According to Colonel Oleksandr Bakulin, it is easier for the Ukrainian defenders to resist the Russian regular troops near Bakhmut in Donetsk Oblast than the Wagner mercenaries, who "were uncomfortable enemies".
Source: ÂÂÑ citing Colonel Oleksandr Bakulin, commander of the 57th Motorised Brigade named after Otaman Kost Hordiienko
Details: Bakulin says he is not underestimating his opponent, but that the regular Russian troops he now faces are nothing like Yevgeny Prigozhin's mercenaries of the Wagner Private Military Company who eventually captured the city in early 2023.
The Wagner fighters, he said, "were inconvenient enemies... they were killing for the sake of killing".
At the same time, Bakulin believes that if the Defence Forces "put in a bit of effort, Bakhmut could be encircled".
Contrary to conventional military wisdom, he also claims that casualties during the offensive are lower than when his unit stood still, defending the city, the BBC writes.
Advancement, although slow, also contributed to the increase in morale, so "the losses are easier to bear," Bakulin said.