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63,800 Dead: Russia Is Getting Hammered in Ukraine

Russian TOS-1 firing. Image Credit: Creative Commons.
Russian TOS-1 firing. Image Credit: Creative Commons.

On day 232 of the war in Ukraine, the Russian forces are trying to stem the flow of the Ukrainian counteroffensive in the south. In contrast, the Ukrainian forces continue to push and inflict heavy casualties on the Russian military.

Russian Casualties in Ukraine

The Russian military continues to bleed heavily in Ukraine. Almost eight months into the war, and the Ukrainian skies are still dangerous for the Russian Aerospace Forces.

Yesterday, in the span of just 20 minutes, the Ukrainian military claims to have shot down four Russian helicopters, including two Ka-52 Alligator attack helicopters that were supporting Russian ground troops in the vicinity of Kherson.

Overall, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Thursday, Ukrainian forces have killed approximately 63,800 Russian troops (and wounded approximately thrice that number), destroyed 268 fighter, attack, and transport jets, 240 attack and transport helicopters, 2,511 tanks, 1,556 artillery pieces, 5,167 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, 357 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), 16 boats and cutters, 3,935 vehicles and fuel tanks, 183 anti-aircraft batteries, 1,182 tactical unmanned aerial systems, 136 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems, and 315 cruise missiles shot down by the Ukrainian air defenses.

The Fight for Kherson 

The fighting in the south rages hot as the Ukrainian forces are pushing toward the city of Kherson while the Russian military is desperately trying to set up a second line of defense to hold the Ukrainian advance.

The new Russian defensive line is now located west of the small village of Mylove.

“Heavy fighting continues along this line, especially at the western end where Ukrainian advances mean Russia’s flank is no longer protected by the Inhulets River. Most of the Russia [sic] troops on this front line remain understrength VDV (airborne) units,” the British Military Intelligence assessed in its latest estimate of the war.

“In recent days, the Russian occupation authorities have likely ordered preparation for the evacuation of some civilians from Kherson. It is likely that they anticipate combat extending to the city of Kherson itself,” the British Military Intelligence added.

Before the war broke out, the Russian VDV airborne units enjoyed an elite status in the Russian military. However, the war has done much to tarnish their image as VDV units have repeatedly been humiliated on the ground by the Ukrainian forces and have suffered heavy casualties.

Ukraine Social Media

From Twitter Screenshot: Intense mechanized combat footage of Ukrainian Marines using tanks and Turkish-donated BMC Kirpi IMV against Russian forces during the ongoing Kherson offensive.

The VDV airborne troops were one of the first units in Ukraine during the attempt to capture the Hostomel airfield near Kyiv in a surprise air assault in the opening hours of the war. And, in fact, the Russian paratroopers succeeded in capturing and holding their target for a few hours. However, follow-on reinforcements never arrived, and the VDV airhead was never reinforced. As a result, a Ukrainian counterattack by a mix of national guard and special operations units pushed the VDV out of the airfield, and the remaining survivors had to run for their lives in the nearby woods.

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. He is currently working towards a Master’s Degree in Strategy and Cybersecurity at the Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). 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.