The bridgehead at Kozachi Laheri

Chuck Pfarrer is often overly optimistic in his pronouncements, but they also often prove to be quite prescient.

1. New Dnipro River thread/Kozachi Laheri landings. Russian Telegram channels report today that UAF landed at Kozachi Laheri with ongoing fighting. Some inform on UAF ‘presence’ west of the village. gives a specific location at 46.707197, 32.946664.

2. Russian blogger Rybar reports today: At night, seven UAF boats landed up to seven groups of 6-7 men after launching a smoke screen west of the village and struck from the flank. I have seen imagery of the destruction of a Russian AFV vehicle approximately 2.7km west of the village at spot where Rybar marks with a gun symbol. Exact timing of destruction unclear. The source and the imagery itself can’t be released for now.

3. Dubious Russian film NOT from Kozachi Laheri explained in tweet. Russian bloggers since report Russian Major Tomov of Battalion 1822 and a 16 man recce group are MIA at the location of the red dot in tweet 1. UAF seem to know where he is/was. Expect more later;)

4. Reportedly three Russians and weapons captured in or near Kozachi Laheri. Earlier today I received word of at least one Russian POW from Major Tomov’s missing unit, but so far I can’t confirm they are same.

5. Today Russian blogger ‘Thirteenth’ who serves in the area reports the loss of 25 Russian KIA+POWs in yesterdays fighting including Major Tomov’s lost group which he reports was ambushed.

6. Yesterday Izvestia sent a team to show RuAF control of the village. (Ukraine did not claim it yet, but rather territory to its west). They approach from south:

Large sign 46.641818, 32.947721

Small sign 46.695842, 32.968270

Check point 46.698032, 32.969264

Bus stop 46.698607, 32.969809

7. This is the destroyed RuAF AFV that I mentioned yesterday in tweet 2 that I had seen, thus evidencing that combat had taken place 2.7km west of the village at spot where Rybar also marked fighting. It is a BTR-82A or variant hit by UAF mortar fire. Its location is 46.707495, 32.910227. 

8. Geolocation of a destroyed Russian BTR-82A or variant mentioned in tweet 2 and 7 at 46.707495, 32.910227. This evidences that combat had taken place 2.7km west of the village at spot where Rybar also marked fighting. 

9. A UAF barrage from a reported Czech RM-70 Vampires MLRS hits the northwestern outskirts of Kozachi Laheri. The large block is at 46.706679, 32.954072 viewed from the west. h/t @EerikMatero and @fdov21. The film was sent yesterday but I could only share it after a delay.

10. A thread of 4 geolocations from yesterday’s Izvestia visit to the village filmed in tweet 6. They only visit the southern edge of the village. As mentioned UAF have not yet claimed control of this area, but rather an area to its west.

Comment: The Ukrainians have established another small bridgehead on the left bank of the Dnipro. This one appears to have at least penetrated into the settlement of Kozachi Laheri. Information is sparse and comes almost exclusively from Russian Telegram channels. At least one Telegram poster shows Ukrainian probe further south towards  and the E58 road. This road is important because it is the main route to Melitopol from Crimea via Armiansk. The road already runs uncomfortably close to the Dnipro and Ukrainian artillery fire from the right bank. And, of course, the Quisling Saldo claims the Ukrainian force was totally destroyed and pushed back into the Dnipro.

This bridgehead appears to be only platoon strength although I would think it was reinforced once initial success was achieved. The push towards Chelburda and the E58 may be more aspirational at this time given the small Ukrainian force across the Dnipro, but the Russian defenders may also be few and far between, at least for now. The VDV brigade was recently pulled from this front to reinforce the defenses further east and the 10th Spetsnaz brigade may be more sad sack mobiks than elite commandos. It’s a war of opposing patrols backed up by artillery on the Kherson front, but it has the potential to be much more important if not decisive.


