Strategic Ukraine War Map: Kyiv Forces Unleash Remarkable Tactical Advances, Closing In on Encircling Bakhmut!


Ukrainian Counteroffensive in Bakhmut: Advancements and Strategic Implications

The ongoing conflict in the Donbas region has seen significant gains by Ukrainian forces in the city of Donetsk. These advances have raised hopes that Kyiv’s troops could soon encircle Bakhmut, a fiercely fought-over city in the region. A map released by the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) provides a detailed overview of the state of play around Bakhmut. This article delves into the recent successes of Ukraine’s military in their counteroffensive on the Bakhmut axis and explores the strategic implications of these advancements.

Ukrainian Forces Liberate Klishchiivka and Andriivka

In the latest success of Ukraine’s counteroffensive, the village of Klishchiivka was liberated. This comes after gaining control of the neighboring village of Andriivka, located about 6 miles southwest of Bakhmut. These victories mark significant progress in Kyiv’s efforts to recapture Russian-occupied territory and highlight the determination of Ukrainian forces to regain control over the region.

Strategic Importance of Kurdiumivka

According to Ukrainian War Monitor, an account that provides updates on Russia’s full-scale invasion, Ukrainian forces have pushed west of Kurdiumivka, a settlement situated 12 miles south of Bakhmut. This location offers a strategic advantage to Ukraine as it provides a high ground that can disrupt Russian logistics into Bakhmut. By gaining control of Kurdiumivka, Ukrainian forces have paved the way for potential disruptions to Russian operations and increased their chances of encircling Bakhmut.

Map of Russian air force deployments by Bakhmut
This map by the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) from September 17, 2023 shows Russian air force deployments by Bakhmut. The think tank said Ukraine’s tactics in Bakhmut have stopped Russia from creating a large reserve impacting Kyiv’s counteroffensive in Zaporizhzhia.
Institute for the Study of War

Advancements Towards Encirclement

The liberation of Andriivka has opened up new possibilities for Ukraine’s forces. The Ukrainian World Congress states that this victory creates an opportunity for a potential breakthrough to encircle Bakhmut from the south. This development poses a significant threat to Russian-held positions in the city and further underscores the progress made by Ukrainian forces in their counteroffensive.

ISW Update on Ukraine’s Operations

Addressing unwarranted criticism about the resources and commitment of Kyiv in the fight for Bakhmut, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) provided an overview of Ukraine’s operations. The ISW emphasized that Ukrainian forces have conducted sustained and reinvigorated offensive actions near Bakhmut’s northern and southern flanks. These efforts demonstrate Kyiv’s dedication to regaining control over the region and refute claims suggesting a lack of commitment.

Russian Forces in Bakhmut

The ISW’s analysis highlights that parts of two of Russia’s four Airborne (VDV) divisions and three of its four VDV separate brigades are defending the Bakhmut area. One of the ISW maps illustrates Russia’s VDV deployment around Bakhmut and the increasing presence of Ukrainian troops west of the city. This information underscores the intensity of the conflict and the significant military deployment on both sides.

Strategic Implications of Ukraine’s Tactics

Despite criticism and reports of high losses, the ISW concludes that Kyiv’s tactics in Bakhmut have prevented Russia from establishing a large mobile VDV operational reserve. The Ukrainian counteroffensive in the Zaporizhzhia Oblast relies on continued large-scale efforts around Bakhmut to fix Russian forces in the area. By continually challenging Russian-held positions, Ukraine effectively disrupts their operations and maintains pressure on the enemy.

Ukrainian soldier with the 42nd Separate Mechanized Brigade
A Ukrainian soldier with the 42nd Separate Mechanized Brigade puts camouflage on a tank’s muzzle on September 11, 2023, in Eastern Ukraine. Ukrainian gains in Donetsk have raised hopes Kyiv’s troops could soon encircle Bakhmut.
Yan Dobronosov/Getty Images


The Ukrainian counteroffensive in Bakhmut has witnessed significant advancements, with the liberation of key villages and strategic positions. Ukrainian forces continue to push towards encircling Bakhmut, disrupting Russian operations, and preventing the establishment of a large mobile reserve. While the conflict remains intense and losses are suffered on both sides, Ukraine’s unwavering commitment and tactical maneuvers exemplify their determination to regain control over the region. As the conflict unfolds, further developments and strategic implications are likely to shape the outcome in Bakhmut and the wider Donbas region.


Micheal Kurt

I earned a bachelor's degree in exercise and sport science from Oregon State University. He is an avid sports lover who enjoys tennis, football, and a variety of other activities. He is from Tucson, Arizona, and is a huge Cardinals supporter.

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