War update – dedicated to Slavyangrad
Why not big arrows? Kessler syndrome, The Equalizer and further Ukrainian mobilizations
Today I want to give you another important update.
But before I start, I want to dedicate a few words to the Telegram channel “Slavyangrad”. You can join it here if you want, I absolutely recommend it. Well, my team and I, we are analysts. We read information across the internet, process it through our experience and knowledge and write down our conclusions. I want to highlight, that the best firsthand information, we can get, we receive from “Slavyangrad” and its awesome team around Gleb Bazov, Miroslav and all the other administrators and moderators. I also want to say “Thank you”, to “Slavyangrad”, for publishing my articles as well. Moreover, I assume that many other analysts and “podcasters” are receiving their information from this channel. Well, having said this, we can now start with the article.
I’d like to give you some strategic clarifications, which hasn't been discussed in detail in my last article. Especially about the question of “Big arrows” and many more.
State of the war
Black Mountain Analysis hereby declares, in our own definition, that the big Russian offensive has already started. It has started precisely at the day when General Gerasimov took over the command.
Yes, maybe the Russian army has another definition or there will be at a certain point an official declaration. Or at some time we will see the movement of big Russian columns, and people will say, NOW the offensive has started. Yes, maybe. But according to our own definition, we declare the start of the offensive now. Currently it is a grinding approach on several theatres. If you read our beforementioned article, you will exactly see the theatres, that will be ground, until the Ukrainian defenses start to crumble on a large scale. It seems like we were spot on, with our five theatres 😊. But later more.
Kessler and Equalizer
I read these days often analysis of fellow writers, that are creating one map after another with nice big arrows. Usually accompanied by sentences like “The Russians will come from X and do Y in Z and then breakthrough to A only to create then a big cauldron around B”. Unfortunately, I think that many confuse the current technological possibilities with these of the 1940s.
Nowadays the whole battlefield is covered with reconnaissance of all kinds. For a further read, I recommend reading about C4ISR, ISTAR and “Network centric warfare”. There are plenty of new technologies, that make sure, that we can’t compare strategies of WW2 with the current situation. There is reconnaissance from satellites around the clock. Moreover, a whole swarm/army of drones. Last, but not least, we mustn’t forget about all the signal intelligence and AWACS planes, that are collecting all possible signals, movements and data from far away.
This leads us to the situation, that the Russians can NOT apply any large-scale offensives against Ukrainian positions or deep penetration strikes, as long as Ukraine still has forces left, that are enough mobile, to move in the way of these forces and prepare all kinds of defensive techniques. Well, in Ukraine’s case, mostly guerrilla techniques, since they can’t fight a direct head on battle against the Russians. Don’t get me wrong. Russia can break all of this resistance. But it would need to calculate far bigger losses, then would be needed, to conclude this war. Since Russia is in no hurry, but the West and Ukraine is, I don’t see any reason, why Russia should do this.
To conduct such offensives, Russia would need to calculate with casualty rates of 20-30%.
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t say, Russia won’t move in with large columns of tanks and logistics equipment. But my personal assumption is, that this will first happen, as soon as the Ukrainian forces starting to crumble and starting to retreat under a collapse. Then these big Russian formations will move in. I will explain it in more detail in another chapter of this article.
Okay, the next question is, what have Donald Kessler (Scientist at NASA) and “The Equalizer” (Denzel Washington movie) to do with the current conflict in Ukraine?
I will explain it now step by step.
Who is Donald Kessler? Well, for details, I recommend googling him. Only in short, he worked for the US Army and for the NASA as a scientist. But I will only describe here very quickly, what syndrome he has described. The so called “Kessler Syndrome”.
Russia’s army is training in its large-scale manoeuvres, like “Zapad” or “Vostok” etc. commanding armies with and without full support of the space component of its intelligence services. For command and control. What does that mean? Russia is training to fight in an environment, where it has full access to all the command-and-control features, that comes with its space assets and it also trains to fight a large-scale war, without these components/assets.
Well, NATO heavily relies on its space assets, to conduct a war. Everything is being conducted by space reconnaissance, GPS and communications. In fact, my personal assumption is that NATO wouldn’t be able to fight a large-scale conflict effectively, without their space assets.
And here comes the Kessler syndrome. It is a theory, that is saying, that if you shot down enough satellites in different orbits, their debris would get out of control and destroy all other satellites and space assets in the same orbit. This effect would then spiral out of control and simply destroy everything, that is based up in the space. Of any nation. The density of debris would be so high that there wouldn’t be any further space launches possible.
Well, this is, what Russian officials has announced several times. If a conflict with NATO breaks out, the Kessler syndrome would be triggered immediately. Yes, all parties would lose their assets and thereby the corresponding benefits. But Russia is always training exactly for this scenario.
As we know, Russia still is training with large formations to conduct division and army sized warfare. And yet, we don’t see it currently in Ukraine. Where is the 1th tank army, punching through the Ukrainian lines straight to the Polish border? Why? Because NATO sees and hears everything, that Russia is doing. Every movement of larger formations would be detected immediately and submitted to the Ukrainians which could prepare accordingly. Large scale formations are not that agile, to simply surprise the enemy, with all the reconnaissance, up in the space. Today, if you move in large formations, even though you manoeuvre, all your assets would be sitting ducks, if the enemy knows where you are and that you are coming.
