A nearly 80% casualty rate among Russia’s best fighters, it’s been reported. Those are staggering numbers and point to the ‘meat wave’ attacks that Russia has used in Ukraine to try to overwhelm Ukrainian forces. Eventually though when such tactics fail you’re just left with the losses and have to come up with new ways to replenish spent, wasted forces. Now that Wagner is effectively gone from Ukraine, Russia is left with a dilemma. Where to find new “meat” that can actually fight?
A total of 22,000 Wagner Group mercenaries have been killed in Ukraine, with a further 40,000 wounded, according to a Wagner-affiliated Telegram channel.
As of May 20, 25,000 recruits working for the paramilitary outfit were “alive and healthy,” according to the account, which attributes the quotes to a commander with the call sign “Marx.” Newsweek has been unable to independently verify his identity.
Of these recruits, 15,000 are on leave and 10,000 are now in Belarus, the commander said. Per the information posted by “Marx” on Wednesday and republished by another Wagner press channel, a total of 78,000 Wagner mercenaries have participated in operations in Ukraine.
Those numbers of KIA align closely with what Yevgeny Prigozhin, head of the Wagner Group, and President Zelensky have previously said.
Wagner Group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin said he lost 20,000 Wagner fighters in the months-long battle for Bakhmut.
Around half of those who had been killed in Bakhmut were convicts from Russia’s prisons, Prigozhin said. On June 30, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky told Spanish newspaper El Mundo that Ukrainian fighters had killed 21,000 Wagner troops and injured 80,000.
As for Prigozhin, he was seen yesterday for the first time in nearly a month, and he’s still pissed off. I don’t blame him though. He wasted his private army for nothing in Ukraine.