- Dec 27, 2014
- Reaction score
OK, so let's start with tanks. There's some different estimates of how many tanks Russia had at the start of the invasion. The consensus seems to be that Russia had about 3000 tanks reasonably available for combat. Nine months in (aka November), around 1100 had been lost (see Guardian article here). As of the most recent update, Oryx has used open source intelligence (OSINT, aka geolocated photos and videos) to identify 1900 tanks destroyed, damaged, abandoned, or captured. So a minimum of 60% of Russia's prewar tank fleet is gone, including 800 in the last 3 months. I say that's a minimum because OSINT can't capture every piece of equipment destroyed.Or are you claiming Russia has destroyed its own army? Please support your claims with acceptable evidence from an independent source, if you can.
On a subjective level, it can't be a good thing for Russia that they're shipping T-55s (designed in 1946) to combat in Ukraine. because they can't build modern tanks fast enough to cover their losses.
It's difficult to find troop loss information from independent sources, but it's clear from news reports that they are losing vast numbers of troops trying to take Bakhmut. The Beeb says 20K-30K killed or injured in this small area of the front. Russia has been trying to take Bakhmut since last May, and still hasn't managed it. They've taken a relatively insignificant amount of territory that's of little strategic value.
Why do I say that this is Russia destroying its own army? Because their tactics seem almost guaranteed to cause massive losses on their own side. Speaking of Bakhmut, the primary tactic in recent weeks was to send groups of 8 infantry into the firefight with no armor. If they got shot, Russian artillery would pound the positions that Ukraine shot from. Then they'd repeat with another 8 soldiers. It's a guaranteed approach to kill lots of people. Further south in Vulhedar, Russia has repeatedly run tanks into minefields littered with burned out hulks. Shockingly, many of those new tanks running in also get blown up. But this also goes back to the early days of the war. After the initial assaults on Kyiv stalled, Russia was running multi-kilometer convoys down roads when they had no control past the shoulder. Shocking nobody, the convoys got picked off by Ukrainian soldiers a couple of yards into the trees on either side. Throughout the war, Russia has chosen tactics that guarantee large losses on their side.