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The War Between Ukraine and Russia Is a Bloodbath

Ukraine Blowing Up Minefield
Ukraine Blowing Up Minefield

On day 421 of the conflict in Ukraine, the Russian military is preparing for a Ukrainian attack in the south by creating a new organization.

A New Russian Unit for Ukraine

On Tuesday, the Kremlin issued a press release about Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to the occupied provinces in southern Ukraine. In the press release, Moscow stated that Putin had visited, among other things, the “Dnipr Group of Forces.”

This marks the first-ever reference to the existence of such an organization. Thus far, the Russian military has used the term “group of forces” or “grouping of forces” to describe a large formation that has been established for a particular operational task. But the simple change in the title suggests wider problems, according to the British Military Intelligence.

“The existence of an apparently new DGF suggest that the original force organisation has evolved, probably due to heavy losses,” the British Military Intelligence assessed in its latest estimate of the war.

The Russian forces have suffered extremely heavy casualties on the ground. This year alone, the Russian military and Wagner Group private military company have lost an estimated 76,000 men killed or wounded. That number of losses would incapacitate most military forces, and it seems to have had a debilitating effect on the Russian “special military operation.”

Overall, the combined Russian forces have lost between 185,000 and 220,000 troops killed or wounded, with Ukrainian estimates claiming the lower number and Western intelligence estimates the higher. Either way, the Russian forces have lost almost their total initial invasion force in just over a year of combat.

At the onset of the invasion, the Russian forces were broken down into different groups of forces, much like an army corps, based on their home military districts. However, that arrangement led to confusion and reduced efficiency. Indeed, not only was there not any unity of command—a key requirement for effective military operations—the different Russian groups of forces competed with one another for reinforcements and resources, leading to subpar performance and animosity within the Russian ranks.

In terms of the new organization that Putin visited in southern Ukraine, “[its] mission is likely to defend the southern sector of the occupied zone, and especially the south-western flank which is currently marked by the Dnipro river,” the British Military Intelligence added.

This location has been suggested as a possible location for the upcoming Ukrainian counteroffensive. However, the location presents some challenges—the Ukrainians would have to cross the Dnipro River in force.

Russian Casualties In Ukraine Reaching Historic Numbers 

Overall, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Thursday, Ukrainian forces have killed and wounded approximately 184420 Russian troops, destroyed 308 fighter, attack, bomber, and transport jets, 293 attack and transport helicopters, 3,667 tanks, 2,825 artillery pieces, 7,020 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, 539 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS), 18 boats and cutters, 5,707 vehicles and fuel tanks, 285 anti-aircraft batteries, 2,286 tactical unmanned aerial systems, 332 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems, and 911 cruise missiles shot down by the Ukrainian air defenses.

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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. 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.