Day 285 Roundup: Multiple Blasts at Russian Airfields; 8M Ukrainians to Live Below Poverty Line by Year's End

    Photo: pravda

    The Facts

    • On Monday, for the first time in nine months of war, multiple blasts were reported deep in Russian territory. While Ukrainian attacks have routinely targeted munition depots and fuel tankers in the Russian border regions of Bryansk, Kursk and Belgorod, Monday's blasts were reported hundreds of miles within Russia's borders.

    • One blast was reported at the Dyagilyaevo airfield in the region of Ryazan where a fuel tanker reportedly exploded, killing three people and injuring six others. The second struck the Engels airfield in the Saratov region, reportedly damaging two Tupolev Tu-95 bomber jets. An unspecified number of servicemen were said to be injured. Both attacks are suspected to have been carried out with drones, though this is yet to be confirmed.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    As the winter months continue to set in, the tempo of fighting will reduce. Both Russia and Ukraine will use the opportunity of the coming Winter months to replenish their armies before the commencement of further offensives in the spring.

    Narrative B

    Winter will not see a decline in this conflict, as frozen ground enables heavy vehicles, previously restricted by the autumn mud, to advance. Ukrainian forces will not pause fighting, as such cessation would enable Russian troops to restrengthen. All indicators point to offensives ramping up in the cold weather.

    Narrative C

    As winter arrives and temperatures continue to plunge, the most important question is not that of the relative strategic advantage of fighting in winter months. The key to this conflict will become which force has better morale and is best equipped to fight effectively in the bitter weather.

    Nerd narrative

    There is a 50% chance that there will be at least 7.78M internally displaced Ukrainians by the end of 2022 (based on UN estimations), according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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