Life is cheap in Russia

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


Wars cost lives. Life is invaluable, because once taken, a person is gone forever. But in autocracies dictators like to cheapen human life. They maintain such a low and precarious standard of living for most that people almost readily accept paltry payouts for deaths of their male relatives mobilized for wars of conquest. In the empire, which Russia is, blood money varies widely, depending on a region and whether a person is an ethnic Russian or not. Yet, it is a negligible cost of Moscow’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine. After all, a single middling Russian missile Iskander costs $3 million per unit. Under the current system of payouts for Russian troops lost in action, a single Iskander rocket equates to the lives of 263 dead Russian soldiers. Quite a deal.
Original languageEnglish
Specialist publicationУкраїна Модерна (Ukraina Moderna)
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2023


  • Ukraine
  • Russian war
  • Human rights
  • Casualties
  • Economy of death
  • Pricing casualties
  • Russia
  • Russian neoimperialism


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