Expert: Effects of Russian mobilization would reach Ukraine next year

Rainer Saks.
Rainer Saks. Source: ERR

The effect of the partial mobilization declared by Russia on Wednesday would not affect the situation on Ukrainian fronts before the start of next year, security expert Rainer Saks offers, adding that Russia is not prepared to carry out a mobilization quickly.

"This mobilization could have an effect on the course of the war starting in the first months of next year, or when a year will pass from its beginning. It will not bring quick relief on the front [for Russia]," Saks told ERR on Wednesday.

"It is bound to take a long time and constitutes a major challenge for the Russian state apparatus," he added. "From what I've gathered, they are short on specialists whose training takes longer. You cannot mobilize pilots in this manner, while you can pull tankers, artillery and radio specialists from the reserve and have them undergo follow-up training," Saks said. "They will also be mobilizing additional basic infantry units as voluntary recruitment really isn't working anymore – their training could be faster," he offered.

Extent of mobilization reflects losses

Pointing to Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu's words according to which Russia wants to mobilize another 300,000 soldiers, Saks said it is indicative of Russia's losses in the Ukraine war.

"Let us recall that the Russian army, with the exception of conscripts, was said to number 260,000 before the war. This tells us of the extent of Russia's losses so far."

"The Russian side's losses continue to be considerable, and they are preoccupied with holding on to territory they've seized. Recent Ukrainian offensives have caused a slight panic among Russia's leaders. The losses are too great, and the other half of President Putin's message about referendums and annexation of conquered territories is meant to put psychological pressure on the West – to stop supplying Ukraine with arms in recent volume," Saks suggested.

The Kremlin taking a major risk

Saks also said that mobilization constitutes a massive risk for the Russian leadership. "Should this undertaking fail, it could have disastrous consequences for Russia's leaders."

The analyst also pointed to the package of amendments being aimed at not declaring a state of law, which the administration still very much fears doing.

"But the greatest mistake is trying to make it look like the special operation is going well and how the Ukrainian army is all but destroyed. This kind of blatant lying completely fails to serve the intended purpose of galvanizing the Russian society to fight this war in the long term," Saks said.


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Editor: Marcus Turovski

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