Situation Report of Ukraine war, March 2023
General situation, March 31
The fight for Bakhmut/Artyomovsk has emerged as one of the most intensive and bloody engagements of the armed conflict in Ukraine, with both sides reportedly suffering significant casualties. Western officials have claimed that the city poses no strategic military value but Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky pledged to defend it as long as possible after proclaiming the city a fortress. Ukrainian leader explained that, if Russia were to capture Bakhmut, his government would come under international and domestic pressure to seek peace with Moscow.
March 24, President Volodymyr Zelensky has said Ukraine’s counter-offensive against Russia cannot start until Western allies send more military support (tanks, artillery, Himars-rocket launchers and particularly ammo). He said the situation in eastern Ukraine was “not good”.
There has been speculation for some weeks of Ukraine launching a spring offensive against Russian forces. Ukrainian commanders have hinted it might be imminent. Oleksandr Syrskyi, commander of Ukraine’s ground forces, said this week it might come “very soon”. But President Zelensky is more pessimistic. He has often warned that the war could drag on for years, unless Western allies speeded up the delivery of weapons.
This is a major revelation for several reasons. It proves that Russia is winning NATO’s self-declared “race of logistics”. The Western aid exceeds $100 billion, which makes Russia’s leading position in this “race of logistics” even more impressive. This lack of weapons and ammo, mentioned by Zelensky, drastically decrease the chances that AFU’s counteroffensive will achieve much of anything. The problem, however, is that no amount of money can make ammunition appear out of thin air, since it requires a lot of time to scale production accordingly to meet these newfound exorbitant needs. Both the US and the EU are facing this key problem.
Evgeny Prigozhin, the head of the Wagner Group private military company (PMC) has described (March 30) Ukraine’s losses in the battle for the city of Artryomovsk as almost fatal for Kiev’s entire military. The sacrifices being made by his group for the sake of Russia were worth it. “As of today, the battle for Bakhmut has almost destroyed the Ukrainian army,” Prigozhin said in a statement. A victory by his troops would be “a turning point” and a historic event, securing a Russian victory, Prigozhin predicted.
SitRep in the frontlines, March 2023
Sumy, Kharkov Region and Kupyansk direction
Generally, this frontline has been stable for several months with characteristics like “normal” artillery duels, occasional reconnaissance and guerilla teams scouting operations as well as some air strikes by Russian combat aircrafts on AFU ammo depots, troops concentrations and equipment warehouses.
Krasny Liman direction
Here, Russian forces have advanced slowly but clearly and are pushing AFU troops back. Fierce battles have been fought in Serebryanka forest area – Bilohorivka and Kreminna-Terny-Yampolivka direction. AFU losses have been significant in this direction.
The biggest and fiercest battles are going in Bakhmut/Artyomovsk, Avdiivka, Pervomaiske, Marinka areas, here also the losses of both parties have been the highest. Russian forces have advanced significantly on this frontline. On the other hand, AFU is concentrating large formations of troops and heavy weapons in this area, mainly to unblock Bakhmut but daily rains are turning everything to mud and there are now rumors that the big counter-offensive has in fact been delayed to at least mid-April.
Epic battle for Bakhmut/Artyomovsk. The Wagner PMC, which is fighting for the city of Bakhmut warned that the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) have concentrated up to 80,000 Ukrainian and foreign fighters in the Bakhmut region (including in Konstantinovka, Sloviansk, Kramatorsk, Chasov Yar and Seversk) as well as about 280 tanks, over 1,000 armored vehicles, up to 300 pieces of barrel artillery and 93 MLRS. All the military equipment has been received from NATO.
Despite massive Ukrainian grouping and threat of AFU counterattacks, Wagner fighters and Russian army troops have advanced and took more territories as well as tightening encircling the city of Bakhmut. Russian forces have taken control of the city up to 80% and in last days of March, Wagner Group found a large underground tunnel system between Bakhmut and close-located town Chasiv Yar, from where AFU has managed to supply its troops in Bakhmut. A turning point of the Russian assault on the city of Bakhmut is at hand and the name of the city will soon become back as Artyomovsk (the Russian name of the city in 1924-2016).
AFU troops have suffered massive losses in the battles in and around Bakhmut during the whole March; in many days AFU losses amount up to a battalion per day (500-800 fighters KIA and WIA daily). Estimates of several military analysts are sketching a gloomy picture, a total number of losses may amount up to 15,000 Ukrainian servicemen and foreign mercenaries in March.
