Ukraine is getting ready a massive army: The Russian military might have had some success in the Donbas lately, but the Ukrainians are amassing a huge army to launch a theater-wide counterattack.
Million Man Army
In an exclusive interview with the London Times, Ukrainian Minister of Defence Oleksii Reznikov said that Ukraine is preparing and training a one million army to counterattack and retake the occupied Ukrainian from the Russian forces.
According to Reznikov, the Ukrainian government is particularly concerned about the coastal areas in southeastern Ukraine because of their significant importance to the Ukrainian economy.
Before the war, the Ukrainian military had a professional force of approximately 200,000 and about three times that number in reserves. But almost five months of war have taken their toll.
Here at 19FortyFive, we have covered the force generation troubles of the Russian military extensively. But Moscow is not the only combatant that is suffering from a shortage of trained troops to send to the frontlines and make up for the extremely high casualty rate.
The Ukrainian military has also been suffering heavy casualties, with estimates putting the number anywhere from 100 to 200 killed Ukrainian soldiers every day. If we add to this number between 200 to 600 wounded troops (historically, there have been three wounded for every killed soldier), we are coming up a pretty bleak figure of between 300 to 800 casualties every day for Kyiv.
So, in order to reach the numbers required for the “one million army,” the Ukrainians have to enlist and train a lot more men. And this is where the British come in.
The British Are Training Ukraine
The outgoing British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has pledged to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky that the British military would be training 10,000 Ukrainian soldiers every 120 days, or four months, to be combat-ready. And although we still don’t know who the next British Prime Minister will be, institutional continuity will most likely continue the process Johnson began.
The first class of 10,000 Ukrainians has already arrived in the United Kingdom and began training. More than 1,000 British troops from the 11th Security Force Assistance Brigade are running the program that is taking place across the U.K.
“This ambitious new training programme is the next phase in the UK’s support to the Armed Forces of Ukraine in their fight against Russian aggression,” British Defense Minister Ben Wallace said in a press release.
The training program is broken down into several courses and aims to take green recruits with no military experience whatsoever and make them proper soldiers that can fight and survive on the frontlines of the war. Some of the courses include basic soldiering, marksmanship, tactical first aid, fieldcraft, patrolling, and the law of armed conflict.
“Using the world-class expertise of the British Army we will help Ukraine to rebuild its forces and scale-up its resistance as they defend their country’s sovereignty and their right to choose their own future,” the British defense minister added.
The British trainers acquired AK rifles to ensure that the Ukrainian forces would be training on the weapon systems they would actually be using on the frontlines.
1945’s New Defense and National Security Columnist, Stavros Atlamazoglou is a seasoned defense journalist specializing in special operations, a Hellenic Army veteran (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army HQ), and a Johns Hopkins University graduate. His work has been featured in Business Insider, Sandboxx, and SOFREP.
July 11, 2022 at 10:58 am
Another news item mentioned one million, but indicated the figure was more a wish than a practicable figure. Last I heard, the Russians had assembled 120 battle groups of an average 800 troops, meaning a total of 96,000. Round the Russian figure up to 100,000, and the Ukrainian military would require three times that to give the standard effective attack mass, so 300,000.
Also because the western countries are apparently providing military hardware, I don’t see the wherewithal happening for an ambitious figure like one million.
July 11, 2022 at 5:28 pm
Well, a million is a little over twice what the British lost in the Battle of the Somme, so I suppose that is a good start. (If “good” is the word to use.)