Ukraine War Daily Summary 22 Aug 22

27 Aug 22

At the geostrategic level, People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Senior Colonel Tan Kefei warned “We firmly oppose any third party to meddle in the China-India border issue in any form.” This came after upcoming India-US exercises were announced in the region. There is a strong belief that after seizure of Taiwan China will turn to settle accounts with India.

The Solomon Islands refused a US Coast Guard vessel the USCGC Oliver Henry to make a recent logistics port stop over as tensions remain after a recent Chinese visit and new Chinese agreements signed in closer ties between the two. The US warship had to go on to Papua New Guinea.

Tensions are rising between Serbia and Kosovo as there is a significant build-up of Serbian military equipment near the border.

Russia blocked the passage of a UN declaration on nuclear disarmament of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant. This unwise move firmly isolated Russia, as even China expressed disappointment with its non-passage and did not reiterate support for Russia's objections in Ukraine.

A significant part of the Russian Mediterranean task force withdrew from the region with the departure of Northern Fleet warships. The Slava class cruiser Marshal Ustinov, Udaloy class destroyer Vice-Admiral Kunikov and fleet oiler Vyazma passed into the Atlantic Ocean via the Strait of Gibraltar, ending a six-month long deployment.

Russia pulled a S-300 air defense system out of Syria and sent it back to Russia.

Belarus has 4-7 Battalion Tactical Groups (BTGs) between Brest and Gomel to fix Ukrainian troops in the North and prevent them from reinforcing forces fighting to the south. The Belarusian military are reportedly conducting reconnaissance all along the Ukraine border. While not an indication of hostile action Belarusian forces exercise tempo from mid-spring to now has been unprecedented. Belarus has extended military drills near Ukraine's borders.

Ukrainian media and Belarusian opposition figures are warning that Russia is amassing significant forces in Belarus to fire missiles on Ukrainian cities with Ukraine's Independence Day.

Across the theatre, Russian air and missile strikes continued but on a very subdued scale. Russian shelling continued to be heavy around Donetsk City, near Bakhmut, northwest of Kherson, Zaporizhzhia and north of Kharkiv.

On the ground, British intelligence believes that Russia has made progress over the past five days around Pisky which is near Donetsk airport. This coincided with an intensification of Russia's attacks north of Donetsk city, which includes Siversk and Bakhmut.

There is evidence that Russia’s new 3rd Army Corps being raised for service in Ukraine is being equipped for offensive operations and with modern equipment such as the BMP-3 infantry fighting vehicle and T-80BVM, T-90M main battle tanks, and even the latest AK-12 models.

Fighting continues around Soledar after a sizeable Russian offensive that was repelled with Russian losses.

Fighting also continued east of Bakhmut with Russian forces fighting to move beyond the strategic highway intersection.

Two smaller Russian offensives on Kodema were the scene of heavy fighting on the fringes of the town.

Around Izyum there was Russian activity towards Karnaukhivka 20 kilometres to the south.

East of Zaporizhzhia the Ukrainian counteroffensive continued to make ground. Ukrainian forces destroyed two targets around Chernihivka with HIMARS or similar further southeast, believed to be a Russian ammunition depot and rotation base.

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on late Friday said the situation at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant remains “very risky” after two of its six reactors were reconnected to the grid following shelling.

Ukrainian forces hit the Dariivskyi bridge near Kherson and the bridge is believed to be inoperative.   With strikes against three main bridges across the Dnipro River, Russia’s combat effectiveness was noticeably affected.

The Antonovsky bridge was also targeted successfully yesterday by Ukrainian forces. Reports suggest the damage to the bridge is now significant and Russian resupply operations to occupation forces in the region face yet another challenge.

Russian Naval activity in the Black Sea remains very active.

25 Aug 22

At the grand strategic level, in another sign of a confused and muddled foreign policy Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly said Canada plans to return five repaired gas turbines which are part of the Russian Nord Stream 1 pipeline to Germany.

While Canada could help Germany and other European allies with their energy security ahead of the next winter, the last several days have shown little interest by the Trudeau government in investing in and helping to ship Canadian Liquified Natural Gas to Europe citing a lack of East coast infrastructure to support the moves. It has shown a total disregard for enhanced alliance solidarity in the face of Russian energy warfare and completely ignored Canada’s battered energy sector.

Chief of Defense Staff Wayne Eyre has said two Canadian Air Force C-130J Super Hercules, previously based in Kuwait, will now be assisting in the transport of military aid to Ukraine.

Taiwan is reportedly going to increase its defense budget by 13.9 percent next year to $586.3 billion NTD. A Chinese seizure of Taiwan breaks the first island chain and gives the Chinese navy full access to the open seas.

Some four PLAN warships and 15 PLA aircraft were deployed around Taiwan today. Another US government delegation is expected shortly.

India voted to allow Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to address the UN Security Council. This is the first time India has opposed Russia on the Ukraine War in the UN.