Ukrainian troops have launched a major offensive on Novorossiyan Armed Forces this morning. Clashes have erupted all along the front line, with heavy artillery fire at Gorlovka and skirmishes in numerous cities and towns. As RT reports, the order was given early this morning, according to Poroshenko aide Yury Biryukov:
"Today we will show HOW good we are at jabbing in the teeth," he wrote on his Facebook page, a mode of conveying information favored by many Ukrainian officials. In a later post he said: "They are now striking a dot. Uuu..." in a reference to Tochka-U ('tochka' means 'dot' in Russian), a tactical ballistic missile, one of the most powerful weapons Ukraine so far deployed against rebel forces.
"Locals in Donetsk said they haven't heard such intensive shelling since summer," Valentin Motuzenko, a military official in the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, told Interfax news agency. "The Ukrainian military are using all kinds of weapons, Grad multiple rocket launchers, mortars..." Motuzenko said.
In other words, the ceasefire is officially over. And Kiev broke it. As one local resident in Donetsk puts it in the video below (recorded by Ukrainian reporters from Channel 17): "Poroshenko is sending us our pensions." Last year, Kiev stopped sending pensions to citizens in the east of the country. This is how he is 'paying' the citizens there.

Donetsk's prime minister, Aleksandr Zakharchenko, accused Kiev of exploiting the ceasefire in order to regroup, rearm, and now restart the all-out war:
It's clear that Kiev is making an attempt to take revenge for the serious military defeat it took from the militia last year. Kiev always ignored our numerous suggestions to pull back heavy weapons from the disengagement line.
The escalation comes after several days of violent clashes at the ruins of the Donetsk International Airport, a scene of constant fighting over the months of shaky ceasefire between Kiev's troops and local militia forces.

The militia, who have accused the Ukrainian military of launching constant attacks on Donetsk from their positions at the airport, reported taking over the location this week. Kiev denied this report.

The Ukrainian Security and Defense Council confirmed the resumption of hostilities and that Kiev's objective was to recapture the airport.
Kiev has consistently denied their losses at the airport and claims to be in full control, which are pure propaganda. The Ukrainian troops there have been under siege for months as Donetsk militiamen have closed in, retaking the airport piece by piece, and causing the mercenaries and troops there to hole up. Now, finally, it appears the airport is fully under control of Donetsk forces, or at least close enough, with very few holdouts. And what did the NAF find? American weapons. Edward Basurin, deputy commander of the DPR militia, reported that the weapons were discovered in an abandoned stronghold at the new airport terminal:
There was uncovered an American M-16 automatic rifle, and several side-arms, specifically Brownings. Most alarming find of all: cartridges with steel cores, and exploding bullets, which are banned by all conventions. We showed them to the OSCE observers, who came to the airport.
Zakharchenko himself made several visits to the airport in the last week (heavy fighting began around January 7, Russian Orthodox Christmas), ordering his troops to cease fire and allow the Ukrainians a corridor to leave the airport. The Ukrainians refused the offer (as usual). As one of the NAF fighter put it:
This whole conflict that started a few days ago was provoked by Ukrainian armed forces. And I think that this was started by those formations which are not controlled by the president or the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine. One of our divisions came under a heavy mortar shelling, including their ammo storage. A large explosion occurred. Our fighters were lost. We did not have a human or moral right to leave it without a response. ... Some did leave [after the corridor was offered]. Those who stayed were destroyed. The airport is completely under our control. And we are still catching some individual Ukrainian fighters.
After the NAF took the airport, Zakharchenko invited Poroshenko for a face-to-face negotiation at the airport. We can predict Poroshenko's response... Here is Zakharchenko, holding the Ukrainian flag that was flying at the airport terminal, now in possession of the NAF, and offering to return it to Poroshenko as a reminder of all those who senselessly lost their lives thanks to Poroshenko's madness:

The RT report continues:
Kiev launched its retaliation days after President Poroshenko ordered a new wave of mobilization into the country's armed forces. The government plans to hold at least three conscription campaigns over 2015 to sustain its military operations in the east.
One Ukrainian journalist is calling for his fellow citizens to boycott the mobilization, which is apparently being referred to as a 'coffinization'. Even regular Ukrainians are beginning to see the madness of Poroshenko's (i.e., his U.S. masters) war.
The escalation of violence comes after a controversial incident at Kiev's checkpoint near the town of Volnovakha, where 12 passengers were killed on Tuesday. Kiev blamed the deaths on the militia, saying it was hit by a Grad rocket. The DNR forces denied the accusations and said the bus was targeted by the Ukrainian troops themselves - either in a tragic incident or as a staged provocation - and said the damage visible in the picture of the bus is consistent with a less powerful weapon, possibly a landmine.

