Feigin says he believes that mobilisation was a spontaneous decision and not a planned one, also notes that Russia has not declared war, just mobilised. Also says that this may have taken place as a result of conversations Putin had at the Shanghai summit. Feigin says that the referendums and mobilisation may be a way to pressure the west into making Ukraine negotiate. Arestovich says this plan, if there is one, has already failed because Ukraine will fight no matter what. No one got scared, and everyone in Ukraine is laughing.
The mobilisation is not partial, it is only partial in the name. 300k is just a number. There is no real limit to how many will be called up. The Russian casualties are at around 150k, so they want to replace this twice because they have already written off the first 150k.
General Hodges: Putin’s speech was based largely on his points, “the general can be proud”. Feigin notes that the Russians do not realise just how hawkish some American politicians are.
Shoygu casualties claim: Arestovich says that he is simply framing Russian casualties as Ukrainian, therefore there are 61k killed Russians and around 100k wounded.
The situation on the front
Arestovich says that another theory for why mobilisation took place is that the Russians assessed Ukrainian offensive capabilities and their defensive, and came to the conclusion that they might not withstand another Kharkhiv-style operation. They are now attempting to stop military advances using referendums, and then use this to invoke nuclear threats.
Arestovich is sure that sanctions and weapons shipments will be increased due to these referendums. Regardless of if these measures succeed, these measures will take place because mobilisation and the referendums are a double escalation. Putin said that Russia is fighting the “collective west” and this gives the west an excuse to respond. Arestovich also says that some restrictions such as hitting Russian territory may be lifted.
Russia still imports explosives and this is allowed to continue for some unknown reason. There are many such cases that if they will be properly cut off, the Russian war effort is doomed. The Yermak-McFaul group is continuing its work. Sanctions are still not sufficient, but this is being worked on.
UN general assembly
Lavrov was let in in order to communicate to Russia the repercussions of their actions such as hosting referendums. They are being warned, but Arestovich believes that Putin will not back down. Biden said that the list of permanent members of the security council should be expanded.
Arestovich says that Lukashenko will continue to go in circles and not take a firm position. He will carry out mobilisation exercises but will not join the war until the last possible moment. Lukashenko also does not want to be an ally of a country that used nuclear weapons. This escalation of the war is actually reducing the Chances of Belarus entering the war. Russia does not have anything that it can use to force Belarus into the war.
Russia has training facilities for 60k-90k troop training max, and only for extremely short periods of training. The first wave of soldiers will be used to replenish depleted formations. These reinforced formations may cause problems for Ukraine if there are still professional troops at their core. It isn’t known what Russia will do with the second wave. However, Russia does not have the resources to create new large-scale military units. Some may be deployed to Belarus but a new attack on Kyiv is highly unlikely. They may also be used on the Donetsk or Zaporizhzhya fronts on the attack or the Kherson front on the defense. The Russians want to defend Luhansk oblast and attack Donetsk, Zaporizhzhya, and Kherson oblasts to facilitate referendums. We will see how mobilisation proceeds.
Arestovich says Russian weapons storage are depleted by around 70%. There is also a lack of junior commanders and problems in logistics. Arestovich says that around 60k can realistically be equipped.
Arestovich describes what he believes to be a possible scenario. The Russians will reinforce the formations they have, return formations that are not on the front line, and give them directives to take Donetsk and defend Kherson oblasts, possible small-scale attacks in Zaporizhzhia and defense in Luhansk. Possible counteroffensive in Kharkiv across the border. Possible attacks to push the Ukrainians back across the Oskil river. The Russians could not even fully equip the 15k of the 3rd army corps. Arestovich says that this may all attempt to ensure negotiations with Ukraine, as Feigin said earlier.
People are fleeing Russia, having encountered the realities of war for the first time. The Russian system is not managing its current objectives, and yet are deciding to undertake far more difficult tasks.
There are protests in Moscow and St Petersburg. Arestovich addresses the Russian mobilised men and says that the best way for them to stay alive is to stay in Russia. The chances of surviving modern war are extremely slim, a 155mm shell does not care about training or motivation. 85% of casualties in this war occur due to artillery. At least 50% of Russian soldiers sent to Ukraine will die.
The way to collapse the Russian system and hinder mobilisation is mass protests. Arestovich also calls for mutinies of Russian units. Russia and the whole world will stand behind the first regiment to mutiny. The government cannot mobilise and give weapons to a protesting mass.