Russians try to capture Bakhmut, intense battles underway in Marinka – General Staff report
As of Saturday, 8 April, Russian troops continued their offensive on the Lyman, Bakhmut, Avdiivka, and Mariinka fronts; in particular, they are trying to take the city of Bakhmut under full control.
During the day, the Russian forces launched two missiles and 34 air strikes, carrying out more than 36 attacks from multiple-launch missile systems. The probability of missile and air strikes remains high throughout Ukraine.
The occupiers continued to focus their main efforts on conducting offensive actions on the Lyman, Bakhmut, Avdiivka, and Mariinka fronts; more than 35 attacks were repelled.
On the Volyn, Polissia, Sivershchyna, and Slobozhanshchyna fronts, the operational situation has not changed significantly, and no signs of the formation of offensive groups of the Russian forces have been detected. During the day, they shelled the settlements of Hremiach in Chernihiv Oblast, Seredyna-Buda, Baranivka, Bezsalivka, Volfyne, Turia, Vysoke in Sumy Oblast, as well as Veterynarne, Vilkhivka, Ternova, Vovchansk, Karaichne and Chuhunivka in Kharkiv Oblast.
Kolodiazne, Krasne Pershe, Novomlynsk, Dvorichna, Zapadne, Krokhmalne, Kindrashivka, Pishchane, and Berestove in Kharkiv Oblast were struck on the Kupiansk front.
On the Lyman front, during the day, the occupiers conducted unsuccessful offensive actions in the area south of Kuzmyne and Verkhnokamianske. Cherneshchyna in Kharkiv Oblast, Makiivka, Nevske, Dibrova, Bilohorivka, and Luhansk Oblast, as well as Yampolivka, Torske, Siversk, Spirne in Donetsk Oblast, were hit by artillery fire.
On the Bakhmut front, Russians continue to conduct offensive actions and try to take full control of the city of Bakhmut, but skirmishes persist. During the day, the occupiers carried out unsuccessful offensive actions in the area of the settlement of Bohdanivka. Units of the defense forces repelled about ten attacks on the indicated section of the front. Vasiukivka, Minkivka, Zaliznianske, Orikhovo-Vasylivka, Markove, Hryhorivka, Bakhmut, Khromove, Chasiv Yar, Ivanivske, Stupochky, Bila Hora and Druzhba in Donetsk Oblast were affected by the shelling.
On the Avdiivka and Marinka fronts, the Russians carried out unsuccessful offensive actions in the area of Sievierne, Pervomaiske, and Marinka. The fiercest battles on the indicated section of the front continued for Marinka, where more than 10 Russian attacks were repelled. At the same time, Novokalynove, Kamianka, Stepove, Orlivka, Avdiivka, Sieverne, Netailove, Krasnohorivka,, Marinka, Pobieda and Paraskoviivka in Donetsk Oblast were struck by shelling.
During the day, the Russians did not conduct offensive operations on the Shakhtarsk front. They shelled the settlements of Novomykhailivka, Shakhtarske, Novoukrainka, Velyka Novosilka, Vuhledar, Prechystivka, Zolota Nyva, and Novomaiorske in Donetsk Oblast.
On the Zaporizhzhia and Kherson fronts, the Russians continued to build up defense lines and positions regarding fortification. They carried out shelling of settlements bordering the line of military confrontation. Among them is Vremivka, Novopil in Donetsk Oblast, Novosilka, Olhivske, Malynivka, Chervone, Huliaipole, Charivne, Mala Tokmachka in Zaporizhzhia Oblast, Dudchany, Kachkarivka, Beryslav, Kozatske, Mykolaivka, Ivanivka, Mykilske, Dniprovske in Kherson Oblast, as well as the city of Kherson.
During the day, the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine carried out eight strikes on clusters of Russian personnel. A reconnaissance UAV was also shot down.
Units of Rocket and Artillery Forces struck two clusters of personnel, weapons, and military equipment, one ammunition storage point, one position of anti-aircraft defense systems, and three Russian army radio-electronic warfare stations.
Ukraine's Air Force warns of a new threat from Russia and asks for F-16s for Ukraine
The Air Force of Ukraine warned of a new threat from Russia and explained why modern multipurpose jet fighters could be an effective countermeasure against Russian aircraft.
