Russian Mobilization Now Underway

The newest development in the Russia-Ukraine war has just appeared and it’s one that’s sure to have major shockwaves. On September 21, 2022, the Russian president Vladimir Putin announced partial mobilization. This comes after a series of Russian losses along the Ukranian border, with Ukraine recapturing swathes of land in its eastern Kharkiv region.

For the past two weeks, Russian troops have been facing losses across the crucial northeastern border. Up against an extremely successful counterattack, a partial mobilization was called, with Putin calling the move “necessary and urgent” in a televised speech. The mobilization called up 300,000 men (about half the population of Wyoming), mostly consisting of those with recent military experience. Many took this as a silent admission that the war against Ukraine had not been going as well as Putin had hoped.

But perhaps what is most notable is the backlash that this move has received from the Russian people. Mass anti-war protests have erupted all over the country, with over 1,000 arrests occurring. Waves of people who are trying to escape being drafted are fleeing the country by plane. US President Joe Biden led the condemnation of the Russian mobilization in the UN General Assembly, with his words being echoed by his allies. The German Chancellor calls Putin’s recent decisions “an act of desperation”. The head of NATO reassures that the mobilization won’t have an immediate effect on the battlefield, saying that the Russian troops are “ill-equipped” and “lack proper command and control”.

However, what Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy wants is for these words of condemnation to translate to additional arms being supplied to support the country’s war efforts. Since the beginning of the war, Ukraine has relied on its allies to provide it with many arms and ammunition to defend itself against the advances of Russia, a global superpower. Zelenskyy has also called for the United Nations to revoke Russia’s power at the Security Council, as well as asking allies to put more sanctions on Moscow.

What effects the new mobilization will have is something that is not at once clear. Ukraine and its allies insist that the results will be delayed, as it will take time to train these new troops. However, the mobilization will answer one of Russia’s biggest military issues- its lack of manpower. And that’s something that is sure to influence the grand scheme of the war.