On Friday, Ukrainian officials said that a seventh Russian general had died in the war that began on Feb. 24.
The slain commander was identified as Lt. Gen. Yakov Vladimirovich Rezantsev of the 49th Combined Arms Army of the Southern Military District of Russia.
⚡️Another Russian general killed in Ukraine.
Yakov Ryezantsev was killed in Chornobaivka, a site of intense fighting just north of Kherson, according to Oleksiy Arestovych, advisor to the head of Ukraine’s presidential office. pic.twitter.com/V9BNrmg08M
— The Kyiv Independent (@KyivIndependent) March 25, 2022
Meanwhile, Russia has confirmed the death of just one general, Maj. Gen. Andrei Sukhovetsky. The local Russian government in the port of Novorossiysk said on its website that Sukhovetsky had previously served in Syria, the North Caucasus, and Abkhazia.
High Death Rate Among Russian Command Staff
Russia clearly has underestimated Ukraine’s resolve to defend its homeland and the quality of that country’s military defenses.
According to Foreign Policy, “The tally of Russian generals killed in the nearly monthlong conflict — most of them one- and two-star commanders, including at least one lieutenant general — is likely the highest death rate among general officers in the Russian military since World War II.”
Placing Russian military leaders in harm’s way, multiple sources say, are continual communications failures.
“They’re struggling on the front line to get their orders through,” a European diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss recent battlefield intelligence, told Foreign Policy. “They’re having to go to the front line to make things happen, which is putting them at much greater risk than you would normally see.”
Russian Generals Forced to Front Lines
A lack of discipline among Russia’s conscripted soldiers and that country’s top-down military leadership structure also are forcing generals to lead from the front lines.