Putin’s ‘hunky-dory’ act fails as frantic Russians flee Crimea

Getty

Getty

As Ukrainian forces gain momentum and force Russia’s forces to retreat from territory stolen during this year’s war in Ukraine, Moscow is working to signal that some of the territory taken from Ukraine is out of bounds.

Russia’s governor for Crimea, Sergei Aksyonov, said Friday that Russia is working to strengthen its defenses in Crimea, the peninsula Russia illegally annexed from Ukraine in 2014, as fears grew that Ukrainian The authorities have set their sights on taking it back.

“The security of the Republic of Crimea and its residents is ensured through the measures taken by our president,” Aksyonov said. “The joint work of the authorities, the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation and law enforcement agencies is aimed at ensuring that Crimeans can feel calm.”

According to Emil Ibragimov, head of the educational platform Q-Hub, despite Aksyonov’s urgings for calm in Crimea, citizens in Crimea have reportedly begun to read between the lines and fear has grown that Ukraine may seek to take Crimea back. Can be serious about. Ibragimov told Radio NV that according to Newsweek, people were fleeing to the Russian region of Krasnodar to avoid further damage.

“That is, we look at the trend and can conclude that it is definitely panic and fear [Ukraine] The Armed Forces will be able to liberate Crimea in the near future,” Ibragimov said.

Aksyonov’s attempt to craft the narrative that Crimea comes as Russia’s plan to annex Ukraine looks more shaky than ever. Increasingly, Russian officials are questioning Russian President Vladimir Putin’s judgment and war plans. Ukrainian military counter-offensives across Ukraine have forced Russia to retreat from much of the territory seized during the conflict this year. Earlier this month, the Ukrainian army expelled Russian troops from Kherson – a major city that was Russia’s last stronghold west of the Dnieper River – in what Ukrainian officials see as a precursor to taking back Crimea.

Kherson lies just north of Crimea, and a defeat there would represent a major loss for Putin’s dream of building a land bridge from Russia to Crimea, as well as supplying further incursions into Ukrainian territory.

Secret mission to free Crimea from Putin’s clutches

The loss of Kherson also signals to the administration of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that it may be time to go after Crimea and drive Russia out, The Daily Beast has learned. Tamil Tasheva, the official in charge of taking Crimea back from Russia in Zelensky’s administration, told The Daily Beast in an exclusive interview earlier this month that taking back Kherson is a precursor to taking back Crimea, and the Zelensky administration is increasingly Keeping an eye on the army. The factor of taking out Russia.

Tasheva told The Daily Beast, “We understand that it’s really linked — the demilitarization of Crimea — linked to the battlefield situation, in the southern part of Ukraine, specifically Kherson.

And while diplomacy is key to taking back Crimea, “we also [talk] Tsheva spoke, of course, about another mechanism of occupation, including the military components of the occupation.

Zelensky said in an interview with Bloomberg on Thursday that there would be no peace until Ukraine took back Crimea. “A simple ceasefire will not work,” he said.

Russia has been focusing on Crimea in recent days, according to a British intelligence analysis shared on Friday.

The intelligence analysis said, “Following the withdrawal of its forces from west of the Dnipro River, the Russian military continues to prioritize repair, reorganization and defense preparation in most areas in Ukraine.” “Units manned new trench systems near the border with Crimea, as well as near the Siversky-Donets River between Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts.”

According to the Institute for the Study of War, the region’s particularly limited number of stable roads and railways could make it vulnerable to Ukrainian targeting. However, Ukrainian forces are not yet operating on the eastern bank of the river.

The renewed focus on Crimea comes as the Ukrainian military continues to gain ground across Ukraine and as the Russian leadership increasingly realizes how poorly prepared the military is to match Ukraine and its continued military aid from the West. , given Russia’s poor logistics and execution of war plans from the early days of the war. Analysts say Russia’s response has been a frenzied attack on Ukrainian energy infrastructure, in an apparent attempt to use what little power it has left to deprive Ukraine of energy resources during the winter.

Following a series of attacks against Crimean military installations in October, Russia launched attacks against Ukrainian infrastructure. Russia has shelled the regions of Kherson, Zaporizhia, Dnipropetrovsk, Sumy, Donetsk, Mykolaiv, Chernihiv, Kharkiv and Luhansk as Russian troops continue their offensive on Bakhmut, Avdeevka and southwest of Donetsk city over the past 24 hours . to the Territorial Military Administration. Earlier this week, Russia fired nearly 100 missiles into Ukraine in what is believed to be one of the biggest attacks this year.

The breakdown that could trigger Putin’s deadliest rampage yet

Recent Russian attacks on Ukraine’s infrastructure have put about 50 percent of the Ukrainian energy system out of order, Ukraine’s Prime Minister Denis Shmyhal said. State energy company Ukrainergo said in a statement on Friday that emergency shutdowns are predicted in the coming hours and into the weekend.

The dire situation coincided with the first snowfall in Ukraine, in a sign that tough winter days lie ahead. Ukrainian officials are beginning to fear that they may not be able to repair some of the attacks on energy infrastructure in the near future. political man,

According to local reports, Poland is preparing for an influx of Ukrainian refugees as the winter months begin and Ukraine could become increasingly unusable.

Ukrainians will need to be resilient in the coming days if Russia continues its campaign, Ukrainenergo warned on Friday.

“The result of rocket attacks by the Russians on Ukraine’s energy system is the consumption limit,” Ukrainergo said on Friday. “This winter, we must show endurance and courage to face the enemy on the energy front.”

Schmihl said on Friday that according to customs data this week, Ukraine has imported about 9,000 generator sets to help ease difficulties with energy supplies.

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