March 10, 2024

47th Mechanized Brigade has a new commander

The brigade with M2 Bradley infantry vehicles and M1A1 Abrams tanks struggles to find a commander worth keeping.


As we reported back in October 2023, the situation in the brigade was far from perfect, and it seems the situation remains suboptimal.

In September 2023, as a result of failed Ukrainian offensive in Zaporizhzhia Oblast, poor performance of the brigade on the battlefield, and internal problems among the command staff, Lt. Col. Oleksandr Sak was relieved of the command. He was replaced by Col. Oleksandr Pavliy, a commander of 112th Territorial Defense Brigade. According to fighters, he failed to understand the brigade’s structure and used rear elements as assault units, which caused irreversible damage to the unit.

Col. Olekandr Pavliy was removed in January 2024, and replaced by Lt. Col. Dmytro Ryumshin. He previously served as a commander of 33rd Mechanized Brigade. Ryumshin led the brigade during the defense of Avdiivka, during which Ukrainian higher command questioned the brigade’s performance, again.

Lt. Col. Dmytro Ryumshin was relieved of the command in March 2024, not even two months after its appointment. Col. Yan Yatsishen has been appointed as the new commander. He previously commanded the 56th Motorized Brigade.

The change seems to be connected to a promise by the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Oleksandr Syrskyi. On March 3, 2024, Syrskyi declared that some brigade commanders are not in control of the situation and their actions pose a threat to the life of their subordinates.

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1 Is this a NATO-trained brigade?

2 Is this the reason why he received “valuable” material?

3 For some analysts there are brigades formed by NATO that have underperformed because they were directed by commanders trained in the Soviet era. Could this be true for this brigade?


1 Parts of it were traind in the UK and by US forces in Germany
2 No. In order to use western material, they had to train in the west. Plus it makes no
sense to first send material to ukraine, only for it to sit on a training ground for
weeks, in range of russian long range missiles.


3 We should not consider this as some kind of special training. Often it’s just basic training with a crash course on how to operate and field repair western equipment. To expect them to be a elite force was and is somewhat overstated. I’m not taking anything away from the soldiers however. They did everything they could. Replaycing three commanders in a short time could suggest your point however


Thank you

3 the basic course for Italian private soldiers lasts longer than the NATO course. The shortened duration is justified by the ongoing war. Given that the troops had to operate in the famous offensive, it seems that they were not trained in the defensive phase of entrenchment. If this is true, it is also justifiable in the initial choice. But serious if this shortage still persists.


Another problem is probably that NATO training was more about how NATO troops, with NATO capabilities, would conduct an offensive acording to NATO textbooks. Ukraine does not have NATO capabilities and it appears that NATO textbooks don’t hold up with the reality on the ukrainian battlefield.


Another big problem for ukraine, at least in terms of force generation, is that they cannot conduct brigade-size exercises. Inside of ukraine, any large force concentration, that stuck to one place for to long, is in danger of long range missiles and abroad, as far as i know, they train at most on battalion level.


Forget about training or fighting in brigade-level units going forward. Big gets you detected and targeted.

We’re moving fast towards a world of decentralized small unit actions. Combined arms companies, with reinforced battalions capable of operating independently.


You are right about the detection of force concentrations, but small units won’t get you very far. If you want to punch a hole and go a reasonable distance, you need a big enough force to do that. In terms of the Ukrainan War, battalion size can already be too big. Both sides mostly send squad/platoon size units forward, on foot and it takes weeks to get to an objetive, let alone taking it.

Last edited 4 months ago by Miles_Ignigena

You’re trading the last remaining chance of operational success for some very questionable tactical superiority! You’re going to punch through the line with the “reinforced company,” and who is going to exploit it? What’s the use of breaking through if you have no force capable of exploiting it on operational level? That’s why US army is going bigger, not smaller, bringing back the divisions.

Lev Vuksin

Ya but the marines are going Smaller and lighter from brigades to Littoral Combat teams(Regiments) divided into independent 100 man company size Stand in Forces kinda like at Antonovsky bridge. The Divisions definitely made a come back but not tactically more operationally Ukraine groups its brigades into Divisions(geographic) and corps(purpose built for a task such as counter offensive)


The US Marines are preparing for a different type of war, on pacific islands against China.
As for the ukrainians on the left bank of the Dnipro river, that small size is likely due to logistics. They have to use small boats. Ukraine can’t supply more troops on the left bank.

Lev Vuksin

Isn’t that rather similar though the stand in forces face the same problem with logistic in fact probably even harder, Both make up for the lack of mass with drones and missiles.


Well, the US Marines do so by doctrine and they probably expect to be supplied by the Navy from air and sea. Ukrainian Marines do so, because they don’t have other means. A ponton bridge and bigger boats would get destroyed by russian artillery and drones.


When Ryumshin and Yatsishen were commander of 33rd and 56th brigades? I can’t find informations about these two officers. Thank you in advance.