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Putin’s Army and Air Force Are Getting Killed in Ukraine

Artist rendering of a Russian Su-35 fighter. Image Credit: Creative Commons.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine continues to go poorly for Moscow on day 208 as the Ukrainian military continues to advance in the east and the south, liberating towns and settlements.

The Ukrainian military is also making gains in the eastern part of the Donbas.

Russian Casualties in Ukraine

The rate of Russian casualties has slowed down from the deadly pace of the past two weeks. However, that doesn’t mean that the Russian military has solved its serious force generation issues. Moscow continues to lack sufficient troops to man its frontline units increasingly and adequately has to jeopardize its positions in one part of the battlefield to bolster another.

The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Monday, Ukrainian forces have killed approximately 54,650 Russian troops (and wounded approximately thrice that number), destroyed 251 fighter, attack, and transport jets, 217 attack and transport helicopters, 2,212 tanks, 1,313 artillery pieces, 4,720 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, 312 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), 15 boats and cutters, 3,581 vehicles and fuel tanks, 168 anti-aircraft batteries, 920 tactical unmanned aerial systems, 125 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems, and 238 cruise missiles shot down by the Ukrainian air defenses.

Russian War Crimes in Ukraine

The Ukrainian highly successful counteroffensive in the east has brought to light more Russian atrocities. Ukrainians who had been living under the Russian yoke for the past six months are coming out with stories of war crimes.

In Izium, a major command and control and logistical hub in eastern Ukraine, investigators have uncovered mass graves with bodies that display evidence of torture and execution. Previously in Bucha, in northern Ukraine, the world had been appalled by the discovery of hundreds of tortured and executed Ukrainian soldiers and civilians.

The Russian Air Force Over Ukraine 

The Russian Aerospace Forces continue to be one of the great mysteries of the war. Russian pilots have failed to achieve air superiority over the Ukrainian skies despite their numerical and technological advances.

And Russian aircraft continue to suffer casualties as the Ukrainian air defenses are getting stronger.

“There is a realistic possibility that this uptick in losses is partially a result of the Russian Air Force accepting greater risk as it attempts to provide close air support to Russian ground forces under pressure from Ukrainian advances,” the British Military Intelligence assessed in its latest estimate on the conflict.

Russia's T-72 Tanks Ukraine

A man jumps from a Russian T-72 tank destroyed during Russia’s invasion, in the village of Yahidne, Ukraine April 20, 2022. REUTERS/Vladyslav Musiienko

“Russian pilots’ situational awareness is often poor; there is a realistic possibility that some aircraft have strayed over enemy territory and into denser air defence zones as the front lines have moved rapidly. Russia’s continued lack of air superiority remains one of the most important factors underpinning the fragility of it.

Expert Biography: A 19FortyFive 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 InsiderSandboxx, and SOFREP.

1945’s Defense and National Security Columnist, Stavros Atlamazoglou is a seasoned defense journalist with specialized expertise 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.