Overview:

  • A familiar face in Kyiv, Victoria Nuland steps down from US State Dept.
  • Ukraine says Russian defense ministry servers still down from cyberattack
  • Siege on Sumy: One injured in barrages on residential settlements in the northeast region
  • A look at Ukraine’s new “Bond-like” sea drones knocking out Russian warships
  • AFU fighting back on left bank with drones and French glide bombs

US State Dept says frequent Kyiv envoy Nuland is resigning from her post

US Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland, who was a voice of the American administration very often heard in Kyiv, will be stepping down soon, the State Department said.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced: “Victoria Nuland has let me know that she intends to step down in the coming weeks as Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs – a role in which she has personified President Biden’s commitment to put diplomacy back at the center of our foreign policy and revitalize America’s global leadership at a crucial time for our nation and the world.”

Blinken said that John Bass, Under Secretary of State for Management, will serve as an interim Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs until Nuland’s replacement is confirmed.

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Kyiv’s spy service is thrilled that its cyberattack on Russian MoD has a lasting effect

The Main Directorate of Intelligence for Ukraine (HUR) announced on its website Tuesday that their cyberattacks on Russia’s Defense Ministry (MoD) continue to hobble the Kremlin’s servers more than 48 hours later.

“The defense ministry of the aggressor state Russia cannot cope with the consequences of a cyberattack carried out by the HUR. The official website of the enemy’s law enforcement agency was still down as of March 5, 2024,” HUR spokespeople wrote in a statement, according to state news agency Ukrinform. According to intelligence officials, the Russian MoD’s IP addresses, website domains, and servers in general remain largely inoperative.  

Russian Missile Attack on Chernihiv Leaves 16 Dead, Over 60 Injured
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Russian Missile Attack on Chernihiv Leaves 16 Dead, Over 60 Injured

An 8-story civilian multi-purpose building was directly hit during the Russian missile strikes, according to the acting mayor of Chernihiv.

The attack, revealed on Monday, reportedly allowed Kyiv’s hackers to access data on the ministry’s servers.

This was the second such HUR cyberattack on the Russian ministry this year. The first, in January, broke into MoD’s special communications channels.

Reports of attacks in Sumy region on Tuesday give a glimpse into terrifying life under siege

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The military administration of the Sumy region, along the northeastern border with Russia, announced Tuesday that a resident was injured during a huge barrage of mortar and artillery fire from Moscow’s forces. Administrators said the Russians shelled settlements here 37 separate times throughout the day, with 222 explosions heard. The civilian was injured in the attack on the Seredyna-Buda district.

Giving some acoustic detail into neighborhood life under siege in Ukraine, Sumy authorities recorded, among others attacks, the sounds of shelling in the neighborhoods of:

  • Bilopillia (26 mortar explosions, 30 grenade explosions and 10 artillery explosions)
  • Miropillia (14 mortar and 15 artillery shell explosions)
  • Velykopysarivka (11 mortars, 14 grenades and three artillery explosions)
  • Khotin (7 mortar explosions)
  • Esman (5 mortar explosions)

The Russians are reportedly also “remotely mining” the Sumy region by dropping spherical bomblets from the air:

AP gives interesting details on the sea drones used against Russian vessels on the Black Sea

On Tuesday, once again, Ukrainian sea drones managed to sink a prized jewel of the Russian Navy’s Black Sea Fleet, this time the brand new, $65 million patrol ship, the Sergei Kotov (and a $16 million Ka-29 helicopter, too.) What are these new sea drones?

The Associated Press on Tuesday gave some new details about these unmanned surface vessels (USVs), loaded with GPS, live-stream cameras, and lots of explosives, and that, it said, would “not be out of place in a James Bond movie.”

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The new naval drone used in the attack on the Kotov patrol ship was the latest version, a Magura V5.

AP reported that the sea-going drone is 5.5 meters (18 feet) long, weighs up to 1,000 kg (2,200 pounds), has a range of up to 800 km (500 miles), with 60 hours of battery life, and has a 200 kg (440-pound) warhead payload.

“Another drone that is larger than the Madura, called Sea Baby, was shown to The Associated Press... The latest Sea Baby model is capable of carrying 860 kg (1,900 pounds) of explosives, hits a top speed of 90 kph (56 mph), and can cover a distance of 1,000 km (620 miles),” the AP wrote.

Operations: Dnipro River

The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) reported on Tuesday that limited fighting continued on the left bank of the Dnipro River, with the first noted uses of French glide bombs by the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU), citing online reports and confirmed images.

Russian military bloggers wrote that Moscow’s forces are striking “small Ukrainian groupings in the dacha area near the Antonivsky roadway bridge” and reported that Ukrainian forces may be strengthening their grouping on the left bank, and conducted a drone strike against a substation near the Kakhovka dam.

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Geolocated footage on Tuesday from the left bank also shows the first confirmed Ukrainian use of French-provided AASM Hammer glide bombs against Moscow’s units.

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