Ukraine Update 24 February, 2022 (Afternoon)

I deliberately waited for President Biden to make his comments on the Russia’s invasion of Ukraine before posting the afternoon update. Biden’s remarks were largely a rehashing the threat of ‘devastating’ sanctions being prepared for implementation and painting Vladimir Putin’s actions in a decidedly dark light, and rightfully so. He believes Putin intends to reclaim through conquest what the Soviet Union ceded in 1991 upon its collapse. Biden also made it a point to explain that sanctions will not damage Russian economy immediately upon being unleashed. It will take some time for the effects to be felt. The rest of the comments and subsequent press conference centered around details of the sanctions as well as requests for clarification of the role of the United States military in the fighting thus far. Biden was clear to point out the purpose of US troop movements into Eastern Europe is to strengthen NATO’s Eastern Flank against possible Russian action in the future. There will be no direct military assistance provided to Ukraine by the US or NATO.

Also this afternoon, the Department of Defense announced the deployment of an additional 7,000 troops to Europe to help strengthen NATO defenses. This force will include an armored brigade, though it was unknown if the brigade will take its equipment from prepositioned war stocks in Europe or if its equipment and vehicles will need to be transported to Europe by ship.


Military Update

-On the ground in Ukraine this afternoon, fighting continues to rage. As far as determining how much ground the Russian offensive has gained, that remains hidden by the fog of war for now. Fighting west of Kiev at the airport is still taking place. The Russian air mobile force that secured the airport early in the morning has been counterattacked by Ukrainian forces. It’s unclear which side now has control of the airport.

-Mariupol appears to now be in Russian control, or at least parts of the city are in Russian hands. Video obtained from there earlier today showed Russian troops setting up a checkpoint on a road with two armored vehicles in the background. Whether or not this scene occurred inside of Mariupol proper has not been confirmed. However, given that web camera streams from there are now out and communication severely degraded, I’ll assume Russia controls Mariupol unless independent sources confirm otherwise.

5 thoughts on “Ukraine Update 24 February, 2022 (Afternoon)

  1. Good morning from Denmark Mike

    I have followed your “real world “blog for some time, but with the situation in Ukraine being what it is, I have a few comments:

    1) It’s a tragedy and Putin seem delusional. Everyone here is firmly on the side of the Ukrainian people. I cannot fathom what his endgame is, and how it benefits anyone in Russia. The world would be a better place if this had not happened.

    2) When the dust is settled, there going to be a lot of analysis of tactics, weapon effects and shifts in doctrines. Much like the Falklands War gave us an understanding of near-peer warfare during the Cold War, this will be a real test for systems and perceived notions we had for 30 years. May be a wake-up call for a lot of military pundits.

    3) Observation 1: I am seeing a lot less drones than what I thought I would. Perhaps they are there, but so much else is going on, that they are being overlooked? Or perhaps drones are not as useful in a high mobility war?

    4) Observation 2: All the videos I have seen (but you properly have access to better sources), show the Russians moving along roads in neat marching columns. The few losses show, seems to have been from ambushes. My thinking is, that there has no real Ukrainian “stands” – in proper combat positions. This might be a part of a deliberate withdrawal, because they are being overwhelmed or perhaps, they are “melting away”.

    5) Observation 3: Very few pictures of prisoners or mass casualties. This is off-course a good thing. If true. I just cannot connect the massive army clashes I read about – with the very few causalities and number of prisoners.

    6) The Russian airmobile assault on Hostomel Airport was quite a sight. And seems to have been an astounding success. Some losses in helicopters, but still a success. This was what NATO feared for many years – a large, well-supported airhead at a strategic target in the deep rear. And it worked.

    • Morning, Christian! Good to hear from you over here. 🙂 I’m just about to head to a meeting but I’ll address your points later on this afternoon when I get back. Off to a meeting now unfortunately

    • 1. Putin has his reasons for launching the attack now. I personally believe he had this planned for a long time and the opportunity presented itself now.

      2. I agree. Happens after every major conflict. Nowadays, the alleged military ‘experts’ are not experts at all, sadly. Many haven’t even served and their knowledge is restricted to theory and second-hand information. Very unfortunate.

      3. Good point. Heavy drone activity was expected by both sides. So far, we’ve seen little evidence of this.

      4. I have seen some videos of Russian tanks going cross country, but then coming back into roadways where available. The fac they’re using roads this much though, doesn’t speak well for the level of resistance Ukraine is putting up.

      5. I’ve seen a few prisoners and all, but yeah they seem to be in lower than expected numbers

      6. The second airmobile attack this morning was a success, sadly. They used a larger force though, with considerable air support. So they learned their lesson

  2. Two somewhat-hopeful signs:
    – Crowds are in the streets of Moscow not exactly supporting Putin’s land grab. Of course, they’re being repressed, but one can hope it turns out as well as the uprising against the August 1991 coup.
    – There’s anecdotal reports that at least some of Ukraine’s resistance is being effective.

    • Tomorrow is going to be the big test for Ukraine. Well, today, considering its after midnight there. Day 1 was about softening air defenses, etc. The main effort on the ground will likely begin in the next 12 hours

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