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Ukraine is waging a ‘deep war’ to degrade Russian forces

A Russian train carrying troops and supplies to reinforce positions in southern Ukraine was destroyed by US-supplied precision missiles over the weekend, killing dozens of soldiers and destroying many wagons, according to Ukrainian officials, who released satellite images of the strike site to support their claim.

At the same time, Russia sought to renew its efforts to advance into eastern Ukraine, again covering the front with overwhelming artillery fire as it attempted to reposition ground forces to move from the before.

On several fronts, the Ukrainian and Russian military tried to dictate both how and where the battle was fought. Much will depend on which army succeeds in this effort.

For the Ukrainians, this means attacking the Russians where they are weakest on the eastern and southern fronts, using some of the same tactics they used in the early months of the war to drive the Russians from around Kyiv and other northern towns and villages.

For the Russians, that means using the kind of brute force that has devastated many cities now under their control.

As more long-range Western weapons have entered the country, Ukraine has been increasingly able to wage what military analysts call “deep warfare”, attacking command centers and Russian checkpoints, striking key supply routes, trying to isolate Russian forces in pockets, and enlisting Ukrainian guerrillas behind enemy lines in the south to help target Russian positions and engage in sabotage.

The attack on the train over the weekend was the latest in a series of strikes that have disrupted Russian logistics efforts and inflicted severe casualties.

“According to intelligence data, all drivers and engineers of the Russian Railways Company, who were transporting military goods from Crimea to the Kherson region, were killed,” Anton Gerashchenko, an adviser to the ministry, said Monday morning. inside.

Although his specific claims are not independently verified, video of an explosion and satellite images of the aftermath provided evidence that the Ukrainians hit a Russian train along one of the two main railway lines running from Crimea to southern Ukraine.

Ukraine’s military said on Monday that in recent weeks it had destroyed at least 15 ammunition depots in southern Ukraine alone – with many strikes captured on video – forcing the Russians to use ground-based missiles. air to hit ground targets. The Pentagon said last week that Ukraine was using Western weapons to increasingly devastating effect.

The Ukrainians have become very good at finding and killing Russian command and control centers and destroying large amounts of Russian equipment, a senior US Department of Defense official said on Friday.

But the Russians have shown they can still cause widespread death and destruction with the vast arsenal still at their disposal.

The use of overwhelming force has been at the heart of Russian military doctrine since Soviet times. The advances of their forces this spring in the eastern region of Lugansk came only after Russian artillery had reduced the towns to rubble.

“Their tactics remain much the same as during the hostilities in the Luhansk region,” Serhii Haidai, head of the Luhansk regional military administration, said on Monday.

He said the Russians were daily trying to mount an offensive against the town of Bakhmut in the Donetsk region, but had so far failed to break through the main Ukrainian defensive lines.

Russian forces in the east – as well as parts of the south – were also massing troops in an attempt to advance along several lines of attack, Ukraine’s military high command said. While Western military analysts think Russia is unlikely to succeed in any attempt to gain new swathes of territory, the Ukrainians are expected to react – influencing how quickly they can mount a counteroffensive in southern Europe. ‘Ukraine.

The Ukrainian government has expressed growing confidence that as long as the West continues to supply the weapons it needs, Ukraine can win the war. But Kyiv must also persuade a public weary of war and Western allies to be patient.

nytimes Eur

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