“The military-tactical initiative of the Russian troops in the Bakhmut direction is lost,” says the source, confirming the conclusions of the Institute for the Study of War:
Due to heavy losses in the Wagner PMC, the pace of the advance of the Russian troops near Bakhmut decreased. The Russians want a tactical or operational pause.
It is known that Russian troops are losing the initiative in the Bakhmut direction, thereby giving Ukraine the opportunity to get out of a rather deaf defense into a partial counteroffensive. The previous model “the front does not move at all” was provided by the multiple advantage of the Russian Federation in manpower and military strength in this sector due to the constant “traffic of human and technical means.”
In the analytical materials of the Russians, the retreat and “regrouping” were called “forced measures” that must be implemented in order to deliver a “penetrating” strike deep into the Bakhmut triangle.
The plan failed: the troops withdrawn and transferred to Bakhmut turned this front into a “Verdun meat grinder,” but this did not give either a tactical or a strategic effect.
Now Russia is running out of opportunities to maintain the current military parity in the Bakhmut direction, which will likely lead to the fact that the territories captured by the Russian Federation over the past few months will rapidly return to Ukrainian control with little or no fighting, as the front line will consistently shift towards the position formed to all regroupings and retreats of Moscow in all other directions for the sake of the “Bakhmut knot”.