Previously, we posted a situation map for the front lines in Ukraine, for the night of 22/23 March. That post portrayed images found on Wikipedia, which depict the military situation in Ukraine, as it has been estimated from over 600 cited news sources. Accordingly, areas west of the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv were reported as having been swept of Russian troops; however, we discovered the following day, that most Russian positions west of Kyiv were portrayed as being intact. It would seem that word of a great Ukrainian military victory were premature. New military developments are being reported for 25 March, whose veracity may or may not stand in succeeding days. Those developments are as follows:
In the north near Kyiv, Ukrainian forces are reported to have recaptured the western suburb of Makariv; to the east of the capital, Ukrainian forces appear to be trying to reopen the Mena-Shostka corridor. Ukrainian forces have advanced on an east-northeast from Mena to Sosynytsya to the western approaches of the Mezynski National Park. More ominously for the Russians, Ukrainian forces appear to have infiltrated into Russian rear areas and taken control of a few cities that the Russian military had previously secured. These towns are: Slavutch, near the Russian-Ukraine border, about 40 miles (60 kilometers) west of the besieged city of Chernihiv; Shestovytsya, a southwestern suburb of Chernihiv; Krolovets, a town located 25 miles (40 kilometers) south-southwest of Shostka; Hlukhiv, located about 25 miles east-southeast of Shostka; Druzhba, located about 25 miles east-northeast of Shostka; and Pustohorod, a town located about 25 miles east of Shostka. The eastern suburbs of Shostka, Hlukhiv, Druzhba, and Pustohorod form an irregular area that roughly contains 25 x 35 square miles (40 x 60 square kilometers). If it is true that Ukrainian forces have re-infiltrated these areas, it may be as a result of Russian forces redeploying to focus their efforts on recovering the rest of the territory of the Lugansk and Donetsk Peoples’ Republics, which make up the eastern breakaway regions of the Donbass.
Ukrainian control of the towns and areas mentioned above, not only poses a threat to Russian supply lines and communications going directly from Russia to the front, but also threatens the lateral communications between the major Russian groups operating on either side of the Mena-Shostka axis.
In the south, Ukrainian forces have recaptured the eastern and southeastern suburbs of Mykolaiv, and have even crossed into Kherson Oblast.
Compare the military situation map for 25 March (above), with the military situation map for 22/23 March, below:
Blog Editor Patrick Cloutier is the author of Mussolini’s War in the East 1941-1943.