As expected Bakhmut has been taken. Their are conflicting reports regarding Ukrainian troop withdrawal. If troops are being withdrawn it’s likely to little to late. If it’s happening at all! Personally, I’m not confident about Zelensky’s leadership. He’s been all too willing to sacrifice Ukrainians for the US. But, maybe withdrawal has or is taking place?
Bakhmut was Artemovsk until 2016- when Ukraine began to erase/ change names
Drawing on a few sources
“No city outside of Kyiv is more politically important than Bakhmut,” John Spencer, a retired U.S. Army major and chair of Urban Warfare Studies at the Madison Policy Forum, told Newsweek.”
Bakhmut is, to my understanding, more than just politically important. Which leaves me wondering if the media presentation is more for perception management. To soften the blow of the loss. For both Ukrainian and Western audiences
The talk of an actual withdrawal is not reassuring
“So far they’ve held the city, but if need be, they will strategically pull back because we’re not going to sacrifice all of our people just for nothing,” said Alexander Rodnyansky.
Alexander Downes, the co-director of the Institute for Security and Conflict Studies at George Washington University, said Ukraine may need to pull troops out “before it’s too late.”
Continuing the fight?
“But it only makes sense as long as you don’t risk losing a large force, either through getting overrun or getting encircled, which is looking increasingly likely given that the Russians are making gains to the northwest.”
Russian troops and mercenaries were closing off on Friday the last access routes to the besieged Ukrainian city of Bakhmut, which is located about 130km (80 miles) southeast of Kharkiv.
Victory in Bakhmut would give Russia its largest advance since last summer and control over a key transport hub in Donetsk
Victory in Bakhmut
- It says it would be a stepping stone to capturing the surrounding Donbas region, an important war aim.
Taking Bakhmut is more than political
Civilian withdrawal from Kupiansk- It seems the Ukrainian military has been readying the next fight.
Image below from Feb 13/23. Two weeks ago
Ukraine has ordered the mandatory evacuation of vulnerable residents from the front-line city of Kupiansk and adjacent northeastern territories as fears mount Russia will retake the key city and rail hub.
Reno, “It is more useful to view Kupiansk in the bigger picture of Russia’s attempts to throw more soldiers and materials into the fight to exhaust Ukrainian forces before the arrival of the West’s tanks and infantry fighting vehicles.”