Despite recording significant casualties on the side of Ukraine, around 15,000 Russians have been killed in the five-month-long Russia-Ukraine confIn addition, approximatelymately 45,000 have been injured, according to estimated figures provided by William Burns, the Director of the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).

In an interview with a news agency, Burns said, “I think the latest estimates from the US intelligence community would be something in the vicinity of 15,000 killed and maybe three times that wounded, so a quite significant set of losses.” “And the Ukrainians have suffered as well, probably a little less than that. But significant casualties,” he added.

However, Ukraine has earlier claimed much larger numbers of Russian casualties. In April, Ukraine’s government estimated that its armed forces had been the cause of the deaths of more than 20,000 Russian soldiers. Meanwhile, Russia has not frequently updated its official casualty counts throughout the conflict because it considers its military losses a “state secret.” The most recent information provided by the Russian government was on March 25, when it announced that 1,351 Russian soldiers had been killed in action. 

Last month, an adviser to the president of Ukraine indicated that Russia’s military onslaught claimed the lives of up to 200 Ukrainian soldiers daily. According to Mykhailo Podolyak, the only way to turn back the Russian assault, reduce the number of casualties, and force Moscow into peace negotiations is to arm Ukraine with “more and more advanced weaponry” from the West.

Russia’s invasion was estimated to have resulted in 11,544 civilian casualties as per the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) projection of the United Nations last week. A total of 5,024 civilian deaths and 6,520 civilian injuries were reported due to the conflict.

Ukrainian soldiers attack a Russian tank in Mariupol. (Source: BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

Catastrophic Failures?

Burns added that Russia experienced “catastrophic failures” during the initial stage of its occupation when it unsuccessfully attempted to capture Kyiv and western regions of Ukraine but mentioned how Russian troops have since recalibrated their focus to concentrate on the “industrial heartland” in Ukraine’s east, which is the Donbas. 

Also, the director of the CIA referred to the new chapter of the conflict as a more “comfortable way of war” for the Russian military, noting that it lets them utilize long-range weaponry and avoid continuing significant casualties, even with “weaknesses” in their surviving armed forces. As a result, Burns believes that the Russian troops have “adapted” to the situation, and “One of my recent conversations with one of my Ukrainian counterparts, he pointed out that the dumb Russians are all dead.”

But for Ukraine to cope with Russia’s firepower and maximize the effectiveness of their “catastrophic failures,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has called on its allied countries to provide his country with additional heavy weaponry.

The United States has been shipping High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) to Ukraine since roughly June. These systems will allow the Ukrainian military to strike targets more precisely from immense distances.

Recently, the US State Department released that the most recent package of presidential drawdown authority includes 36,000 rounds of 105 mm ammunition, extra anti-armor weapons, spare parts, and other gear; four command post vehicles; and other HIMARS systems, which will bring the total number of HIMARS systems in Ukraine to 16.

The High Mobility Artillery Rocket System fires the Army’s new guided Multiple Launch Rocket System during testing at White Sands Missile Range. (Source: U.S. Army photo, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

Latest Developments of the Conflict

A video that Ukrainian law enforcement officials claim shows a Russian missile striking a school in the city of Bakhmut in the Donetsk region has been made public. The assault occurred in the wee hours of Sunday morning, and it caused the school to be nearly inoperable. According to a representative for the police department, there was no one present in the building at the time of the incident.


After gaining control of the Luhansk territory earlier this month, Moscow focuses on the Donetsk region, which Russian separatists only partially govern. This is because the Donetsk region is located closer to Moscow. According to reports, even though there has not been a significant onslaught launched so far, there has been scattered fighting and shelling in several different regions.

Meanwhile, Galina Minayev, the mayor of Chihuiv, located in the northeastern part of Kharkiv, stated that 12 missiles struck her village in the early morning of Monday. It was uncertain to Galina Minayev whether anyone had been murdered, but she expressed her dread that bodies might be discovered buried beneath the ruins.

“All these years our society, residents have been creating, and building comfortable life conditions, and now the enemy is destroying all this, killing children, peaceful residents. It’s very hard to describe all this.” 

It is believed that one of the following targets of Vladimir Putin would be Kharkiv, which is the second largest city in Ukraine. However, the Ukrainian military, which is now monitoring the outskirts of the town, is skeptical that Moscow has enough troops in the vicinity to take over Kharkiv.