Russian troops stationed in Ukraine are refusing to obey orders and essential supplies, including food and fuel, are running out, intercepted radio messages suggest.
- SEE MORE Why didn’t Russia’s superior air force manage to conquer the skies over Ukraine?
- SEE MORE Why Vladimir Putin is losing the propaganda war in Ukraine
- SEE MORE Did Russia Commit War Crimes in Ukraine?
The leaked audio, obtained by London-based intelligence agency ShadowBreak Intl, “sheds light on the force’s confusion over engaging targets in civilian areas and expresses stress and frustration at the lack of supplies.” The Telegraph reported. In one clip, a soldier can apparently be heard crying.
Similar claims that Russian troops are going nuts have been reported by The New York Times (NYT), which said that some units “surrendered en masse or sabotaged their own vehicles to avoid fighting,” according to a Pentagon source.
“War Crimes Evidence”
The leaked radio messages suggest that parts of the Russian military stationed in Ukraine are completely “relying on cell phones and analog walkie-talkies” for battlefield communications, “making them vulnerable to interception by radio enthusiasts,” reported The Telegraph .
Ukrainian intelligence officials “had no problem jamming their communications,” which they “often interrupt with recordings of the Ukrainian national anthem.”
ShadowBreak founder Samuel Cardillo told the newspaper: “What we found is that the Russian agents are operating in complete confusion. They have no idea where they are going and how to really properly communicate with each other.”
Tapping on their radio frequencies was “basically like tapping on a police frequency in the US,” said Cardillo, who claimed to have done so heard “evidence of war crimes”including orders to launch ballistic missiles at civilian areas.
“There were phases when we listened [Russian soldiers] Crying in battle, a time they insulted each other – obviously not a sign of great morality,” he added.
“There was one case where they shot at each other, there was one case where they had to transport bodies back to their forward bases of operations. Often you don’t hear them at their highest level of happiness.”
The NYT has reported claims by an unnamed senior Pentagon official that “entire Russian units laid down their arms without a fight afterwards Confrontation with a surprisingly strong Ukrainian defense“.
A “significant number” of Russian troops are young conscripts who are “ill-trained and ill-prepared” for the invasion.
Some “deliberately punched holes in the fuel tanks of their vehicles, presumably to avoid fighting,” the newspaper said.
The Economist’s defense editor, Shashank Joshi tweeted that a US Department of Defense source had corroborated the self-sabotage allegation, telling him, “I can say with certainty that this is happening.”
Ukraine’s ambassador to the United Nations has painted a similar picture, revealing the content of texts a Russian soldier allegedly sent to his mother shortly before his death.
The unnamed soldier said Russian troops would “shoot at anyone, including civilians” and that he wanted to “hang himself,” Ambassador Sergiy Kyslytsya told a United Nations special session on Moscow’s aggression on Monday.
“There is a real war going on here,” the soldier wrote. “They told us the Ukrainians would greet us peacefully, but they throw themselves under our machinery and won’t let us pass. They call us fascists mom.”
The NYT suggested that the combination of low morale and logistical problems “could help explain why Russian forces, including an ominous 40-mile convoy of tanks and armored vehicles near Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital, almost died.” came creeping”.
The Pentagon source reportedly told the newspaper that the Russian commanders leading the column may also be “regrouping and reconsidering” before making a new push to capture the city.
“Accumulating evidence” from messages sent to Russia from the front lines “suggests that the Kremlin had persuaded Russian troops that they would face little resistance in Ukraine and would instead be treated as heroes of the conquest.” , said The Telegraph.
Russian state media “denied invasion plans Ukraine before Thursday’s all-out attack,” but had also indicated that Ukrainians were “so deeply dissatisfied with their government that they would welcome Russian soldiers.”
But “the opposite turns out to be the case,” the newspaper continued, with the Ukrainian military putting up a fierce resistance and releasing “countless videos” in which “captured Russian troops claim they had no idea they were going to the neighboring country.” would be sent”.
With young soldiers already “abandoning their gear, deserting and showing other signs of overexertion, an urgent attempt to further erode Russian morale could throw Vladimir Putin’s faltering military into utter confusion,” he said forbes Defense writer Craig Hooper.
Putin “kept the average Russian soldier in the dark about the invasion of Ukraine,” and they “know nothing about the war they’re fighting,” he wrote. They are now “vulnerable to suggestion,” so “a massive, uncompromising effort to train and further demoralize Russian soldiers” would “probably pay off enormously.”
Mujtaba Rahman, Managing Director for Europe at Eurasia Group’s political risk consultancy, tweeted Among the ideas discussed in Brussels earlier this week was “offering asylum and refugee status to soldiers who wish to desert the Russian army – to incentivize defection – as long as they have not committed war crimes”.
There are undoubtedly “signs of poor morale in some units,” he said the economist Footage circulating online shows “at least one column of tanks hurrying backwards after being confronted by unarmed civilians.”
But “the bulk of the Russian forces” is approaching Kyiv”.
“The The concerns of the Russian war machine are great and real,” the newspaper continued. The more important question, however, is whether they are also “temporary”.
“Missiles and cluster munitions have begun targeting residential areas” and “Images show bodies littering the streets,” suggesting a significant number of troops are still following orders, no matter how “grim” the outcome.
https://www.theweek.co.uk/news/world-news/russia/955950/is-russia-military-falling-apart-ukraine Is Russia’s military falling apart in Ukraine?