- out of 90 000 Russian men at the Zaporizhzhia front, about 16 000 are dead or wounded through the first 20 days of the offensive.
- out of 990 Russian artillery pieces, 300 have been destroyed.
At this level of attrition, we may need another couple of weeks to see any significant change and movement of the front.
So you may read the daily briefings of the Ukrainian General Stuff and do believe that there is intense fighting (but also intense thinking, manoeuvring and deception) takes place.
Also, you might wish to look back for some old news.
For me personally, the most significant development of the last week was the official confirmation of the rumours that Ukraine's defence forces liberated territories in Donetsk Oblast occupied since 2014.
Many people were speculating whether a potential cease-fire or a peace treaty would somehow rely on the “pre-24 February 2022” front line”.
Some were casually referring to the “strong defensive lines” built by Russia at the pre-2022 front line.
And here it is — the line has been crossed, and the news about this fact is lost in the casual everyday newswire.
For me personally, this bears an additional meaning, as there are some places in the “old” occupied territories to which I have a family connection — and had been cut off from them for long nine years…
Remember that the war things happen not just on the front line.
The same night Prigozhin took Rostov-on Don, five people were killed and eleven wounded in Kyiv due to the biggest Russian missile strike since April. Ukraine's Interior Ministry shows first minutes after missile fragments fell on a residential building in Kyiv.
Meanwhile, in the occupied territories, Russians check teenagers in Mariupol for "loyalty to Ukraine". That follows the killing by Russians of two Ukrainian teenagers who had killed two Russian soldiers in Berdyansk two days ago.
3. Connect to a topic, military unit, or a relief organization
This helps me a lot. I vent my frustration by posting on international social media and writing posts like this, usually accompanied by a call to donate. I was lucky to have dozens of people reporting that they have donated to various Ukrainian military and civilian causes that I had promoted, bought Ukrainian goods to support Ukrainian small businesses etc. I have even got two guys who donated their drones to Ukrainian units.
I have some connection to several units, and I can tell you they were not having a very quiet life throughout the war. Either they are fighting, recovering from fighting or looking to replenish their equipment, or training. People raise in ranks and get awards, and fun things happen, but also people die and get wounded. All of that helps me feel connected, useful, and involved. Getting yourself busy and connected with something you are excited about helps.
Another thing I am looking at — and the one you might be interested too, especially if you are into some business — is Ukraine’s economic recovery: there was a major conference last week in London, and a dozen programs totalling USD 60 billion have been announced to support and rebuild Ukraine.
I can already see the money from the previous financial assistance packages being put to work in Ukraine — from rebuilding destroyed bridges to providing microgrants to SMEs who suffered from war or employ IDPs or veterans. This is no less exciting than fighting at the front line.
Things happen, and life goes on. Pray for Ukrainian fighters, donate if you can, keep your governments in check to keep supporting Ukraine with weapons and ammunition, ask for stronger sanctions against Russia, and urge Western companies to finally stop doing business in Russia.
Once again, thank you USA and all Americans who are supporting Ukraine now. Please keep doing this — the trend is positive, but we are just halfway there.
P.S. Just in case you have missed it before, here is my recommended list of 30+ Ways to Help Ukraine Today.