Russian Army Lost 40 Percent of Its Warfighting Capability, Ran Out Of Ammo and Shells

A group of Russian conscripts surrendered to Ukrainian Army. Photo by Kyiv post.

A new phase of the Ukraine war is shaping up in the eastern part of the country, where Russian troops are aiming to overcome early setbacks and pummel Ukrainian forces in a long-distance ground battle.

The report clearly flagged that Russian forces in Ukraine are low on the missile, tanks, and aircraft deemed necessary to further their attack on Ukraine. Global Defense Corp understands that an estimated 40 percent of its warfighting capability was depleted in Ukraine War. However, since engines of Russian military helicopters and other key components for warships, cruise missiles, and a majority of Moscow’s fighter jets are all made in Ukrainian factories, the advancement of the Russian troops has slowed down much ahead than was anticipated.

But succeeding with its new war goals will be no simple task for a Russian military that has lost some 40,000 personnel since its February 24 invasion, according to an estimate British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace gave on April 25.

Russia will also be unable to restock air-launched Kh-55 cruise missiles, enabling them to carry nuclear warheads, since they are dependent on imported components. The engine of the carrier is reportedly manufactured in Kharkiv, The Telegraph reported.

While far larger than the Ukrainians, the Russian forces are seen by Western and Ukrainian officials as demoralized and increasingly depleted following Moscow’s failed attempt at a quick victory after it invaded. In addition to mounting casualty figures, Russia has already deployed large parts of its military arsenal, including some of its most modern equipment, and has fired vast amounts of its rockets, artillery shells, and missiles.

As Western countries continue to gain momentum by sending more and better equipment to Ukraine, questions about the depth of Russia’s military stockpiles as well as the preparedness and skills of its soldiers hang over the Kremlin’s war effort as the conflict enters its ninth week.

According to the open-source Oryx blog, Russia has depleted 80 percent of its guided munitions forcing Russia to use new generation Zircon hypersonic missiles. Russia also lost 60 percent of its tank ammunitions and artillery rocket rounds.

Russians stock few smart weapons. The ones they stock are significantly less effective. Russians do not have enough technicians to maintain what they have. Many of their weapon systems are cosmetic. The destruction of the most modern Russian T-80 and T-90 tanks who were marketed as invulnerable to top attack missiles shows that the Russian tanks were not useful. Russia recently sent T-60 tanks to Ukraine as it depleted its T-90 tank inventory.

While Russia is replenishing troops in the east of Ukraine, the Russian army is suffering a broad shortage of weapons and ammunition. Sanctions implemented by the West may not have stopped Putin’s military operation in Ukraine, but they have impacted the weapons supply chain.

It is becoming increasingly difficult for Russia to build and supply new weapons, or even provide spare parts for military vehicles that have been damaged in the war.

One senior U.S. defense official told The War Zone this week that Russia’s substantial losses on the battlefield are hurting its military particularly badly given how economic sanctions have disrupted their ability to replace lost weapons and vehicles.

“There has been an effect on Putin’s ability to restock and resupply, particularly in the realm of components to some of his systems and his precision-guided munitions,” the U.S. official told The War Zone.

“They’ve already faced an issue in terms of replenishing their inventory because of components to some of those systems. And that’s already had a practical effect on Putin.”

It is also clear that Russia is suffering from serious logistical constraints that have forced it to abandon its clearly over-optimistic plan to simultaneously encircle Kyiv and Kharkiv and attack from the south and east.

An important sign of the scale of Russia’s difficulties will be if Ukraine can muster an effective counterattack in the Irpin and Kharkiv area, which has seen some of the most deadly fightings from almost the beginning of the war.

Following three months of sustained bombardment and shelling of Ukraine cities, Russian troops are now understood to be short of adequate armaments. Logistical issues stemmed from relentless and arbitrary bombings have led to the rapid depletion of Russia’s resources, the report added.

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