An OSCE observer team studied blast craters near the checkpoint and confirmed the direction they came from. Russia's permanent representative to the OSCE, Andrey Kelin, said the direction runs along the disengagement line separating militia- and Kiev-controlled areas, which makes it difficult to determine who fired the rockets.
Kelin's statement refutes the claim from Kiev and Washington that the attack definitely came from militia-controlled territory. It's the same lie repeated over and over again: Kiev isn't killing civilians - Donetsk is firing on its own civilians in order to make Kiev look bad. Where have we heard that before?

In a repeat of last year's humiliating defeat, Kiev's forces again look to be getting their asses kicked. Check out these reports:
In five days Ukrainian forces lost 2,000 wounded, 25% of equipment, 700 killed and missing

A Ukrainian column tried to penetrate toward Debaltsevo, but the road is under fire, so they lost 1 tank and 3 trucks. Ukrainians are demoralized. In 5 days they lost up to 2,000 wounded along the entire front, including 700 irretrievable losses [killed, missing, prisoners]. They lost a quarter of their heavy equipment and artillery that was in the first line. Most casualties were inflicted by artillery fire. We're continuing the bombardment of the entire Ukrainian front line. Ukrainians are sitting in shelters for the second day. Their army tried to take Novotoshkovka, but we held out and are fighting near the village. The Ukrainian army is too weak to attack, so they are trying to reach a settlement, but after an almost whole year of war we know they can't be believed. We fire without respite!
Lugansk Front: Ukrainian forces are taking stunning losses

LPR is suppressing the firing positions of the occupiers, the Ukrainian forces are trying to restore the river crossing behind Krimskoye.

Commander of an LPR unit Stas "Engineer" announced the beginning of night-time bombardments on the Lugansk front. "The evening begins. I put on some music. My fire direction platoon commander will pinpoint targets. It will take about an hour and a half to distribute all the targets, but that's planning.

"Shells are flying north of Zholtoye, next to Aidar and Schastye. I'm planning to clean up the West, yesterday was not enough. One munitions depot and three tanks, not enough."

"Ukrainians are once again trying to repair the ferry behind Krimskoye, and let them keep trying. This problem can be solved in 20 minutes, using 200 liters of gasoline and 120 artillery rockets. That's what it took last time."

"Everything's going well, today at the evening briefing artillery came in for special praise for its particular effectiveness, so we were thanked."

"Ukrainian forces are taking stunning losses both in manpower and material. No exact data yet. Only in a couple of days will I know what we bagged."
NAF artillery commander: "I put down three companies"

What we did in Stanitsa, Valuysk, and Schastye defies description. Those who went there to work in the morning could see dead Ukrainian soldiers just lying in the street, nobody was picking them up.

An ammunition depot is a small cherry on a big sundae, which our artillerymen have consumed. Return fire is almost zero, we put on the pressure on the Ukrainians to such a degree that their response is purely symbolic. They are still trying, but those are convulsions. All the tales about how they pushed us back are simply fairy tales.

Yesterday it was a firing frenzy, we were firing in all directions, today it's methodical work against concentrations, fortifications, and so forth. Minimal resistance. This is to make them understand they should not have gotten involved. Their losses are sufficiently heavy to cause major demoralization. Still, the "counter-terror" HQ says "no casualties," and until Tymchuk admits you are dead, you're not going to heaven.

