Ukrainian efforts to achieve an operational breakthrough in Ukraine continue. Ukrainian forces are using constant, measured attacks in Southern Ukraine and the Donbas.
For the time being, Russian forces are holding the line. But the Russian military is losing some of its best men in the process. Now, the Western coalition supporting Ukraine’s defense is sending Kyiv more tanks to help sustain the counteroffensive.
More Tanks for Ukraine
Denmark has committed to send 45 main battle tanks to Ukraine, including 30 Leopard 1s and 15 T-72EAs, which are a modernized version of the Czech variant of the Soviet-made T-72.
Kyiv expects the tanks to be delivered in the coming weeks.
The fierce fighting has taken its toll on the Ukrainian military. Kyiv has lost a number of its Western weapons systems, including some Leopard 2 tanks, M2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles, and at least one Challenger 2 tank.
Russian Casualties in Ukraine
Meanwhile, the Russian military keeps moving forces around urgently to plug the gaps created by Ukrainian advances. The Kremlin is using elite VDV paratrooper units in a firefighting role, moving them wherever the threat of a Ukrainian operational breakthrough is highest.
The constant fighting and attrition are reducing the combat effectiveness of these units. In its desperate attempt to keep the defensive line intact, Moscow is seriously degrading its potential offensive capabilities.
On day 575 of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the Russian military and pro-Russian separatist forces continue to take serious casualties. In the past 24 hours, Russian forces lost almost 500 casualties killed, wounded, or captured, as well as more than 100 heavy weapons systems, drones, missiles, and vehicles.
The Russian military is losing a very high number of artillery pieces each day. Ukrainian forces since the outset of the counteroffensive have systematically targeted Russian long-range fires systems in southern Ukraine and the Donbas.
Russian artillery guns, counter-artillery radars, and multiple launch rocket systems have all been targeted and destroyed en masse. The goal behind this Ukrainian strategy is simple: Degrade the enemy’s most lethal capability and thus achieve the dual goal of causing more casualties for the Russians while reducing losses in its own camp.
Overall, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed that as of Thursday, Ukrainian forces have killed and wounded approximately 274,470 Russian troops. They also claim they have destroyed 322 fighter, attack, bomber, and transport jets; 316 attack and transport helicopters; 4,638 tanks; 6,137 artillery pieces; 8,883 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles; 781 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems; 20 boats and cutters; 8,670 vehicles and fuel tanks; 528 anti-aircraft batteries; 4,850 tactical unmanned aerial systems; 911 special equipment platforms, such as bridging vehicles, and four mobile Iskander ballistic missile systems; and 1,479 cruise missiles shot down by the Ukrainian air defenses.
About the Author
A 19FortyFive Defense and National Security Columnist, Stavros Atlamazoglou is a seasoned defense journalist specializing in special operations and a Hellenic Army veteran (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army HQ). He holds a BA from the Johns Hopkins University, an MA from the Johns Hopkins’ School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), and is pursuing a J.D. at Boston College Law School. His work has been featured in Business Insider, Sandboxx, and SOFREP.