infrastructure-damaged-in-russian-attacks
    Exerpt:
    …Russia has carried out missile and drone strikes on southern and eastern Ukraine, causing damage to infrastructure in the Black Sea port of Odesa,…

    Exept:
    …the port was part of the UN-brokered deal allowing the safe Black Sea export of grain that Russia pulled out of on Monday.
    The latest attack was “further proof that the country-terrorist wants to endanger the lives of 400 million people in various countries that depend on Ukrainian food exports,” Andriy Yermak, the head of the presidential staff, said on Telegram….

    If he was still working at RNZ – How would Michael Hall have edited this overseas news feed story to make Russia look good?

    Maybe some of our resident pro-war trolls could tell us.

    • Facts, nearly 80% of the grain under the deals went to Western country’s mainly used as animal feed this despite Russians terms that it be used for poorer country’s.
      Russia is continuing to export grain to poorer Africa at either no cost (Free) or minimal cost.
      The West continuously failed to implement their part of the deal by removing sanctions against their main agriculture bank.
      In short the West lied and yet again failed to uphold their part of the agreement and as such.
      And finally Pat Odessa has TWO ports, the one in question does not have the proper facilities for loading/unloading grain.

      • The West made no deal with Russia….
        The deal was brokered by the UN and Turkey.

        So how exactly did the West lie to Russia?

        • “The West made no deal with Russia….
          The deal was brokered by the UN and Turkey.”
          Quite right, but by sanctioning insurance for shipping shifting Russian grain the west, ie the US has prevented the UN brokered deal from being implemented . So Russia has done what it had to.
          D J S

        • By sending most of the grain to the West where a vast amount was used as animal food despite Russia clearly wanting it to be sent to the global south to alleviate global hunger. Refusal to implement Russia terms and agreement to remove sanctions on the main Russian bank to allow them to export grain and import agricultural parts. Using the agreement to import weapons using grain ship’s which yet again resulted in the recent attack on one of Odessa’s ports. Notice how I said ONE of their ports as Odessa has seven the one attacked was not part of grain shipping but a central hub for Western weapons which is a legitimate military target whereas the Crimean bridge is a civilian target and therefore a War crime.

      • Surprised Odessa has more than one port? Western propaganda won’t inform you of facts it’s called lying by omission. The part of the port targeted was the main hub of Western arms and therefore a legitimate military target the Crimean bridge was strictly civilian and therefore a war crime.

      • You really are such an idiot FG. Why don’t you go over and join up! Mind you Russia wouldn’t want the support of simpletons like you!

  7. Rumour has it that Putin is seriously ailing and uses a double for many engagements. The double will go to Turkey and probably South Africa. Putin may only have months to live.
    Good riddance I say!

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