Southern Donetsk and Zaporozhye directions
Fiercest battles have been waged in the vicinity of Ugledar on this frontline. In this region, there is calm before the storm. As said before, this may be the main direction of AFU counteroffensive and large concentrations of troops and material have been noticed in the vicinity of the frontline.
In February – March, AFU has made several failed attempts of offensive, which have been thwarted by Russian forces. AFU losses have been substantial.
This part of the frontline (Dnieper River as a border) has been stable, just artillery duels and some sporadic guerilla scouting operations. On the other hand, Russian artillery has been very “successful” and destroyed massive amounts of AFU vehicles, artillery and other heavy weapons as well as troops over the river.
Some analysts say Ukraine’s military is talking up the idea of a counter-offensive to discomfit their Russian counterparts. They want Russian commanders to spread their forces thinly along the front lines. Other analysts believe a counter-offensive is possible soon, some others later in the spring time.
However, preparations of the Ukrainian army for the upcoming large-scale offensive continue on the Ukrainian front lines. The main strike is likely to take place in the Zaporozhye region and large-scale operations in the southern Donbass front lines will be accompanied by simultaneous assault operations of Ukrainian groups on the eastern bank of the Dnieper River in the Kherson region, as well as attempts to counterattack along the front lines in the Kharkov region. Ukrainian attempts to counterattack in Bakhmut in an attempt to unblock the city are not excluded.
In last couple of weeks, the AFU attempted another offensive operation in the Zaporozhye direction near the town of Orekhov. Ukrainian units in Zaporozhye are massively equipped with drones, including small First Person View UAVs, which can be involved in a swarm attack aimed to overload the Russian air defense.
Ukraine’s defense minister Reznikov has confirmed that Ukraine is preparing a counter-offensive “corps”. Those “corps” are generally made of 2-5 divisions, which themselves are 2-5 brigades of up to 5,000 troops each. So, a corps can be upwards of 100,000 men. The Spring offensive is meant to be prosecuted with the latest Western equipment and material but at the same time involving mostly untrained conscripts, since most of the experienced AFU have already been killed off.
The 18 Leopard 2 tanks promised by the German government to Kiev have been delivered to Ukraine, Der Spiegel magazine has said on March 26, citing its own sources. Russian analysts believe that Russia will hit these tanks as they’re accumulating in Ukraine. A new unconfirmed report (March 29) stated the following: not far from the city of Zaporozhye, Western-made tanks were destroyed in one inconspicuous hangar tonight. Eyewitnesses saw how equipment was driven into the hangar, quantity up to 10 units but they could not say the exact models, and later Russian missiles eliminated the whole hangar.
Heavy weapons with guided munitions in work
Since the start of this year, evidence from the battlefields indicate that Russia has changed gears and use much larger percentage of munitions now being guided ones than before. This means that using more guided munitions, Russia is able to retain the same effectiveness but with far fewer total shells.
For instance, Wagner Group is now regularly using advanced laser-guided 120mm mortars called KM-8 Gran in Bakhmut, type code is Gran 120 mm gliding SALH (Semi Active Laser Homing) shell. The KM-8 Gran system can be used with smooth-bore and rifled 120 mm calibre mortars for the destruction of single and group targets or fortifications.
Typically, to successfully engage a target in a hard-to-reach area a gun crew at a distance of 6 km would need to fire 100-200 regular shells. Using Gran gliding SALH shells, Wagner PMC crews are able to destroy the target with just one or two shells.
The target can be laser illuminated by the combat vehicle with the firing mortar, a reconnaissance spotter, or a UAV. The Malakhit automated artillery fire control system (AAFCS) provides target detection and illumination (including at night), survey control of the fire position and command observation post, automated calculation and firing data input.
Depleted uranium rounds
The UK government announced some days ago that the country would supply depleted uranium (du) ammunition along with the Challenger tanks to Ukraine. Based on numerous scientific research reports, in Iraq the cancer incidents increased at least ten times due to large-scale use of du ammunition by the US and UK during the Gulf War.
Some analysts assume that the upcoming British delivery (of du-ammo) will be only a pilot project before the mass deliveries of American 120-mm M829A1 and M829A2 shells (for Abrams tanks), also with a depleted uranium core. So, it is plausible that the Donbass region could face massive contamination, perhaps even eclipsing that of the Chernobyl exclusion zone. Based on US military sources, the US Army has used 300 tons of depleted Uranium in Iraq. This means that the US dumped almost a full ton equivalent of full-on radioactive Uranium on Iraq.