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31 Responses to The bridgehead at Kozachi Laheri

  1. F&L says:
    Fights in the Cossack Camps. This is the left bank of the Dnieper. There are many DRGs of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. But if it’s just a DRG, it’s not that dangerous. The question is, did they manage to drag the equipment to the left bank? Here they beat them.
    Posting for the video clip above the pasted text from the link. In the comment section – “They are not being beaten.” I can’t see how you can tell from those few seconds.
    From slightly earlier. (A reader wants to locate Rabotino on a map to appreciate this. It seems fairly far from the river banks to my amateur eyes, but not “bigly” far (our former President did indeed enrich the American version of the English language and deserves some sort of acknowledgement).
    Rabotino, Ukrainian / Map:
    military logic. The front is moving. For the first time after several weeks of stability.
    1. The APU seems to have managed to cling to the northern sector in Rabotino. Work is an important point. There are fierce fights.
    2. The Armed Forces of Ukraine mainly control Staromayorskoye and carry out frenzied attacks on Urozhaynoye. There are fierce fights.
    The capture of Rabotino and Urozhaynoye would mean a great success for the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
    3. The fierce battles on the left bank of the Dnieper in the area of ​​the Cossack Camps say that perhaps the Armed Forces of Ukraine have already managed to transfer not just DRGs, but also some kind of equipment to the left bank of the Dnieper. This means that the Armed Forces of Ukraine are close to creating a foothold on the left bank. This is very dangerous for Russia.
    4. And the Russian army is advancing in the north to Kupyansk. There are evacuations from 53 settlements. The Russian army can take Kupyansk. Or, approach him.
    5. It is important that serious changes may occur in the four sectors of the front literally in the coming days. This may create a new situation. Not at the strategic, but already at the operational level.

  2. Fred says:

    “10th Spetsnaz brigade may be more sad sack mobiks than elite commandos.”

    They have not be used as ‘elite commandos’ since the start of this whole mess. Which indicates to me that they haven’t been actual elite commandos for years. The intel agencies should have caught on by now.

    800 meters! Well, well; almost half a mile. That’s a ten minute walk, more or less, around these parts. But then that stretch of road by the Dnipro is in artillery range of Ukrainians, however it can’t possibly be in artillery range of the Russians, so walk on by…….

    • TTG says:


      10th SFG(A) hosted a small group from the 45th Guards Spetsnaz Brigade back in 2012 for exchange training. We were impressed with this small group. Of course, this was surely a hand picked group of their best. Still beyond day three of this war, these elite commandos haven’t been employed in accordance to doctrine. Either they were were never that good or they’ve deteriorated badly under the Gerasimov reforms. They spent more time on building an image than on building the force.

      Back in 1982, my team was training at the Austrian Army Mountain Guide School. One ridge over from us was a Spetsnaz team undergoing the same training. Our Austrian hosts kept us well separated, but we did wave at each other.

    • F&L says:

      Don’t really know but huge resources are devoted to protecting the one and only and increasingly lonely his nibsovitch. Maybe he takes the finest caviar for his table or something else even more mystifying.

  3. Jake Holman says:

    Meanwhile Zelensky is imprisoning priests, Kupiansk is being evacuated, and CNN has indirectly acknowledged that the Russian army is not on the verge of collapse:

    I’ve been watching the parade of cable news generals for almost three months now and a question as occured to me: How much money would US taxpayers save if retired officers who lie in public were stripped of their pensions and barred from lobbying or working as streetwalkers for MIC contractors? Thinking of Patraeus here, but it could apply more widely.

    • F&L says:

      We found this under the pillow this AM:

      Obama already busted Petraeus using a streetwalker who was a smoking hot undercover operative of the United States Army’s military police. Nice touch, wasn’t it? Big CIA chief 4 Star General Dave! Gotcha.
      What’s wrong with some people I’ll never know, and how anyone can say these things makes me wonder. I saw that woman, admittedly hotter than Jaylo in her prime with a rockin’ bod, wearing only a tight tight mini skirt and skimpy halter top azipping off 25 pushups on John Stewart’s daytime show – beautiful? Ok. I guess so. Boobs? To die for. Booty? Let’s say it took booty to beauty and then to triple X. Sexy? You can’t be serious, you need several unexpurgated new urban dictionaries, dearie. But why do you think it had anything to do with General Perseus losing his job? We need thorazine put back in the water supply, I know we do. And Mr Stewart? Your first name – it says a lot about you Mr Stewart. A lot.

    • Fred says:


      “How much money would US taxpayers save if retired officers who lie in public were stripped of their pensions …”

      Not much.

  4. F&L says:

    TTG (and other former service members),

    Similar to your military training and preparation I’m assuming.
    Am I right?

