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Putin’s Next Ukraine Disaster: The Russian Army Is Running Out of Ammo

M-109A6 Paladin Self Propelled Howitzer
Col. David Mansfield, 407th Air Expeditionary Group commander fires an illumination round from a M-109A6 Paladin Self Propelled Howitzer here June 20 in support of Iraqi Police patrolling Nasiriyah, Iraq. The Soldiers of the 3-319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, regularly support Iraqi Police with illumination to help them secure the city. Colonel Mansfield was given a tour, a system capability brief and the opportunity to fire, under close Soldier supervision, so that he can better inform Airmen about the "outgoing fire" missions and thunderous explosions heard almost nightly here.

Ukraine War Update: Russia Hammers Kyiv Despite Running Low On Ammunition – The Russian military unleashed missile attacks across Ukraine on Saturday, hitting the capital of Kyiv with the heaviest barrage of missiles in weeks. And with the indiscriminate targeting of civilian areas, the strikes hit both an apartment building as well as a kindergarten. 

These strikes killed at least one person and wounded six more. Ukrainian firefighters rushed to put out the fire in a nine-story apartment building. “They have pulled out a seven-year-old girl. She is alive. Now they’re trying to rescue her mother,” Kyiv’s Mayor Vitali Klitschko said

“There are people under the rubble,” Klitschko added on the Telegram messaging app. He also stated that several people had been hospitalized. The strikes took place as leaders of the G7 met in Germany to consider whether to levy new sanctions against Moscow. 

President Joe Biden condemned the strikes when asked if he had any reaction to the latest attacks by Russia. “Yes, it’s more of their barbarism,” Biden said. Russia conducted the airstrikes from the west, south, and north from Belarus. 

With the Ukrainians claiming that Russia is trying to drag Belarus into the war,  just a few hours after the airstrikes Russian President Putin promised Belarus that he’d send them missiles that are equipped with nuclear warheads. 

Ukraine’s Defense Ministry’s Main Intelligence Directorate said “missile strikes from the territory of Belarus are a large-scale provocation of the Russian Federation in order to further involve Belarus in the war against Ukraine.”

‘”Russian bombers hit directly from the territory of Belarus. Six Tu-22M3 aircraft were involved, which launched 12 Kh-22 cruise missiles.” The Directorate added that the missiles had been launched from airspace above the district of Petrikov in southern Belarus. 

“After launching the missiles, they returned to Shaikovka airfield in Russia. The strike was launched on Kyiv, Chernihiv and Sumy regions. This is the first case of an airstrike on Ukraine directly from the territory of Belarus,” the Directorate said.

Ukraine War: Russia Running Low on Missiles and Ammo

The Russian military may soon have to slow down or even stop their offensive in the Donbas of eastern Ukraine due to heavy casualties and a general lack of ammunition, according to Western intelligence military experts.

Despite Russian forces concentrating artillery fire, as well as air and missile strike advances against Ukrainian forces, many analysts believe that Russian forces are running short of ammunition, particularly artillery.

One senior Western official told the Washington Post that the slow Russian advance that finally took Severodonetsk on Friday, when Ukrainian troops withdrew, is dependent on massive artillery strikes that can’t be sustained for long, the way they are burning through ammunition

Ukraine characterized its pullback from the city as a “tactical withdrawal” to fight from higher ground in Lysychansk on the opposite bank of the Siverskyi Donets river. The Russians claim that they already have troops fighting inside of the city. 

One Russian blogger said that manpower shortages are taking a toll on Moscow’s “special military operation and that they’d need upwards of 500,000 troops which they can’t field without a national mobilization, something Putin thus far has not opted to do.” 

The Ukrainian deputy defense minister Anna Malyar has said that the Russian military is under pressure to bring all of Luhansk under Russian control by Sunday, perhaps explaining the lack of artillery ammunition.

The Russians, overconfident of their ability to finish the war in days, didn’t ramp up ammunition production. The Ukrainians too, have almost run out of their Soviet-era ammunition from their older weapons. 

