Ukraine war started February 16, 2022 with a Ukrainian attack on the Donbas

After reading an article by earlier mentioned Former Senior UN official, Swiss intelligence officer and NATO advisor Jaques Baud, and some follow up, I put a timeline with selected events together: for my own better understanding of the background of this war. 

Key takeaway is, that the official start of the war is February 16, 2022, when the Ukraine launches a massive artillery attack on Donbas, shelling civilians. This is recorded in OSCE reports.

But let’s start with March 24, 2021:

  • March 24, 2021 – Zelensky issued a decree for the recapture of the Crimea and started force deployments
  • 2021 – NATO executes massive (planned and unplanned) drills in Eastern Europe throughout 2021, with “Seabreeze” being the biggest Black Sea drill in decades, hosted by the Ukraine – show of force against Russia 
  • October, 2021 – (Illegal) Ukraine air operations in Donbas, Drone strike against fuel depot in Donetsk, October 2021
  • January 18, 2022 – Western equipped saboteurs intercepted trying to create chemical incidents in Gorlivka 
  • January 25, 2022 – RF drills involving 6,000 troops and 60 jets near Ukraine and Crimea
  • February 10, 2022 – RF and Belarus began 10 days of military maneuvers
  • February, 2022 – Intense Ukraine force deployments in the south, 60-80.000 troops 
  • February 16, 2022 – Artillery attack on Donbas, shelling civilians (reports by OSCE observers)
  • February 19, 2022 – In a meeting with Zelensky in Munich, Scholz recommends Z to renounce Ukraine’s EU and NATO aspirations and declare neutrality as part of a wider European security deal – Zelensky rejected this, US gave Ukraine $200 million in security aid
  • February 21, 2022 – Putin speech explaining the situation and outlining options, Putin agrees to the request of the Duma and recognized the independence of the two Donbas Republics and, at the same time, he signed friendship and assistance treaties with them
  • February 23, 2022 – Donbas asked for military assistance from Russia
  • February 24, 2022 – Putin invokes article 51 of the UN charter and agrees 
  • February 24, 2022 – RF troops enter Ukraine
  • February 28, 2022 – Ukraine again applies to join the EU and NATO, RF and Ukraine start ceasefire talks, EU agrees on EUR 500mil military support fund
  • March 1: A 65km-long RF convoy heads for Kyiv. Kharkiv is surrounded
  • March 2: RF tanks enter Kherson, RF forces surround Mariupol,  – in six days, the Russians seized a territory as large as the United Kingdom

To be continued