Although some military experts have downplayed the strategic value of Bakhmut, pointing out that the city is not a transport hub and does not have a large population, others have pointed out that Russia would use it as a starting point to control d other areas of the Donetsk region.
Despite the Kremlin’s announcement and the raising of the Russian flag over the city on Saturday evening after 224 days of fierce fighting, and Russian President Vladimir Putin’s congratulations to Russian forces for completing control of Bakhmut, the Ukrainian General Staff has confirmed that “fierce fighting is still going on in the city.”
What does Bakhmut’s loss mean for Ukraine?
The morale of the Ukrainian forces declined after President Volodymyr Zelensyy described it as a “morale castle”. Ukraine will suffer a political defeat. He gave the Ukrainians strategic tactics to drive out Russian soldiers, according to Britain’s BBC website. Ukraine bet on her to change the course of the war. The battles spread to larger areas such as Kramatorsk and Sloviansk in the Donetsk region. The loss of thousands of lives and equipment forces Kiev to seek to reinforce supply lines to defend nearby towns. Ukrainian capabilities will reduce or delay the spring offensive to supplement the necessary logistical support. It was considered an important transport hub for the supply of Ukrainian forces in the Donbass and a strong point for supply deliveries.
British strategic analyst Simon Jordan said that “after Russia takes control of the city, and if this is true, the Ukrainians will retreat to the defensive areas of Kramatorsk areas that they have prepared over the last 8 years”.
He added to “Sky News Arabia” that Kramatorsk is located on higher ground and has more defense capabilities than Bakhmut, pointing out that there will be bloodier battles between the two sides than Bakhmut battles.
Bakhmut was known for its salt and gypsum mines and large wine-producing factories, and it is of no geographical importance, according to Western reports.
Western officials described it as “a small tactical event on a 1,200 kilometer front line”.
What are Russia’s gains?
However, according to the maps, Bakhmut is located in the north of the province of Donetsk, about 65 km north of the city of Donetsk, the administrative center of the province which together with the neighboring region of Luhansk forms the Donbass region, at about 15 km from the Luhansk border, and 580 km from the capital, Kiev.
It is also located on a main road that leads to the cities of Sloviansk and Kramatorsk, which are two of the largest cities in the Donbass region, and its proximity to the international road “M-03” connects it directly to the city of Sloviansk to Lugansk, and continues to the city of Kharkiv.
By controlling the city, Russia made several gains, including:
A symbolic victory for the Kremlin after fierce fighting that lasted about 7 months, since the control of Severodonetsk and Lysischansk last summer. Russia must succeed in promoting him to Kremlin supporters at home, according to the Washington Post. It would be a stepping stone to more victories on the pitch. This will allow Russia to threaten larger regions such as Kramatorsk and Sloviansk, according to the UK Ministry of Defence.
For his part, the head of the Donetsk region, Denis Pushilin, confirmed that the liberation of the city of Bakhmut carried a special symbolism, one year after the surrender of the militants of the Nazi battalion “Azov” in the liberated Mariupol.
Pushilin wrote via “Telegram”, saying: “For the second time, the date of May 20 constitutes a special day with a special symbolism for the Russian forces. The “completely impregnable fortress”, according to the Russian agency “Novosti”. .
Military expert Vladimir Igor commented that Bakhmut was a decisive battle in the basin of the Donbass region, and the domino which, if it falls under the control of Russian forces, will fall after the rest of the regions and the control of the region in the provinces of Donetsk and Luhansk.
In statements to Sky News Arabia, he attributed the delay in resolving the battle to the strong fortifications established by Ukrainian forces in the city, in addition to its distinguished geographical location, which prompted Russian forces to engage in battles of attrition.
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