Steve Balestrieri is a 1945 National Security Columnist. He has served as a US Army Special Forces NCO and Warrant Officer before injuries forced his early separation. In addition to writing for 19fortyfive.com and other military news organizations, he has covered the NFL for PatsFans.com for over 10 years. His work was regularly featured in the Millbury-Sutton Chronicle and Grafton News newspapers in Massachusetts.

Written By

Steve Balestrieri is a 1945 National Security Columnist. He has served as a US Special Forces NCO and Warrant Officer before injuries forced his early separation. In addition to writing for 1945, he covers the NFL for PatsFans.com and his work was regularly featured in the Millbury-Sutton Chronicle and Grafton News newspapers in Massachusetts.

9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. speedster

    June 26, 2022 at 5:43 pm

    Putin, is like a gambler, failing with his first gamble, taking the kiev capital, and in the process losing a great number of troops. He has redirected the invasion attempt to the east and has some limited success at great cost in troop losses.

    At present the Russian losses if compared with the ten years in Afghanistan are 68 times greater. Again a sure sign of Putin s desperation. The comment regarding ammo, make a sense since all along it has been apparent that Putin has mounted an ill prepared invasion of Ukraine. Time is not on Putin’s side, since western weapons, which have proved superior, are continuing to arrive in Ukraine, and with western intelligence, Russian military assets are vulnerable.

    • Invitado 2

      June 27, 2022 at 5:08 pm

      Tu análisis es muy veloz, ten cuidado, te puedes estrellar.

  2. Begemot

    June 26, 2022 at 8:41 pm

    I’ve lost count of how many times during this war that the Russians have been on the brink of major failures or shortages of resources or morale or of everything. Yet the Russians keep going. Guess they’re too dumb to know they should be dead and failed and have run back to Russia. Don’t they know that Sgt. Balestrieri, once of the US Army Special Forces, knows more about war than they do? Why don’t they listen to him?

    Maybe, liked the stopped clock, your prognostications will prove true some time, but so far, the Western “experts” track record is pretty laughable.

  3. Real Analyst

    June 27, 2022 at 2:43 am

    So far our Western “Experts” have proven themselves inept and out of ammunition when analyzing Russia’s objections, strength, losses etc. Ukraine is clearly losing this war. Ukraine is a corrupt nation and we backed it like idiots.

    • mcswell

      June 27, 2022 at 9:19 pm

      “We backed it”? I wasn’t aware you Russkies did that.

  4. speedster

    June 27, 2022 at 3:42 am

    The article is correct about Russian shortage of ammunition, because it is supported by Ukrainian documented destruction of Russian ammunition dumps behind the front lines. According to the Ukrainian article , they are destroying an average of at least one dump every day, so seven a week, 30 in a month. Whether the russians,are able to replace the destroyed ammunition is debatable, but obviously the dumps were chosen to minimise the time taken to deliver ammunition to the Russian front line.
    One can only guess at the destruction wrought in the vicinity of those ammunition dumps.

    • Divia

      June 27, 2022 at 10:36 am

      But you will NEVER hear that on the US’s state run media!

  5. VP92Wings

    June 27, 2022 at 3:56 am

    Steve – what are the facts about U.S. delivery of promised materiel to Ukraine?
    State Dept. kind words, while slow-walking the actual delivery?
    “Consensus” accommodation to Euro-Socialist politicians, who just want Russian fuels?
    As former Navy aircrewman, the transport of weapons & other gear can be, & should have been, done within days.
    USAF C-5/C-17 flights for big hauls; C-130’s & helo’s to land in more restricted areas.
    Why the delays?
    (& Go Pats!)
    🙂

  6. Dissociate

    June 27, 2022 at 1:46 pm

    Running out of ammo? Hard to believe. When the iron curtain fell and NATO broke it’s promise not to expand into the former Soviet bloc countries, Russia saw the writing on the wall.

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