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Putin Has Blood on His Hands (As in 142,000 Dead in Ukraine)

Ukraine Russia
Russian T-72 Tank. Image Credit: Creative Commons.

The war in Ukraine continues on day 360. Russian forces continue to search for an operational breakthrough, but despite extremely heavy losses, they aren’t any closer to achieving it

Russian Casualties in Ukraine: The Update 

The heavy Russian casualties continue. Although the rate slowed down during the early days of the week (an average of around 450 casualties a day) the high losses are picking up again.

In the last 48 hours alone, the Russian forces have lost almost 2,000 men killed or wounded. 

Overall, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Saturday, Ukrainian forces have killed approximately 142,270 Russian troops (and wounded approximately twice to thrice that number).

Destroyed equipment includes: 298 fighter, attack, bomber, and transport jets, 287 attack and transport helicopters, 3,303 tanks, 2,326 artillery pieces, 6,520 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, 469 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), 18 boats and cutters, 5,196 vehicles and fuel tanks, 243 anti-aircraft batteries, 2,016 tactical unmanned aerial systems, 223 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems, and 871 cruise missiles shot down by the Ukrainian air defenses. 

Russian forces will have an increasingly more difficult job of achieving an operational breakthrough as the days pass.

It is likely that the Kremlin will have to resort to additional mobilization and recruitment measures in order to match the heavy losses the Russian forces are taking on the ground. 

But any such measures will highly likely trigger some backlash from the Russian people, who are becoming increasingly tired of the war.

War Weariness? 

Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to address the Russian people on February 21 in his state of the nation address.

One of the goals he is likely to try and achieve is to bolster the population morale and support his campaign in Ukraine.

Morale boosters will be necessary if he ends up calling another mobilization. 

A recent Russian parliamentary report on the “special military operation” in Ukraine likely covered issues “such as social support to those mobilised and their families.

“This issue is likely to become more salient if any further mobilisation (be it overt or tacit) takes place,” the British Military Intelligence assessed in its latest estimate of the war.

“It is becoming increasingly difficult for the Kremlin to insulate the population from the war in Ukraine.”

A December 2022 Russian poll reported that 52% had either a friend or relative who had served in the so-called Special Military Operation,” the British Military Intelligence added.

On the other side, the situation in Ukraine couldn’t be any different.

Almost to a person, the Ukrainian people are behind their government and military.

Indeed, they are committed to seeing this war to an end and supporting the liberation of any Ukrainian territory currently under Russian occupation, including the Crimean Peninsula, that was illegally invaded and annexed by Russia in 2014.

Repeated Russian missile and drone attacks against Ukrainian urban centers and critical infrastructure is only strengthening the resolve of the Ukrainian people

However, the Ukrainian people’s resolve can make any negotiations tougher. 

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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.