The Russian march tables for Kyiv

What has been released by Ukrainian intelligence is the Russian march tables for the forces coming down from Belarus and down to Kyiv. It was only the first page, so was not complete.

The units are listed down the left and the locations they are supposed to be at are listed across the top. The times are all the numbers on the chart.

Now, a few things can be derived from this.

First, it gives us a partial order of battle. They list 19 units on this chart, and we gather there is a second page that lists the rest. Listed are the 5th Guards Tank Brigade and the 76th Air Assault Division.

Second, that order of battle does not include the third battalion of any of the air assault regiments. So they list 1/104th, 2/104th, 1/234th, 2/234th, 1/237th and 2/237th… but no 3rd battalion for any of these regiments. This is because, we believe the 3rd battalion were manned by conscripts and according to Russian law, they cannot be deployed outside of Russia. Therefore, they are not. We believe that this is the case for all air assault units. This is partly the reason why these air assault forces have not played a larger role in this campaign. An air assault division does not have an armor battalion, so if their third battalion in each regiment remains at home, then a division at best fields six maneuver battalions. A number of the divisions (98th and 106th) have only two regiments. Therefore, they field only 4 maneuver battalions. Most Ukrainian brigades field at least 4 maneuver battalions.

Third, it is clear from their planning that they intended to be on the outskirts of Kyiv the afternoon of the 24th in force in three separate locations.

Fourth, this is not what happened. They did all get to their final destinations, but almost 24 hours later. So, their carefully calculated march tables turned out to be too fast by a factor of two, meaning it took them two days to get to their objectives when they were planning on one.

Fifth, this, of course, is a classic case of Clausewitzian friction in action.

Sixth, the fact that it took them two days, when they were planning on one, gave the Ukrainians time to organize a defense.

Seventh, once their got to their destinations, they really did not do much after that, because the routes were now well defended.

One does wonder if the “Ukrainians” got hold of this march order before or after the 24th of February.

Eighth, this does raise an issue related to the captured of Hostomel airport. Some accounts have claimed that the Ukrainians had seized the entire airport in the counterattack and then held it. Yet, these forces continue on their march as if that never happened. Furthermore, some of these forces were marching right by the airport. If the Ukrainians had seized the airport, then you think some of these forces would have been diverted. It does not appear that they were. Therefore, we concluded that Ukraine did not seize and hold Hostomel Airport for any extended period of time. They clearly counter attacked there, but the extent of that attack is not really known. It was probably not as successful as some have claimed.

As I note in my book (page 104) “Between 2000 and 2200 Kyiv time [24 February 2022], it was reported that the Ukrainians had retaken the airport, but this may not have been entirely the case. It does appear that they made some progress in closing with the Russian defenders and neutralizing the airstrip. By 1400 the next day, Russia declared that it had control of the airport. The airport and the neighboring town of Hostomel (population 17,534) now appeared to be in Russian hands.”

Ninth: March route was between 186 to 223 kilometers.

Tenth: The number of vehicles was 495. Imagine that in a line. These are long columns winding their way down two-line highways. There were additional units to these.

A translation of this table is provided here. It was translated by Sasho Todorov, who originally brought this chart to my attention: Transcribed Time Table 5th Tank Bde and 76th VDV Div

Related posts:

The Russian First Tank Army Report from 24 February – 15 March 2022 – The Dupuy Institute

Tank Losses and Crew Casualties in the Russo-Ukrainian War – The Dupuy Institute

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Christopher A. Lawrence
Christopher A. Lawrence

Christopher A. Lawrence is a professional historian and military analyst. He is the Executive Director and President of The Dupuy Institute, an organization dedicated to scholarly research and objective analysis of historical data related to armed conflict and the resolution of armed conflict. The Dupuy Institute provides independent, historically-based analyses of lessons learned from modern military experience.
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Mr. Lawrence was the program manager for the Ardennes Campaign Simulation Data Base, the Kursk Data Base, the Modern Insurgency Spread Sheets and for a number of other smaller combat data bases. He has participated in casualty estimation studies (including estimates for Bosnia and Iraq) and studies of air campaign modeling, enemy prisoner of war capture rates, medium weight armor, urban warfare, situational awareness, counterinsurgency and other subjects for the U.S. Army, the Defense Department, the Joint Staff and the U.S. Air Force. He has also directed a number of studies related to the military impact of banning antipersonnel mines for the Joint Staff, Los Alamos National Laboratories and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation.
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His published works include papers and monographs for the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation, in addition to over 40 articles written for limited-distribution newsletters and over 60 analytical reports prepared for the Defense Department. He is the author of Kursk: The Battle of Prokhorovka (Aberdeen Books, Sheridan, CO., 2015), America’s Modern Wars: Understanding Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam (Casemate Publishers, Philadelphia & Oxford, 2015), War by Numbers: Understanding Conventional Combat (Potomac Books, Lincoln, NE., 2017) , The Battle of Prokhorovka (Stackpole Books, Guilford, CT., 2019), The Battle for Kyiv (Frontline Books, Yorkshire, UK, 2023), Aces at Kursk (Air World, Yorkshire, UK, 2024), Hunting Falcon: The Story of WWI German Ace Hans-Joachim Buddecke (Air World, Yorkshire, UK, 2024) and The Siege of Mariupol (Frontline Books, Yorkshire, UK, 2024).
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Mr. Lawrence lives in northern Virginia, near Washington, D.C., with his wife and son.

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2 Comments

  1. C.A.L: “March route was between 186 to 223 kilometers…”

    -Minimum 115 miles in less than 14 hours?

    A squad of guys in the woodline with a javelin and a LMG every five or ten miles could’ve prevented that, and it wouldn’t require that each squad along the way be new (they could’ve leapfrogged past each other when they fell back). The Russians must have expected almost NO resistance along the way, which, other than stupidity, means they expected a decapitation strike to end resistance almost completely (which was still stupid).

    • Yea, you look at their operations at Kyiv, Chernihiv, Sumy, Kharkiv and Kherson… and they all seem to be designed under the assumption that there was going to be almost no resistance. U.S. Intel was probably also picking this up from the Russians and came to the same conclusions. They did not ask the Ukrainians.

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