Sunday, January 21, 2024

Russian Operations Assessment 11JAN2024

Key Takeaways: 
• The reported concentration of the Russian military’s entire combat-capable ground force in Ukraine and ongoing Russian force generation efforts appear to allow Russian forces to conduct routine operational level rotations in Ukraine. 
• Russia’s ability to conduct operational level rotations will likely allow Russian forces to maintain the overall tempo of their localized offensive operations in eastern Ukraine in the near term, but it is unclear if Russian forces will be able to conduct effective rotations in the long term or in the event of intensified Russian offensive efforts or a significant Ukrainian counteroffensive operation. 
• Ukrainian intelligence reported that Russian efforts to expand Russia’s defense industrial base (DIB) have yet to fulfill operational requirements in Ukraine and that munitions shortages will continue to prompt Russia to source supplies from abroad.
• Freezing temperatures in Ukraine are likely constraining operations along the front but will likely create more favorable terrain for mechanized maneuver warfare as the ground freezes in the coming weeks. 
• Latvia and Estonia announced new military aid packages to Ukraine on January 11. 
• Russia may be setting information conditions for future escalations against Latvia by threatening to punish Latvia for closing a likely base of Russian informational influence in Latvia. 
• European Commission (EC) Defense Industry Spokesperson Johanna Bernsel clarified on January 11 that European Union (EU) member states will be able to produce a million shells per year by spring 2024 but that the delivery of the shells to Ukraine will depend on individual member states. 
• The US Department of Defense (DoD) Office of the Inspector General published a report on January 11 that states that the failure to document certain aid provided to Ukraine in a timely manner is largely due to DoD limitations but that does not suggest that any of the material aid has been misappropriated. 
• Ukrainian Verkhovna Rada Speaker Ruslan Stefanchuk announced on January 11 that the Verkhovna Rada withdrew a draft law on mobilization for revisions after discussions between Ukrainian legislators and political and military leadership. 
• A Ukrainian official indicated that the Russian Black Sea Fleet (BSF) may struggle to compensate for the loss of base infrastructure after allocating naval assets away from the BSF’s main base of Sevastopol in occupied Crimea. 
• Ukrainian and Russian forces continued positional engagements along the entire front. 
• Kremlin newswire TASS reported on January 10 that Russian forces will deploy additional aircraft and vessels and increase the production of hypersonic Kinzhal and Zircon missiles in 2024. 
• The Belarusian Ministry of Emergency Situations stated on January 10 that it sponsored a trip for 35 Ukrainian children from occupied Ukraine to Mogilev for the New Year holiday during which soldiers taught children “the basics of life safety” and how to behave in “extreme situations.”


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