According to the Iraqi government, in 2005 the cancer incidence in the country because of the use of depleted uranium rose from 40 to 1,600 cases per 100,000 people. There has also been a 25% increase in cancer incidence in the countries of the former Yugoslavia.
Using du-shells in Ukraine would mean, large areas of crops on Ukrainian territory will be contaminated and radioactive substances will be spread through vehicles to the rest of the territory. This would cause enormous economic damage to Ukraine’s agro-industrial complex, bringing down any export of agricultural products from Ukraine. Besides its radioactivity, Uranium is chemically toxic like other heavy metals and carcinogenic.
While Iraq was mostly desert area, Ukraine is full of farm fields, which will be cultivated and the food grown there eaten by millions of people will greatly spread the toxicity and exponentially compound the amount of potential damage to the population.
Russia has warned that it would regard the use of depleted uranium as a “dirty bomb” against Russia with all the ensuing consequences.
Russia immediately gave an answer to this and the answer was “surprising.” As a result, the Russian Federation announced that it would deploy tactical nuclear weapons in July in Belarus, right on the border with Ukraine. Chinese analysts say that “Russia no longer hesitated and directly used the British method of countering the British. The countermeasures also caused a shock to the entire Western community”. The reason for this Russian counter-measure was the decision of the UK to supply Ukraine with depleted uranium ammo.
In addition, Moscow responded to the West with its own methods, because the United States has long been deploying its tactical nuclear arsenals in Europe (Belgium, Germany, Italy, Netherlands and Turkey). That was one of the reasons why Russia suspended its participation in the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.
Moscow is completing the construction of a specialized storage facility for such arms. The site in Belarus will be ready by July 1, Putin told Russia 24 TV. The president also said that Moscow does not plan to hand over control of any tactical nuclear weapons to Minsk and that it would only deploy its own arms to Belarus.
Air defenses, air bombs and air strikes
Ukraine’s air defense
AFU seem still having enough air defense systems (AD) to threaten Russian aviation, which means Russia has no complete air superiority over the whole Ukraine area. At the beginning of the war, Russia destroyed majority of Ukrainian existing, Soviet-era AD systems. Russia destroys their AD regularly but they are getting flooded with new systems all the time.
The simple explanation, why does some Ukrainian AD still able to elude Russian destruction, is that most of them now operate in “cold/silent” mode with radars turned off. Using the various Delta/Nettle systems, provided by the US and NATO, Ukraine is able to use a system of forward observation spotters to first indicate, when a Russian craft is in the area and only then, after relaying the info to sector AD systems, does that AD briefly turn its radar on, to gain tracking/target data and launch, quickly turning radar cold again afterwards.
This allows them to operate undetected by Russian anti-radiation missiles. However, Ukrainian AD has been greatly degraded, in fact they are using second or third rounds of full AD infrastructure by now, as it continually gets entirely destroyed by Russia but more units are sent all the time.
Here below the list of all the systems sent so far (with the exception of Patriot, which will be delivered later). The result is quite a mess, resembling more a nightmare than a functioning system.
From the US: Patriot (surface-to-air guided missile, PAC-3), Avenger AN/TWQ-1 (short-range, Humvee-mounted), MIM-23 Hawk (medium range, surface-to-air guided missile).
From Italy: SAMP/T (Franco-Italian surface-to-air guided missile), Aspide (medium range air-to-airand surface-to-air missile)
From Germany: IRIS-T (surface-to-air guided missile)
From Norway: NASAMS (American-Norwegian surface-to-air guided missile)
From France: Crotale NG (short range surface-to-air guided missile)
From the UK: Stormer HVM (short range surface-to-air missile)
Besides this Western equipment, also the Soviet legacy systems sent from neighboring ex-Soviet bloc countries.
Reports tell that the AFU have lost almost all Western IRIS-T and NASAMS air defense systems and there are losses among the trained officer personnel as well. Majority of Soviet-era and other Russian-made air defense systems (S-200, S-300, Tor-M1 etc.) have been already eliminated.
The Patriot air defense system will not help Ukraine against Russian cruise missiles, this fact was confirmed even by White House Strategic Communications Coordinator John Kirby, who said that “Patriot system is designed to intercept ballistic missiles, it is not as effective against cruise missiles, and it will definitely not be effective against drones“.
On March 28, the Russian Ministry of Defense announced, for the very first time, the interception of a Ground-Launched Small Diameter Bomb (GLSDB) over the special military operation zone in Ukraine. The GLSDB, which was developed by American Boeing and Swedish Saab Group, combines the 129-kilogram GBU-39 Small Diameter Bomb (SDB), which is guided by a GPS-aided inertial navigation system, with the rocket motor. It has a range of up to 150 kilometers.