In Stanitsa we blew up munitions depot, it's burning and exploding. In Rayovka we were hit in the gas distribution station, which is burning. We hit officers' barracks in Schastye. In Krymskoye we blanketed equipment concentration. We hit many targets, but so far don't have the results. They'll report tomorrow. Although, come to think of it, we're not quite done yet. By 6am they'll realize they were foolish to open fire. We have one lightly wounded artilleryman. Everyone else is fine. At least we haven't gotten any reports of casualties at the command point. Yet only two days ago they were asking for a real ceasefire, the idiots...
Kiev's folly just gave the NAF the excuse they needed to retake important positions and prepare for more heavy fighting (or, less likely, negotiations):
In view of the above, one can conclude that Novorossia forces were tasked with using the broken-off "ceasefire" to take a number of positions and to "optimize" the front line (perhaps ahead of eventual negotiations, or with more far-reaching objectives in mind). The offensive is being conducted in order to flatten enemy positions with artillery, so that after the enemy is weakened or forced to flee, Novorossia tanks and infantry are occupying enemy positions and are slowly moving forward (especially where incoming enemy fire is insufficient to stop our movement). The main mechanized forces of both sides are being held in reserve and are used sparingly, since each side suspects the other in planning a large-scale offensive. Junta is afraid of Novorossia armored offensive north of Mariupol and attacks against Svetlodarsk which would create an encirclement around Debaltsevo. We are afraid of attack on Yenakievo and the Petrovsk region of Donetsk. Therefore neither side is committing its main forces.
In their counter-offensive, the NAF has liberated Peski, a small town close to the Donetsk airport, the strategy probably being to secure positions that could be used by Ukrainian troops as jumping-off points for an offensive on Donetsk or used as artillery positions. Even the Ukrainian press reported that Ukrainian losses in Peski were "simply catastrophic". Fighting is also taking place in Mariupol, Dzerzhinsk, Avdeevka and Uglegorsk. As Zakharchenko put it: "Strong offensive battles are now being held along the whole frontline: from Mariupol to Gorlovka." An effort to re-take the airport by the Ukrainians was repelled. At least 30 civilians have died since Kiev launched its offensive.

Several days before the 'official' offensive launched by Kiev, Zakharchenko gave the following interview:
Q. Today is Monday, January 12. What happened yesterday in Donetsk?

A.Z.: This didn't start yesterday, it started January 7 [Russian Orthodox Christmas]. Ukrainian authorities showed how ready they are to fulfill their agreements and what their word is worth. This was expected, though. They showed it with massive shelling of Donetsk, Gorlovka, Dokuchaevsk. Nevertheless, we were expecting it and we were prepared.

Q.: I am afraid to ask this question, but is this the end of the ceasefire?

A.Z.: Ukraine unilaterally broke the ceasefire without declaring it officially.

Q. What will be the response of DPR?

A.Z. First of all I would like to address an important issue. The militia and the citizens of Donetsk Republic have the rightful questions about why we allowed rotations, supplies of food and the removal of the wounded by the Ukrainian side at the airport. It is a failure of the Ministry of Defence, the Security Council, and my own to explain this situation to the public.

I cannot expose all the details, but I can say that it is the only concession that we had made. The reality is that we desperately need each extra day of the ceasefire: to rebuilt a normal life, to prepare for inevitable future military operation. If we take unpopular, even embarrassing steps, it is because they are essential for our army, for our economy, and more importantly for a chance to solve this crisis peacefully and to reach the people who had lost all conscience. And not to spill any extra drop of blood. But yesterday's events proved that talks with these people are fruitless. If it was up to me I would continue to allow rotations as long we could continue to strengthen our army and our economy. However, the response of our army had shown that we have prepared well so far. But I want to apologize in front of our people for failing to explain the importance of this. I would like to address the various rumors. No one is dumping anything. War is not only about "Hooray, let's attack!" People think they can shout "Hooray!" and march to Lvov. It couldn't be further from the truth. No, you cannot march to Lvov or anywhere without certain technical capabilities. You will only unnecessary spill blood and damage infrastructure, housing and industry. Dear military, do not forget that behind you are the peaceful citizens, who you should also worry about. The training and preparation of the army needs time. All our efforts were directed to maximally stretch the time so we can adequately prepare.

Q.: Was the rotation part of the ceasefire agreement?

A.Z.: Yes it was. We had to abide by it to ensure the ceasefire. Unfortunately (or luckily) the Kiev authorities took off the fake masks of humanism and peacemaking, and showed their real face.

Q.: We know that Poroshenko used the ceasefire to prepare for war. And did well. Did Donetsk Republic use this time well?

