Discover more from Geopolitics And Climate Change
Ukraine: A Country Of Old And Damaged Men
Between the economic emigration of previous decades, the more recent conflict driven emigration and the populations now within the control of Russia, the Ukrainian government-controlled population of Ukraine is probably down to about 20 million people. This population will be heavily skewed toward the older generations and the less able and the less skilled as the young, able and skilled are much more mobile and ready to leave for better things. A further factor that will affect the average age of the remaining population is the crash in live births in the early 1990s, following Ukrainian independence. This has resulted in the 18-30 population being much smaller than it would otherwise have been. The demographic impact of this extreme drop in live births can be seen below (from Wikipedia):
The above graph is based on an assumed population of 40 million, so we need to halve the population numbers with that halving falling much more on to the 18-30 segment. So instead of about 500,000 males aged 21-25, we can assume at best 200,000, for 26-30 instead of about 750,000 at best 300,000. Including 18-20 year-olds, probably at best about 600,000 prime military age 18-30 year olds. Up to now that has been further limited by those in reserved occupations and those with enough resources and/or luck to be successfully dodging the draft; the latter factor probably becoming greater as the mass graves continued to grow at a fast rate and the reality of the front-line filtered back to the civilian population. This is why the Russian army is increasingly seeing Ukrainian men in their 40s, 50s and even 60s at the front line.
I am an extremely healthy and fit 60-year old male, probably at least a standard-deviation off the mean, but I cannot envisage myself performing anywhere near the level of a twenty-something under the rigours of the front-line. The average man in their 50s or 60s, or even their 40s, will perform far lower than a man in their 20s; younger men are just incredibly more physically resilient. In addition, new troops being sent to the front seem to have very little actual real training and apart from a few select battalions are very badly equipped. The cream of the Ukrainian military has already been very significantly annihilated.
A conservative estimate of Ukrainian losses since the start of the conflict would probably be in the region of 1,000 per day confirmed dead, irretrievably wounded, missing probably dead and taken prisoner. That’s 30,000 a month, over a period of 19 months: 570,000, a conservative estimate. That’s very close to the probable number of prime age 18-30 year-old males available (although of course many of the losses would have been of older individuals).
Ukraine has now announced a new “full” mobilization which is planned to conscript up to 500,000 more during the next 6 months, which will most probably need to include many in reserved occupations. Let’s remember that those selected will be skewed toward the able-bodied population, so the age group 18-50 will be heavily denuded of its remaining able bodied members. Ukraine will be moving to the British WW2 “Rosie the Riveter” model, but with the speed of such mobilization a significant decrease in remaining economic output can be expected. In addition, even those that survive the intense combat experiences of this conflict without disabling physical injuries may be very significantly psychologically scarred.
The possibility of Ukraine being able to conscript these 500,000 is highly questionable given the level of knowledge now of the realities of the front-line among the general population; an escalation in civil unrest can be expected. Even if Ukraine could conscript this many, it does not have the equipment and time available to even adequately train and equip them at a time when the readiness of the West to pour more resources into the conflict is rapidly declining. The newly conscripted will provide only new cannon fodder, with the level of Ukrainian losses probably rapidly escalating. A trend exacerbated by the Ukraine government’s continued attempts at frontal assaults on well dug in Russian troops that are backed up by air, drone, artillery and mechanized vehicle superiority. As the Military Summary channel details, the level of Ukrainian losses has kept escalating as more and more troops are thrown against the Russian defences with the remaining Ukrainian reserves being utilized.
Facing them will be a core of many hundreds of thousands of war-experienced and well-equipped Russian troops, together with hundreds of thousands more that have undergone many months of training in addition to their prior compulsory military service. The Ukrainian army is quite probably within 6-12 months of total exhaustion and collapse, if even Ukrainian society maintains some level of stability for that long. It is in the interests of Russia to fight a war of attrition (with losses running up to 10 to 1 in its favour) until the moment of collapse arrives, as any campaign launched after that time will be many times easier and produce much lower levels of Russian losses. The other possibility is that individual Ukrainian senior officers, or groups of them, may see what is coming and start to defect to the Russians and/or plan the overthrow of Zelensky and his Western handlers. The next 6-12 months promise to be much more fluid than the previous period.
The sad end result may be a much-diminished Ukrainian population with very few able-bodied skilled men in their prime years of life (18-50) left, with many of the remaining able-bodied psychologically scarred; a nation of old and damaged men. As the Russian victory becomes obvious, the hard-core Banderist areas in the North West of Ukraine will probably undergo another surge of emigration; reducing the population even more. The fallback option in the case of such a Russian victory for the Western elites will be to destroy as much of Ukraine, including its remaining population, as possible; delivering a somewhat Pyrrhic victory, while killing and maiming as many Russians as possible. Unfortunately, the Western elites may mostly get their way for their fallback plan, apart from the masses of Russian military dead and injured that is one of their main objectives.
The populations of the Baltic States, the Taiwanese, the Finns and the Poles should take note before they are set up as the next sacrificial lambs by the Western elites.