GLSDB munitions glide towards their targets at a low speed, which makes them exposed to air defense fire. The system was promoted by the mainstream media in the West as yet another “Wunderwaffe”. However, several military experts noted that GLSDB munitions can be intercepted with Russian short and medium-range air defense systems, such as the Pantsir-S, Tor-M, Buk-M and S-350.
Russian air defenses have intercepted a Ukrainian Grom-2 tactical ballistic missile for the first time, the Russian Ministry of Defense announced on March 30. It was still in development, when Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine in 2022.
The development of the Grom-2, which is also known as the Hrim-2, can be traced back to the early 1990s. However, serious work on the system began after 2013. The Grom-2 transporter erector launcher was showcased in 2018 during a parade in Kiev. Each vehicle could carry and launch two missiles. The tactical ballistic missile is said to have a maximum range of 500 kilometers and a warhead weighing 500 kg. Several guidance systems were reportedly being developed for the missile, with the main one utilizing satellite-aided inertial navigation.
Ukraine has not yet confirmed or denied the use of Grom-2 missiles. Work on the system may have been completed after the start of the Russian invasion with some support from Kiev’s western allies.
Russia has been utilizing an increasing number of new, advanced and guided types of munitions. There is increasing evidence of Russian guided bomb usage coming out from the frontlines. Ukrainian Air Force spokesman Yuriy Ignat stated that: “They (Russia) have enough FABs, they just add wings and GPS, and that’s it. They are there, they just need to be upgraded. The cost of the issue is much less than to produce missiles.”There are now confirmed 5 new, different types of “glide-bombs” that Russia appears to be utilizing in Ukraine.
There is the UPAB-1500B-E or K029BE as its glide designation, dropped from Su-30/34/35 aircraft. The bomb is in normal stowed configuration with its winged panels retracted but when it is dropped the wings unfold. This bomb is a massive 1500kg in size, with a reported 1000kg+ concrete-penetrating warhead. Russia has tens of thousands of these ancient Soviet Fab-500 bombs, so it can create a JDAM-like system to rig them with wings and guidance and could have a gigantic preset inventory of guided munitions with very minimal costs as these bombs are at this point worth next to nothing.
Another bomb, demonstrably used, is a new Grom-2 (Kh-36/9-A-7759) glide-bomb, which is similar with Ukrainian developed Grom-2 bomb. This is a roughly 500kg munition meant for Su-34’s and Mig-35’s, with a range of 50-65km. It can even be used to hit targets behind the carrier.
The next bomb is Kab-1500LG (Laser Guided). Although this one is not a glide-bomb, it is nevertheless laser-guided with high precision. Now that AFU’s AD has been degraded, Russian Su-34’s can drop them from semi-close range.
The next bomb is an oddity, the RBK-500U Drel a guided glide-bomb, which Russia has started to produce but there have not been reports of its usage yet. This bomb is the most advanced at all and would be perfect against Ukraine’s supposedly coming armor offensive, as it is armed with 15-20 SPBE-K sensor-fuzed sub-munitions, which pop out over the given area and then self-target onto all enemy armor present (via infra-red and millimeter wave radar). A single bomb can destroy over a dozen enemy tanks if they’re grouped nearby.
Air strikes continue
On the night of March 24, the Russian Aerospace Forces carried out more than 10 airstrikes on military targets in the Ukrainian border Sumy region. Sumy region was attacked by guided aerial bombs launched from about 10 aircraft. Ukrainian servicemen who were seen on the spot confirmed that the facilities were used by the Ukrainian military. Ukrainian bases were attacked by Russian Su-35 fighters with upgraded FAB-500M62 glide bombs. Destruction of military facilities in the town of Belopolye and Viri was confirmed. Targets were also reportedly hit in the Mykolaiv commune located west of the city of Sumy.
The Ukrainian side did not reveal the real losses. However, the strikes with heavy bombs on the Ukrainian accommodation points likely resulted in destruction of hundreds of Ukrainian servicemen. Russian sources supposed that dozens of Ukrainian militants were killed and over two hundred others were injured.
Russian strikes in the Sumy region were claimed to be the most large-scale attack by Russian aviation on the border facilities of the Ukrainian army in recent times. On the same day, Russian Geran-2 UAVs reportedly struck military targets in the Krivoy Rog region.