    Sorry, I forgot. Here guns are everywhere and we shoot each other constantly without any training whatsoever. Just had a cold one. Memory. Yes, Fosters.
    Valkyries over military registration and enlistment offices:

    • TTG says:


      This sounds nothing like training and prep in the US Army. Russian mobiks are on their own to obtain basic equipment and even training. Recruit training in the US is fairly thorough and basic equipment is provided. Good stuff, too. Every foreign military wants our poncho liners. Of course more training is conducted once they get to a unit and the troops often supplement their equipment with a few items of nice to have stuff. The exception is Special Forces and special operations folks. We’re always buying new gadgets.

      • F&L says:

        Thanks TTG. I was being my usual bonehead self, goofing on the huge discrepancy. I shouldn’t have made fun of their predicament. Maybe during the Civil and Revolutionary wars this was the case but those men were farmers and mechanics and were in fit condition and killed animals on the hunt or farm. I think the US army was desperate for warm bodies during the Bulge and threw people in with less than full basic but don’t really know. War of 1812 and Indian wars were not a trip to the mall or clicks on Amazon either.

  5. Lars says:

    I read some comments from my native Sweden about US soldiers who had trained with Swedish counterparts and they were mightily impressed with the US soldiers. They mentioned their physical fitness, their skills and their dedication. I doubt that Russia will ever reach the equivalent. When you use vodka as a major motivator, there are drawbacks.

    • F&L says:

      You can’t even imagine how badass our soldiers were, at least during the cold war era I grew up in. Unless you had personal contact. It was a wildass warrior nation – still is – contact sports from grade school on up everywhere. Violent sports are the national religion. It’s partly why we became so gay – the men are strong, tall and handsome and the fairies can’t stay away. More seriously – there’s a breed of men that literally have to be kept away from civilization or else nothing will get done. You can’t imprison them because they’d kill the guards and police and if you managed to somehow succeed then your nation would be destroyed by the natural disasters and resulting riots because you’d have no army or national guard. I lived in a Queens neighborhood during the GWOT which had the highest percentage of men killed, wounded and decorated of any neighborhood in the entire country. St Patrick’s day at the local Irish bar – which had really tough working class clientele all year round – was frightening as hell because the marines & army on leave would come in and you could suddenly hear a pin drop – they were that frightening to behold, especially because everyone expected the marines and the army to start brawling with each other any second. Hardened gangsters left. You see marvelous physical specimens on TV football and baseball games. This is another of dimension entirely. If wars didn’t exist they would have to be started just to get these types of humans away from normal people during the critical years of their maturity. Only a professional officer corps with borderline psychopath professional drill Sargeants can control them. I’m not making it up. It was on a 12 part UK series on militaries narrated and written by John Keegan – an emiment military historian at Sandhurst, probably the most emiment man in his field. Washington said never keep a standing army – do you think he was stupid? One reason, probably a main one, that the Russian army is so disassembled and weak is that they dare not keep a trained, fit, well equipped one around. It’s the most dangerous thing in existence if you don’t know what you’re doing and if you do then what you produce is even more dangerous. Look what almost happened with Prigozhin. Try to wrap your head around what the Red Army of 1944-45 could have done. You couldn’t because you wouldn’t have a head for long. I love the geniuses who say “bring the troops home from those 800 overseas bases, we are for peace and saving tax dollars!” Ok. How long do you plan on living in your house? Better to keep them overseas or homeless and drug addicted here. The truth hurts, which is why you can’t find it anywhere.

      • TTG says:


        You make it sound like we were all recruited from prison death rows, that we’re all a bunch of cutthroats, thugs and murderers. We can be hard. We can be rough, but we’re not an imminent danger to the general public. We have no more sociopaths or psychopaths than the rest of society, probably less.

        The Soviets used such a line in their propaganda to keep Eastern Europeans from cooperating with any Green Berets sent in to foment resistance. They said we were recruited murderers who are released at night to kidnap and kill defenseless women and children for training. I related the story about meeting a former Polish defense official back in 1986 or 1987. My academic advisor introduced me and told him I was a Green Beret. He blanched white and shuddered as if he was meeting the devil himself. We eventually hit it off fine.

        • F&L says:


          My apologies again. I was trying to say you’re not a danger to the general public specifically due to the skills and efforts of fine professionals such as you and the late Col W Patrick Lang (may his name be a blessing), which have been accumulated over the course of centuries.