And the enemy capabilities in the space are more than significant.
This is exactly the reason, why Russia is currently grinding and not penetrating deep. The loses would be horrendous. And why do this, if not needed? This is also exactly the reason why I say that I do not expect such deep penetration strikes, at least, unless the Ukrainian army is degraded enough, that it couldn’t do much harm to the big moving formations, even with all the corresponding NATO intelligence and support. We mustn’t either forget about the Poles, that are mainly in the rear.
What has “The Equalizer” to do with this? Well, he equalizes 😊. And this is exactly Russia’s strategy. To trigger the Kessler Syndrome in a fight with NATO to make them deaf and blind and thereby equalizing the field, so Russia could move large formations, conduct deep penetration and manoeuvre warfare, exactly as in WW2.
This is of course a simplification. Russia would cut far more command-and-control assets, like the undersea internet cables etc.
Which is currently NOT the case. So, no fancy “Big Arrows” on maps. Again, they will come, but first the risks on the field, in form of the Ukrainian army needs to be degraded a little more. It needs to be safe enough. Well, Russia can’t unleash “The Equalizer” Robert McCall currently against the NATO space assets, because both parties are currently not officially at war with each other. And to trigger the Kessler Syndrome would be certainly a declaration of war against the opponent.
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Therefore, Russia still needs to continue its slow grinding approach. But now with far more personnel and formations, stationed at strategically important axis. See the “theatres” from my last update. Currently the pressure is being turned up at all these frontlines, except the Belarussian theatre. I assume the following. When all forces for Belarus are in place, then Russia will take Bakhmut. This process is currently already in work, to be approximately finished in February. This is approximately the time when the forces in Belarus will be ready. When Bakhmut falls, and the lines starting to crumble, then I assume, that the Belarussian theatre will also be activated.
As described in my last article, also only a grinding approach at proximity to the border. And simultaneously an air campaign on the rear of the defending forces in the north.
The goal is, to trigger a total collapse of Ukraine. I will describe the way to the collapse a little more in the following chapters.
As I already described in my last article, the Ukrainian army has been defeated, again, at the day, where General Gerasimov took over, officially. The defenses of the Ukrainian army have been breached and its stock of armored vehicles has been depleted. They wouldn’t be able to resist more then maybe two months. That’s what we currently are experiencing as we see several frontlines collapsing, like in Zaporizhzhia.
Unfortunately, I have explained it several times, that The West is going to use the whole human potential of the Ukrainian able-bodied male population. So, they mustn’t collapse yet. There needs to be delivered hundreds of further armored vehicles, to keep the Ukrainian army up resisting. That’s precisely, what we have experienced on January 20, 2023, in Rammstein.
There is not much more to say about these deliveries. It doesn’t make any sense to go into details of these deliveries, since they aren’t designed to make any difference on the battlefield, but to prolong the conflict, unless the human potential of Ukraine has been fully depleted. Later more about that.
What I can say definitely, is, that Germany is being forced to deliver Leopard 2 tanks, to Ukraine. Not because it would make any difference. Any tank on the Ukrainian side is doomed. In modern times tanks are, remember the chapter about the Kessler Syndrome, doomed without air and artillery superiority. On offensives, they will most likely not even come close to the enemy. They will be destroyed far ahead by artillery or air-strikes.
So, militarily, at least for offensives, it doesn’t make any sense. These are driving coffins. As already described in my former article, it could make sense indeed for defensive use. Out of concealed positions or to use it for fire traps on pre-registered areas. Later more about that.
But why is Germany forced to deliver these tanks mainly? Yes, to prolong the war, but that’s not the main reason. The main reason is, that Germany mustn’t deliver tanks, that will be used on Russian soil ever again. There are clear understandings between Germany and Russia. If not in written, then at least by backchannels. Now you will maybe think, they wouldn’t be used on Russian soil? Well, if Russia considers the Donbass as Russian soil, then this is what matters to Russia, for its further decisions. If such tanks would show up in the new Russian regions, then I assume, that we could expect a major escalation between Russia and Germany. Or let’s say à The West. Not necessarily a military one, in the first place. But most likely a total cessation of all contacts for years or decades to come. Which is more than extremely dangerous. And Germany would of course lose ALL resources from Russia. Not only the few deliveries of energy, that are still flowing.
This in fact would be the final goal of the Americans, for its own preparation for the multipolar world, to split the heartland. Europe would still be under the US grip. The rest would be truly multipolar.
Are we going to see Leopards in Ukraine? Well, yes, I think Leopards will show up in Ukraine. And most likely, the trick will be, that Germany will say, that other nations decided to deliver Leopards without German’s approval. Will it help? I don’t know.
