The Washington PostThe Washington Post

Ukraine short of skilled troops and munitions as losses, pessimism grow

By Isabelle Khurshudyan

13 Mar 2023 · 10 min read

Editor's Note

The loss of experienced soldiers and lack of ammunition is leading to a "palpable, if mostly unspoken, pessimism" among Ukrainian troops on the front line—and among leaders in Kyiv, writes The Post.

DNIPROPETROVSK REGION, Ukraine - The quality of Ukraine's military force, once considered a substantial advantage over Russia, has been degraded by a year of casualties that has taken many of the most experienced fighters off the battlefield, leading some Ukrainian officials to question Kyiv's readiness to mount a much-anticipated spring offensive.

U.S. and European officials have estimated that as many as 120,000 Ukrainian soldiers have been killed or wounded since the start of Russia's invasion early last year, compared with about 200,000 on the Russian side, which has a much larger military and roughly triple the population from which to draw conscripts. Ukraine keeps its running casualty numbers secret, even from its staunchest Western supporters.

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