Dnipro — Ukraine is combating onerous with ato liberate Russian-occupied territory, one village at a time, typically in close-quarters city or trench warfare. Ukrainian protection officers say the battles occurring now within the south and east of the nation are extraordinarily fierce. CBS Information met Ukraine’s 108th Territorial Protection Brigade because the troops returned from the entrance strains, and so they shared video and their very own private accounts of how vicious the combating has been.
Their helmet and physique cameras present how they transfer into place beneath the quilt of darkness, making the most of Western-supplied night time imaginative and prescient to present them an edge over the Russian invaders.
When morning broke, the officer in cost gave the command to assault.
“It took us two days to push almost 3 miles,” one of many troopers who led that first assault, who makes use of the callsign “Blacksmith,” advised CBS Information.
The Russians have been dug in and their positions closely fortified, however intense artillery fireplace lastly compelled them to flee.
The quickness of the Russians’ retreat was evident within the trenches they deserted, with weapons, rations and different gadgets left scattered throughout the bottom, however struggle has taught the Ukrainian troops a precious lesson:
“Do not contact,” stated one of many troops. “Something might be boobytrapped.”
Requested if the Russian forces have been placing up a fierce resistance, brigade commander Anton stated when his males first broke the road of protection, the occupying troops confirmed “just a little panic and so they moved quick,” however he is aware of they have been solely retreating to a different line of higher fortified trenches.
Anton described how his troops would sustain the pursuit, choosing meticulously via mine-infested treelines for canopy, “to be gradual, to be silent, and to be secure.”
When Blacksmith and his squad reached their ultimate goal, Anton gave the order for them to maneuver in, clear the realm after which dig in.
Requested if it was good to lastly be on the offensive quite than simply holding a line, Anton stated “There is no struggle you may win with out assault. You’ll be able to’t win the struggle with protection solely, and we’re glad to maneuver ahead.”
The 108th Brigade was about to get some relaxation, however their coaching by no means stops. The boys aren’t skilled troopers, and plenty of had by no means held a gun earlier than Russia launched its full-scale invasion in February 2022, prompting them to volunteer.
Now, they’re battle -hardened warriors, and as Blacksmith advised CBS Information, they’re fully sure “we’ll win.”
“Morale is excessive, as a result of we’re pushing ahead,” he stated. “Everybody desires victory.”
The one factor the troopers they want that they had extra of, they stated, is tanks., from each Europe and, later, the US.
High U.S. protection officersthat about 200 Ukrainian troops have been anticipated to finish coaching to function American-made Abrams essential battle tanks by the top of the summer time. That ought to nearly line up with the anticipated supply this fall of the the U.S. promised Ukraine earlier this yr.
If that they had extra tanks already, the Ukrainian troops of the 108th advised CBS Information, the struggle could be over quite a bit sooner.