Zaporozhye-Melitopol, Strategies Ukraine Can Take After Occupying Kherson

Although it seems russian army voluntary withdrawal On the west bank of the Dnieper, they have left the city of Kherson, the only provincial capital they still control, indicating their fate His situation was more desperate than it seemed.This Russian President Vladimir Putin believe that winterwhich would inevitably slow the pace of the war, allowing him to regroup his battered troops and prepare them to retake Kherson in the spring.

despite this, Putin’s situation could get worse Yours before that. weeksThere are rumors of opening a third front, splitting the occupied territories in two.Yes, so far they have been Kherson, Kharkov and Luhansk Scenes of hostilities, Zaporozhye and Donetsk will be added soon. It all depends on whether Ukraine has the strength and energy to deal with this fatal blow, and whether Russia is capable of any kind of resistance, which it has not shown in recent months.

Vasilivka, the city that can decide the war

This The origin of the offense will be in the city of Zaporozhye, the provincial capital was annexed by Russia at the end of September but has been in Ukrainian hands since the war began. The Zaporozhye, protected by the Dnieper River, controlled the north bank and at the time played a role in deterring a possible Russian attack on the Dnipropetrovsk region. Since those anxious days of March, Russia has been unable to launch a single offensive against the city.

Ukraine map.

ISW, UK Ministry of Defence, self-explanation

The key to the third counter-offensive is to break through the defense line around the E105 highway, reach wassilivka. If Ukraine manages to capture that town south of the Dnieper, then the third consecutive collapse of the Russian army can be taken for granted. From Vasilivka, Ukraine has direct access to three nerve centers: Meritopolto the south, power ups West…and Donetsk Province to the East.

Meritopol It is the second most important city in the region and we know that since the occupation began, it has always been partisan land, not even in Jersón itself to see such diligence. Zaporozhye is 127 km away, while the crows are less than 70 km away when they fly from Vasilevka. Ensuring control of this highway divides Russian territory in two, separates the part of Kherson on the west side from Mariupol on the other side, and makes it difficult for troops to move from Crimea to a different front.

Ukrainian soldiers sit on a Russian mortar shell seized in the village of Blahodatne, Kherson region


If Russia is in a hurry to defend Melitopol (which would be a normal thing, since it cannot lose that city and that road), Ukraine has the option of heading west to Energodar. Why?Because power upsright on the bank of the river, yes The famous nuclear power plant they quarreled with the Russians For months, this has kept the entire planet under control of the constant bombardment of highly dangerous installations.

Along the Dnieper to Kherson or to Mariupol

The most likely targets of the Ukrainian troops upon their arrival in the town are Repeating what was achieved in northeastern Kherson, that is, to recover the land parallel to the Dnieper bed but on the other bank so that the armies of the North and South can join at any time. If that happens, Russia’s days of ruling the capital, Kherson, will be numbered, aside from losing control of the nuclear power plant that Putin also annexed by force.Obviously, without capital Kherson, say goodbye to any dream of building a corridor until Odessa and Transnistriawhich was supposed to be the target of the second phase of “special military operations”.

However, the real importance of the Zaporozhye counteroffensive and the possible capture of the Vasilevka enclave lay in the subsequent assault on the occupied area of ​​Donetsk. It is understood that Melitopol and Enel Godard are very juicy targets once Kherson is recovered … but it is two hundred kilometers from Vasilevka to Mariupol, more than one kilometer .This The temptation to reconquer “Stalingrad in Ukraine” The significance of this war is enormous, especially knowing that the forces of the Eastern Front continue to maintain control of Artemivsk (Bakhmut), eighty-five kilometers from the capital Donetsk, and are closing in on Lugan, the capital. Lysichansk-Sivierodonetsk core, ninety kilometers from Sk.

A Russian soldier fires an RPG-22 anti-tank rocket launcher from an undisclosed location in Kherson.

Russian Ministry of Defense


if ukraine did it Divide the narrow corridor into two, Russia would be in trouble, with no apparent destination for its three hundred thousand reservists, whose fighting conditions would have to be seriously questioned. In addition to the aforementioned need to decide between defending the corridor to Kherson or the highway to Melitopol, there should be an increased risk of deploying too many troops on that front and ignoring the Donbass itself.It must be remembered that the cities of Donetsk and Luhansk They have been at pro-Russian hands since hostilities began in 2014. Losing them now would be a complete disaster..

Of course, this is easier said than done, and the risk of getting caught in enemy territory is high.Now, everyone seems to agree This is the fatal blow Prepared from Kyiv. What we’ve seen so far in every Ukrainian counteroffensive is an important, sometimes desperate, destructive job culminating in unstoppable progress in a few days and winning Russia’s money in a week. A victory that takes months to conquer. Will the same thing happen to Zaporozhye? Location-wise, it was a key area for this war. Its grip could shift the conflict to one side or the other before a dreadful winter begins.

[Kiev espera una victoria total y Putin anuncia que “reagrupa” sus tropas para contraatacar Jersón]

Russian-Ukrainian War