The Ukrainian Armed Forces have captured at least 117 Russian tanks and lost another 74 since the start of the conflict, according to a survey by the website Oryx, associated with the Bellingcat investigative vehicle. The number of tanks captured by the Russians, on the other hand, would be smaller — just 37.
The numbers, however, could be higher, as the information was gathered by Oryx through techniques known as Open Source Intelligence (OSINT), which only work with data found on the internet.
According to the Ukrainian Defense Ministry, Russia has lost a total of 509 tanks since the conflict began a month ago. Already information from the Russian government, released on March 8, states that 900 Ukrainian armed vehicles would have been destroyed.
Recordings involving clashes between tanks have been shared on social media since the beginning of the conflict, on February 24.
The Russian forces, faced with unexpected Ukrainian resistance and logistical and strategic problems, reached a point of exhaustion of the mobilized capabilities, without being able to achieve their political objectives. At the moment, they are holding back their movements to regroup their forces and rethink what they want and can achieve in war.
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“Ukraine fought Russia’s forces until they were stagnant on many fronts. That doesn’t mean they’re defeated or can’t fight. Local battles will continue. But the initial campaign is over,” said Jennifer Cafarella, a researcher at the Institute for War Studies (ISW) in Washington, noting that the conflict “is far from over.” “This does not mean the end of the killing. Stagnation can be even more violent than previous phases.”
On the other hand, Franz-Stefan Gady, a military analyst at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS) in London, says that the fact that losses on the Ukrainian side are unknown — unlike on the Russian side, there are fewer intelligence reports to this respect — it makes it difficult to know which side suffered the most damage.
“It may be true that Ukraine ‘won’ the initial phase of this war simply by not losing. But I would like to have a clearer understanding of Ukrainian losses, the ability of Western weapons supplies to replace lost Ukrainian equipment, and the impact of the prolonged Russian attrition campaign, before drawing conclusions,” Gady said.