Mariupol and Russian victims in Ukraine
After a siege that lasted 82 days, last Ukrainian defenders capitulated. Wounded troops are being evacuated to Ukrainian and Russian hospitals, while the Ukrainian government is indicating that there may be a change of prisoners.
The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Tuesday, Ukrainian forces have killed about 27,900 Russian troops (and wounded about three times as many), destroyed 201 combat, attack and transport jets, 167 attack and transport helicopters, 1,235 tanks, 578 artillery pieces, 3,009 armored ships, 198 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS)13 boats and cutters, 2,109 vehicles and fuel tanks, 90 anti-aircraft batteries, 436 unmanned aerial vehicles, 43 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems and 97 cruise missiles fired by the Ukrainian air defense.
Russian indiscriminate shelling in Ukraine
In its daily assessment of the war, the British Ministry of Defense focused on the extensive damage caused by the Russian invasion on Ukrainian city centers.
“In the Chernihiv region north of Kyiv, an estimated 3,500 buildings were destroyed or damaged during Russia’s abandoned move towards the Ukrainian capital. 80% of the damage has been caused to residential buildings. The extent of this damage indicates Russia’s readiness to use artillery against inhabited areas, with minimal regard for discrimination or proportionality, says the British military intelligence service. assessed.
Although the Kremlin at the beginning of its “special military operation” insisted that they only hit targets with precision weapons to avoid possible side damage, the Russian military has in fact targeted Ukrainian city centers indiscriminately. Whether it’s a result of technical shortcomings – such as a lack of precision-guided ammunition – or a general disregard for the lives of civilians – or indeed a combination – the result is the same: Ukrainian cities in ruins and dead civilians lying in their apartments and streets.
“Russia has likely resorted to increasing reliance on indiscriminate artillery bombardment due to limited target acquisition capability and a reluctance to risk routinely flying fighter jets outside its own front lines. In the coming weeks, Russia is likely to continue to rely heavily on artillery attacks. the speed of its advance in the Donbas, added the British military intelligence service.
Ukraine Impact – NATO, Finland, Sweden, Russia … and Turkey
The decision of Finland and Sweden to join NATO has triggered an expected reaction from Russia and an unexpected reaction from Turkey.
On Tuesday, the Finnish parliament overwhelmingly approved the decision to apply for NATO membership, with 188 legislators voting in favor and 8 against.
Russia Warns that any serious relocation of NATO’s military infrastructure to the two Scandinavian countries would provoke a proportionate response;
“I think there are some things we all need to keep in mind. First, NATO is a defensive alliance, it has never done so, and it does not now pose a threat to any other nation. And that includes Russia,” the Pentagon said. Press Secretary John F. Kirby.
This is the usual Russian rhetoric, and it is highly unlikely that Moscow will take any military action against Finland and Sweden. It will certainly launch or intensify hybrid warfare operations, such as cyber attacks and information operations, against Stockholm and Helsinki, but will not take any military action.
“Secondly, it is not up to Mr Putin, or any other third party, to veto whether a nation joins NATO or not, it is up to that nation and the other members of NATO to decide. And again, there is a multi-step process here, and three, I think we need to remember who is actually the aggressor here, and whose actions probably motivate these two nations to want to join NATO, and that is Mr Putin and Russia themselves, added Kirby.
But the prospect of Finland and Sweden joining NATO has provoked controversy within the alliance. Turkey, a NATO member since 1952, has publicly said that it would oppose the two Scandinavian countries’ membership application.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan claims that the two countries should first lift an arms embargo they have imposed on his country after he invaded Syria in 2019, thereby turning a strategically crucial decision into a personal feud.
All NATO members must agree to a new country joining them.
[1945snewcolumnistDefenseandNationalSecurity[1945årsnyakolumnistförförsvarochnationellsäkerhetStavros Atlamazoglou is an experienced defense journalist with a focus on special operations, a veteran of the Greek Army (civilian service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army Headquarters) and a degree from Johns Hopkins University. His work has been included in Business Insider, Sandboxxand SOFREP.