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Russo-Ukraine War - 09 May 2022 - Day 75

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A number of claims and counterclaims are being made on the Ukraine-Russia conflict on the ground and online. While GlobalSecurity.org takes utmost care to accurately report this news story, we cannot independently verify the authenticity of all statements, photos and videos.

On 24 February 2022, Ukraine was suddenly and deliberately attacked by land, naval and air forces of Russia, igniting the largest European war since the Great Patriotic War. The military buildup in preceeding months makes it obvious that the unprovoked and dastardly Russian attack was deliberately planned long in advance. During the intervening time, the Russian government had deliberately sought to deceive the world by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.

"To initiate a war of aggression... is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole." [Judgment of the International Military Tribunal]

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a "special military operation" in Ukraine in response to the appeal of the leaders of the "Donbass republics" for help. That attack is a blatant violation of the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine. Putin stressed that Moscow's goal is the demilitarization and denazification of the country.

The seventy-fifth day of the heroic opposition of the Ukrainian people to the Russian military invasion continues. The Russians continues full-scale armed aggression against Ukraine. The Russians conducted offensive operations in the east of Ukraine in order to establish full control over the territory of Donetsk and Luhansk regions and maintain a land corridor between these territories and the occupied Crimea.

Residents of Russia consider Victory Day the main holiday of the country. Over 40% plan to take part in festive events. This is evidenced by a survey of the All-Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VTsIOM). Some 27% plan to watch TV and films about the Great Patriotic War. Will take care of the summer cottage 19%, household chores 20%,. Will receive guests or go to visit 20% (+ 11% from 2020). The telephone survey was conducted on April 23, 2022 among 1,600 citizens of the Russian Federation aged 18 and over. The marginal error with a probability of 95% does not exceed 2.5%.

The most frequent feelings associated with the Great Patriotic War are pride in the country, the people, a sense of patriotism (29%), sorrow, pain (12%) and the joy of victory, Victory Day (10%). This is evidenced by a survey of the Public Opinion Foundation (FOM). Also, citizens, when they hear the words of the Great Patriotic War, have feelings that “this is our history, it will never be forgotten” (6%). The same number (6%) want world peace 6%. Some 4% of respondents feel gratitude to war veterans, everyone who fought, respect for them. Victory Day is a great holiday, causes spiritual awe in 3%, it is a feat of people, heroism, courage, memory of the dead - 2%. The survey was conducted on April 22–24, 2022 in 104 settlements among 1,500 citizens of the Russian Federation over 18 years old. The statistical error does not exceed 3.6%.

The vast majority of Russians (95%) consider the Victory Day of the Soviet Union over Nazi Germany a holiday, and more than half (55%) consider it a national holiday. This follows from the results of a poll by the Public Opinion Foundation published on May 7. It is noted that the study was conducted from April 22 to April 24 and 1,500 adult residents of Russia took part in it in 53 subjects of the Russian Federation from 104 settlements, the statistical error does not exceed 3.6%. It is also specified that 95% of Russian residents consider May 9 a holiday, of which for 55% of respondents it is a national holiday, for 36% it is a state holiday and another 4% is a family holiday. In addition, 77% of survey participants are going to take part in the celebration of Victory Day, despite the fact that in 2021 there were 72% of such people. In addition, 84% of respondents said that among their relatives there are or were participants in the Great Patriotic War (16% said there were none) and 62% of respondents said they were well acquainted with its history (29% said they knew it poorly).

The most popular national holidays in the United States are Christmas and Thanksgiving. Approximately 85 percent of Americans celebrate Christmas. Independence Day, also known as the Fourth of July, is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, when the United States declared its independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain. In 2021, 84 percent of Americans stated to celebrate the Fourth of July.

It’s been a century since the battle at Gallipoli that birthed ANZAC day, but Australian interest and respect for this public holiday is as strong as ever. In fact, nearly a third of Australians (30%) feel Anzac Day is the most meaningful public holiday to them. Christmas is the most meaningful public holiday of the year for Australians (37%), while other Christian holidays such as Easter were considered less meaningful, with just 15% selecting the Easter long weekend… that’s just 4% more than those whom selected Australia Day.

