The U.S. has quietly told lawmakers that more than 75,000 members of Vladimir Putin's forces have been killed or injured in the war with Ukraine since Feb. 24, far exceeding earlier U.S. estimates.
What Happened: The estimate had emerged in a briefing from the U.S. Department of Defense, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, a legislator who recently visited Ukraine, confirmed on Wednesday, according to The New York Times.
The report pointed out that if the estimate was correct, it would be a staggering loss for Russia, which deployed an estimated 150,000 soldiers in the spring, as it means roughly half of the forces could be out of action.
Why It Matters: Earlier in March, when U.S. intelligence estimated that Russia had lost around 7,000 army men, the Pentagon officials had said that with a 10% casualty rate, including dead and wounded, a single unit would not be able to carry out combat tasks.
The developments came a day after many reports emerged that the Russian military was operating with an 'operational pause' – indicating that the frontline units are running out of men in Ukraine.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Wednesday said the Ukrainian army had killed nearly 40,000 Russian soldiers and tens of thousands more "wounded and maimed" since the war began.
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