Efficiency and motivation of the newly mobilized Ukrainian forces
Since Ukraine is forced to dispose its whole able-bodied male population, before the West hands over Ukraine to Russia, they are now desperately hunting everywhere for males in Ukraine. The bottom-line here is, that the potential of highly motivated ideologically confused people is almost totally depleted. There might be some teenagers, that Ukraine will now mobilize, that are indoctrinated by the Bandera ideology, or, what is very sad, that have lost their father etc. that will be motivated to go to war, for revenge. In fact, exactly, what the West wants. To create generations and decades of hate between Russians and Ukrainians.
But apart from these, very few ideologically motivated Ukrainians are left, that could be mobilized (the rest is dead, fled or on the frontlines), the Ukrainian authorities are now hunting for people, that don’t want to fight. Mainly Russian speaking or Russian “sympathizers”, or simply à Russians.
Well, one can imagine how motivated and effective these people, that are arrested on the streets, to be conscripted to fight against the Russians, are. They are not. And how are you going to build an effective army with these people? You can’t! You can use them, to plug holes in trenches, where they are simply dying. And you need to hope, that they won’t shot at own troops or shot themselves in the foot or whatever, to avoid going to the frontlines.
Another question. Ukraine has been able to send ideologically motivated people abroad for training. For example, to Britain. But how is it about the current and last mobilization generation (as opposed to “wave”)? If you have forcefully captured and mobilized people, as it is currently being done, you can’t send them abroad for training. They would try to flee. And how should the foreign trainers react to people, that wants to flee, as soon as they arrive in, say, England, or Germany? It is highly problematic.
Unfortunately, there are many Ukrainians already, since a few weeks or even months abroad and in preparation for special purposes in Ukraine. These are still motivated people. I assume we are talking about some 50,000 troops. First, they should have been prepared for offensive operations. But this is over. Now, I assume they will be prepared for defensive operations and guerrilla techniques, for example, to target Russian supply lines while they are advancing. Essentially, as in Phase 1. The West is always adapting, to the state of war.
How could it proceed further on? I will discuss this in the chapter “Further developments”.
Estimated total loses of Ukraine, going forwards
Well, of course I don’t have first-hand information. But from sources, that I trust, I assume, that Ukraine and its affiliated forces (mercenaries, Poles, etc.), combined, have lost approximately 200 thousand in killed and another 400 thousand in wounded. Which is indeed huge. If we assume, that Ukraine (and its affiliated forces) has currently some 150 thousand troops left and another one hundred thousand could be potentially (forcefully) mobilized, we could assume, that there is potential for another 250 thousand casualties, before the war concludes. I don’t think that there is more potential left, for mobilization. The question is only whether these casualties will be dead or wounded.
These are fighting forces. Of course, we need to keep in mind, that, at least some 100 thousand people needs to be engaged in the rear with logistics, administration, police, conscription etc. Which is a very low number now. The logistics effort is rising and the human potential for this is decreasing, because ever more people from the rear are fed to the frontlines.
What I want to say, in fact, is, that the end is near. It could have been over by now, but The West isn’t allowing it. So, the last men need to be depleted as well. And we could be now in the phase, where the last mobilizations are being carried out.
The forcefully mobilized will be simply thrown into the trenches, because you can’t train them. They would kill their instructors. So, the will be used as human shields, to slow down the Russian advance on the Dnieper. The troops, that are still motivated and being trained since weeks by The West, will be prepared for future defensive battles, maybe on the Dnieper or in the North on the Belarussian border. And for “stay behind” operations.
Well, the future developments, at least as we on Black Mountain Analysis assume, is described in my last article, referenced at the beginning of this article. But to put it in a few words here, again, we think, that there are five designated “theatres” where the Russian army will increase the pressure, as needed, to overstretch the logistical possibilities, as well as the available resources, of the Ukrainian army. We see it currently around Artemovsk (Bakhmut), Kupiansk, Ugledar and Zaporizhzhia. Exactly, as predicted by us before.
As soon, as the big collapse in Donbass starts to unravel, we could see the opening of the Belorussian front, to put the final pressure nail into the Ukrainian coffin. But not, as other analysts predicted, with some fancy big arrows. But rather the opening of many fronts on the border proximity and an air campaign, also on the border proximity. First, when it is absolutely clear, that there is a visible collapse in the North as well, and the territory is to a certain degree save, then we could see the advance of large formations into the North of Ukraine and maybe an encirclement of Kiev.
Things need to develop step by step. Or rather, milestone by milestone.
Even considering this last big mobilisation effort, we could assume, that it will prolong the war for another four-to-six months. Not from now on, but from the two months, we estimated for a collapse of the current Ukrainian resources. If we add it up, we could well reach any date within the summer, for the end of the large-scale hostilities. I’m not saying, that the war will be over then. But at least the large-scale combat and the mass dying could reach an end somewhere within summer 2023.
Afterwards we still can expect the siege of big Ukrainian cities, if Ukraine won’t surrender voluntarily. And as stated before, more mobilisation waves in Russia, for appeasing Ukraine. In fact, securing the rear, why advancing. Here is the question, how much effort can The West still put in Ukraine, when it is militarily defeated, to keep up the resistance and to further develop the Scorched Earth in Ukraine. I don’t know. We will see.
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