UK Defense Secretary Ben Wallace slammed "the absurdity" of Russia's bemedaled military top brass at the annual Victory Day parade in Moscow. "All professional soldiers should be appalled at the behaviour of the Russian Army," Wallace, himself a former soldier said in a speech at the National Army Museum. "Not only are they engaged in an illegal invasion and war crimes but their top brass have failed their own rank and file to the extent they should be court martialed," he added. "Through the invasion of Ukraine, [Russia's President Vladimir] Putin and his inner circle of generals are now mirroring fascism and tyranny of 77 years ago, repeating the errors of the last century's totalitarian regime."

Speaking at Red Square, Putin drew spurious parallels between the Red Army fighting against Nazi troops and Russian actions in Ukraine. Some analysts had anticipated Putin would issue a formal declaration of war that would legally allow him to mobilize Russias large reserve forces; others anticipated a formal annexation of Ukrainian territory; still others, a declaration of victory with scaled-down war aims. He did none of these things. Putin gave no indication of a shift in strategy or made any indication that he was going to declare a broader mobilisation, as some in Ukraine and the West had predicted.

Putin sought to cast Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine as a necessary move against "aggression" despite no evidence that Russia was under imminent threat from either Ukraine or NATO. “The danger was rising by the day,” Putin claimed, adding that Russia made "a pre-emptive response to an aggression” in what he described as a “timely and the only correct decision by a sovereign, powerful and independent country”. In his speech at the parade, Putin again scolded the West for failing to heed Russian demands for security guarantees and a rollback of NATO expansion, arguing that it left Moscow no other choice but to launch an action in Ukraine. Putin said Russian troops have been “fighting for the Motherland, so that no one will forget the lessons of World War II and there will be no place in the world for hangmen, executioners and Nazis”.

A senior US defense official stated "we now assess that there's about 97 operational BTGs in Ukraine. And I think the last time that we talked it was like 93. So they've actually moved in more. And there's -- look, there's give and take every day. Sometimes they'll move, you know, one or two out and then three or four in. I'm just giving you the net numbers. But it is not unusual for them to move a BTG or two out of the Donbas back into Russia for refit or resupply and then move them back in. I mean, that's normal. That's what you would expect them to do... It's very muddy there so they are pretty much restricted to paved roads. Number two, or sorry, number three, they haven't fixed all their logistics and sustainment issues, we still see them struggling to resupply their troops." The Ukrainian General Staff reported that Russian forces accumulated 19 BTGs in Belgorod Oblast, which could reinforce the Kharkiv City axis.

The senior US defense official spokd of "... anecdotal reports. These are typically like, you know, midgrade officers, you know, at various levels, even up to the battalion level where they're just -- anecdotally it's not across the board, but we've seen indications that some of these officers have either refused to obey orders or not obeying them with the same measure of alacrity that you would expect an officer to obey."

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said his country would not allow Russia to "appropriate" Victory Day as Moscow parades mark the anniversary of the Soviet Union's defeat of Nazi Germany. Zelensky, for his part, said that Ukraine would not allow Russia to "appropriate" Victory in Europe Day – known as VE Day – for his own political purposes. "Today we celebrate Victory Day over Nazism. We are proud of our ancestors who together with other nations in the anti-Hitler coalition defeated Nazism. And we will not allow anyone to annex this victory. We will not allow it to be appropriated," the Ukrainian leader said.

Zelensky listed several Ukrainian towns and cities currently under control of invading Russian forces, saying that Ukrainians during World War II had also ousted Nazi Germany's forces from these regions. Zelensky said: "Decades after World War II, darkness has returned to Ukraine. Evil has returned – in a different uniform, under different slogans, but for the same purpose."

"Our enemy dreamed that we would refuse to celebrate May 9 and the victory over Nazism. So that the word 'denazification' gets a chance," he added. "And very soon there will be two Victory Days in Ukraine. And someone will not have even one left... We won then. We will win now".

Zelenskyy thanked US legislators and President Joe Biden for passing legislation reviving a WWII-era weapons programme that will allow Washington to more easily export arms to Ukraine. “Today’s signing of the law on Lend-Lease is a historic step,” Zelenskyy tweeted. “I am convinced that we will win together again. And we will defend democracy in Ukraine. And in Europe. Like 77 years ago.” US weapons exports typically involve a months-long process amid various agency reviews, but the signing of the Lend-Lease Act does is essentially wipe away all of that bureaucracy.

