A Ukrainian military intelligence document revealed the effectiveness of the “Wagner” military group in the war in Ukraine, especially in the recent battles around the city of Bakhmut, and the difficulty of fighting them.
A Ukrainian report dated December 2022, published by CNN today, Tuesday, concluded that Wagner posed a unique threat, even while suffering extraordinary losses.
The report emphasized that “the killing of thousands of Wagner soldiers does not concern Russian society,” noting that “the attacking groups from Wagner do not withdraw without an order.”
He also revealed the strict procedures practiced by the Wagner Group with its members, as it is not authorized to withdraw from the battlefield, indicating that withdrawal without injury is immediately punishable by death.
Strict orders on the battlefield
Phone intercepts obtained by a Ukrainian intelligence source and shared with CNN indicated an unforgiving situation on the battlefield. In one, one soldier was heard talking about another who tried to surrender to the Ukrainians.
Wounded Wagner fighters are often left on the battlefield for hours, according to the Ukrainian assessment, where “the attackers are not allowed to remove the wounded from the battlefield alone, as their main task is to continue the attack until the objective is achieved. If the assault fails, a retreat is allowed only at night.”
Wagner forces (Reuters)
Despite the indifference to casualties, the Ukrainian analysis said Wagner’s tactics “are only effective for the massed, poorly trained forces that make up the majority of Russia’s ground forces.
The Russian army is following in the footsteps of Wagner
He also suggested that the Russian army might adapt its tactics to become more Wagner-like, saying, “Instead of the traditional tactical groups and phalanx of the Russian Armed Forces, it is proposed to create assault units.”--
This would be a significant change from the Russians’ traditional reliance on larger mechanized units.-
A component of the Russian army in Ukraine
In addition, the Ukrainian report stated that Wagner deploys its forces in mobile groups of about a dozen or less, using rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs) taking advantage of real-time drone intelligence, which the report describes as the “essential element.”
Modern communication equipment
According to the document, another tool the Wagner soldiers had was the use of communications equipment made by Motorola.
Motorola told CNN it has suspended all sales to Russia and closed its operations there.
Putin and Prigozhin (AP)
It is noteworthy that Yevgeny Prigozhin, who previously avoided the limelight and denied his links to Wagner, admitted in September 2022 that he founded this group that plays a major role in the conflict, describing it as a completely independent force with its own planes, tanks, missiles and artillery.
Prigozhin is wanted in the United States for interference in the US elections, something he announced in November that he had done and would continue to do.