Overview:

  • Russian strike results in death and injury in Kherson area
  • Re-capture of Robotyne not so clear-cut or critical, AFP reports
  • AFU destroys dozens of Russian tanks and vehicles in Avdiivka defense
  • Ukraine makes small advances near Bakhmut
  • US officials lay out shrapnel from Shaheds used in Ukraine to prove a point
  • Ukrainian troops share smiles on video on the road to the front

Russian shelling kills man in village in the Kherson region

One man was killed and another injured on Thursday after Russian shells came down on the village of Chornobaivka in the Kherson region. A 71-year-old man was killed and a 70-year-old man injured, the Kherson Regional Military Administration reported.

The regional administration noted in its statement that the blasts knocked out some power in the village and that dozens of houses were damaged.

AFU stops Russian advances in Avdiivka, destroys dozens of tanks and vehicles

The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) reported that Russian forces have likely lost at least a battalion tactical group’s worth of armored vehicles in offensive operations around Avdiivka. A “reliable” observer noted on Thursday that Armed Forces of Ukrainian (AFU) units destroyed 33 Russian armored vehicles and 15 tanks since Oct. 10 near Avdiivka, while a Ukrainian reserve officer confirmed that conservative estimates suggest Ukrainian forces have destroyed at least 36 Russian armored vehicles including tanks, armored personnel carriers, and transport vehicles.

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The ISW had reported significant Russian gains around Avdiivka on Wednesday but now believes those reports to be exaggerated.

The fighting around Avdiivka has produced several images and videos on social media showing mostly Russian tanks and armored vehicles destroyed, with one column falling into a body of water: Footage published on Oct. 11 purportedly shows a Russian armored vehicle in a column near Avdiivka falling into a body of water by Novomykhailivka.

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Operations: Bakhmut area

The General Staff reported that Ukrainian forces achieved “unspecified successes” east of Klishchiivka (7 km southwest of Bakhmut) and east of Andriivka (10 km southwest of Bakhmut), the ISW wrote.

Ukrainian Eastern Group of Forces Spokesperson Captain Ilya Yevlash stated that Ukrainian forces are continuing offensives in the area and have advanced several hundred meters in unspecified areas. Yevlash went on to claim that the weapons and military equipment of 18 units were destroyed, including four tanks, seven armored fighting vehicles, as well as artillery and other vehicles.

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The Ukrainian General Staff and Ukrainian Tavriisk Group of Forces Spokesperson Colonel Oleksandr Shtupun confirmed that Ukrainian forces improved their “tactical positions” west of Robotyne, the ISW wrote.

Meanwhile in Robotyne, according to the AFP...

Robotyne “liberation” may not be exactly what it seems

A boots-on-the-ground feature story Thursday by AFP reveals that reports of the re-capture of the town of Robotyne may have been premature, at best. According to stories told to reporters by eight AFU soldiers there, the situation in the small village in the Zaporizhzhia region, announced in August as a strategic victory in the counteroffensive, is a lot more fluid than that and perhaps not as critical as it is made out to be:

Speaking in an area usually closed to media, they complained of a lack of manpower, ammunition and drones, AFP wrote. Igor Korol, the heavily tattooed commander of the brigade's first battalion, spoke calmly but did not mince his words. For him, the announcement of the capture of Robotyne on August 28 was primarily a PR move, since the village, occupied since early in the war, has no strategic value.

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“We could have gone around it,” he said, speaking to AFP in an area near the front line. “We love big announcements, quick victories. The reality is different,” said the commander who uses the call sign “Morpekh” (Marine). Korol said his men are still not able to move freely around the area because of Russian fire, even though they hold the territory, calling it a “gray zone.”

US intelligence shows debris from Russian-launched drones made in Iran

“Iran lies, and we want to push back on Russia’s war in Ukraine, a US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) analyst told AFP and other reporters the evening before a presentation to the UN Thursday of the findings of Iranian-made components in Russian drones.

The evidence, according to the Pentagon, demonstrates the growing ties between Iran and Russia. The analyst showed the shells of two Shahed 131 drones, one they said was used in Ukraine in the fall of 2022 and the other found in Iraq in 2021. Other debris displayed included parts of Iranian Shahed 101, Shahed 131 and Shahed 136 drones found in Ukraine.

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Iran has denied supplying Russia with shipments of drones, both attack drones and unarmed aerial vehicles, AFP reported.

A great video of Ukrainian brothers-in-arms on the front

With all the terrors of war and the hardships soldiers face on a daily basis, sometimes it’s heartwarming to be reminded of the camaraderie shared on the campaign, and the brotherly ties felt while defending your country:

 

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