NEW YORK - Russian forces are driving the Ukraine army into pockets of envelopment, well-informed European military sources told Asia Times.

“The Russians are in no hurry,” a European military intelligence analyst wrote in a text message. “They will engage and drive the Ukrainians into several pockets. Then they will ask them to talk or kill them. It's a time-honored tactic.”

There are three major Russian encirclement maneuvers presently in progress, the intelligence source added. The first is in the south, with troops moving to the west of Mariupol, the largest city in the breakaway Donbass region whose independence Russia recognized last week.