One of the participants in the partisan attack on Russian Belgorod explained to Novaya Gazeta why their original plan failed.
Source: B92, index.hr
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Tanjug/Russian Defense Ministry Press Service via AP, File
Namely, he said that on the eve of their campaign, the weather conditions suddenly worsened, due to which the ground became even more muddy, and that the road on which they were supposed to start the attack was so rough that they were forced to go through the middle of the field, because of which their operation to attack the Russian territory was initially delayed.
That participant in the attack, who requested anonymity, also said that many of their vehicles were stuck in the mud, and some of them could not even be used in the planned action because of this. He also pointed out that this is why they failed to achieve everything they set out to do.
According to him, only a dozen cars and armored vehicles managed to break through to the border, and that around 150 people participated in the attack on Russia.
He also claims that there was no artillery shelling from the Ukrainian side, but that they themselves opened fire at the Gryvoron border crossing with 120 mm mortars.
"The crossing was guarded by border guards and motorized infantry. When we launched an attack under the protection of a tank, all the defenders ran away. They left their documents there. One of those who fled did not understand the situation quickly enough, got in the way and was killed. Another border guard, who was hiding in the basement, was captured," the anonymous source of Novaya Gazeta continued his claims.
"We also managed to launch two APCs and take at least one of them as a trophy. I'm not sure what happened to the other one. The video showing the two US Humvees (HMMWVs) was taken where our vehicles got stuck in the trenches near the border crossing. Fragile wooden bridges could not support their weight," he pointed out.
"After we captured the point, we all focused on our goals. The first group went to warn civilians not to leave their houses. They reached the district center very quickly. When the second group came (I was part of that group), there was no one in the villages. Dead streets," he emphasized.
He claims that only a few hours after the start of the operation, the Russians woke up and started sending their units, artillery and aviation. He said that the Russians started shooting at them, using all kinds of weapons.
"They launched cluster munitions from the cities. We saw Su-25 fighters and military helicopters. Some of our guys were slightly injured," he said.
"No one tried to stop us in the villages. It was only in the district center that we encountered serious resistance. I reached the outskirts of the small town and continued to fulfill our goals. By the evening, I and my comrades returned to the border. The next day we set off in a calm and organized manner with an armored personnel carrier," he said.
"I heard on the radio that some of our guys managed to shoot down a helicopter near Grayvoron. I didn't see it, but I'm sure it happened. Our initial goal was to take the center of the district. That all our forces got into Russia in time and that "We went according to schedule, captured Greyvoron and built fortifications there, we could have held the city for a week without a problem. Look at the map: the countryside is very good for defense. There are rivers and marshes everywhere," he continued.
He also said that his partisan group, the Legion of Freedom for Russia or the Russian Volunteer Corps - since he did not reveal which one he belongs to - continues to learn and become stronger.
"This time we tried to take the district center, but next time we could try to reach the capital of the region," he announced and added: "We are not just a marginalized group, we are a well-trained, well-prepared and armed formation. People want to join us."