Statistics on how many Russians died in World War Two vary widely. Some sources say that the Soviet Union had over 20,000,000 casualties, both military personnel and civilians, but these figures are under dispute. During Soviet rule, all information regarding casualties was kept secret, making it hard to find the records today. The Russian Academy of Sciences calculated a total of 26.6 million for the total population, while the Russian Ministry of Defense released figures suggesting military losses of 8.7 million. This figure however conflicts with that of the Central Defense Ministry Archive, which published about 14 million military men's names. Other historians and researchers recon that the total amount of Soviet people who died during WW2 is closer to 40 million.
This article is part of our larger educational resource on World War Two. For a comprehensive list of World War 2 facts, including the primary actors in the war, causes, a comprehensive timeline, and bibliography, click here.