The situation at the front
Russian forces launched a massive new offensive against Bakhmut ahead of the first anniversary of the war, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said . The city is under heavy artillery strikes, Reuters writes with reference to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Russian troops advancing on Bakhmut are constantly changing tactics - either they attack with small assault groups, or they use dozens of mobilized for the assault, writes the Telegram channel "Operational Armed Forces of Ukraine". Sometimes the Russian army intensifies shelling at night, rear cities and civilian infrastructure are subjected to rocket attacks.
In the Kupyansky and Limansky directions, Russian forces fired from tanks, mortars and artillery, according to a summary of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. During the day, Ukrainian aviation delivered 14 strikes on areas where Russian soldiers and military equipment were concentrated.
On February 13, the Russian Ministry of Defense announced the capture of the urban-type settlement of Krasnaya Gora near Bakhmut. A day earlier, Yevgeny Prigozhin, the founder of the Wagner PMC, announced this. The Armed Forces of Ukraine deny the loss of Krasnaya Gora: a representative of the Eastern Group of Forces, Serhiy Cherevaty, told CNN that the fighting continues and the settlement remains under the control of Ukrainian forces.
Russia continues to build defensive fortifications in the central part of the Zaporozhye region, especially near the village of Tarasovka, the British Ministry of Defense reports in a report on February 13. Judging by the data of satellite images, protective structures are also being built between the village of Vasilyevka and the city of Orekhov. According to British military intelligence, although the main battles are taking place in the Donbass, the Russian command is concerned about the defense along the entire front line, which stretches for 1288 km. This is evidenced by the construction of fortifications in the Zaporozhye and Luhansk regions and the sending of reinforcements there.
The summary of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, published on the evening of February 13, states that over the past day, Russian forces launched two missile and 16 air strikes on the territory of Ukraine. More than 15 attacks from multiple launch rocket systems were also committed.
12 Ukrainian attack drones launched from Odessa and Nikolaev were shot down in Crimea near Dzhankoy on February 13, Military Review claims . Another drone was shot down near Kerch.
Russia lost 103 pieces of equipment, including 36 tanks, during the three days (February 8-10) of the offensive against Avdiivka and Vuhledar, the Dutch OSINT project Oryx calculated . Ukraine during the same period lost 20 pieces of equipment, including 2 tanks. Thus, the ratio of losses by the evening of February 10 was about 5:1. The overall ratio of equipment losses by Russia and Ukraine according to Oryx is 9189 and 2941, or 3.12 to 1.
During the unsuccessful assault on Vuhledar, the Russian army was losing 150 to 300 marines a day, Politico claims . According to the publication, over the past week, Russia has lost about 130 pieces of equipment, including 36 tanks.
In the past two weeks, the Russian army is likely to suffer the biggest losses since the first week of a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the UK Ministry of Defense announced on February 12. The agency emphasizes that it cannot confirm the specific figures given by the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, but notes a trend towards a noticeable increase in losses. According to the Ukrainian General Staff, over the past week, Russia's losses have averaged 824 people per day. This is more than four times the losses that the Russian army suffered in June-July.
According to the statistics of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, published on February 13, the total Russian losses since the beginning of the invasion amounted to about 138,340 people.
Mobilized from the 51st Tula Regiment of the Airborne Forces, attached to the Wagner PMC, when on vacation, break their arms and legs so as not to return to the front under the command of the PMC, says Russian military blogger and expert Andrei Morozov. According to him, the mobilized deliberately injure themselves, because, while working to evacuate the wounded Wagnerites, they receive threats from them: “We will shoot you if you don’t report our wounded.” Morozov also claims that the Wagnerites are taking all the humanitarian aid that comes to servicemen from the 51st regiment.
In Ukraine, three Russian criminal authorities were killed, who were recruited by Wagner PMCs in the colonies. This is reported by the investigative group Bellingcat. These are 59-year-old Sergey Maksimenko, 55-year-old Andrey Berezhnykh and 55-year-old Igor Kusk. They were accused of numerous murders and the organization of three organized crime groups.
Ukraine launched the production of Western weapons
Production of American M-16 assault rifles has begun in Ukraine, writes The Moscow Times, citing a source close to the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Earlier, Kyiv signed a memorandum with the American arms manufacturer Aeroscraft. The first joint project was a special version of the M-16, adapted for use by the Ukrainian army. The modification was called M4-WAC47. This weapon can fire 7.62x39mm cartridges, the kind used in the Kalashnikov assault rifles in service with the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Iran has delivered 18 new-type attack drones to Russia since November, The Guardian writes , citing its own sources. We are talking about 12 drones Shahed-129 and Shahed-191, as well as six Mohajer-6. According to the newspaper, the weapons were transported across the Caspian Sea, where they were reloaded from Iranian ships to ships of the Russian Navy. It is noted that the Mohajer-6 drones have a flight range of about 200 km and carry two missiles under each wing, and the Shahed vehicles of these modifications are capable of hitting targets on the ground from the air.
The war in Ukraine is depleting allies' ammunition stocks, Stoltenberg said . The meeting of defense ministers of Ukraine's allies, which will take place on February 14, will be devoted to finding ways to increase the production of ammunition. “For example, the waiting time for large-caliber ammunition has increased from 12 to 28 months. Orders placed today will not be delivered until two and a half years later,” said the NATO Secretary General.
Ukrainian tankers began training on Leopards
The Polish authorities showed photos and videos from the training ground where Ukrainian soldiers are learning to use Leopard 2A4 tanks.
The effectiveness of Russian military propaganda is declining - ISW
The American Institute for the Study of War (ISW) in its regular report analyzed the methods of Russian propaganda aimed at supporting certain goals at the front or mitigating the consequences of military defeats. In particular, the experts concluded that the numerous threats of a nuclear strike emanating from the Russian authorities in September-November were an attempt "to convince the West of the need to stop the supply of military assistance to Ukraine, which it needed to continue counter-offensives after the crushing defeats inflicted on Russian troops in the Kharkiv region.
“It is now clear that the Russian information campaign around peace talks, which became especially intense in December 2022, was designed, among other things, to delay the delivery of Western tanks and other advanced equipment necessary to continue Ukrainian mechanized counter-offensives,” the report says. . ISW experts also believe that Moscow constantly exaggerates the successes in the Bakhmut area, however, “the effectiveness of such information operations is declining, since both Ukraine and Russian nationalists who support the war tend to perceive assertions about an imminent Russian victory no longer so readily.”
“We thought that we would fight the Poles and mercenaries” - an interview with Wagner PMC fighters
Two former Russian prisoners, recruited by the Wagner PMC and taken prisoner by the Ukrainians, gave an interview to CNN, in which they talked about heavy losses. According to one of them, he fought in a group of 90 people, 60 of whom died in the first battle.
“We couldn’t retreat without an order because if we didn’t follow the order, we would be killed,” one source told CNN. - One person remained in position, he was very scared, it was his first assault. We were ordered to run ahead, but he hid under a tree and refused. This was reported to the command, and that's it. He was taken 50 meters from the base. He dug his own grave, and then he was shot.”
Former prisoners claim that the Wagnerites lied to lure them into the war, and that the recruits had no idea what was really going on in Ukraine. “We thought that we would fight the Poles and various mercenaries. Germans. We did not think that someone remained in the Ukrainian army. We thought they had left the country,” says one of them.
Read also The Insider’s report of February 10: “The defeat of the Russian army near Ugledar, reports of a Russian missile in Romania, modified Iranian drones. What's going on at the front .