Russian Offensive Marketing campaign Evaluation, June 19


June 19, 5:30 pm ET

Click on right here to see ISW’s interactive map of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. This map is up to date each day alongside the static maps current on this report.

The UK Ministry of Protection assesses that the Kremlin’s continued framing of its invasion of Ukraine as a “particular army operation” reasonably than a conflict is actively hindering Russian drive technology capabilities. The UK Ministry of Protection reported on June 19 that Russian authorities are struggling to search out authorized means to punish army dissenters and those that refuse to mobilize as a result of the classification of the battle in Ukraine as a “particular army operation” precludes authorized punitive measures that may very well be employed throughout a proper conflict.[1] ISW has beforehand assessed that the Kremlin’s framing of the conflict as a “particular operation” is compounding constant points with poor perceptions of Russian army management amongst Russian nationalists, issues with paying troops, lack of accessible forces, and unclear aims amongst Russian forces. The Kremlin is constant to aim to battle a serious and grinding conflict in Ukraine with forces assembled for what the Kremlin incorrectly assumed can be a brief invasion towards token Ukrainian resistance. The Kremlin continues to battle to right this elementary flaw in its “particular army operation.”

Russian authorities possible search to make use of conflict crimes trials towards captured Ukrainian servicemen, significantly troops that defended Mariupol, to advance its narratives across the conflict. Russian sources reported that the authorities of the Donetsk Folks’s Republic (DNR) plan to carry conflict crimes tribunals till the tip of August 2022 and that a minimum of one in all these tribunals can be held in Mariupol.[2] These tribunals will reportedly be judged in accordance with DNR laws (which notably permits capital punishment, not like Russian regulation) and be modeled on the Nuremberg format for conflict crimes trials. The trials are a sham try to attempt lawful prisoners of conflict as conflict criminals and help the Kremlin’s false framing of its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine as a ”de-Nazification” operation. Even supposing DNR authorities plan to attempt Ukrainian servicemen within the DNR, a supply in Russian regulation enforcement advised state-owned media outlet TASS that the deputy commander of the Azov Regiment and the commander of the Ukrainian thirty sixth Marine Brigade will each be transferred to Russia for investigation and trial.[3] Russian authorities will possible use these trials to strengthen authorized controls of occupied areas and additional demoralize Ukrainian defenders by setting a harsh authorized precedent throughout preliminary tribunals, in addition to advancing the Kremlin’s false narrative of invading Ukraine to “de-Nazify” it.

Key Takeaways

  • Concentrated Russian artillery energy paired with possible understrength infantry models stays inadequate to allow Russian advances inside Severodonetsk.
  • Russian forces continued to organize to advance on Slovyansk from southeast of Izyum and west of Lyman.
  • Russian forces are specializing in strengthening defensive positions alongside the Southern Axis as a result of latest profitable Ukrainian counterattacks alongside the Kherson-Mykolaiv Oblast border.
  • Profitable Ukrainian counterattacks within the Zaporizhia space are forcing Russian forces to hurry reinforcements to this weakened sector of the entrance line.
  • Russian forces are possible conducting false-flag artillery assaults towards Russian-held territory to dissuade Ukrainian sentiment and encourage the mobilization of proxy forces.

We don’t report intimately on Russian conflict crimes as a result of these actions are well-covered in Western media and don’t straight have an effect on the army operations we’re assessing and forecasting. We’ll proceed to guage and report on the consequences of those prison actions on the Ukrainian army and inhabitants and particularly on fight in Ukrainian city areas. We totally condemn these Russian violations of the legal guidelines of armed battle, Geneva Conventions, and humanity regardless that we don’t describe them in these reviews.

  • Important Effort—Japanese Ukraine (comprised of 1 subordinate and three supporting efforts);
  • Subordinate Important Effort—Encirclement of Ukrainian troops within the cauldron between Izyum and Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts
  • Supporting Effort 1—Kharkiv Metropolis;
  • Supporting Effort 2—Southern Axis;
  • Actions in Russian-occupied Areas

Important Effort—Japanese Ukraine

Subordinate Important Effort—Southern Kharkiv, Donetsk, Luhansk Oblasts (Russian goal: Encircle Ukrainian forces in Japanese Ukraine and seize the whole thing of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, the claimed territory of Russia’s proxies in Donbas)


Concentrated Russian artillery energy paired with possible understrength infantry models stays inadequate to allow Russian advances inside Severodonetsk, as Russian troops continued to battle for management of the town however made few features on June 19. Russian forces continued efforts to encircle the remaining Ukrainian troops within the Azot industrial plant.[4] Russian Telegram channels moreover claimed that Russian forces are advancing on Lysychansk from the south and preventing in Berestove, Spirne, Vovchoyarivka, and the Lysychansk Oil Refinery.[5] Russian troops performed airstrikes round Severodonetsk and Lysychansk and strengthened their grouping to the south of the realm round Orikhove and Toshkivka.[6] Russian forces possible search to levy their makes an attempt to interdict the T1302 Bakhmut-Lysychansk freeway to help offensive operations in Lysychansk.

