In the past year, the Ukrainian army refused to mobilize, have experienced new types of weapons, and gained strength under the leadership of foreign instructors. At the front were positional battles. According to experts, this situation will continue and in 2017, if in Russia or Ukraine is not going to happen any political upheaval.
CONTRACT ARMY. In 2016 the Armed forces of Ukraine have scored more than 60 thousand contract. At the same time from the ranks of the APU was fired by the people called in 2015 under the fourth, fifth, and sixth waves of the partial mobilization. The probability of the announcement of the seventh wave of partial mobilization was maintained during the first half of 2016. This obliged the logic of army, in which the fourth wave changed the first, fifth, second, sixth and third. Thus, the seventh wave was supposed to change the fourth, but the effectiveness of call in doubt. Suffice it to recall how difficult the military complied with the plans of the fifth and sixth stages of mobilization in the summer of 2015, when some conscripts had to catch.
Therefore, the government has decided to involve volunteers in specie, from 1 January 2016, raising the salaries of contractors. An ordinary shooter started to of 7 thousand hryvnias, almost two and a half times more than previously. It brought effect, and the contract went to enlist in the army. However, many of them regarded it as a place for stable earnings. According to a member of the parliamentary Committee on national security and defence Dmitry Tymchuk, this led to the fact that the “workers” refused to move into the area of hostilities. “If the difference in salaries between the rear and front is only a thousand hryvnia, anyone interested to fight,” — said Tymchuk.
Nevertheless, the appearance of volunteers-contract employees, increasing the attractiveness of military service has improved the quality of the army, said the chief editor of “Information resistance” Yuri, Karin. “Another important factor is the aid of foreign instructors in the training of our soldiers. We used it all the time in order to become stronger,” explained Karin.
RELATIONS WITH THE WEST. Foreign instructors working in Ukraine within the framework of “non-lethal” military aid provided by Western countries. According to the defense Ministry, Ukraine has helped 18 countries, however the most significant support was provided by US by sending equipment to Ukraine worth more than $117 million — for example, radars for conducting counterbattery fight, armored Hummer, as well as small Raven drones, which, however, in December 2016 scandal. Adviser of the Ukrainian General staff Natan Khazin said that Raven was useless in the Donbass, because they use analog communication channel that is easily tracked by the electronic warfare of the enemy.
Some hope the Ukrainian side holds on the support of NATO. During the Warsaw summit, which took place in July 2016, it was decided to provide Ukraine with comprehensive support package for 40 different directions. “This package will take as much help as Ukraine will be able to use effectively for reform”, — said the President Poroshenko. The Alliance actually recognized Russia as the aggressor, but, on the other hand, made it clear that he is not going to accept Ukraine into its composition, and thus help us to liberate the Donbass and the Crimea. These questions we have to solve on their own.
NEW WEAPONS. Liberate occupied enemy territory should help us new weapons systems, which have been tested in the past year. One such system is the new missile complex “Alder”. It is a precision guided rocket, developed by the Kiev KB “Ray”, which starts with the old Soviet 300-mm jet systems of volley fire “Smerch”.
The first launches of “Alder” was held in the spring of 2016. Another test took place in the Odessa region on August 26. And finally, the last launch of “Alder” was held on November 16. “It’s a scary, accurate, Ukrainian weapons,” — said the assistant Secretary of defense Yury Biryukov.
According to the Director of information and consulting company defense Express Serhiy Zgurets, the project “Alder” is needed due to a critical obsolescence only at the disposal of the APU operational-tactical missile complex “Tochka-U”, which was adopted in 1975 and has practically exhausted its resource. Since all the known tests of “Alder” were successful, in 2017, the missile shield in Ukraine may significantly stronger.
THE ENEMY DOES NOT SLEEP. This shield is necessary at least in order to prevent the opponent from escalating the situation. In 2016, Russia launched the construction of four major military bases on the borders with Ukraine to deploy troops there. So in the village of Boguchar (Voronezh oblast), 45 km from the border with Ukraine, the defense Ministry allocates more than 1,300 pieces of equipment and more than 5 thousand troops. In addition, in the village of Valuyki Belgorod oblast (Kharkiv area), 25 km from the border, the planned deployment of a further 3,500 military personnel. Another military base is deployed on the ground Kadamovsky in the Rostov region, and the fourth base is based in the city of Klintsy in the Bryansk region (50 km from the Ukrainian border in the direction of Chernihiv). Here will be deployed from 3 to 4 thousand Russian soldiers.
Also in the Rostov region created a system of control by occupation troops in the so-called “DNR” and “LNR”. Experts of Center for army, conversion and disarmament noted that these forces can at any time to invade the Ukraine, and in August 2016, this probability exceeded 50%. The enemy just stops increasing power of the Ukrainian army, as well as the unwillingness of the militants of the so-called “DNR” and “LNR” to attack.
SVETLODARSK ARC. In fact, to occur in 2016, the militants tried, limiting the constant shelling of the Ukrainian positions. The main hot spots of 2016 became the industrial area of Avdeyevka, Mariupol direction and the so-called Svetlodarsk arc formed in 2015, after the retreat of the armed forces of Ukraine from debaltseve.
Avdiivka industrial Park, which was on “no man’s land”, the insurgents used for attacks on positions of the Ukrainian army. In March 2016, there were fixed divisions of VSU, providing firing control of the important route Donetsk — Gorlovka near Yasynuvata interchange. Since the units of the so-called “DNR” trying unsuccessfully to dislodge Ukrainian fighters with new positions.
The first round of battles on the arc Svetlodarsk was held in late June, and the second, particularly bitter, began on 18 Dec. The December battle broke out in no-man’s zone.
As the speaker of the presidential Administration on issues of anti-terrorist operation Andrey Lysenko, the battles on the arc Svetlodarsk from 18 to 23 Dec killed 8 soldiers APU. Losses of insurgents, according to the Ukrainian side, tens. However my opponent said about a large amount of “two hundred” in the ranks of the Ukrainian army, playing down their own losses. While their positions have improved the Ukrainian side, taking a few strongholds of the enemy and establish control over the village of Novoluganskoe. A series of small tactical acquisitions of AFU and was mainly the result of a positional struggle in 2016.
WHAT’S NEXT. According to experts, the situation of “neither peace nor war” will continue next year, but the development of the situation will largely depend on geopolitical factors and the situation in the country. “Next year, Russia will continue to destabilize the situation in Ukraine. In this case, the front will continue a war of position with the subsequent demoralization of the occupation forces,” said Yuri, Karin. A senior analyst at the International centre for policy studies Anatoly Artisyuk believes that political instability in Russia or Ukraine could lead to escalation on the front. “It is never clear what to do with the occupied Donbass. From the informed people, I often hear the statement that Ukraine in General is to move to a more independent policy, not looking at the view of the EU and the United States,” said Artisyuk.