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Smart Bombs: Military, Defense and National Security

Putin Lost 110,000 Soldiers in Ukraine (And It Will Get Worse)

Patriot Missile
The Army test fires a Patriot missile in a recent test. The Patriot missile system is a ground-based, mobile missile defense interceptor deployed by the United States to detect, track and engage unmanned aerial vehicles, cruise missiles, and short-range and tactical ballistic missiles.

As Ukraine is getting ready to liberate more territory in the coming months, the U.S. and Germany have announced that they will be providing armored vehicles to the Ukrainian military and several other weapon systems. 

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Russian forces have largely stopped fighting in observance of a unilateral 36-hour ceasefire called by Russian President Vladimir Putin in observance of the Russian Orthodox Christmas, 

Meanwhile, the Ukrainian forces continue to wait for the appropriate weather conditions. M

ud and freezing rain have turned the battlefield into a huge quagmire, making mobile offensive operations difficult and favoring static defense and localized attacks.

On day 317 of the war, the Ukrainian military continues to have the strategic initiative. 

With A Little Help From My Friends 

In a joint press statement after a call between U.S. President Joe Biden and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, the two leaders announced further military assistance to Ukraine, including about 50 M2/M3 Bradley and 40 Marder infantry fighting vehicles and an additional battery of MIM-104 Patriot air defense missiles (to be provided by Germany). 

“President Biden and Chancellor Scholz expressed their common determination to continue to provide the necessary financial, humanitarian, military and diplomatic support to Ukraine for as long as needed,” the joint statement said.

The announcement of more military aid comes in the wake of France’s commitment to send Ukraine AMX-10 wheeled tank killers.

“To this end, the United States intends to supply Ukraine with Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicles, and Germany intends to provide Ukraine with Marder Infantry Fighting Vehicles. Both countries plan to train Ukrainian forces on the respective systems,” the joint statement added.

Nothing significant in terms of foreign policy and economy happens in Europe without the greenlight from Germany. But when it comes to military power and readiness, Berlin is at the bottom of the pile among the countries of the European Union. Nonetheless, Germany has a potent defense and aerospace industry that equips several militaries around the world with advanced weapon systems.

The M2/M3 Bradley and Marder will allow the Ukrainian military to better protect its tanks in combat.

Although the two weapon systems can’t stand toe-to-toe with Russian tanks, they can carry infantry close to the action with increased safety.

The operational environment in Ukraine means that tanks often have to fight within urban areas, thus making them easy targets for enemy infantry. So, if the Ukrainian military can bring its own infantry closer to where the action is, it can increase the survivability of its tanks. 

The decision to send Kyiv M2/M3 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles could also pave the way for a future shipment of M1 Abrams tanks to Ukraine. 

Russian Casualties in Ukraine

Meanwhile, the Russian forces continue to suffer heavy casualties on the ground. 

Overall, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Friday, Ukrainian forces have killed approximately 110,250 Russian troops (and wounded approximately twice to thrice that number), destroyed 285 fighter, attack, bomber, and transport jets, 272 attack and transport helicopters, 3,064 tanks, 2,059 artillery pieces, 6,124 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, 431 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), 16 boats and cutters, 4,797 vehicles and fuel tanks, 215 anti-aircraft batteries, 1,844 tactical unmanned aerial systems, 182 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems, and 723 cruise missiles shot down by the Ukrainian air defenses. 

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. 

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.

14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. Joe Bloviaten

    January 6, 2023 at 3:13 pm

    BS. Complete BS. There is no evidence these numbers are true.

  2. Valery

    January 7, 2023 at 3:39 am

    “110,250 Russian troops (and wounded approximately twice to thrice that number)” – The author, you know that to believe the Ukrainian data on the losses of military personnel of the Russian Armed Forces, to put it mildly, is not true. To put it more harshly, it’s a lie! At the same time, the Armed Forces of Ukraine repeatedly reduce their losses. As Mikhail Podolyak, adviser to the head of the presidential office, said, during the nine months of hostilities in Ukraine, the losses of the country’s Armed Forces amounted to 13,000 dead. But even according to Open Source INTelligence estimates, there are more than 400,000 killed and 200,000 missing in Ukraine (data as of October 20, 2022).

