The question of providing state leadership and the armed force with intelligence has assumed special significance ever since Ukraine gained its independence.
The creation of Ukraine's military intelligence took place amidst sharp changes in the global geopolitical situation and the emergence of new threats to the national security of the state.
Military units and intelligence units stepped into the newest history of Ukraine already possessing fundamental military traditions, but Russian military aggression against our state - unleashed in 2014 - posed the biggest test since its creation and became almost the second birth of military intelligence in Ukraine.
Military units and intelligence units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were reformed and re-equipped amidst the difficult conditions of repelling Russian aggression while continuing to acquire intelligence on the actions and intentions of the enemy.
In the course of successful combat operations in early August 2014, the Armed Forces of Ukraine regained control approximately over 60% of the territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions. Regional centers were blocked from the north, west and south. Battles for the liberation of Slovyansk, Toretsk, Savur-Mohyla, Izvarin, Debaltsevo and other settlements have been engraved in golden letters into the history of Ukraine’s military intelligence. In those days, reconnaissance officers often performed combat tasks at the cost of their own lives. Their names are preserved in the memory of Ukrainians and sworn brothers as an example of selflessness and patriotism. They did not betray themselves, did not hide behind the backs of others; they courageously tolerated superhuman burdens and, at the same time, skillfully performed their work.
When it became clear that the anti terror operation was approaching a successful completion Russia launched direct military aggression. With support of massive artillery strikes from Russian territory, combat tactical groups of RF regular armed forces invaded Ukraine. At that stage, intelligence officers focused their main efforts on supporting raid actions of our tactical groups (which turned out to be the most effective way of troop application at the time), conducting intelligence operations in order to ensure the delivery of besieged military units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the vicinity of the Russian-Ukrainian state border, exposing critical objects in the depths of adversary deployment patterns for further fire damage.
Leadership of Ukraine’s military intelligence promptly took measures to comprehensively counteract Russian aggression with priority given to the improvement of the military intelligence system of Ukraine, strengthening of the military component of intelligence strengths and assets, enhancing cooperation with foreign partners in the sphere of information exchange on enemy actions, establishing a systems for informing the global community about Russian armed aggression against Ukraine, etc. In particular, through the efforts of the Ukrainian military intelligence the whole world received unequivocal evidence of regular units of the Russian armed forces participation in hostilities in the East of Ukraine, the illicit supplies of arms, ammunition and personnel from Russia to the occupied territories of Ukraine which were later employed against Ukrainian servicemen as well as the civilian population.
After the invasion of Russian troops, the Armed Forces of Ukraine were forced to turn to defense. Amidst such situation development, once more reconnaissance men proved their ability to act effectively under any circumstances. The joint efforts of many defenders of Ukraine prevented the spread of enemy aggression. Intelligence men of various troop branches and services, different ages and military ranks made their contribution to this effort. Because of their professionalism and patriotism the enemy suffered considerable losses and was forced to adjust plans.
Today, Ukraine’s military intelligence system is confidently regenerating.
In order to prepare for the execution of combat missions, reconnaissance warriors undergo intensive combat training both at permanent deployment sites and at military training areas through field trainings, tactical exercises, firing exercises and driving of combat vehicles under the guidance of experienced instructors.
Military and intelligence units which are engaged in the anti-terrorist operations reveal the control and communication systems, the organizational-staff structure, combat orders, the state of armament procurement, military equipment and logistics, the nature of combat and operational training, moral and psychological sentiment, the nature of the actions of adversary units and formations, deployment sites and firing positions of the units of the Russian-terrorist forces, as well as the latest models of Russian arms.
In addition, intelligence officers uncover information on the participation of representatives of RF AF leadership in the management and logistical support of Russian-terrorist troops in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, as well as the participation of military personnel of RF Armed Forces in hostilities. The information received from intelligence units made it possible to plan successful military operations on regaining control over a number of settlements: Vuhlehirsk, Olhovatka, Horlivka Mala, Sanzharivka, Luhansk (Svitlodarsk area), Avdiyivka and Avdiyivka industrial zone, Nelipovka, Pavlopil, Kominternovo, Shyrokino and others.
A special place in the history of Ukrainian military intelligence belongs to the people. Heroes of Ukraine Eugene Zelenskyy, Alexander Petrakovskyy, Kostiantyn Mohylko, Yuriy Kovalenko, Oleksandr Trepak, Ihor Hordiychuk, whose heroic acts spread across the entire length of the contact line, will remain in the nation’s memory forever. Overall, since the beginning of ATO, more than 800 intelligence officer (ten of them – twice) were presented with state awards for personal courage and heroism, devotion to the Military oath displayed during the protection of state sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.
A heavy loss for Ukraine’s military intelligence was the insidious assassination of Maxim Shapoval (commander of DIU military unit) in Kiev. His name will permanently remain in the lists of the military unit that he commanded and was written in the Book of Glory which was established in 2015 with the aim of perpetuating the memory of individuals who made a significant contribution to the development of military intelligence in Ukraine. While launching the book in 2016 the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko said: "Throughout its existence, Ukraine's military intelligence has undergone a difficult path from creation to reformation and development, and today it is an important element in the system of ensuring the national security of the state."
Today, we can say with certainty that Ukraine's military intelligence reliably stands in defense of the national interests of our state, having become one of the main high-tech and intellectual components of the combat capabilities of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the guarantor of the protection of the territorial integrity of our state. All this was made possible through the selfless work of many generations of DIU workforce, intelligence agencies, military bases and units.