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Operational Situational Summary - Ukraine 2 March

From a glance at the map and the news reports, it appears that the Russian advance has been very slow or even checked.

However, a deeper look shows the situation has worsened significantly for Ukraine. That this happened as per my expectation in the past few posts makes me feel worse.

In the North, the Russian forces have already encircled Chernihiv in the past couple of days. This is not yet fully updated on this map.

The two strong armored spearheads from Konotop (which had also fallen) are currently holding in Pryluky and Nizhyn. The Chernihiv garrison probably has a day or two before the Russians reach Kozelets. Then any breakout attempt to Kyiv will become extremely difficult and will likely result in very heavy losses. It is to be expected that this city too, will fall soon without affecting the battle of Kyiv.

This is bad for Ukraine. Now that the International Community has rallied for Ukraine, the previous fears of Russia dealing with breakaway republics in the East should be gone. Putin will have to sign a peace treaty with Zelensky only - otherwise the crippling sanctions on Russia will continue. No puppet Ukrainian state can come about and get diplomatic recognition except from Russia, Belarus and other Russian puppet states.

What this means is that the Ukrainian Forces should withdraw promptly from their Eastern besieged areas to the areas where the decisive battle is going to come about - Kyiv, Zhytomyr, Dnepropetrovsk, Cherkassy and Fastov.

Worse, the Russians have broken through the Kyiv defenses in the West and blocked the roads to Korosten and Zhytomyr completely. Even the road to Fastiv/Fastov is being contested. If this is gone, all the routes of supply to the West / Europe will be cut leaving only an air bridge available to the Ukrainian defenders. This is terrible, because most of the larger airports in and around Kyiv have fallen to the Russians and also because the air superiority in the region over Kyiv belongs firmly with Russia.

Ukraine will have to break the route to Zhytomyr and Fastiv if it hopes to sustain a meaningful resistance over the next couple of weeks.

The front in the East remains largely static. There have been artillery shelling of Kharkov over the past days, but infantry assaults have not yet materialized. This significant force and the one facing the DPR and LPR are also facing encirclement on the other bank of the river.

In the South, we have a lot of action. Almost the entire south of the river has been captured by Russia. Mariopol is likely to fall anytime soon. The city is still fighting and is probably going to follow the Festung Mariopol policy to its demise in a day or two.

The battle for Kherson is ongoing. The Russians had captured the railway station and the port/ferry. This allows them to reinforce the city at will, while Ukraine will not be able to do so. Unfortunately, Ukraine will have to defend this town as this is the last line of defense before the open plains to Central Ukraine and a direct Southern route to the Capital. Odessa is also just to the West - which is the last access point Ukraine has to the Black Sea.

One the Russian forces reach Mykolaiv, Kherson's defenders will perish eventually - again without influencing the decisive battles to occur in and around Kyiv. The last chance of having a Southern front stretching Mykolaiv - Kherson - Nikopol - Zaporizhzhia - Berdiansk seems to be gone. Nikopol and Berdiansk have already fallen. With Kherson in the bag, it is only a matter of time before the South is breached.

After this Ukraine will be devoured from the open south. This could have been prevented if the East was evacuated and forces sent to reinforce the river Dnepr. It is now too late. Only a miracle can ensure sustained Ukrainian resistance.


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