The Russian military keeps losing great numbers of men and materiel every day, making its work harder as the war progresses.
The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Tuesday, Ukrainian forces have killed approximately 42,640 Russian troops (and wounded approximately thrice that number), destroyed 223 fighter, attack, and transport jets, 192 attack and transport helicopters, 1,817 tanks, 964 artillery pieces, 4,076 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, 261 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), 15 boats and cutters, 2,998 vehicles and fuel tanks, 133 anti-aircraft batteries, 757 tactical unmanned aerial systems, 87 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems, and 185 cruise missiles shot down by the Ukrainian air defenses.
30 Days of Almost Nothing
In its daily estimate of the war, the British Ministry of Defense focused on the sluggish Russian campaign in the Donbas.
Over the last 30 days, the Russian forces have advanced at most about six miles in certain sectors on the battlefield in eastern Ukraine. In others, they have failed to advance at all, or their gains are so small (less than two miles, for example) as to be inconsequential.
“Over the weekend, Russia has continued to focus efforts on reinforcing defences in southern Ukraine. Despite the shift in effort, Russia has maintained attacks on Ukrainian positions in Donetsk oblast,” the British Military Intelligence assessed.
“Over the last 30 days, Russia’s assault towards the town of Bakhmut has been its most successful axis in the Donbas; however, Russia has only managed to advance about 10km during this time,” the British Ministry of Defense stated.
“In other Donbas sectors where Russia was attempting to break through, its forces have not gained more than 3km during this 30 day period; almost certainly significantly less than planned,” the British Ministry of Defense added.
“Despite its continued heavy use of artillery in these areas, Russia has not been able to generate capable combat infantry in sufficient numbers to secure more substantial advances,” the British Military Intelligence assessed.
Meanwhile, in the south, the Ukrainian military is focusing its long-range strikes on transportation infrastructures, such as bridges, ammunition depots, command and control posts, and rail links, to make the life of the Russian forces in Kherson more challenging by restricting their resupply.
The Ukrainian forces have been particularly focusing on the railroad that links Kherson with Crimea, which the Russian military has turned into a fortress since its illegal annexation in 2014.
The Food Situation
According to the British Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office, at least 1.6 billion people around the world are being directly affected by the ongoing surge in food and energy prices caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
“Ukraine was one of the largest exporters of grains and vegetable oils until Russia’s invasion in February. If the war continues [or if a permanent solution to the Ukrainian grain situation isn’t achieved soon] 323 million people could face acute food insecurity by the end of the year,” the British Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office stated.
It is estimated that by enforcing a naval blockade of the Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea, the Kremlin held hostage an estimated 20 million tons of grain.
Although cargo vessels carrying Ukrainian grain have started to leave the embattled country carrying the precious cargo to the countries in need, a permanent solution to the problem has been reached yet.
“It’s welcome news that Ukrainian grain has begun to arrive in other countries thanks to the UN deal being adhered to. But Russia must take responsibility for its role in worsening the food crisis and stop its illegal assault on Ukraine once and for all,” the British Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office stated.
“For as long as Putin’s warv continues, global food security will be threatened. Instead of claiming responsibility, the Kremlin has falsely blamed Western sanctions; claimed Ukrainian grain is irrelevant to the global food supply; accused Ukraine of mining cargo routes,” the British Foreign, Commonwealth, and Development Office added.
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.