On the night of March 25, an air alert sounded in several Ukrainian region, including Kharkiv, Sumy, Poltava and Dnepropetrovsk. As a result of the missile strike, the building of the Kramatorsk Institute of Economics and Humanities, which was also reportedly used by the Ukrainian military, was hit. Ukrainian forces continue to accommodate the AFU units in public civilian facilities.
The Ukrainian command has been actively increasing the concentration of forces and means of the AFU in the north-east of the Kharkiv region. These forces can be seen as strategic reserves of AFU for the coming spring offensive and one of the accumulation places has been Volchansk. This city is located just a few kilometers from the border with the Russian Belgorod region. Russia got to know the place and accumulation process taking countermeasures. Artillery and assault aviation destroyed and eliminated large troops concentrations, trenches, dugouts and other fortifications as well as huge amount of equipment. The strike took place on March 27-28.
Some western experts have stated that thus far Russian Air Forces have kept quite low profile but that may not be true, yet they have performed in another way and this theater of operation is very different from those, where the US air forces have operated in last 20-30 years.
Some days ago, MoD Shoigu stated the following interesting information in an update: During the special operation, the Russian Aerospace Forces destroyed more than 20,000 enemy facilities, making over 140,000 sorties – Shoigu
If you divide that by 392 days of combat of the SMO thus far, you get almost 360 total sorties per day average. NATO’s own cited numbers showed, in the 1999 Serbian bombings, all NATO forces combined flew 250 sorties per day on average, and the US flew 150 strike sorties per day, as a comparison. According to Defense Ministry’s statistics, Russian forces have eliminated in total, 404 airplanes and 227 helicopters, 3,625 unmanned aerial vehicles and415 air defense missile systems.
Drones in action – It’s a drone world today
As mentioned in previous articles and based on many experts’ assessments, it is anticipated a mass drone attack to start off an AFU offensive. The AFU has been busy creating large company-level teams of UAV operators with each brigade. According to a Russian source, Taiwan gave Ukraine almost a thousand unmanned aerial vehicles that may have a swarm function and are able to automatically interact with each other. Ukrainian forces want to use them in a counter-offensive against Crimea to create an effect of surprise and panic among Russian forces.
But Russia has not sat idle, either. There are several new reports that Russian authorities have been developing different new means taking the drone warfare very seriously, from handheld one-man devices (jammers) to wide-range mobile truck mounted systems.
There’ve been reports of a new mysterious Russian microwave weapon taking out Ukrainian drones several kilometers away and AFU are strongly complaining about it. Some believe it is the Ranets-E system, presented long ago at Russian military trade-shows but has gone ‘off-grid’ since then. In Ukraine, reports began to appear about UAVs shot down by Russia at a distance of 6-7 kilometers, as if they seem to be burning down. According to the authors, the Russian Armed Forces can use Ranets-E combat complexes of electromagnetic radiation in downing Ukrainian drones.
“Ranets-E” is a powerful microwave generator on wheels designed for non-contact destruction of enemy aircraft. The installation station is able to detect enemy equipment using the “friend or foe” system, aim and automatically guide the target, constantly “frying” its electronic insides with powerful microwave radiation.
The Economist even highlighted the ‘black magic’ of Russia’s recent capabilities in this regard in a recent article, March 20: “The Russians are doing black magic in electromagnetic defense. They can jam signals, affect GPS, send drones to the wrong height, just to make them fall from the sky,” a Ukrainian source quoted the publication as saying.
Russia has created a Defense Innovation Support Center at the level of the State Duma to help facilitate new technologies to Russian troops. This is partly in response to all the complaints about how inefficient and bureaucratic the Russian military system has been in the first year of the SMO in terms of allowing Russian troops to procure the latest needed items like drones etc.
Drones, robots and satellites – what will be the war of the future
The warfare has changed dramatically in recent decades as the proliferation of unmanned systems continues unabated. As a result, drones, robots and other unmanned vehicles have become increasingly important.
Perhaps the best proof of the dramatic rise and adoption of unmanned systems has been the mass usage of drones by both sides of the Ukrainian conflict. Ranging from commercial quadcopters to HALE (high-altitude, long-endurance) military drones, these weapons are changing the face of warfare in a manner no less revolutionary than airplanes and tanks did during the First World War.
Interestingly, as both the Russian military and the Ukrainian forces deploy advanced long-range air defenses (particularly the former), the role of larger drones has subsided, leaving smaller platforms as the cost-effective alternative, providing with significant tactical advantages.
