16 July 2014 — No Limit to Our Anger (c) V. M. Molotov
[I don’t know how accurate these situation reports from the Eastern Ukraine are, but they make interesting reading. I wonder also, how much is down to the translation as they come across more like prose than journalism? But most surprising of all is the fact that the ‘rebels’, ‘separatists’, or ‘federalists’, take your pick, might actually stand a chance of winning, but at what cost? WB]
by Gleb Bazov
Translated from Russian by Gleb Bazov
Video: Igor Strelkov on the Battlefield – The Attack on Maryinovka
Igor Strelkov: We attacked Maryinovka, attempting to cut across the [southern] corridor, which connects the enemy’s southern group with its main forces. Well, we weren’t able to cut through all the way. We took control of three strategic heights and one village. However, we couldn’t make it all the way to the border; their forces are too large here.
It looks like there were two dead and no fewer than fifteen wounded, most of them, thankfully, lightly. So, there are a few …
Militiaman: The mortar battery was located. In the corn field.
Igor Strelkov: (to the militiaman) Where is it? Eliminate it. Eliminate. Encircle and eliminate it. Throw your reconnaissance unit there.
Igor Strelkov: (to the reporter) Right now I’ll have to give orders. So, we destroyed one BTR and one BMP of the enemy. One BMP was captured. And just now we located the mortar battery that was shelling us. Perhaps we’ll be able to deal with it as well. However, chances are the personnel is long gone.
So, a few armoured vehicles managed to escape from us; they fled the village. One of the heights was defended by three tanks. In the settlement itself, there were four BMPs, one Hummer and two BTRs. The larger part of them left. However, as I already mentioned, two armoured vehicles were destroyed and one was captured.
What else could I tell you? The enemy is sending its last regards to Maryinovka by shelling it. Right now it’s quiet, but, otherwise, they lob two-three heavy shells at it every several minutes.
There were fierce artillery exchanges. The militia conducted mortar strikes against the enemy positions. You can hear them now again. I don’t think the battle is over yet.
[Here’s another one, also released today; an interview with a Kiev government soldier. WB]
by Gleb Bazov
Translated from Russian by Gleb Bazov
Video: A Call from the ATO Zone – We’ve Been Retreating for Four Days
Ukrainian Soldier: I am currently the area of Sverdlovsk, Krasno-Partisansk and Izvarino. There are only 400 of us left out of almost 800.
Reporter: Describe the situation. What is happening now? Please tell us.
Ukrainian Soldier: What is happening now? Since 02:00 am we are being pummeled with Grads. Right now, there was mortar shelling that lasted about two hours. We don’t have anything to respond with. All we have are the two wretched SAUs [Note: Self-Propelled Artillery System]. We are sitting here and taking it. We are sustaining losses. There are dead and wounded. Yesterday there were dead; today there are dead. Yesterday there were wounded; today there are wounded.
There are no reinforcements. There is no food. They got us only 800 … 400 litres of water for four hundred men. It’s just a litre a day per person, or what? And that’s how it is here. And you write that everything is fine and we are attacking Sverdlovsk. We are not fucking attacking – we are retreating for the forth day in a row!
There is no order to withdraw. There are killing us like cannon fodder. They know where we are, but we have no idea who it is that we are fighting against! We can’t see them! They are hitting us and picking us off.
And it’s coming from the “neutral” territory – from the territory between Ukraine and the border. The territory between Russian and Ukraine – those two wretched kilometres of the neutral zone.
The fields are burning around us. Very many of our vehicles have been blown up. Fuel trucks are burning. We are retreating into the forest. There is no order to withdraw. We are just sitting there.
Reporter: Who is your commander?
Ukrainian Soldier: Commander of the 72nd Brigade, he gave the order to stand ground. Colonel Grishenko. Out of one company, a full company, only 35 men are left and only one unit of military equipment. And by protocol, there must be 10 units of equipment and 90 men. Can you imagine our losses? And that’s how we fight here.
Reporter: Is there anything else you want to say?
I want to tell the command of our “great” ATO to start acting, even just a little bit. They must withdraw forces from here! I understand that it will give the militants the place and the opportunity to fortify. But they must withdraw the forces! Put everyone into one live chain – everyone close ranks and push along the entire front and move forward together, rather than deploy individual units.
Because … we are not afraid to fight, but we don’t want to become cannot fodder. We are not cannot fodder, we are human beings. And when they put checkmarks and conduct negotiations with terrorists … while we can’t even see them to shoot at them. They airdrop ammunitions that we don’t need in a hundred years. We want to move forward in one joint front to kick them out of our land.
If they are ready to go forward with this and think with their heads, let even one of them come and spend a day and a night here. Let him spend time in the trenches, being shelled with Grad. Let him try it himself to see how “cool” it is. He’ll be drinking a ton of sedatives a day.
And then they tell us they will be paying some kind of compensations. And then they write that we didn’t handle weapons carefully. When we are already in the hospital.
There are almost no helicopters that fly here. There was just one that came in, one in so many days, just to take away the “200s” and the “300s” [Note: KIA/Killed In Action and WIA/Wounded In Action]. Three “200s” – that’s three killed – and eleven wounded. It came yesterday and the day before yesterday. Before that, they did not fly – they were too afraid to fly. Do they think we are not afraid to stand here?