MoD Defence intelligence update 15th January 2024


There is considerable evidence to back up that final bullet point from the MoD that "It is highly likely that Russian military recruitment to sustain the war has disproportionately drawn from impoverished and rural regional communities of Russia."

Four months ago Simon Whistler posted a powerful piece on YouTube,  "Counting The Dead: How Many Russians Have Really Died in Ukraine," which pulled together the evidence then available about how many people have really died on the Russian side because of Vladimir Putin's ambition.

Among other things Whistler concludes that it is people from the poorest regions of Russia and those from Russia's ethnic minorities are the most likely to sign up, often because they face crushing poverty and the regime offers enticing financial rewards for joining the armed forces.

He said that he did not expect, starting this video, to feel much sympathy for them, as they are taking part in a war designed to exterminate Ukraine's independence and culture and which has also exterminated far too many of Ukraine's people. But the war has also killed tens of thousands of Russia's young men who didn't want to fight but had little or no choice, to feed the insane ambition of one man.


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