Putin mocked: Ukraine claim Russian generals dying due to Moscow using tactics from ‘1917’

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According to Markiyan Lubkivsky, a spokesperson for the Ukraine Ministry of Defence, “at least 15 senior Russian commanders have been killed in the field”. The tally was later amended to 16, including five named colonels and four lieutenant colonels. Though not independently verified, the death rate among Vladimir Putin’s senior military figures seriously questions the efficiency being the Kremlin’s strategy. Akin to the toughest days of World War Two, the toll is “really disruptive” to Moscow’s goals, Express.co.uk has been told.

Mark Savchuk, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine, said: “People like generals… they shouldn’t die, because they shouldn’t be at the frontline.”

The 32-year-old, speaking from a Kyiv basement in which he shelters with a group of friends, said this comes down to a “lack of preparation” by Moscow.

Describing Russia’s army as “an old doctrine”, he said general fighting close to the frontline means “the probability of a lucky strike is actually much higher than in a conventional army”.

Mr Savchuk worked as a PR professional before the war. Now, he is a coordinator for the Ukrainian Volunteer Journalist Initiative.

He said: “We’re quite lucky that they’re fighting like it’s 1917.”

Ukrainian officials said the total number of Russian generals lost in battle was confirmed at seven by March 27.

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These include three army commanders: Andrey Kolesnikov, of the 29th Combined Arms Army, killed on March 11; Andrey Mordvichev, leading the 8th Army, who died in a Ukrainian raid on his command post at Kherson airfield; and Yakov Rezantsev, general of Russia’s 49th Combined Arms Army, killed in another airfield strike, apparently on March 25.

In addition, as per Western sources, another four other generals were reported killed on the frontline.

Magomed Tushaev, a Chechen major general in Russia’s National Guard (Rosgvardia), died when a column of 56 tanks was attacked near Hostomel on 26 February, although some Chechen sources dispute his death.

Around March 1, Andrey Sukhovetsky, deputy commander of Russia’s 41st Combined Arms Army, was shot by a sniper.

Shortly after, Vitaly Gerasimov, chief of staff of the 41st Combined Arms Army, was killed outside Kharkiv.

And on March 15, Oleg Mityaev, of the 150th Motor Rifle Division, died during the storming of the port city of Mariupol.

There is evidence that some of these generals were targeted by Ukrainian Special Forces, using sophisticated eavesdropping devices.

Mr Savchuk backs this theory.

He told the Express many among Putin’s forces are using “unencrypted networks”.

He bluntly said: “We (the army) have managed to track them down and we have managed to kill them.”

After one general was identified because “they don’t have encrypted networks”, he recalled, the military “sent the rocket there and destroyed him while he was talking”.

He added: “Not only that, we have been able to get a complete military layout of their plan of invasion of Ukraine, meaning we know how they organised their military.”

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According to Mr Savchuk, Russian forces have “four separate groups” that “behave completely independently from one another”.

He said: “We don’t know why. But this is the plan. Gladly for us, it’s a bad plan.”

It is understood each of these groups is made up of dozens of Russian battalion tactical groups (BTGs) Putin is dedicating to the invasion.

Mr Savchuk, emphasising Moscow’s forces are “not managing to reach their goals”, said it is good news for Kyiv when generals are killed “because Russian management organization is very vertical-centric”.

This, he explained, “means that if you kill a commander, it really disrupts their communication and management team.”

Yet, he noted the deaths of senior figures within Putin’s team won’t be the end for Russia, either.

He said: “Unfortunately, the Russian army is big, so they will be able to get replacements for them.”

The bottom line, he stressed, is “Putin is obsessed with conquering Ukraine”, and “if the West doesn’t supply weapons to Ukraine, he will eventually win”.

Mr Savchuk said despite the reported losses of Russian soldiers and the fierce resistance of Ukraine portrayed in the media, his country’s army “will simply run out, and it will happen pretty soon”.

What they need, he stressed, are “old Soviet-type weapons like tanks, APCs, artillery pieces and anti-aircraft guns”.

He said: “We are fighting an enormous army that has many more weapons than us. And that has much more ammo than us.

“Currently, the West helps us, but it does with weapons that help us stop their advance.”

Now, though, it is time “to take some territory back” – for which more aid is needed.

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