  3. TrustbutVerify

    January 7, 2023 at 7:31 am

    Yeah all that Russian military success and minimal troop and equipment losses is why Putin is trying to reconstitute his infantry with 300K conscripts and bringing T64s out of mothballs! HAHAHA!

  4. William

    January 7, 2023 at 8:01 am

    Media fabrication willfully repeated by half-assed organizations calling themselves “news outlets”.

  5. Greenman

    January 7, 2023 at 9:56 am

    Using the average of the 2 to three times wounded factor mentioned, say 2.5x, gives a combined 385,000 dead or wounded Russian casualty figure. The pre-invasion Russian army was 280,000, so it has effectively ceased to exist. This explains the subsequent Russian conscription of criminals and reliance on the mercenary Wagner group, to make up numbers. When the aforementioned sections of society, were, used up, the general conscription of ethnic russians began 21/9/22.

    The kill/wounded rate average was over 900 per day, from the beginning of the invasion, however, Ukraine has increased the average kill rate to over 600 per day, giving an implied kill/wounded rate of 2,100 per day, annualised 766,500. This would explain the recent Ukraine claim that Russia, was going to conscript another 500,000, for the invasion. Since Ukraine has recovered 50%, of the initial Russian territory gains, this points towards Putin, being willing to sacrifice even more Russians for shrinking Ukraine territory. Also since Russia has begun borrowing to fund the invasion, and it can no longer fund the war from energy income, then it is clear the desperation from Putin, signals the beginning of the inevitable collapse of the Russian war machine.

  6. Magneto

    January 7, 2023 at 11:36 am

    Ukraine is eliminating the Russian invasion force, two times faster than at the beginning of the illegal invasion. The original Russian army of 280,000, has been destroyed.

    The problem for Russia, is that Ukraine is not the very small country that Russia usually chooses to invade, such as Finland in 1939. Simple arithmetic informs one that Russia, will be defeated , because Ukraine has a population 9x larger than Finland. Unfortunately, Russia, has failed to do its homework, to ensure that a very small country is its victim.

    The 110,000 Russian deaths and wounded do not include Russian missing , which ought to be included since Russians have invaded a foreign country where the probability of going missing , is much higher. At least Ukrainian troops have the excuse of having maps, for their own country.

  7. Alejandro Pelota

    January 7, 2023 at 11:52 am

    It astounds me how people can fabricate and construct out of thin air a version of events that makes them feel good about themselves, regardless of reality, just blurting out pure hopeful thinking delusions for a dopamine hit and a few likes…

  8. Rick

    January 7, 2023 at 12:15 pm

    Irrespective of the number of currently dead, it is fair to assume that Russian losses have been very high. Putin didn’t conscript prisoners because he has an abundance of cannon fodder. He will need many more body bags before he is run out of Ukraine.

  9. mawendt

    January 7, 2023 at 1:19 pm

    Before the losers shoot off their mouths, I have over 20 years in army ground forces military intelligence, and conducted a hellacious number of Battle Damage Assessments on REDFOR, whoever they might be.

    First, the Russian casualty numbers are most likely accurate. There are many independent armchair casualty counters tracking destroyed equipment using picture and video reference, based on the equipment kills that’s between 25,000 and 75,000 crew kills alone.

    Second, counting supporting Russian killed which usually is a 2:1 ratio infantry:crew casualties (for a well trained army, with good medical support). Russia having a lousy trained army with terrible battlefield medical support, it’s much higher and 110K dead infantry might be on the light side.

    Then we estimate the attrition of simply being on the battlefield, which shifts based on weather, season, logistical and supply quality, and all those little things. A better trained and supplied army would have less attrition. Russia is not a better trained or supplied army.

