Russian losses in Ukraine so great it cannot fight again for 'years'

Russia’s military has lost so much equipment in Ukraine it will be incapable of fighting another war for ‘years’, analysts claim

  • Putin’s failing war in Ukraine has seen Russia lose years’ worth of kit, experts say
  • That includes 939 tanks, 185 planes, 155 helicopters and 421 artillery: Kyiv army
  • ‘Supplies are getting low’ and ‘it will take years for Russia to rebuild’: US analyst
  • Soviet-era reserves including tanks remain – but it’s unclear if they still work
  • Embarrassing sinking of Black Sea flagship the Moskva prompted fury in Russia
  • Russia will be unable to fight another war for years because of catastrophic kit losses in Ukraine, defence experts said.

    ‘It will take years for Russia to rebuild its inventories’, according to the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies.

    In fact, Putin will struggle in the Donbas because vital ‘inventories are getting low’, analyst Mark Cancian told The Times.

    Wrecked Kremlin equipment now amounts to 939 tanks, 185 planes, 155 helicopters, 421 artillery units and eight ships, the Ukrainian army estimated this morning. 

    The Ukrainian Army updates its latest - and rising - estimates of Russian losses each morning

    The Ukrainian Army updates its latest – and rising – estimates of Russian losses each morning

    Kyiv estimates its forces have now killed 22,400 Russian soldiers, up from 22,100 yesterday.

    Military analyst Henry Boyd from the International Institute for Strategic Studies said Putin could still draw on sizeable, Soviet-era reserve forces stationed across Russia.

    But most Russian soldiers could be unable to use it, he added. 

    Mr Boyd told the newspaper: ‘They kept a large number of Soviet-era tanks, armoured vehicles and artillery.

    ‘You can probably compensate in terms of sheer numbers by reactivating older systems but there is a question mark over whether they will have the crews to man the vehicles and if they do, whether they have had sufficient training.’

    Putin, pictured looking sheepish at a meeting yesterday with the UN Secretary-General, may be emasculated for years to come due to his military's costly failure in Ukraine

    Putin, pictured looking sheepish at a meeting yesterday with the UN Secretary-General, may be emasculated for years to come due to his military’s costly failure in Ukraine








    The bad news for Moscow comes as Russia continues its pivot to the east of Ukraine, where it has had more military success than elsewhere in the country.

    But UK armed forces minister James Heappey warned yesterday ‘the Donbas will be a difficult nut for the Russians to crack’. 

    Mr Heappey added Russian and Ukrainian forces are now ‘evenly matched’. 

    He also hit headlines yesterday when he backed Ukraine’s right to attack targets inside Russia using British-made equipment.

    The Moskva battleship (pictured as it sunk two weeks ago) is Russia's highest-profile loss so far

    The Moskva battleship (pictured as it sunk two weeks ago) is Russia’s highest-profile loss so far








    He told Times Radio: ‘It is completely legitimate for Ukraine to be targeting in Russia’s depth in order to disrupt the logistics that if they weren’t disrupted would directly contribute to death and carnage on Ukrainian soil.

    ‘There are lots of countries around the world that operate kit that they have imported from other countries; when those bits of kit are used we tend not to blame the country that manufactured it, you blame the country that fired it.’

    When Russian forces entered Ukraine on February 24, the invading Moscow military dwarfed Ukraine’s, prompting many to believe the war would be swift and effective.

    A man rides his bike next to a wrecked Russian tank in Chernihiv, northern Ukraine last week

    A man rides his bike next to a wrecked Russian tank in Chernihiv, northern Ukraine last week








    Russia’s land army consisted of 280,000 full-time active soldiers compared with Ukraine’s 125,600.

    But the amount of Russian soldiers needed to seize the whole country and control the entire population would be close to 1 million, according to Michael Clarke, a visiting professor at King’s College London’s Department of War Studies. 

    That suggests the Kremlin woefully underestimated the amount of force needed to pummel its neighbour into submission.

    A flood of Ukrainian conscripts, high-tech weaponry sent by NATO countries and Russian strategic failures have all helped to turn the tide in Kyiv’s favour. 

    Ukrainian sappers search for unexploded bombs at the burnt remains of a Russian helicopter destroyed during recent fighting at Antonov airport in Hostomel on the outskirts of Kyiv

    Ukrainian sappers search for unexploded bombs at the burnt remains of a Russian helicopter destroyed during recent fighting at Antonov airport in Hostomel on the outskirts of Kyiv

    Russia’s fallen generals 

    General Magomed Tushaev: Chechen special forces leader who had led ‘anti-gay purges’ killed in an ambush near Hostomel on February 26 

    Major General Andrei Sukhovetsky: Deputy commander of the 41st Combined Arms Army of the Central Military District killed during a special operation by a sniper on March 4

    Major General Andrei Sukhovetsky, 47, deputy commander of the 41st Combined Arms Army of the Central Military District

    Chechen general Magomed Tushaev was one of 56 highly-feared elite soldiers killed at Hostomel

    General Magomed Tushaev (right) was blown up in the early stages of the war by Ukraine after they joined the Russian invasion

    Major General Vitaly Gerasimov: First deputy commander of Russia’s 41st army who took part in operations in Syria and Crimea, killed in fighting around Kharkiv on March 8

    Major General Andrei Kolesnikov: Commander of the 29th Combined Army Army killed on March 11

    Major General Vitaly Gerasimov (left) was the first deputy commander of Russia's 41st army

    Major General Andrei Kolesnikov of the 29th Combined Arms Army

    Major General Vitaly Gerasimov (left) was first deputy commander of Russia’s 41st army, taking part in operations in Syria and Crimea. He was killed in fighting around Kharkiv on March 8

    Major-General Oleg Mityaev, died fighting near the city of Mariupol on 16 March

    Lt-Gen Andrey Mordvichev, killed in the Kherson region on March 19 

    Lt Gen Yakov Rezantsev, commander of Russia’s 49th combined army, was killed in a strike near the southern city of Kherson on March 25 

    Lt Gen Yakov Rezantsev , commander of Russia's 49th combined army. He was killed in a strike near the southern city of Kherson on March 25

    Lt Gen Yakov Rezantsev , commander of Russia’s 49th combined army. He was killed in a strike near the southern city of Kherson on March 25

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