Ukraine — Victory Is Closer Than You Think
Center for European Policy Analysis CEPA
From here, the Ukrainians need to advance by a further 10–15 km (7–10 miles), in order to range their guns on Russia’s east-west transport routes that are critical to the ability of its army and armed forces to fight. If Ukraine can interdict these road and rail links, it’s very hard to see how the Russian army can continue to fight. This will not be easy, but it’s reasonable to think it will happen. This will be achieved using its indirect capability — first the M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System( HIMARS ) and the M270 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), whose reach is about 80km-90km, and later its 155 mm artillery with a range of over 40km. These are hugely more capable than Ukraine’s pre-war 152mm Soviet-style artillery that have a range of only 17–20 km. Russia’s GLOC does not run along the sands of the Azov Sea’s shores, but rather inland, and therefore closer to Ukraine’s advances. The M14 highway running east-west, and largely parallel to the coastline, is about 7km–10km from the shore. Nearby is the broader logistics corridor where the Russians place supply and ammunition dumps, fuel storage, higher-echelon command posts, reserve units, and logistics railheads. This logistics corridor becomes increasingly narrow for every inch the Ukrainians liberate. Once the Russian assets mentioned above are within Ukrainian MLRS reach, the Russian senior leadership will have an almost impossible choice to make — will they be able to sustain operations west of Melitopol when every aspect of their fighting effort is under fire? As winter approaches, the logistic situation west of Melitopol is likely to get worse and worse. As occurred on the western bank of the River Dnieper last fall, even Vladimir Putin will be forced to acknowledge reality – he can fight on and risk mass troop surrenders or pull back. Either way, the so-called land bridge from Russia to Crimea will be snapped.
Ukraine, Russian, Military Conflict
Kallberg, Jan. "Ukraine--- Victory Is Closer Than You Think" (2023).