    For the naysayers on this war: yes, in war *lies about how successful a side* is like that spoonful of sugar with the medicine to your supporters. However, if you are winning (as Ukraine is) there is less motivation to lie and more motivation to brag. Smart money is on the Ukrainian numbers.

    The second and third order effects reflect those big numbers also. Russia has been kicked back quite a distance from it’s initial gains, indicating it does not have the manpower to hold what it took. Russia has in desperation not simply mobilized whatever number of men to put into the Ukraine front, but there also is countless *Russian* sources describing pressganging, dragging drunks out of bars, emptying prisons as well as soldiers deserting, calling home and describing lack of training/clothing/equipment/food/leadership, and more. Successful armies don’t have those issues. So… again, gives credit to the Ukrain count of Russian killed.

    Last, Ukraine itself doesn’t have to stretch hard to show it’s troops are successful and motivated, almost seeming to be held back by a leash while Russian propaganda is dismal and cringy. Even the unofficial non-sanction soldier-at-the-front reporting shows the huge gap between the Ukraine and Russian morale, and in it are more than a sprinkling of Russians killed.

    In my opinion then, the numbers are ‘most likely’ on the truer side regarding Russians killed.

    So unnecessary. All Putin needs to do is pull back to the lawfully agreed 1994 international borders. His ego and failed leadership, as well as the failure of his military advisers and generals will continue to pointlessly kill Russians for nothing.

  10. Mark Wiechmann

    January 7, 2023 at 7:17 pm

    More of your BS propaganda.
    Question: What are the Uke losses?
    Deafening silence says alot.

  11. Valery

    January 7, 2023 at 11:57 pm

    mawendt, “First, the Russian casualty numbers are most likely accurate.” – Since you are so confident in your forecasts for the losses of the Russian military, then voice the same losses for the Ukrainian army. As a Russian, I want to understand: “How would your government react if Russian missiles ended up in Mexico or Cuba?” I think that the US just made a desert out of these countries. So Russia does not like it when NATO is on its borders, since Ukraine’s entry into this organization is just a matter of time, although Russia has warned it more than once not to do this.
    Or let’s say you personally would like the massacres of Americans in Mexico, Cuba, Guatemala, etc.? I think no! Russia also does not like it when Russians were killed in Drnbass for 8 years.

  12. froike

    January 8, 2023 at 10:44 am

    Valery…Why is Russia concerned about NATO? NATO is a Defense Pact, not an Aggressor Pact. Did NATO every invade Russia or make threats against Russia?
    If you remember your History, Russia did send Missiles to Cuba, and it almost resulted in WW3. POTUS Kennedy ordered a Blockade of Cuba, and Nikita backed down.
    The USSR and Russia were and are controlled by aggressive bullies. Putin invaded Crimea in 2014, should we even bother mentioning Chechnya? I think you understand my point.

  13. Serhio

    January 9, 2023 at 4:37 am

    froike
    “Valery…Why is Russia concerned about NATO? NATO is a Defense Pact, not an Aggressor Pact. Did NATO every invade Russia or make threats against Russia?”

    The NATO block was created to fight the USSR. The USSR has been gone for 30 years, and the NATO block exists. What for? Tell the Yugoslavs, Afghans, Syrians, Iraqis, Libyans about the defensive nature of the NATO bloc. NATO “defended itself” from them by attacking these countries and ruining them.

    “If you remember your History, Russia did send Missiles to Cuba, and it almost resulted in WW3. POTUS Kennedy ordered a Blockade of Cuba, and Nikita backed down.”

  14. Serhio

    January 9, 2023 at 4:39 am

    froike
    “If you remember your History, Russia did send Missiles to Cuba, and it almost resulted in WW3. POTUS Kennedy ordered a Blockade of Cuba, and Nikita backed down.”

    You have an unsatisfactory grade in history. The Russians deployed their missiles in Cuba in response to the US deployment of its missiles in Turkey, near the city of Izmir. Cuba was a retaliatory move by the Russians . The next move was to either use these missiles or retreat. After negotiations, both sides made concessions. The Russians have withdrawn missiles from Cuba, and the Americans from Turkey.

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