Aside from circumventing advanced SAM (surface-to-air missile) systems, miniature drones offer an important upper hand in terms of first-strike capabilities and forward reconnaissance. The US-led political West is also taking this into account, especially when considering the fact that NATO’s massive ISR (intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance) capabilities have been used to observe virtually every inch of the vast Ukrainian battlefields.
Regarding Ukraine’s upcoming offensive, Russian intelligence found solid evidence that such weapons are being supplied by the West to the AFU but what is unusual is the participation of Taiwan in this business. Taiwan is working directly with the US on developing and manufacturing the new unmanned systems. Another novelty will be the ability of these drones to autonomously coordinate their attacks and act as a swarm, or more precisely, “swarms-of-swarms”, as the US program’s name clearly indicates.
The project, named AMASS (Autonomous Multi-Domain Adaptive Swarms-of-Swarms), is directly supervised by DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency), the Pentagon’s top advanced weapons programs agency. In order to accomplish the task of controlling hundreds of drones simultaneously, the use of advanced artificial intelligence (AAI) is a given in this case. Considering that AAI is one of DARPA’s main fields of study, its involvement in the project is effectively guaranteed. DARPA’s share in the project is by far the largest, although Taiwan seems to be providing key manufacturing facilities.
The AMASS project is now accelerated by DARPA due to Pentagon’s plans to create a “swarms-of-swarms” system that would “simultaneously counter multiple adversarial assets and enable warfighters to operate within the A2/AD (anti-access/area denial) environment”. With Russia and China being the only countries with such capabilities, it’s essentially guaranteed they are the primary targets. This is further reinforced by the involvement of the government in Taipei, which clearly aims to counter China’s A2/AD capability.
However, before the possible deployment of AMASS in Taiwan, the system needs to be battle-tested in Ukraine. If it were to be proven effective, Washington and Taipei would certainly mass-produce it. Thus, it’s highly likely that the project was discussed by Russian and Chinese military delegates during President Xi Jinping’s latest visit to Moscow, as it’s in the interest of both to see the program fail. If it proves successful in Ukraine, the Chinese military itself would most certainly face it in Taiwan, endangering the success of a possible amphibious operation. While China has advanced systems capable of countering such weapons, the best possible defense is preventing their deployment altogether.
Nevertheless, with the Russian military poised to be the first to encounter weapons such as the AMASS, Moscow has already started crucial upgrades to its air defense systems. Still, Russia’s A2/AD, better known as “echeloned defense” in Russian military nomenclature, is only one segment of its (recently revised) strategy, with the so-called “active defense” being the key to neutralizing immediate threats. This includes adopting new offensive capabilities and precisely this could have been one of the main topics of behind-closed-doors talks about Sino-Russian technological cooperation, which almost certainly includes the exchange of information on drone swarms.
China – Taiwan context
The great power rivalry began again in 2014, when Russia annexed Crimea and China militarized the South China Sea. After that, the Pentagon promised to invest in advanced military technology but the American advanced military, however, turned out to be utopian. American military wasted its money on losing campaigns in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria and other theaters of operation. For almost a decade, the US has not advanced in the development of the promised “advanced” weapons (e.g. hypersonics) – unlike Russia and even more so China.
American analysts say that the priority of the Biden administration in favor of supporting Ukraine “disturbs the balance of power in the Indo-Pacific region and contradicts the declared strategic goals.”
The longer the Biden administration pumps weapons into Ukraine, the sharper the competition with Taiwan will be for air defense systems, coastal defense systems and drones. Especially considering that at the current pace, China is ready to reunite with Taiwan as early as 2027 (previously called 2025).
Russian actions during the special operation in Ukraine are being studied in detail by American intelligence, not only to report to the Kyiv generals but above all, for the internal needs of the United States itself. The Pentagon has begun developing a new “National Defense Strategy” for 2024 and the main points in it will be devoted specifically to Russia and China.
American strategists state that, having studied the advanced experience of Russia today, they will use it to prevent a Sino-Taiwan war tomorrow. The US directly draws an analogy between Ukraine and Taiwan: in the event of an armed conflict, they will supply the partner country with both weapons and intelligence.
Both American and Chinese military analysts are now closely following, what is happening in Ukraine and they are most closely studying the use of loitering ammunition and other drones, artificial intelligence as well as fighting in urban environments.
The latest information from Ukraine frontlines tells that Wagner “musicians” are taking over Bakhmut, which appears to be a turning point in this war. On the other hand, accelerating losses of AFU troops and equipment cause the possible counteroffensive to be postponed into the indefinite future. The final act of this war is really going.