Day 227 of the war was marked by an act of sabotage attributed to the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) that is set to have important repercussions on various levels. The Big Bang that caused the collapse of part of the Kerch Bridge during the night, which has joined Russia in Crimea since 2018, appears to represent a quantum leap above all symbolic of the Kyiv counterattack, even if it has significant logistical implications. And it is no coincidence that the sinking of the cruiser “Moskva” is compared with strikes on Russian power in the Ukrainian Crimea, which was annexed in 2014.
There is talk of a truck bomb, but other reconstructions prefer explosives or bombs placed in carrier sections of the infrastructure, with a lot of experience, in order to cause the most damage with the least risk of detection. The explosion killed three people, according to the Russian source. Moscow stated that the rail portion of the bridge as well as a motorway lane has already been reopened for light traffic, but not for heavy traffic.
President Zelensky’s first advisor, Mikhailo Podolyak, did not directly claim Ukraine’s responsibility, but wrote on Twitter: “Crimea, the bridge, the beginning. Everything illegal should be destroyed, everything stolen should be returned to Ukraine, everything occupied by Russia should be expelled. ” Later, Podolyak blamed an unlikely internal quarrel with Moscow’s intelligence services, because the truck was going to arrive from the Russian side. But 007 The United States was to confirm Kyiv’s imprint.
Russia used the double bridge, the longest in Europe, to transport military equipment, ammunition and personnel from the motherland to the battlefields of southern Ukraine. For this reason, the Kyiv authorities declared this a legitimate goal, as they intend to restore the peninsula that was part of the Federation in a disputed referendum.
According to some analysts, such as Australian strategist Mick Ryan, the Ukrainians have so far been very adept at planning and executing blitzkrieg attacks of this kind. before they advance. The attack on the bridge could be part of a plan to restore Crimea in the short term, or it could be a covert operation to distract the enemy from other areas.
Either way, it could create a huge problem in Moscow. The interruption, even temporarily in Kerch, does not prevent supplies to the Crimea (which also travels by sea and on the way through Melitopol), But it makes the preservation of melitopol itself even more important. This could lead to a redeployment of Russian forces in the south, with consequent potential disruptions to the overall military deployment.
Finally, there is evidence that the Moscow forces are not able to effectively protect the provinces that were annexed to the union: There are controls on the bridge that have been circumvented. It is not excluded that the rush to leave Crimea was greater than that seen after the recent attack on an air base. Distrust of Putin and his regime will only increase, with other actions in Crimea, where the Russian military has a significant presence.
Soon, videos of the damaged bridge went viral on social media. The BBC reports that Ukraine’s second bank, Monobank, is ready to issue a new debit card with a collapsing bridge doll. Many also, ironically, linked the operation to Vladimir Putin’s seventieth birthday, a poisoned “gift” that could, however, unleash severe retaliation by the Kremlin in connection with the bombing of cities: the one in Zaporizhia cost 17 casualties in the hours It preceded the explosion in Kerch.
As mentioned, road and rail infrastructure are vital links in the Russian supply chain. Without them, it will be difficult for Moscow to send troops and equipment To repel the counterattack north of Kherson. Adviser to the Minister of the Interior, Vadim Denisenko, commented on the damage to “a great advantage for all Ukrainians”, because it complicates the supply of food, fuel and weapons to the occupied peninsula and the Kherson region.
After the recent revelations of Kyiv’s alleged involvement in the murder of Daria Dugina and of the American strangeness in the attack, one can wonder whether Washington was warned about this measure and whether it approved of it. American support often takes the form of valuable intelligence, even more than just supplies of means. In fact, it should be considered that the Kerch bridge is located at the southeastern tip of the Crimea, very far from the areas tightly controlled by Kyiv.
In the context of verbal escalation over the atomic threat, action against key Moscow infrastructure could have important consequences and thus also prove to be a test of relations between Biden and Zelensky, which appear to have become even more tense due to differing objectives between the United States and Ukraine.
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