          I have made a note to myself to try to mend my ways and present the oddities I offer in more organized formations. Visual cues are absent in this medium and disorganization and amateur humor produce a more rather than less clueless impression. I’ve known a couple of Green Berets personally and even more ex Marines and even a criminal or two, I can tell the difference. You are absolutely not criminals. Which is why President Trump’s pardoning of that murderous seal – overriding that Admiral who is now President of the finest University in Texas, was such a nauseating thing to observe and a disgrace to the country.

        • Whitewall says:

          I hope our militaries ongoing difficulty in recruiting hasn’t damaged the Special Forces you describe. The Orwell quote of good people sleep peacefully in their beds….is true and I hope it stays that way in spite of Washington.

  6. leith says:

    Any ideas on which UKR unit made the crossing to establish the bridgehead? There is mixed speculation in the press and on twitter:

    1] A Kyiv Independent article dated today says the 124th Territorial Defense Brigade has been providing small unit raids across the Dnipro. And a video they released also dated today shows UKR soldiers crossing the Dnipro River in boats with at least six possibly seven troopers aboard.

    2] Tom Theiner @noclador implies Ukraine’s elite river crossing force is the Special Forces Battalion “Lyubart” that recently returned from training with the SAS in the UK.

    3] A third source, a commenter, suggested it was the Shaman Battalion that works directly for Ukraine’s Main Intelligence Directorate the HUR.

    Makes sense that the 124th would be involved. They are local, they know the area on both sides of the river. But did they do it alone, without support? Doubtful!

    • TTG says:


      No idea. I wouldn’t dismiss a Territorial Defense Brigade. After 18 months of fighting in this war, I would think any unit still in one piece would be capable of doing something like this. I thought some sources did call them commandos though. I don’t think it was the Shaman Battalion. They’re into behind the lines stuff and supposedly are now going to be hunting Russian generals and colonels, like a Ukrainian version of Inglorious Basterds.

  7. Stefan says:

    This might explain a lot of the military aged Ukrainian men I have seen in my recent trips to Europe. Ukraine has always had a huge corruption issue. If they dont watch it they might see further aid tied to tangible measures to tackle the still serious corruption problems.

    Running from the fighting, and making money off the war, seems to be two things the Russians and Ukrainians have in common.

    • TTG says:


      Ukrainian corruption was probably worse than Russia up to 2014-2015. It’s been a slow climb out of that hole. Oddly, a lot of the reformers came out of the Pravy Sektor crowd. From Zelenskiy’s statement about the firings, “The heads of all regional recruitment centers will be fired and replaced by brave warriors who have lost their health on the frontlines but have maintained their dignity.” This is the right time to strike against the corruption. It won’t get easier when the war is over.

  8. JamesT says:

    In my opinion the one thing that the Russians have done well has been to lay “3 belt deep” minefields that are watched over by Lancets. They have proven very effective. I would go so far as to argue that Ukraine has to mount incursions into villages like Kozachi Laheri because they can’t cope with the minefields.

    I do wonder if the Lancets continue to operate because the west cannot come up with an effective countermeasure, or whether its because we don’t want to leak a valuable countermeasure on a conflict that is not of overarching importance to us.

  9. Barbara Ann says:

    I’m sure the timing of this news is no coincidence. 900 Ukrainian marines have just returned from 6 months training in the UK:

    Ukrainian marines were trained by Royal Marines and Army Commandos to conduct small boat amphibious operations, including beach raids.

    At least one Russian commentator I’ve seen has expressed concern about the increasing AFU presence on the left bank.

    • TTG says:

      Barbara Ann,

      There are a number of Russian warbloggers expressing concern. This is from Egor Guzenko, AKA Thirteenth, today.

      “Attention! KHERSON DIRECTION! A sabotage group of the Armed Forces of Ukraine raided a column of one of our brigades, in area of the Razdolnoe-Volnoe highway. (This is 8 km from Kakhovka) According to preliminary information, the enemy group consisted of up to thirty people. EVERYONE BE VERY CAREFUL! Inspect transport, check locals, pay attention even to those who are dressed in the uniform of the RF Armed Forces, because lately cases when crests dress up in our uniform have become more frequent. I will not report on losses on our part, for a very objective reasons.”

      So the Ukrainian commandos are raiding forward of Kozachi Laheri a good distance over mostly open terrain. Not only are they bold and skilled to patrol forward to ambush the main road, but the Russian defenders must be spread awfully thin and are clearly not that alert, even after the initial bridgehead was established a few days ago.

