After Russia launched its special military operation in Ukraine, there was a lot of speculation about the outcome of the armed conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
Military experts are also particularly interested in how long the Ukrainian army can confront Russia? Before the conflict occurred, the British newspaper Skynews reported that if comparing the current Russian-Ukrainian military, the two sides were still far apart: “Russia has an almost five-to-one advantage in conventional military power over Ukraine.”
According to reports, the total standing army of the Russian army amounted to 900,000, far exceeding the 196,000 of the Ukrainian army. This disparity is most evident in the fact that Russia’s navy is 10 times larger than Ukraine’s, with 74 warships and 51 submarines, while Ukraine has only two slightly larger warships.
Russia’s equipment advantage is obvious. The number of Russian artillery is 5,934 guns, three times more than Ukraine’s; the number of tanks is 13,367, six times more than Ukraine; armored vehicles is 19,783 units, almost seven times more than Ukraine.
Comparing the air force, the situation is not much different. Russia has 10 times more warplanes and helicopters than Ukraine. In terms of long-range strike firepower, Russia has a clear advantage with more than 500 ballistic missile launchers.
According to a report published by the American research organization “Atlantic Council”, Ukraine’s military has been rebuilt after the conflict with Russia in 2014 and is trying to move closer to NATO standards and eliminate corruption in the military. According to the report, the Ukrainian military, although it has achieved some positive results, still has many problems. For example, officers at all levels have outdated views of modern warfare and most officers and non-commissioned officers have very limited English proficiency, difficulty in handling documents and communication with NATO forces.
Regarding weapons and equipment, the Ukrainian army cannot have enough new weapons and equipment to replace old weapons from the Soviet era. Worse, Ukraine’s existing defense production capacity cannot be guaranteed. The reason is that more than 20 defense industry companies including ammunition factories, mainly located in eastern Ukraine where separatist forces are located. Ukraine lost most of its defense industrial production capacity in the 2014 conflict.
Although the West has recently been actively supplying Ukraine with various weapons, these are generally only individual combat weapons and have a very limited role in stopping Russia’s massive armored force. In addition, advanced self-propelled artillery, tanks and other heavy weapons require long-term specialized training to promote effective combat power, so they are really a difficult problem for the Ukrainian army.