A.Z.: Yes. We had to train the fighters to use the equipment, and most importantly to improve combat coordination of divisions. I would say, we needed this time, just like USSR needed every day of 1941 before the war.

Maybe I will open a little secret, but you may have heard that we own 55% of Ukraine's coal. Ukrainian economy cannot survive without our coal. They can talk all they want about buying coal from South Africa, Australia or Poland. But, in USSR all the power plants were designed to operate on Donbass coal.

Q.: Are you selling coal to Ukraine?

A.Z.: Yes, we sent the first 554 cars of coal. But we haven't received payment for all of it.
Q.: Can residents of Donetsk expect a firm resistance to Ukrainian army?

A.Z.: I can guarantee that no Ukrainian soldier will set foot in Donetsk Republic. Even today the areas under fire are the same areas as before. The rest of the city is living a peaceful life. Children are playing outside. This is why I would not cease to negotiate to get the rest of our territory peacefully, while I can, to spare the lives of the elderly, women and children and my friends on the front lines, as a citizen of this city. And any one of you would do the same in my shoes - would exhaust every opportunity to pursue peace first to avoid as many victims as possible. We were frankly hoping that the Kiev authorities would realize the futility of their efforts and the endurance of our resolve, and would gradually replace their desire to fight with us with a desire to talk and trade with us.

Q.: So is there a chance for talks?

A.Z.: The problem is there are many vectors of influence in Ukraine. There is a "war camp" and a "peace camp". Both of them are further divided into radicals and moderates. One side in the "peace camp" wants peace tomorrow, another - wants to continue with current course. The "war camp" is divided between those who want to push ahead, and those who want to hold the current positions. Then there are battalion commanders, who each have their own opinion and a couple thousand men at their disposal. So its hard to tell which way the wind will blow.

Q. What were your hopes for Astana talks?

A.Z.: POW exchange, stopping the fire. To be honest, when they wanted to exchange the airport for Dokuchaevsk, I didn't sign it on September 19. Because it is our land, our fate, our children. I would not give up an inch of our land. Just the opposite - all these talks, all these efforts were directed to buy another month, another two, three or four months to prepare our army to be able to deal with the task at hand - to liberate the rest of our territory. Do you think it is easy to see what they write online, in the papers, to hear what they talk about on the buses or at the market about Zakharchenko? But I have to stay focused on the task at hand, and this is how we will achieve our victory.
Since the launch of the new offensive, the DPR's Ministry of Defense released the following statement:
While analyzing information found on the internet, newspapers, and Ukrainian TV, one can find numerous declarations to the effect that:
  • The "cyborgs have done the impossible and held on to the airport..."
  • "The terrorists were attempting to push the Ukrainian army out of the airport, but took heavy casualties and retreated..."
  • "Everything is calm at the airport, the cyborgs are holding their positions..."
  • "Shortages of food in Donetsk, hunger is approaching..."
One can see how Ukrainian media is deliberately spreading disinformation. They want to spread panic within DPR, discredit the militia and the civilian authorities.

At the same time, they want to show other parts of Ukraine that resistance is futile and that any attempts at heresy and separatism will be ruthlessly put down.

But there is a "BUT", and a very important "BUT" at that: UKRAINE NO LONGER EXISTS AS A STATE!!!

We have seen increased artillery bombardments and provocations by AFU (Armed Forces of Ukraine). Their main objective is to intimidate us, citizens of DPR and LPR, and make us doubt our choice.

Kiev still can't accept the idea that Donbass has never been put on its knees, and nobody ever will. The idea that the DPR and LPR militia, just as during the Great Patriotic War, is becoming a victorious army. We have learned how to fight and how to win...Yes, we know the bitterness of defeat, but we have also tasted victory. And the most important victories are still ahead of us!

Only together with its people can the army win! Only together will we achieve success! DPR army will not retreat, will not leave, will not be frightened. People of the Donbass, Brothers and Sisters, together we are making history. The time of great victories has come!
They're right. Ukraine failed to exist as a state the instant it allowed the U.S. to instigate a coup. The situation in Ukraine will continue to decline, and the Ukrainian army will continue to lose. Many more will die needlessly. All thanks to the psychopaths in the U.S. who think they can create reality.