Day 258: Russian draftees suffer heavy casualties near Ukraine’s Svatove and Pavlivka

Russian draftees suffer heavy casualties

Reports of Russia’s heavy casualties in Ukraine broke through the Kremlin-controlled news media. The Ukrainian troops defeated a marine brigade near Pavlivka in Donetsk region, and took out a battalion of unprepared Russian draftees near Svatove in Luhansk region. 

In early November, near Makiyivka in Luhansk region, 30 kilometers from Svatove, only 30-40 Russian draftees out of a battalion of more than 500 survived. Reports came from the Russian media outside of the Kremlin’s control, including Verstka, TV Rain, Current Time, and BBC Russian Service that spoke to survivors and dozens of family members of the mobilized men that were sent to Svatove.

Near the village of Pavlivka in Donetsk region, the Russian marines decried the generals for the loss of about 300 people killed and most of the equipment in just four days of fighting.

The uproar over the losses, including a rare case of a collective address by the soldiers’ family members, prompted an official statement from the Russian Defense Ministry. The Ministry denied the losses, while accounts collected by the media prove the contrary.

As the Ukrainian troops quickly pushed back the Russian forces in Kharkiv region in early autumn, and later retook Lyman in Donetsk region, the counteroffensive in Luhansk region gained momentum, particularly along the Svatove-Kreminna line. In late October, the Ukrainian Armed Forces gained control of the Svatove-Kreminna road. Despite the bad weather that slows the advance, the Ukrainian troops continue to push on the Russian defense lines trying to break through them.

Intense fighting rages on this part of the front line for weeks. The Institute for the Study of War notes Ukraine’s offensive efforts on the Svatove-Kreminna line in its daily reports. Svatove is a strategic point, Ukrainian analysts say.

Russians move convoys of looted goods across Kakhovka dam, Ukraine’s General Staff says

On November 7, the Russian forces moved convoys of household appliances and construction materials they looted in Kherson region, across the dam of the Kakhovka hydroelectric power plant, the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces said. 

The Russian forces try to keep the seized territories, focusing on fixing Ukraine’s defense forces in some areas. The adversary conducts offensive actions on the Bakhmut, Avdiyivka and Novopavlivka directions, the General Staff said.

The Russian forces shell the Ukrainian troops along the contact line, fortify positions and conduct aerial reconnaissance.

Ukraine asks the U.S. to send C-RAM air defense systems to counter Iranian-made drones, ABC News says

In a letter, the chairman of the Ukrainian parliament, Ruslan Stefanchuk, calls on the U.S. to provide Ukraine with highly mobile air defense systems known as C-RAMs, saying they would help protect “important objects, especially crucial power plants”, ABC News reports.

C-RAMs have a built-in radar to track incoming threats and a giant rapid-fire gun to shoot them down, with NATO saying the “most effective” systems are able to fire 4,500 rounds per minute.

In his letter, Stefanchuk also asks senior U.S. lawmakers to assist him in asking the Biden administration to provide longer-range missiles so that the Ukrainian military could destroy targets such as “stocks of Iranian drones, deep behind the enemy lines on the occupied territory of Ukraine.”

“We are using all kinds of different stuff [to destroy the Iranian drones],” an unnamed Ukrainian politician told ABC News, adding that the Ukrainian military even sometimes resorts to shoulder-launched anti-tank weapons to counter the threat. Ukrainian fighter jets are being used to track them and, in some instances, shoot them down.

A Ukrainian government source said the Ukrainian government was talking to all of its partners, including the U.S., about creating a “comprehensive and wide” air defense system “all across Ukraine”.

“We’re not talking about a few systems near the front lines,” the official added. “If we have this [comprehensive air defense] system, this war can end sooner and that’s in all of our interests.”

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