Things are nyet going well for Vladimir Putin or his botched invasion of Ukraine. Given that he’s built his life and reputation around never-ending propaganda, it’s likely that the Russian leader assumed it would take his fierce army of soldiers just a couple of days, if not hours, to strike so much fear into all of Ukraine that they would simply give up and bend the knee to Putin. But here we are, five months later, and Russian soldiers are desperate for food, clothing, protective gear, weapons—and even bandages. Now, according to the latest numbers reported by Yahoo! News, it appears that a shocking 75,000 Russian soldiers have been either wounded or killed since initially invading Ukraine on February 24th.
To put that number into better perspective: Half of Putin’s army has been injured or killed.
These latest stats came courtesy of Michigan congresswoman Elissa Slotkin, who spoke with CNN’s Melanie Zanona earlier this week. “We were briefed that over 75,000 Russians have either been killed or wounded [in Ukraine], which is huge,” Slotkin said. “Over 80 percent of their land forces are bogged down, and they’re tired.”
They’re also desperate. In May, The Daily Beast reported that Russian soldiers were calling their parents to beg for money so that they could purchase the protective gear so desperately needed, but not being provided to them by the Russian government. Earlier this week, Russian officials were reportedly attempting to turn the invasion into a crowdfunded event as they asked citizens for donations in order to help purchase such basic necessities as binoculars, bandages, and tourniquets. And today CNN reported that Russia is desperately stealing African gold in an effort to fund operations.
As Yahoo! reports, the numbers Slotkin shared seem to line up with the tally CIA Director William Burns shared last week when asked about Russian casualties. “I think the latest estimates from the U.S. intelligence community would be, you know, something in the vicinity of 15,000 killed and maybe three times that wounded,” he said, “so a quite significant set of losses.”
Ukraine has faced its fair share of loss of life, too, with one top adviser to Volodymyr Zelensky estimating that they are dealing with 100 to 200 casualties per day.
Yet calling or truce or otherwise solving their differences amicably does not appear to be a move you’re likely to find in Putin’s playbook. This morning, CNN reported that Russia’s newest fundraising tactic involves stealing gold from Sudan under the guise of exporting cookies? Putin, meanwhile, seems more concerned with making sure he’s got enough Botox to take him through the rest of the war—however long it may be.
(Via Yahoo! News)