Since the Russians shifted the center of gravity of the war to the Donbass, the Ukrainians have been losing nearly two battalions a day, which is about 800 men. Such losses are not sustainable in the longer term. Ukraine already has acute problems when it comes to manpower. Just after the Russian invasion, millions of Ukrainian men who were fit for military service fled to European countries. In addition, many Ukrainian men live in areas now under Russian control and thus cannot be recruited. Add to this the large losses of men, and it seems that at this rate, Ukraine’s human resources will run out sooner than Russia runs short of artillery shells.
The Russians are making effective use of their artillery, which is the backbone of Russian strategy. Another pillar of Russian strategy is that they manage to keep their professional army intact after a year of war. When Russia withdrew its army after the first phase of the war, it deployed the bulk of its army sparingly. Except for a few elite Russian units such as Russian airborne forces and marines, the heavy fighting was mainly done by volunteers such as Chechens and Russian people’s militias from the Donbass and Luhansk regions. In addition to volunteers, Moscow also made frequent and successful use of so-called Wagner mercenaries. Meanwhile, mobilized reservists could be trained and gain combat experience on the calmer parts of the front.
In contrast, Ukraine not only lost many troops, but also its most qualitative units. Currently, Ukrainian soldiers receive only a few weeks of NATO training, indicating that the losses on the Ukrainian side are immense. The desperation is also evident from images where men are forcibly recruited on the streets, because volunteers have simply run out. Not only these harsh methods of recruitment, but also the fact that boys as young as 18 and men over 60 are showing up at the front is a sign that Ukraine is scraping the barrel for soldiers. Should the Russian military leadership decide to deploy its professional army, the question is whether the depleted Ukrainian army will be able to defend itself as effectively as it did at the beginning of the war.Ukraine is not going to win the war – The Pharos Report
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