Ukraine, the year begins with new raids. But the Russians may be short on some missiles

At Bakhmut the Army fired 60,000 artillery shells a day: now it would have dropped to 19-20,000. Ukrainians suffer but hold on with courage, inventiveness and immense sacrifices | The military point | 316

A massive attack in the middle of the night, a message from the invaders on the last day of the year with destruction and suffering for the population. The implications are different.


Moscow continues in strategy to sap enemy morale, devastates infrastructure and electricity gridforces the resistance to use enormous resources, hopes to affect industrial production, distorts and takes the lives of innocents. At the same time it satisfies the blind fury of Russian nationaliststhose who publicly call for indiscriminate action in response to the Army’s difficulties on the battlefield.


Ukrainian espionage holds the count of “strokes”. On Sunday one of its executives argued that the occupiers are staying depleting stocks of certain types of missilesespecially the Iskanders and possibly also the Kalibr (ship and aircraft launchable).

According to their estimates they would be able to launch no more than two or three waves with dozens of bombs, then they have to count on production that would not be adequate for the war effort.

At the moment they would have 150 missiles available, such as the KH 101 and KH 555. Intelligence chief Kyrylo Budanov added more data on munitions in the Bakhmut area: previously the opponents fired a cadence of 60,000 artillery shells per day and now they would have dropped to 19-20,000 because they have less. Are these predictions valid? There is the usual fog of war, the information is fluid, for weeks the supply node has been relaunched constantly only to be denied by the facts, ie by the bombing of inhabited areas.

Indeed some experts are not too convinced or in any case choose a middle path. While sharing the thesis of rapid consumption, he believes that the factories mobilized by the Kremlin they can feed the campaign. And then there are always the hundreds of drone-kamikazes of Iranian origin Shahed 136 and 131. It cannot be ruled out that Russia is looking for new equipment in Iran or in North Korea while he would dredged as much as possible from Belarus. The ayatollahs were on the verge of handing over surface-to-surface missiles but would have no qualms as they could be punished with new sanctions. In fact, the question of war favors and exchanges goes beyond the technical aspects, triggering small and large diplomatic controversies. The Zelenski government, for example, has accused some Indian companies of selling leather to Russia to make soldiers’ bootsmaterial originating largely from the state of Haryana.

The resistance

Ukrainians suffer but hold on courage, inventiveness and immense sacrifices. The authorities take preventive measures, show resistance and try to increase the capabilities of the anti-aircraft. On the night of the 31st, the military claims to have shot down 45 Iranian kamikaze drones. The daily bulletins on the intercepted “means” photograph – in part – a reality, but they are also a propaganda move. You frequently receive “merit” citations against systems sent from NATO countries and proved (according to the Ukrainians) to be effective: this is the case of the German Iris T anti-aircraft missiles as well as the Gepard cannons. Acknowledgments that hope for the arrival of a greater number of specimens to strengthen the shield against Putin’s “lances”.

The dynamics push some observers, very aligned with Kiev, to urge the White House to finally give rockets capable of hitting targets at 300 kilometers of distance. Ukraine – is the reasoning – could target distant rear lines, air bases but also infrastructure by making the Russians pay a price for the terror campaign. It’s just that, at the moment, Joe Biden has drawn an impassable red line and he does not want to accentuate the clash with Vladimir Putin supplying that ammunition. Sensitive theme. An upcoming book — The Fight of His Lifeby Chris Whipple — tells that the US president was furious when his intelligence confided to the media that he had helped the resistance to sink the Russian flagship Moskva. It wasn’t a secret, but he didn’t want officials to brag about it.

January 1, 2023 (change January 1, 2023 | 5:38 pm)

Ukraine, the year begins with new raids. But the Russians may be short on some missiles