BBC/Mediazona Figures Over Time

BBC Russia, working with Mediazona, have since early in this conflict kept a count by name of the number people reported killed from multiple sources in Russia. Don’t know how accurate the list is, but I gather everyone they list did die in Ukraine. It may not have been a combat loss. They are also probably some who died in Ukraine who are not listed. Whether the number not listed is a significant additional amount is not known. Nor is it known if there are more people have died who are not listed then those who are listed. Not sure how I would estimate that. 

Still, it is the only listing of Russian dead over time other than the weekly DPR reports (which I may blog about later). 

Anyhow, there is a chart in this link of the people killed over time: Russia’s losses in the war with Ukraine. Summary of “Mediazona”

I have not figured out how to capture it and publish it directly to this blog, but the chart I am looking at is halfway down the page called “Losses of the Russian army in the weeks of the war.” It does give casualties for each week, but only counts a total of 13,019 deaths (out of 18,024 deaths as of 24 March). This is because in a large number of cases, the exact date of death is not known.

The first week of the war is 514 deaths. The second week is 574, the third week is 437. It then drops noticeably in the fourth week to 248, then up to 333, then down to 183. This brings us into early April (up to 6 April), when Russian had withdrawn from most of northern and northeastern Ukraine. It is a total of 2,289 deaths in the first six weeks of the war. Actual losses were probably higher.

On 2 March, Russia published a casualty report saying their losses were 498 troops killed and 1,587 wounded since 24 February. As can been seen from the Mediazona report, there were at least 514 deaths in the first week of the war. 

On 25 March Russia reported 1,351 killed and 3,825 wounded. BBC/Mediazona reported less at the time, with 557 confirmed deaths as of 21 March. From the current Mediazona chart, it appears the killed are 514 + 574 + 437 + 248 = 1,773.

The only other Russian report of losses was on 21 September, when they reported 5,937 killed. At that time BBC/Mediazona were reporting 6,476 killed as of 15 September from their counting efforts. Counting from this chart shows up through 21 September: 1,773 + 333 + 183 + 143 + 197 + 287 + 226 + 275 + 184 + 313 + 244 + 178 + 157 + 175 + 206 + 200 + 193 + 167 + 114 + 85 + 128 + 166 + 118 + 179 + 284 + 197 + 197 = 6,902.

Not sure what conclusions I should draw from this.

As can be seen by this chart, Russian losses were fairly high in September and October, running between 197 and 314 a week, and were again fairly high in December 2022 through early February 2023, running from 227 to 220 a week. They have since declined. 

 

Also see: Casualty Estimates for the Russo-Ukrainian War | Mystics & Statistics (dupuyinstitute.org)

This entry was posted in Casualty estimation, Eastern Europe, Russia by Christopher A. Lawrence. Bookmark the permalink.

About Christopher A. Lawrence

Christopher A. Lawrence is a professional historian and military analyst. He is the Executive Director and President of The Dupuy Institute, an organization dedicated to scholarly research and objective analysis of historical data related to armed conflict and the resolution of armed conflict. The Dupuy Institute provides independent, historically-based analyses of lessons learned from modern military experience. Mr. Lawrence was the program manager for the Ardennes Campaign Simulation Data Base, the Kursk Data Base, the Modern Insurgency Spread Sheets and for a number of other smaller combat data bases. He has participated in casualty estimation studies (including estimates for Bosnia and Iraq) and studies of air campaign modeling, enemy prisoner of war capture rates, medium weight armor, urban warfare, situational awareness, counterinsurgency and other subjects for the U.S. Army, the Defense Department, the Joint Staff and the U.S. Air Force. He has also directed a number of studies related to the military impact of banning antipersonnel mines for the Joint Staff, Los Alamos National Laboratories and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation. His published works include papers and monographs for the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation, in addition to over 40 articles written for limited-distribution newsletters and over 60 analytical reports prepared for the Defense Department. He is the author of Kursk: The Battle of Prokhorovka (Aberdeen Books, Sheridan, CO., 2015), America’s Modern Wars: Understanding Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam (Casemate Publishers, Philadelphia & Oxford, 2015), War by Numbers: Understanding Conventional Combat (Potomac Books, Lincoln, NE., 2017) and The Battle of Prokhorovka (Stackpole Books, Guilford, CT., 2019) Mr. Lawrence lives in northern Virginia, near Washington, D.C., with his wife and son.

16 thoughts on “BBC/Mediazona Figures Over Time

  1. This information is commonly seized by the pro-RU side as proof of limited RU casualties, while the reality is that these are only the proven names of the dead, and casualties are likely much higher (as it says in the article).

    I wonder if we will ever know the actual casualty # ?

  2. Of course we will find out the actual number of victims. We finally learned the combat losses of the Red Army in the war of 1941-1945 in 1993 in the book of Krivosheev) we just have to wait. maybe not 50 years, but much earlier.

  3. By the way, the Mediazone constantly repeats that the number of real victims is at least 2 times greater than a count by name of the number people reported killed from multiple sources in Russia.

  4. “We think that our list contains 50% fewer names than the actual number of soldiers that have been buried in Russia”

    Yeah that’s a confusing statement 🙂

  5. Let’s say
    “actual number of soldiers that have been buried in Russia”=100
    “50% fewer names”=50
    It does appear that she meant that the real number is x2, but a clarification would be nice.

  6. Hernan: Yes, they have not responded yet, and not sure they will. They probably don’t have a clear answer. But, by counting all dead in the military at the time of the war, you are certainly going to count more than just the combat casualties. Probably won’t be able to sort out the “DNBI” from the combat casualties. So their count is an undercount but also a little bit of an overcount.

    • Let’s hope that at least they learned something from your tweets.
      Perhaps one could come up with some sort of rule of thumb to calculate those DNBI casualties? I’m guessing that they are not easily extrapolated from examples of different countries…

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