      There may be up to 48 Ukrainian artillery batteries on the Kherson front including several batteries of Czech RM-70 Vampires 122mm MLRS. I’ve see videos of these MLRS pasting the southern edge of Kozachi Laheri the day after the initial crossing.

  10. elkern says:

    Sounds like a successful “raid” on Russian forces at Kozachi Laheri, but turning that into a real “bridgehead” will require (1) reinforcements (including armor?) and (2) consistent supply lines. Interesting to see how this plays out across the next few days/weeks.

    • TTG says:


      Building a pontoon bridge or ferrying heavy equipment over the Dnipro may just be offering the Russians some juicy targets at this point. I think they’re better off expanding the foot patrolling and raiding further south to knock out more artillery and AA systems before attempting a more permanent crossing. Soon they may want to add some motorcycles and light ATVs to the raids, maybe even some airmobile raiding.

    • leith says:

      You have to wonder if the crossing at Kozachi Laheri served two purposes. Not only to establish a potential bridgehead; but also to keep the occupiers looking in their direction while a commando group crossed up closer to Nova Kakhovka?

      In the meantime it looks like Kozachi Laheri is being resupplied & reinforced and the troops there are digging in. Plus other UKR forces are still at Oleshky and have extended their control a bit to the SW.

  11. When Joe Biden so publicly bragged about using the threat of withholding U.S. aid to Ukraine to get Viktor Shorkin fired,
    some may have wondered if this was part of a corrupt bargain
    where his dissolute son received millions in return for Dad Joe’s act.

    Various stories have been offered that
    “No, no. There was no relation between Dad Joe’s act and the millions Hunter was receiving from the head of Burisma.”

    Countering that narrative,
    Margot Cleveland gives a detailed description of email messages between Burisma executives and Hunter’s associates which show what Burisma wanted from the Biden family:

    Cleveland asserts, and provides evidence for:

    Burisma’s founder, Zlochevsky, and its top executive, Pozharskyi, feared Shokin and his investigation.

    • leith says:

      The EU, the IMF and the World Bank also pushed hard for Shokin to be fired. Crafty old Joe Biden must have had them in his pocket.

  12. leith says:

    UKR troops now have a third location across the Dnipro. This one at the left bank abutment of the Antonivka Railway Bridge. It’s just upriver from the UKR troops at Oleshky & Hola Prystan, and just downriver from those by Kozachi Laheri. So it appears its flanks are protected. UKR now has a presence in an approximately 25 mile contiguous stretch of riverbank on the RUS occupied side of the Dnipro. None of these three crossings are hit-and-run-raids. All three seem to be staying put. What is the objective? Anybody know the status of that railway bridge? The only damage I saw last year was at the right (west) bank side near Prydniprovs’ke controlled by Ukraine.

  13. Keith Harbaugh says:

    A new post from Patrick Armstrong!

    Dated, as you can see, 2023-08-12.
    Since Armstrong was long admired by many at this blog, but stopped blogging at his own blog for a while, I thought this might be worth noting.
    His post is about:

    On this day, 12 August, in 1939, British-French-Soviet military talks began in Leningrad. …

  14. A negative view (on 2023-08-17) on Ukraine’s progress:

    There is mounting evidence that Ukraine has been taking heavy casualties in its counteroffensive, which began roughly ten weeks ago.

    ABC News spoke with two former U.S. soldiers
    who are contracted in a special forces division of the Ukrainian military
    and who were both injured during an operation in eastern Ukraine two weeks ago.

    The men said their team’s mission was to seize control of a village on the outskirts of Donetsk city,
    which has been occupied by a Russian-controlled militia since 2014.

    One of the men, a former U.S. soldier from Texas who goes by the callsign “Tango,”
    said his unit of “dozens” of men took “85% casualties” and that two of their comrades were killed when the team was ambushed whilst advancing into Russian-occupied territory.
    Forty percent of the unit was so badly injured they were rendered “combat ineffective,” he said.

    Interesting that former U.S. soldiers are fighting in Ukraine.
    Wonder who is paying them.

    • TTG says:

      Keith Harbaugh,

      They serve in a Ukrainian foreign legion and are paid by the Ukrainian government. That unit has taken massive casualties over the course of the war.

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