Russian forces continued to organize for offensive operations towards Slovyansk from southeast of Izyum and west of Lyman however didn’t make any confirmed advances in both path on June 19. Russian forces performed reconnaissance and artillery strikes towards Ukrainian positions southeast of Izyum round Dibrove, Virnopillya, Kurulka, Bohorodychne, and Dolyna, in addition to to the west of Lyman.[7]

Russian forces continued offensive operations to the east of Bakhmut to interdict Ukrainian traces of communication alongside the T1302 Bakhmut-Lysychansk freeway on June 19. Russian forces reportedly fought round Nyrkove, Mykolaivka, and Berestove and performed air, artillery, and missile strikes towards Ukrainian positions east of Bakhmut and close to the T1302.[8] Russian forces will possible proceed efforts to achieve entry to the T1302 with the intention to help operations in Severodonetsk and Lysychansk, particularly as preventing within the space has largely stalled and Russian forces are more and more unable to consolidate management of the town, even with artillery superiority.

Supporting Effort #1—Kharkiv Metropolis (Russian goal: Withdraw forces to the north and defend floor traces of communication (GLOCs) to Izyum)

Russian forces targeted on sustaining their occupied frontiers north of Kharkiv Metropolis and fired at Ukrainian positions in northern Kharkiv Oblast on June 19. The Ukrainian Basic Employees reported that Russian troops unsuccessfully tried reconnaissance-in-force operations in Rubizhne (in Kharkiv, not Luhansk Oblast), and Russian forces are possible preventing for extra advantageous positions alongside the complete frontline north of Kharkiv Metropolis.[9] Russian forces moreover continued artillery strikes on Kharkiv Metropolis and surrounding settlements.[10]

Supporting Effort #2—Southern Axis (Goal: Defend Kherson and Zaporizhia Oblasts towards Ukrainian counterattacks)

Latest Ukrainian counterattacks have compelled Russian troops to concentrate on sustaining their defensive positions alongside the Southern Axis on June 19.[11] The Ukrainian Basic Employees reported that Russian forces in Kherson Oblast are strengthening their air-defense programs within the space, possible in response to continuous, profitable Ukrainian aviation assaults towards Russian forces south of Davydiv Brid.[12] Mayor of Melitopol Ivan Fedorov claimed that Ukrainian troops are approaching the Kherson Oblast.[13] Whereas ISW can’t independently verify the present positions of Ukrainian troops, it’s possible that localized Ukrainian counterattacks proceed to push again Russian forces, particularly alongside the Kherson-Mykolaiv Oblast border, and Ukrainian forces could possibly additional threaten Kherson Metropolis within the coming weeks.

Russian forces are persevering with to build up gear and manpower in central Zaporizhia Oblast, particularly alongside the Dniprorudne-Vasylivka-Orikhiv line, possible in response to Ukrainian counterattacks.[14] Fedorov said that Ukrainian forces pushed the Zaporizhia Oblast frontline 10 km south. Ukrainian officers have beforehand reported that the Zaporizhia frontline shifted 5 to seven kilometers south and it’s unclear whether or not Ukrainian forces have superior 10 km in whole or along with these earlier advances. Ukraine’s Zaporizhia Regional Navy Administration said that Russian troops are transferring gear and automobiles from Crimea by means of Melitopol towards the Vasylivka and Polohy areas and that Russian sabotage teams clashed with Ukrainian troops close to the Zaporizhia-Donetsk Oblast border on June 19.[15] Russian forces are possible accumulating troops in Zaporizhia Oblast to defend towards ongoing Ukrainian counterattacks in the direction of Melitopol that might threaten Russian management of the town.

Russian forces continued missile and artillery strikes towards varied places in Kherson, Zaporizhia, Dnipropetrovsk, Mykolaiv, and Odesa Oblasts.[16] Though Ukrainian air protection intercepted missiles earlier than they struck Odesa straight, Ukraine’s Southern Operational Command famous that Russian forces possible focused Odesa and different areas that aren’t experiencing direct hostilities to exert psychological strain on the inhabitants and undermine native economies.[17] Ukraine’s Southern Operational Command moreover reported that Russian forces are restructuring their naval grouping to incorporate extra submarines, which is a probable response to profitable Ukrainian assaults on Russian naval belongings within the Black Sea.[18]

Exercise in Russian-occupied Areas (Russian goal: consolidate administrative management of occupied areas; set circumstances for potential annexation into the Russian Federation or another future political association of Moscow’s selecting)

Russian forces are possible using false-flag artillery strikes towards infrastructure in Russian-held areas of Donetsk Oblast with the intention to dissuade pro-Ukrainian sentiment and encourage the mobilization of proxy forces. Open-source Twitter accounts confirmed ISW’s earlier evaluation that artillery assaults towards Donetsk Metropolis have been possible performed from inside Russian-held territory, refuting accusations made by Russian authorities that blamed Ukrainian troops for the assaults.[19] Such false-flag assaults are possible being propagated by Russian authorities to create hostility to the Ukrainian army.

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