January 12, 2023 -Durt Fibo


In September, Russia announced its first public military mobilization since WWII, with a goal of drafting over 300,000 men to fight in Ukraine. Now a surfeit of reports, including from Russia, has fairy conclusively established that Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu plans to win the war in Ukraine by increasing the total number of combat personnel from 1.15 million to 1.5 million.

Math is evidently no longer a required study among Russia’s General Staff; despite deaths, abductions and flights of refugees, Shoigu’s 1.5 million men will be entering a battleground populated by roughly 40 million very pissed off Ukrainians.

During these many months, as Russia bomb and retreats, Putin’s Great Russian appetite has been constantly ulcered by the malfunctions of his command structures, the corrosion of his arsenal, and the years of looting of his warehoused machinery. Now he will have to swallow -even more than before- a large part of his manpower in diseased and decaying conditions.

This is in accordance with what today has been loudly stated by Valentina Melnikova of the Union of the Committees of Soldiers’ Mothers, speaking publicly as well as to independent Russian news agencies such as SOTA and Agentsvo: that the medical regulations enshrined by the Defense Ministry itself are being ignored to the extent that seriously wounded Russian soldiers are simply sent back to the fronts in Ukraine. Melnikova has long fought for conscripts’ rights, and exposed their extortion by officers as far back as the two Chechen wars (eg, charging the soldiers for necessary gear and ammunition). Agentsvo [Агентство / Проект] which has been publishing investigative news since 2018, and SOTA, well-known for reporting anti-war actions within Russia, persecutions, and exposing the financial entanglements of the ruling echelon since 2015, have strong reputations for accuracy. Both are blacklisted by The Ministry of the Interior.

Still more of today’s revelations came from Russian conscripts themselves. While Prigozhin’s Wagner fighters are currently estimated to consist of up to 20,000 mercs and zeks, the Russian conscripts are generally used as first-line human shields, clearing worst grounds for the subsequent bravado of Prigozhin’s personal glory and asset-grabbing. In addition to the journalists’ and human rights groups’ (Melnikova Sergey Krivenko, Agora, et al) exposure of the recycling of the wounded directly back into battle, helpless conscripts have communicated to the outlets that they have been ‘assigned’ to regiments which do not exist -meaning their deaths will not exist on record. These ephemeral formations, such as the 228th regiment they’ve mentioned, are provided with minimal equipment to charge against Ukrainian artillery as vanguard sacrifices. Few of them had any training worth remembering. Putting the wounded and the unprepared together to create phantom contingents adds up to Shoigu’s new strategy of deploying suicide units.

It is worth noting that Russia’s military mobilization, ordered by Tzar Nicholoas the Last in 1914, set off the First World War, ruined the Russian army, and finally roused the Russian populace to revolt and overthrow the incompetent “Emperor and Autocrat of all the Russias.”