Arm chair analysts are again accusing me of spreading Ukrainian propaganda, but, alas, you cannot escape the truth. The situation now has changed there, aviation was used and half the town was captured. I was not in Popasna, but I communicated very closely with those who were there. All the data is from their words and radio exchanges, which I heard personally. Now it has become an open secret, but the main strike force in Popasna is the Wagner PMC.
The PMC drove into the location of our battalion just at the time when I I was there, which I will talk about later. They came in well equipped. Trucks with personal belongings of fighters, trucks with DShK machine guns mounted on the UAZ-Patriots and a section with two D-30 howitzers. The entire corridor on the first floor was crammed with crates of UAVs, electronic warfare gear and generators. The boys are all equipped awesomely – armor vests, tactical vests, helmets and other things that we never dreamed of. True, they were all dressed in summer gear – straight from Africa and into the snow. The guys did not understand where they were and asked me where they were and how to call the Russian Federation.
In total, 500 people came to us, although, according to them, the total number is three times more – they are in other locations. Wagner also brought its own artillery and MLRS. Two hundred fifty people were immediately sent to Popasna, without even having time to unload their trucks and get their gear. The rest were sent a day later – also without their gear. Two of the mercenaries were left at the location, who unloaded the PMC’s gear to be sent to the front.
According to the radio exchange, at first everything was great. The Ukrainians had 20 200s, a lot of prisoners. And then something incomprehensible began – the wounded were sent to the hospitals. A fighter arrives in a taxi with a hand torn off by a fragment, satisfied and happy, “I’m going home, to Moscow! Well, fuck such a war! The infantry is thrown onto the concrete! We entered on two BTRs. Two missiles from Bayraktar and 19 people were gone!”
Then “refuseniks” began to arrive – those who refused to continue to fight. The contract allows it. A Kalmyk said, “There were only Kalmyks in my platoon. Everyone died, I was the only one left. Three assaults. We reach the concrete bunkers, they close the armored shutters and call mortar and artillery fire on themselves. And everyone is fucked. Machine gunners are purely snipers, they land without a miss. I personally won’t go again.”
From the radio exchange, I heard how the headquarters of the PMC in Pervomaiskoye was struck with artillery, apparently with 152mm. Immediately 50 200s, ammunition stockpile detonated, and trucks with gear scattered around the area. In the news, it was reported as the shelling of civilians in Pervomaiskoye.
In general, in March, the unit based at our location lost about half of its personnel. In April, I bought equipment from “refuseniks” – armored vests, tactical vests and uniforms. It doesn’t make much difference in who to throw at concrete fortifications – professionals with five assignments behind them or miners with no experience – the result will be the same.
According to the comments of the PMC soldiers, the Russian Marines who fought beside them fought well.
Comment: This is a recent account of the fighting at Popasna in the Donbas. It was written by an LNR militia volunteer and posted on his LiveJournal account. He is not just a kid and has been posting on LiveJournal for quite a while. He appears to be working in an LNR militia unit headquarters. It is interesting to note that Popasna was the front line when the invasion started… and still is.
Most of this translation is by @mdmitri91 from South West London. I just tried to clean it up a little. The reference to 200s means killed in action. The “refuseniks” refers to Russian draftees who are, by law, not required to be deployed outside of Russian territory. And below is an article on the Wagner Group’s recent activities.