• Trip Report: Ukraine

  • Tell us where you were and what you saw!
Tell us where you were and what you saw!

Moderator: David Benton

  by Gilbert B Norman
Rail travel today within Ukraine:

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/03/11/worl ... =url-share

Fair Use:
. ABOARD THE PRAGUE-PRZEMYSL TRAIN — On the 12th night of the war, on a platform at Prague’s central train station, Vitali Slobodianiuk and Volodymyr Kotsyuba met for the first time.

They had few things in common: both were Ukrainians working in construction sites in the Czech Republic. On that frigid evening, both got on a train back to Ukraine to join the fight against Russia’s invading army.

Mr. Slobodianiuk, a 47-year-old former soldier, and Mr. Kotsyuba, a 35-year-old university graduate, shared a neat compartment on the sleeper train from Prague to the Polish-Ukrainian border town of Przemysl, sticking together, even though most carriages were virtually empty.

  by Gilbert B Norman
Much as I know all here would wish this not to be the case, Ukraine will be defeated.

Apparently, the Russians have largely spared the Ukrainian rail system from attack; likely holding postwar, it will be needed to rebuild the country and repatriate those who fled and "just want to go home and get on with life":

https://www.wsj.com/articles/ukraines-r ... lewebshare
Last edited by Gilbert B Norman on Mon Mar 14, 2022 7:06 am, edited 2 times in total.
  by hrsn
According to the source below, Ukraine was interested as recently as 2020 in building a standard-gauge line from Lviv to Poland. That line would have been a target for Russian operations, I would think.
https://mediarail.wordpress.com/ukraine ... n-1-435mm/
  by photobug56
Gilbert B Norman wrote: Sun Mar 13, 2022 11:30 am Much as I know all here would wish this not to be the case, Ukraine will be defeated.

Apparently, the Russians have largely spared the Ukrainian rail system from attack; likely holding postwar, they will be needed to rebuild the country and repatriate those who fled and "just want to go home and get on with life:

https://www.wsj.com/articles/ukraines-r ... lewebshare
Overnight reports say that Putin's thugs shelled an evacuation train. I've not seen confirmation yet.
  by amtrakhogger
Mr. Norman,

Your speculation on the Ukraine Armed Forces demise is premature.
The Russian army is having their heads handed to them.

  by Gilbert B Norman
Mr. Hogger, along with surely everyone else around here, I can only hope that your immediate proves to be the case.

But when you think of the "reserves" that Russia can call upon - even if untrained conscripts from Siberia - it just seems inevitable.

I can recall a High School level History teacher, who fought in the WWII Italian campaign, saying that the only reason "we won" was that "we" had so many more troops and the stuff needed to support them. Had it been a "level playing field where you each have so many men, so many tanks, so many planes", the Germans would have "whupped our hind quarters".
  by photobug56
Another Russian General, this time a Lt General, bought the farm. I don't know how many generals they have in the army, or in Ukraine, but being a ruskie general in Ukraine comes with a very short life span. Sooner or later it's going to get a lot harder for Tsar Vlad to get any general to go there. And while Russia is killing a lot of civilians, the defenders are killing, capturing or accepting surrender of a lot of Russian soldiers. 3 day war, so far, what, 3 weeks? Clearly Vlad learned nothing from the USSR's time in Afghanistan.
  by Gilbert B Norman
Messrs. Bug and Hogger, this Times article appearing today would suggest a Russian victory in the war is not an "open and shut" or "a matter of time". The fate of Kiev could be the turning point:

Fair Use:
, Ukraine — The city of Kyiv covers 325 square miles and is divided by a broad river. It has about 500,000 structures — factories, ornate churches and high-rise apartments — many on narrow, winding streets. Roughly two million people remain after extensive evacuations of women and children.

To the northwest and to the east, tens of thousands of Russian troops are pressing toward the city, Ukraine’s capital, backed by columns of tanks, armored vehicles and artillery. Inside Kyiv, Ukrainian soldiers and civilian volunteers are fortifying the downtown with barriers, anti-tank mines and artillery.

Kyiv remains the biggest prize of all for the Russian military; it is the seat of government and ingrained in both Russian and Ukrainian identity. But capturing it, military analysts say, would require a furious and bloody conflict that could be the world’s biggest urban battle in 80 years.
Let's hope that against long odds, Ukraine can prevail. The world will somehow "be a better place" if they can.
  by David Benton
Moderators note:
Tsk , tsk Gentlemen , most posting here know the site rules , and should know better.

However , I am interested to know the state of the railways in the Ukraine, are they up and running in general . Capable of transporting refugees to the border?
I also wonder wether they are capable of transporting grain away from the black sea ports, to an alternative route through Europe?.

All posts rail related from now on , or the whole lot goes.
  by Gilbert B Norman
It appears that I was mistaken in the opening post with the premise that the travelers were within Ukraine. They were traveling on the Standard Gauge Polish rails to the Ukranian border where they would need to change trains. The Ukranian rails are Russian wide gauge.

Apologize for any confusion that may have resulted.

Mr. Benton's dictum will be adhered to should I locate an article describing present rail travel within Ukraine.
  by Gilbert B Norman
Here's a report from The Journal stating that the railroads now are in Putin's gunsight:

Fair Use:
In an attempt to stem the flow of heavy weapons from the U.S. and other allies to the front lines in Ukraine, Russia on Monday hit several Ukrainian railway hubs with missile strikes, severely disrupting rail traffic.
Be sure review this earlier linked article as well.
  by hrsn
I noticed this, too. Pictures will tell the story.
  by hrsn
This article gives the most recent information on the state of the rail network in Ukraine. Pictures, maps, links to tweets, etc.

https://beta.dw.com/en/ukraine-will-the ... a-61714831

Clicking on a link to an article in Foreign Policy brings this interesting information about Ukrainian rail connections with Belarus:
"there are reports that civilian Belarusian railway operators have sabotaged the lines by deactivating or destroying train signaling systems. "
  by Gilbert B Norman
While likely not the whole truth (I've observed armament being handled on BNSF by my house), it seems as if US military logistics falls first to air and highway transport.

Lest we forget that the Interstate Highway Act, enacted during Dwight "Detroit" Eisenhower's administration is formally known as the Interstate and DEFENSE Highway Act, and includes unobstructed straightaways sufficient for a military aircraft to land and takeoff.

Meanwhile, back "over there", Putin being desperate for something he can call a "victory" by tomorrow's Victory Day celebration, could easily target more of Ukrainian rail system hoping to obstruct reinforcements to a battleground resulting in a mass surrender of Ukrainian forces.

Let us all hope and pray such will not be the case.