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The Russian military has lost so many tanks since Feb. 24, 2022 that it is apparently calling up ancient armored vehicles to make up for its current battlefield losses, according to findings of the Tbilisi-based open-source Conflict Intelligence Team.
The research group reported on March 22 that Russian forces transported a train loaded with T-54/55 tanks from Primorsky Krai towards western Russia, and social media sources speculated that Russian forces might deploy them to Ukraine, the Institute for the Study of War said in its latest update.
According to Oryx, another open-source intelligence organization documenting Russian losses in Ukraine, the Russian military has seen somewhere around 1,871 tanks destroyed, damaged, abandoned, or captured in the year since the initial invasion.
The ISW said that Russian armored vehicle losses are "currently constraining" the Russian military’s ability to conduct effective mechanized maneuver warfare, and Russian forces may be deploying T-54/55 tanks from storage to Ukraine to prepare for anticipated mechanized Ukrainian counteroffensives.
"The deployment of inferior equipment to replenish the Russian military's ability to conduct mechanized maneuver warfare may prompt a further degradation of Russian manpower in Ukraine," according to ISW.