UKRAINIAN WORLD CONGRESS

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DAY 506

Victory Chronicles
-DAY 506

July 14,2023

Pentagon on the pace of Ukraine's counteroffensive: Advance comes at a cost of enormous effort

The Pentagon has commented on the allegations that the counteroffensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine is proceeding at a slower pace than expected. Douglas Sims, director of operations at the Pentagon’s Joint Staff, said this at a briefing. He emphasized that Ukrainian fighters are currently in the midst of fierce fighting. “They are using new equipment, and all of this is under fire and bombardment, not to mention… large-scale mining by the Russians. And where they are advancing hundreds of meters a day, and sometimes a kilometer a day, they are doing so at the cost of enormous effort,” Sims said.

According to him, the Ukrainian military is conducting its counteroffensive operations “in a remarkable sequence on the battlefield.” “Perhaps not at the speed we would like… But this is a tough war, it’s being fought in really tough terrain, under fire, and when you take all that into account, it’s just impressive,” the Pentagon representative emphasized.

Symbolic number of the Day - 62

Today, the fallen Ukrainian defenders’ bodies were returned from the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. Thus, the bodies of 62 more defenders were returned. Four died in enemy captivity due to injury, illness, and inadequate medical care. After identification, the bodies of our defenders will be handed over to their families for a proper burial.

War in Pictures

A Ukrainian defender shows his prosthetic eye, which fell out after the Russian shelling of his positions on the front line in Zaporizhzhia Oblast.

Photo: AP/Mstyslav Chernov

Video of the Day

Cambodian experts train Ukrainians in demining techniques. They met with members of Ukraine’s State Emergency Service at a facility in Poland last week to teach demining techniques, according to a video from Voice of America published on July 13. The experts shared advanced land-mine imaging technology and equipment, some developed and supported by the Japanese government.

The Cambodian Mine Action Centre (CAMC), leading in developing training for Ukrainian teams in Poland, gained experience in demining techniques over the past several decades after the war in Cambodia ended in the late 1990s. The CAMC has worked in several countries in Africa and the Middle East to share its equipment and expertise in the realm of demining.

ISW report

Popov’s dismissal (Former Commander of the 58th Combined Arms Army (CAA) Major General Ivan Popov) over the issue of Russian casualties and reported complaints about lack of force rotations further supports ISW’s assessment that Russian defenses in Ukraine are likely brittle. ISW has previously assessed that Russian forces lack the reserves to rotate frontline units and that without operational reserves Russian forces would have to fall back to prepared defensive positions without significant support in the case of a Ukrainian breakthrough.

Popov’s complaint about Russian casualties from artillery fire likely indicates that Russian forces need rotations and reinforcements to sustain their defenses in western Zaporizhia Oblast. Russia’s lack of reserves likely made it impossible for Gerasimov to seriously consider Popov’s appeal, and Popov’s dismissal has further illustrated that Russian forces are unable to conduct force rotations. The apparent theater-wide lack of force rotations suggests that Russian forces would have to rely on existing and already degraded forces in the event of any Ukrainian breakthrough. Popov’s complaints about Russian forces’ poor counterbattery capabilities and significant Russian casualties from Ukrainian artillery fire are likely a result of what ISW assesses to be a Ukrainian effort to attrit Russian forces defending in southern Ukraine.

War Heroes

Defender Pavlo Savluk, with the call sign Rudyi, died on June 4, 2023, near the village of Novopil, Donetsk Oblast. While performing a combat mission, he was fatally wounded due to a FAB-500 bomb from the Russian occupiers hitting his trench. The warrior is 39 years old forever.

The man tried to get to the front when the Russian-Ukrainian war broke out in 2014. But due to health problems, he was denied, so he and his family were actively involved in volunteer activities. Pavlo was an ardent patriot and loved everything related to the culture of his native country.

On the second day of the full-scale invasion, February 25, 2022, Pavlo went to the military registration and enlistment office again to join the ranks of the defenders.This time, he was mobilized. Thus, the man became a fighter with the 114th Battalion of the 110th Separate Territorial Defense Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. He served in an anti-tank platoon of a fire support company. He performed combat missions with courage and dignity. He sincerely believed in victory over the enemy.

“He always called me ‘daughter,’ and I called him ‘dad.’ Although he was my stepfather, he gave me what my own father could not. My father went to war almost immediately after the full-scale invasion began. He had health problems and could have easily not gone, but he did. And I’m honestly not surprised at all. Because he loved this country above all else. When we moved to Prymorsk, Zaporizhzhia Oblast, now a temporarily occupied city, he was almost the only person who spoke Ukrainian. Even then, he understood its value and refused to switch to Russian as a matter of principle. Even before 2014, he knew how important it was to disown everything related to Russia. He and my mother started volunteering when he was not accepted into the military in 2014. I still remember the smell of the pies we baked for the military,” said Aliona Zakharova, the daughter of the fallen defender.

Pavlo was buried in his native village in Vinnytsia Oblast. The defender is survived by his mother, sister, beloved wife and two daughters.

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