Ukraine war: The liberation of cities is a morale booster for Ukrainian military.

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By Creative Media News

Oleksii tells me, “I feel secure here since we are on our land, and the ground itself will provide me with assistance.” This is despite the sounds of local small arms fire, artillery rounds exploding within sight, and Russian warplanes roaring overhead.

Along the border of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, he and a small squad of Ukrainian troops currently occupy territory. The same territory that Russian President Vladimir Putin just proclaimed to be permanently Russian.

Ukraine war: the liberation of cities is a morale booster for ukrainian military.
Ukraine war: the liberation of cities is a morale booster for ukrainian military.

The Ukrainian D1 National Guard Unit has pushed more than 20 kilometers (12 miles) east of the recently liberated city of Lyman in the Donetsk area over the previous week. They currently occupy a former Russian position in a forest, which is still within the firing range of the fleeing Russian troops. A portion of “eternal Russia” has already returned to Ukrainian control. Russia is currently the defensive force.

The reversal of fortune has revitalized the Ukrainian military. There is a distinct air of confidence among them, even though they are still within striking distance. Another unit member, Ilya, informs me, “We can recapture land, but the Russians cannot.” I inquire why “Because they are currently weak, they fear us and are fleeing from us.”

Shot in the arm
Ukraine war: the liberation of cities is a morale booster for ukrainian military.

This situation also illustrates the disparity in discipline and morale between the Ukrainians and the Russians. The withdrawing Russian forces left behind empty cans, ration packs, boots, bottles, and clothing which littered the ground and hung from the trees.

Ilya takes up a Russian helmet that has been abandoned and compares it to his own. Ilya quips, “Army of the future,” as he taps the Russian helmet. “A bleak future,” adds a chuckling comrade.

It is comparable to what Russian soldiers might have worn during World War II. They examine the label of a Russian winter glove while holding it in their hands. It states that it was manufactured in 2005. “New for Russians,” they make light of the situation. A second soldier named Duke asserts that Russia treats its soldiers as meat.

Oleksii claims that when flying their little drone, the Russians frequently give away their positions by discarding trash. For communication, they rely on one of Elon Musk’s Starlink satellite kits. They claim it has been functioning all week.

As one drives around the Donbas, there are more and more indications of Russia’s decimated military. We observed Ukrainian soldiers hauling away a personnel carrier and a huge self-propelled cannon bearing the Russian letter “Z.”

Ukraine war: the liberation of cities is a morale booster for ukrainian military.
Ukraine war: the liberation of cities is a morale booster for ukrainian military.

Ukraine has now taken more Russian armor than the West has supplied. Dozens of other inoperable military vehicles have been abandoned on the sidelines of roadways. The collection of unused ammunition for use against its former owners. The Donbas is also still strewn with fatal mines, the removal of which will take years.

The Ukrainian army’s elation is not always shared by the population they have liberated from Russian authority. The liberation comes with a price tag.

Those who survived the shelling are concerned about how they would endure the winter. There are tens of thousands of people without electricity and running water.

In Lyman, we encounter Natalia and Vitali scavenging among the ruins of a bombed-out house for firewood. Their only source of warmth is now their fire. An estimated eighty percent of their city has been damaged or destroyed. They were awakened at 05:30 by the landing of a Russian rocket on their home, which they barely survived.

Natalia sees her current situation as “arduous and intolerable.”

“We are like ants. Those who survived the trampling are now carrying firewood. Those who did not are interred “she says. She attempts to avoid blaming either side for her misfortunes, as do many others.

When we get to the heart of Lyman, there is already a lengthy bread line. The majority of them appear to be hedging their future bets.

Kataryna, a mother of two young children, explains her predicament. She states that Russia still “has a great deal of strength, which is why the possibility of their return is frightening. Because the city has already suffered greatly, and if it is handed back and forth between hands, nothing, including people, will remain “.

She currently states that all she desires is electricity and calm. This winter neither is likely for her.

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