Ukraine Soledar the Sources of a Modern Russian Butchery

Ukraine: Soledar, the Sources of a Modern Russian Butchery

A wise one who can tell who has won and lost in Soledar, where the smoke of battle has not yet cleared. On Friday, Russia’s Defense Ministry said private militia Wagner, its competitor in mercenaries, had taken control of the small mining town near Bakhmout. On the Kyiv side, the story is completely different. “Soledar is controlled by Ukraine and our military,” said Pavlo Kyrylenko, governor of the Donetsk region (under Ukrainian control) this Saturday afternoon. Nonetheless, a close battle is being fought in and around the city as the enemy attempts to advance in multiple directions.”

“Scattered With Corpses”

Europe’s largest salt mine is located in Soledar, where around 2,300 employees worked before 2022 and supplied all kitchens in Ukraine with small white and blue packets. Residential streets, some sanatoriums, Soledar was mainly a suburb of Bakhmut, 70,000 inhabitants. Unable to take the latter after a six-month frontal attack, the private Wagner militia of Yevgeny Prigozhin, Putin’s Koch gangster, decided to go through the flanks and send thousands of mercenaries kidnapped from justice to attack Ukrainian positions in order to to do so capture Soledar a victory as symbolic as a modern day Stalingrad.

Result, before the new year, Soledar became hell. The Russians again followed the methods of the Red Army there in 1943: they sent groups of eight poor guys to the crushers. Are you being machine gun fired on the field? A second team follows. Then a third… Until the Ukrainians got tired and then Russian special forces intervened. The Soledar battlefield is “littered with corpses,” notes Hanna Maliar, deputy defense minister in Kyiv. The testimonies of Ukrainian soldiers are shocking. “We were only 70 meters between the enemy and us, and the water in the trench was up to our knees,” testifies Anton Filatov, film critic and soldier.

A question of principle

“We were hit with mortar shells, bombs were dropped from drones, the blast waves collapsed the trench,” he continues. In a day and a half we lost half of our group, we only slept ten minutes and decided to retire. It was there that I realized that I had become a stutterer.” The Ukrainians, quick to create romantic myths, made the “Bakhmut Fortress” and Soledar a matter of principle. The Russians don’t come by. But after an autumn of debacle, the Russians are ready to turn the conquest of a minor town into a game changer, and the boss of the Wagner robbers wants to outdo the army generals.

On Sunday, the Russians apparently took over a large part of Soledar. But the 46th and 77th Ukrainian Airborne Brigades, two elite units (including one British-trained) are firmly positioned to the west in the railway district, bombing any destroyed house where Russian soldiers are sheltering. At Soledar, the Ukrainians knelt before the mass of flesh employed, but according to several experts, the Russians could have knowingly sacrificed nearly 4,000 soldiers in a matter of days.