“Treacherous Human Waves”: Russia’s Own Tactics Sabotage Avdiivka Assault

Ukraine Anticipates and Strategically Prepares for Russian Assault Near Avdiivka.

Ukrainian forces, duly forewarned, tactically readied themselves for the forthcoming Russian offensive actions around Avdiivka, as substantiated by statements on October 12 and 13. John Kirby, the U.S. National Security Council Spokesperson, accentuated that the emergent Russian military campaigns near Lyman and Avdiivka were not unforeseen, as conveyed by the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) on October 13.

Deploying “Human Wave Tactics”

Kirby conveyed an assuredness that Ukrainian troops were capable of thwarting Russian attacks. He emphasized Russia’s military dependence on “human wave” tactics, involving the deployment of sizable contingents of under-equipped soldiers – a strategy also evident during the unsuccessful Russian winter offensive in 2023. ISW also highlighted a notably high reliance on armored vehicles by Russian forces in ongoing operations.

Advanced Ukrainian Preparedness

Andriy Yusov, an official from Ukraine’s Chief Military Intelligence Service, asserted on October 12 that Ukrainian forces had early knowledge of the Russian attack near Avdiivka and had subsequently prepared. He further emphasized that Russian forces lacked adequate reserves to launch attacks along the entire frontline, limiting them to specific sectors. Moreover, several Russian military bloggers have observed that Ukrainian mines impeded the Russian progression near Avdiivka, indicating premeditated defensive measures by Ukraine.

Image: Dpsu.gov.ua, Bakhmut during the battle (2023-04-05), frame 15989, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons (image size modified).

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