Ukraine was among the former Soviet nations most devastated by World War II. Ukrainian cities were attacked in the first hours of the Nazi invasion and the country spent several years under occupation, witnessing such atrocities as the Babyn Yar massacre of Jews outside Kyiv. More than 2 million Ukrainian citizens were sent as slave labour to Germany and it is believed the country lost 8 million civilians and soldiers in all.

Retired US Lieutenant General Ben Hodges told DW that "I think the problem for the Russians is that they have no victory to celebrate. I mean, every single thing that they have tried to do has generally failed. Even Mariupol, which should have been gone in the first week. You still have these incredibly tough Ukrainian troops that are still holding out. And I think these guys are going to be compared to the 300 Spartans for a long time."

French President Emmanuel Macron has made his first trip to Berlin since winning re-election. During the visit, both Macron and Chancellor Olaf Scholz agreed that only a permanent withdrawal of all Russian troops could end the war, but that a truce was a good interim solution. "What we want to achieve is a ceasefire, as soon as possible," Macron said. This, he added, was the only way to make headway in the negotiations between Ukraine and Russia and, ultimately, a permanent pullback of the Russian military. "That is our goal," he said. Macron stressed that Ukraine should be supported in peace negotiations, the terms of which would be decided by Ukraine itself. "Our position is on the side of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, nothing more, nothing less," Macron said.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said that it was "important that de-escalation is now pushed further." However, it was inconceivable that Ukraine would accept a "dictated peace" that would impose conditions that it could not accept for its sovereignty and integrity as a nation, he said.

Russia is right in the conflict with Ukraine, it must win it for the sake of peace in Europe, for the sake of preventing the spread of the US and NATO dictatorship to the entire planet. This opinion was expressed in a conversation with Russian journalists by the Greek politician, former energy minister and ex-leader of the left-wing Greek party "People's Unity" Panagiotis Lafazanis, who is starting to create a new political force. He took part in a rally in honor of May 9 in the center of Athens near the monument to Soviet soldiers who died for the freedom and independence of Greece in 1941-1944.

"Russia is right in Ukraine. It must win so that we have peace, so that there is a better atmosphere in Europe and in the world. There is no other solution," Lafazanis said. "If NATO, the United States and the pro-American Western forces win, because they [behind the scenes] howl there, the hardest winter will come on the entire planet, the dictatorship of NATO and the United States will be everywhere. The desire of the American leadership will become the law of the planet," the politician explained.

Lafazanis believes that the US does not want Russian troops to simply withdraw from Ukraine. "Their goal is to overthrow President [Vladimir] Putin, as [US President Joe] Biden said. And as US Secretary of Defense [Lloyd] Austin said, the goal is to weaken Russia. You understand that this is not a war for Ukraine. This is a war for destruction of Russia. And this desire means that they are sacrificing not only Ukraine, but the whole of Europe with their hegemonic military plans for the whole world. And if they achieve their goals, then China will be the next victim," Lafazanis said.

“However, I do not believe and do not think that the United States will be able to achieve its goals in Ukraine. On the contrary, I see that Russia will be able to achieve its goals and establish peace in Ukraine on a fair basis, which will benefit all the peoples of Ukraine. Ukraine cannot be against Russia, it has no interest in being a Cold War machine against Russia," the politician believes.

There are no plans to unite the Kherson region and Crimea, Vladimir Saldo, head of the military-civilian administration of the region, said in an interview with TASS. "These are talks from the sphere of behind-the-scenes assumptions. There are no official talks and no such plans," he said. The balance suggested that a federal district might be created, which would include Crimea, Kherson and Zaporozhye regions. "But the region will remain a region. There are no plans to change its administrative-territorial structure," the head of the Kherson region said.

The UK Ministry of Defence reported that at the onset of its invasion of Ukraine, Russia publicly promoted its ability to conduct surgical strikes and limit collateral damage. It stated that Ukrainian cities would therefore be safe from bombardment. However, as the conflict continued beyond Russian pre-war expectations, Russia’s stockpile of precision-guided munitions has likely been heavily depleted. This has forced the use of readily available but ageing munitions that are less reliable, less accurate and more easily intercepted. Russia will likely struggle to replace the precision weaponry it has already expended. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine revealed shortcomings in its ability to conduct precision strikes at scale. Russia has subjected Ukraine’s towns and cities to intense and indiscriminate bombardments with little or no regard for civilian casualties.

