Kiev Puts Its Military Deaths at 10,000 So Far
About 100 per day
Zelensky’s adviser Arestovich estimates that about 10,000 Ukrainian soldiers have been killed so far.
It was also reported in the Washington Post that Arestovich said in the same talk that Ukrainian daily losses have now reached 200-300 per day. It turned out this was a misreport and a bad translation. Arestovich did not actually say that.
Arestovich said that Ukraine was suffering around 100 deaths per day early in the war, but that the Russian dead is at least 200-300 daily, but that it fluctuates to as many as 600 daily.
So the 200-300 figure is actually Arestovich’s claim about Russian losses.
— On April 15 Zelensky stated that Ukraine had lost 2500-3000 soldiers dead, which works out to 50-60 daily.
— On May 24 Zelensky stated that 50-100 Ukrainian soldiers were dying daily counting only the most active part of the front in the east. Not counting the Kherson front and any troops killed with cruise missiles in barracks and training camps.
— Then on June 1 Zelensky upped his number to 60-100.
— Then on June 9 a Zelensky adviser said the number had recently hit 100-200.
— Then on June 10 Arestovich spoke about 100 deaths per day, and 10,000 in total so far.
The Zelensky admin is somewhat consistent in the numbers it is giving out. Every estimate it has ever given falls between 50 and 200 soldiers killed daily.
There is a noticeable trend where since May 24 Kiev is now talking about its losses much more often than before.
On the one hand, revealing the grim reality of a high casualty toll can complicate conscription, but on the other hand, it creates media pressure on the West to provide more backing.
On May 21 I said that Ukrainian KIA could be anywhere between 6,000 and 18,000. That was day 86 of the war. The war has now gone on for 109 days.
With another 23 days of the war and Arestovich confirming about 10,000 Ukrainian deaths, I would take that as the lower bound, with 25,000 as the very upper bound. Point estimate would be closer to 10K than 25K.
These are already very high losses (as well as incredibly tragic).
However, figures like 60,000 Ukrainian dead that are being thrown around are not convincing. Each side has as few as 120,000 men on the front at any one time. It is not plausible that such a grouping of forces can lose 60,000 dead in under four months and continue to offer stiff resistance. (The 25K number I offer as the max already strains credulity in that respect.)
On a side note, losses reported by Donetsk Republic show a declining trend. The weekly wounded have declined from 700-900 from early March to late April, to 400-500 from late April to late May, to 250-300 in the last two weeks.
Some of that is explained by the Mariupol battle having been wrapped up (active fighting was over in late April), but could also indicate that fighting has become less intense or involves fewer forces. (At least fewer Donetsk forces.)