More Smart Optics, Please
As Russia’s further invasion of Ukraine enters its fourth week, orienting yourself from Kyiv has become a little bit easier, thanks to the boys and girls at Centre for Information Resilience (CIR) and MapHub.
Several forward lines of own troops (FLOTs) have been established around the western, northern and eastern sides of capital. The orcs are no longer attacking, but hiding in surrounding towns and villages, terrorizing civilians and doing everything they can to stay alive.
To the West of Kyiv is an ocean of flat fields (well, a bracelet of small sparsely-populated towns, then Zhytomyr and Lviv, the large islands of Poland and Germany, then an ocean). To the North is Chernihiv and a huge smear of boggy marshes extending into Belarus and western Russia called the Polesian Lowland, or Polissia. Monotonous terrain stretches to the East, all the way to Donbas, reminding us that planet is indeed an oblate spheroid. Odesa and the Black Sea are almost due South, with Cherkasy, Kremenchuk, Dnipro and Zaporizhia straddling the Dnipro - the fourth longest river in Europe. The hilliest part - the Carpathian mountain range - is tucked in the southwestern corner of Zakarpattia bordering Romania, Slovakia and Romania.
Fred at the Institute for the Study of War provides us this map (as of March 18) illustrating Russia’s attempt to encircle Kyiv. Critical Threats, a U.S. taxpayer-funded slush fund, provides a full report.
Compare it with Kyiv Region State Military Administration’s map (also as of March 18) here.
Tik Tok influencers, meanwhile, have identified at least three individuals directly responsible for the unspeakable tragedy.