During the night, Russian air defense systems shot down two Ukrainian MiG-29s in the DPR regions, as well as one Su-25 in the Kharkiv region, the Russian Defense Ministry said . Aviation of the Russian Aerospace Forces hit 52 areas of concentration of personnel and military equipment of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, as well as an ammunition depot in the Glukhov region, the ministry said. The missile forces and artillery of the Russian Federation hit eight command posts and 26 artillery units of Ukraine, as well as four Smerch MLRS and one S-300 air defense system, the Russian Defense Ministry said.

Russian air defense systems in the area of Zmeiny Island shot down three Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles, including two Bayraktar TB2s, the Russian Defense Ministry said. High-precision Onyx missiles destroyed Ukrainian helicopters in the Odesa region at the jump site, the department noted.

The greatest activity of the Russians was observed in Slobozhansky and Donetsk directions. There is a high probability of missile strikes on civilian and military infrastructure throughout Ukraine. In the Volyn and Polissya areas, the Russians did not take active action, no signs of the formation of offensive groups were found. The situation in the Seversky direction had not changed. The Russians held the border guards of the Federal Security Service at checkpoints and in the border areas of the Bryansk and Kursk regions of the Russian Federation. They carried out engineering and fortification equipment of defense positions near the state border of Ukraine.

The Russians did not conduct offensive operations in the Slobozhansky direction. The main efforts continue to be focused on preventing the advance of Ukrainian troops towards the state border of Ukraine. In the Izyum direction, the replenishment of material and technical means is being replenished, and units are being prepared for further offensive operations in the Izyum-Barvinkove and Izyum-Slovyansk directions. The Russians conducted air reconnaissance. The battle for Rubizhne continued in the Severodonetsk direction. The Russians were trying to improve the tactical position, to seize the city and create favorable conditions for the further development of offensive operations in the directions of the settlements of Lyman and Severodonetsk.

Russians made an unsuccessful attempt to storm the settlement of Voevodivka. They were not successful, and retreated. In the Lyman direction, they were trying to advance in the areas of Oleksandrivka and Shandryholove. In the Bakhmut direction Russians fought unsuccessfully in the area of the settlement of Toshkivka. In the Avdiivka direction, they were trying to improve the tactical situation in the areas of the settlements of Novoselivka, Novoselivka Druha, and Verkhnotoretske. The fighting continued.

In the Novopavlovsk and Zaporizhzhya directions, certain Russians units were regrouping troops in order to prepare for further active action. It is expected to increase this group at the expense of units who performed tasks in the area of Mariupol. In the South Buza and Tavriya directions, the Russians regrouped the existing units in order to improve the tactical position of its troops. They increased fire and air defense systems, and improved engineering equipment positions. In order to prevent the transfer of units of the Defense Forces of Ukraine to other areas, the conducted demonstrative actions.

The situation in the Bessarabian direction in the Transnistrian region of the Republic of Moldova remained unchanged. In the Black and Azov Seas, Russian Black Sea Fleet ships continue to carry out tasks to isolate the area of hostilities and conduct reconnaissance. Almost along the entire line of contact, the Russians continued to use all available artillery and aircraft to shell the positions of Ukrainian troops, destruction of civilian and military infrastructure.

In the city of Mariupol, despite the declared "silence", Russians resumed shelling and assault on the Azovstal plant.

In the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine, the Russians continued to carry out measures of the administrative-police regime. The celebration of the so-called "Victory Day" was simulated for the Russian media in some of the occupied settlements. The losses of the Russians exceed the indicators of manning, which significantly affects the overall moral and psychological state and becomes a prerequisite for the refusal of personnel to continue to participate in hostilities against Ukraine.

Since the beginning of the special military operation of the Russian Federation, 5,890,875 refugees from Ukraine have arrived in neighboring countries, over the past two days their number has increased by 89,716, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees reported. According to information on its website, 739,418 refugees arrived in Russia during the specified period, 3,217,206 - in Poland, 880,100 - in Romania, and 568,630 - in Hungary.

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Page last modified: 17-10-2022 19:16:43 ZULU