Russia hits grim milestone as 100,000 troops killed in Ukraine war

Ukrainian tank appears to destroy Russian tank

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Russian casualties in Ukraine have passed the 100,000 mark, less than ten months after Vladimir Putin ordered his invasion, the country’s defence ministry has claimed. And with Christmas imminent, the Defense of Ukraine’s Twitter account cited family favourite Home Alone in order to taunt Russia about its losses.

The ministry, which provides regular updates about the war, keeps a running total of Russian losses, in terms of troops and military equipment.

As of today, the total number of “eliminated personnel” stands at 100,400, an increase of 640 compared with yesterday, the unverified figures suggest.

The account commented: “‘You guys give up? Or are you thirsty for more?’ Kevin McCallister”, a reference to the young hero in the 1990 smash hit, played by Macaulay Culkin.

The post also includes a breakdown of the material which Ukraine claims to have destroyed, including 3,003 tanks, 5,981 armoured combat vehicles, 413 multiple rocket launchers, 212 air defence systems and 283 military jets.

Defense of Ukraine also shared a graphic announcing what it called a “grim jubilee”, adding: “100,000 soldiers have been recognized with awards in 10 months of the full-scale war – Russian #DefMin Sergei Shoigu.

“What an amazing coincidence.”

Speaking yesterday, Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said the country needs a force of 1.5 million “to guarantee the fulfilment of tasks to ensure Russia’s security.” He did not say when the military will reach that size.

The Russian military currently has about one million soldiers, compared with China’s force of two million and the US force of about 1.4 million.

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India also has more than 1.4 million soldiers.

The Kremlin previously considered the size of its military as sufficient, but the calculus shifted after hopes for a quick victory over its neighbour were shattered by fierce Ukrainian resistance.

The Russian military last reported its combat losses in September, when it said 5,937 troops were killed, but the West had much higher estimates.

Earlier this week, UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said 100,000 Russian troops were dead, wounded or had deserted since the invasion began.

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Previously, in September, Mr Wallace said: “It is estimated to date that over 25,000 Russian soldiers have lost their lives, and in all if you include killed, casualties, captured, or the now reported tens of thousands of deserters, over 80,000 dead or injured and the other categories.

“This will have a long-lasting impact on Russia’s army and its future combat effectiveness. Russia has yet to achieve any of its strategic objectives.

“And we are now on day 194 of what was envisaged in total to be a month-long campaign.”

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