Yurii Ihnat, Spokesman for the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, reminded that recently the Russians had been actively using FAB-500 high-explosive aerial bombs [500 kg – ed.], which are being converted into cruise bombs to be used with impunity, from a distance that is unreachable for Ukrainian air defense. Moreover, the day before, Russian media revealed that Sergei Shoigu, Minister of Defence of the Russian Federation, was inspecting the plant where a production line for creating such bombs had been launched.
It indicates the date – 2023, and that Russians plan to manufacture one-and-a-half-ton bombs. According to Ihnat, they will also be equipped with wings and GPS navigation.
According to representatives of the Air Force, modern fighter jets such as the F-16 can become a powerful means of countermeasures [keeping Russian aircraft at a distance that does not allow the use of such aerial bombs – ed].
Lieutenant General Oleschuk gives other arguments in favor of these aircraft.
"The most effective countermeasure against the use of guided aerial bombs," - he said.
Increasingly, Russia is using guided aerial bombs weighing 500 kg along the entire front line. There are signs of preparation for the mass use of 1,500 kg KABs [Russian precision-guided weapon – ed.]!
The aircraft of the Russians do not enter the zone of damage to our air defense, striking remotely at the front line and near-frontline cities. Civilians in the northern, southern, and eastern oblasts are suffering.
The F-16 is armed with air-to-air missiles ranging up to 180 km. This will make it possible to drive enemy aircraft away from our borders and the line of combat, minimizing the likelihood of using guided aerial bombs and other air-based weapons.
The best protection of rear areas
On average, our [Ukraine's] air defense destroys about 75% of cruise missiles and attack drones. But 25% still reach their targets!
Civilians die, and infrastructure is destroyed. F-16s can effectively destroy these air threats even at the borders, preventing missiles and drones from reaching our cities.
The advantage in the air is the reliable cover of the front line
Russian aircraft outnumber Ukrainian by many times, and most importantly, the occupiers have a technological advantage.
The Air Force does not have enough forces and assets, both ground and air, to effectively protect airspace, troops on the front lines, and civilians in the front-line zone from the daily terror of enemy attack aircraft and helicopters.
F-16 will allow gaining air supremacy, significantly weakening the enemy and saving many lives every day.
A powerful strike back
The wide range of modern high-precision weapons of the F-16 will allow for high-precision strikes on Russian troops during counter-offensive actions. It is necessary to stop the enemy's offensive actions, gain superiority in the air, and destroy the means of supply of equipment, ammunition, and manpower of the enemy. F-16 will be able to perform these tasks!
Control of the sea
The Black Sea is still under the control of the Russian fleet. F-16s are armed with powerful anti-ship missiles that can easily drive the enemy fleet to ports or the bottom of the sea. Ukraine needs to ensure freedom of navigation and protection of grain corridors.
Pilots are hostages of old technologies.
The available equipment and armament of Soviet aircraft turned our pilots' missions into mortally dangerous ones, which caused irreparable losses to the best sons of Ukraine.
Only modern technologies will make their work effective and safe. Our pilots are trained and motivated to learn. And they are enough to fight and study at the same time. Our pilots dream of F-16s; they deserve to fly on the best planes!
Serviceability, spare parts
Ukraine uses 40-year-old aircraft. Some planes are twice as old as their pilots! It becomes more and more difficult to maintain their serviceability every day. Own stocks of spare parts are running low, and allies do not have those either.
Many issues are closed through the so-called "cannibalization", but this cannot last forever. You can't wait until all aircraft stop completely. Thanks to the transfer of aircraft from Slovakia and Poland, it will be possible to restore the MiG-29 aircraft fleet of several air brigades to a certain extent and strengthen the capabilities of fighter aircraft to perform current combat missions. However, to achieve superiority in the air, to win, we need modern aircraft!
Stockpiles of ammunition
Stocks of even outdated and ineffective Soviet ammunition for the existing aircraft fleet are steadily decreasing. Even with a sufficient number of serviceable planes and trained pilots, our Air Forces will be left without weapons at a certain point. Switching to the F-16 or another Western platform with a wide range of modern weapons is the only way out!"