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DAY 96

Victory Chronicles
-DAY 96

May 30,2022

LUHANSK-DONETSK LINE

Above: Severodonetsk Chemical Plant “AZOT”. Photo via Wikimedia Commons

  • Enemy forces reached the outskirts of Severodonetsk, Luhansk Oblast, where heavy street fighting took place under a barrage of Russian shelling.  Ukrainian forces still control the western road and bridge leading out of the city and Ukrainian officials have not ruled out retreat if necessary.
  • Severdonetsk greater urban area abuts Donetsk oblast and is the last bit of Luhansk Oblast under Ukrainian control. Its loss is less a strategic loss for Ukraine as much as a propaganda victory for Russia.

Above: Soviet-era city welcoming stela evoked optimism.  Photo via Wikimedia Commons

  • Severodonetsk became the capital of Luhansk oblast after the Russian capture of Luhansk city in 2014. The area is comprised of a cluster of Soviet-built urban factory towns laid out in neat grids of concrete and rebar housing blocks.  It is on the main Luhansk- Kharkiv highway near the Siversky Donets River.

SOUTHERN UKRAINE

Above: New UA counteroffensive in the southern theater will force enemy redeployments.  Map via Michael MacKay

  • Ukraine carried out limited counter-offensive operations northeast of Kherson, the major Dnipro River port city currently under occupation. General Staff of the Ukrainian military Tweeted, “Hold on Kherson, we’re close!”

UNITED STATES

Above: Ukraine really needs long-range artillery to drive the invader out.  Photo via NEXTA

  • Ukraine’s success hinges on the timely supply of Western weapons and the US just approved a big one. The Biden administration approved supply of MLRS – multiple launch rocket systems – to greatly expand Ukraine’s offensive range. Following the second Ramstein meeting earlier this month, President Zelensky expressed optimism that this was on the table.

KREMLIN

Above: Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Cartoon by Yuriy Zhuravel via @HromadskeUA

  • Russia’s ambassador to the US warned that the US was not using common sense in supplying Ukraine with long-range missiles, branding such a transaction as a Moscow-directed provocation and reason for escalation. The ambassador complained it would give Ukrainian forces means to bomb Russian cities.

BOYCOTT RUSSIA: SERBIA

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic has to choose a vector between Moscow and Brussels.  Photo via European Western Balkans

  • Serbia’s boyish-looking president announced that he secured a favorable three-year deal for Russian gas after personally speaking with the Kremlin autocrat on Sunday.  President Vucic is a vocal Putin supporter and refuses to join EU sanctions against mother Russia even if it means abandoning Serbia’s application for EU membership.

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