Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday bragged about his country’s advanced weaponry.
He said in a speech that they were “years, even decades” ahead of their overseas rivals.
But on the battlefield in Ukraine, Russia was forced to use outdated Soviet-era armor due to heavy casualties.
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday touted his country’s arsenal of weapons and said it was significantly more advanced than that of his rivals.
But in Ukraine, which Russia invaded in late February expecting a quick victory, Russian forces were forced out of old Soviet-era tanks to make up for heavy armor losses on the battlefield.
Speaking at a military forum outside Moscow, Putin promoted ‘advanced’ Russian weapons to foreign allies and said he was ready to sell small arms, artillery, armored vehicles and drones.
He also claimed that military professionals have a high opinion of weapons and that most of them have been used in combat many times, noting the technological development in the Russian defense industry.
“We are talking about high-precision weapons and robotics, combat systems based on new physical principles,” Putin said during his speech. “Many of them are years or even decades ahead of their foreign counterparts, and significantly superior in terms of tactical and technical characteristics.”
Putin’s remarks on Monday come as Russian forces have struggled to gain ground in Ukraine – facing severe losses not only of equipment but also of personnel.
The Pentagon estimates that Russian forces suffered at least 80,000 casualties and lost at least 4,000 armored vehicles. Under these circumstances, Putin’s army was forced to turn to old and obsolete weapon systems to fill the gaps in firepower and combat capability.
In late spring, heavy armor losses even forced Russia to pull obsolete T-62 tanks out of storage to replace more modern tanks that were destroyed or damaged in battle.
Ukraine and its Western allies said in late May that Russia had suffered a major blow to its tank force, forcing the military to unveil Soviet-era tanks that were first introduced in the 1960s and are less advanced than later Russian tank designs like the T-72 and T-80.
British intelligence said at a time when “T-62s will almost certainly be particularly vulnerable to anti-tank weapons and their presence on the battlefield highlights Russia’s dearth of modern, combat-ready equipment”.
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