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Oct 14 18 tweets 4 min read
1/ What's life like for newly-mobilised Russian troops in their barracks and temporary accomodation? Terrible, from all accounts, with no heating, no food, no sleeping bags, no hot water, no toilets, freezing tents, bedbug-infested mattresses and no training. 🧵 follows.
2/ The independent Russian media outlet Verstka reports on the experiences of mobilised men from Ufa and Chelyabinsk, two major cities in west-central Russia. The family of one mobilised man named Semyon spent about 40,000 rubles ($625) to equip him for the war.
3/ Semyon and others from the region were sent to a training centre in Elani near Yekaterinburg. To his shock, there were not enough beds and no food at all. He told his family that the only food the mobilised men had was what they had brought with them.
4/ Those with more food were sharing with the hungry. "For two days no dry rations were given, not even a piece of bread each. It doesn't make sense," Semyon said. They were subsequently taken to Rostov, where there was still no food.
5/ The men were told they would not be getting any training and would be sent straight to Luhansk in Ukraine. Semyon asked his superiors for tactical gloves and a hunting knife. The knives given to the soldiers turned out to be blunt.
6/ Two days later they were taken to Luhansk, where again there was no food. Semyon contacted his relatives to ask them to send him 4,000 rubles ($63) to buy food for himself.
7/ Another soldier ended up in another military camp near the village of Popovka in Saratov region. On the first day, all the mobilised men were made to stand for several hours on the parade ground in the pouring rain while the commanders decided what to do with them.
8/ The wet soldiers were assigned to barracks, but there were no stoves so the men could not dry their clothes and walked around in wet clothes. There were no showers, baths or hot water either. The barracks toilets also did not work.
9/ Sleeping bags were not provided and the men slept on old, dirty mattresses infested with bedbugs.
10/ At another mobilisation camp at Dubki in Saratov region, the men were at least given three meals a day on most days. The exception was on days when the new soldiers were being assigned to their units. On such days they stand for many hours on the parade ground and skip lunch.
11/ According to one soldier from Ufa in Bashkortostan, commanders were only interested in three military specialities – likely indicative of where the Russian army is facing manpower shortages – sappers, signallers and gunners.
12/ The mobilised men reportedly sleep on mattresses in their outer clothing, as no one was given sleeping bags. Thirty people are housed in each room. There are no showers, baths or hot water, so the men wash themselves with cold water.
13/ In another mobilisation camp in Tatarstan, the men say they are living outdoors in large army tents. They were not given sleeping bags or mattresses. The men heat a small potbelly stove and sleep in outerwear on the wooden floor.
14/ Very similar conditions are visible in this video from a mobilisation camp in Yugra, near Omsk. The narrator says that they have been given nothing, including uniforms and mattresses, so they are having to steal from others to survive.
16/ The men are receiving little or no training. Semyon from Chelyabinsk was sent immediately to Luhansk without any training. Maria from Ufa says that her husband's group "are just wasting time. They walk around the territory of the unit, rest. They didn't get any guidance."
17/ The men say they are in the dark about their future. A group from Bashkortostan was given assault rifles but not taught how to use them, and they do not know when or whether they will be trained: "No one explains anything to them", says the wife of one.
18/ One wife posted a complaint on the social media page of the head of Bashkortostan, Radiy Khabirov, that the men were being treated badly. She was told that she was “whining” and “crying”. The authorities say the mobilised are "provided with everything necessary".
19/ (And remember, all of this is likely to be far better than what they'll experience in the trenches in the Ukrainian winter.)


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More from @ChrisO_wiki

Oct 16
1/ The Russian Baza Telegram channel reports another example of how mobilisation is affecting Russia's economy: it's ruining the market for Moscow's established strippers, while the partners of mobilised men are taking up stripping to make ends meet. Translation follows: Image
2/ "Against the backdrop of mobilisation, attendance at strip clubs in the capital has plummeted significantly. Men have become much less likely to go there.
3/ After the mobilisation was announced, Moscow's strip clubs saw a severe drop in customers, and because of this, they have already started to see a noticeable drop in revenues, representatives of several venues in the capital told Baza.
Read 8 tweets
Oct 15
1/ A group of relatives of mobilised men from Fokino in Bryansk oblast have published a video appealing to Vladimir Putin to bring their men back from Ukraine. They say the men have been sent to war with no training and have been robbed of their uniforms by NCOs. 🧵 follows.
2/ The relatives say that "our guys are being thrown onto the front line unprepared ... without military training". The men were robbed by their NCOs, who "take everything away from them, [even] their uniforms, everything".
3/ They say that the men signed up to defend Bryansk, not go to the front. They complain there was no medical commission (=examination) prior to deployment and no proper training. The mothers have been getting calls for help from their sons.
Read 6 tweets
Oct 15
1/ The #Blyatskrieg continues: newly mobilised Russian troops have spent two days waiting outside the gates of a mobilisation base in Maikop because someone screwed up their paperwork. Transcript follows (h/t @wartranslated):
2/ "14 October, blyat, of 2022. This is how spending their time for two days now are the mobilised from Anapa and Krasnodar Krai in general. Basically, they screwed up the paperwork so much that not one unit is accepting us.
3/ I'll talk about Anapa specifically, which representative sent us to the distribution point in Krasnodar. They didn't put any necessary stamps that would lead us to be sent to the unit in Sevastopol. So we were brought to Maikop.
Read 5 tweets
Oct 15
1/ The Russian Telegram channel 'Cheka-OGPU' has posted a detailed account of the recruitment by the Wagner Group of 200 prisoners from the Rostov region and their subsequent massacre by the Ukrainians in their first combat engagement. Translation follows: ⬇️ Image
2/ [Posted on 13 September 2022]

A source told the Cheka-OGPU [Telegram channel] about the recruitment of prisoners for PMCs [Private Military Companies] in a high-security colony in one of the border regions.
3/ "We were told about the visit of the so-called 'musicians' [i.e. Wagner] the day before. The [guard] shift on duty was not let out of the zone [prison complex], the head of the colony was in charge out of schedule.
Read 28 tweets
Oct 14
1/ Mobilisation in Russia isn't bad for everyone. The Baza Telegram channel has identified one group that is making a good profit from the current situation: fortune-tellers. Translation follows. ⬇️
2/ "Because of the mobilisation, men are turning en masse to tarot readers and numerologists. But soothsayers refuse to look into their future so as not to "take the sin".

Over the past three weeks, men have begun to turn to tarot readers and numerologists more frequently.
3/ Basically, they are interested in their future in the context of mobilization and military operations - with the help of cards and numbers, potential conscripts want to know if they will return home alive, for example.
Read 5 tweets
Oct 14
1/ Armenia's State Revenue Committee (=customs service) has published an annotated video compilation showing the passage through Armenia of the cargo that reportedly exploded on the Kerch Bridge to Crimea on 8 October. Translation follows. ⬇️…
2/ According to the Russians and the Armenians, the cargo – which comprised 22 tons of ABS plastic (and likely a concealed bomb) – was driven through Georgia to Yerevan, Armenia, and back through Georgia to the Russian border. (See thread below.)
3/ The cargo was transported through Georgia, Armenia and southern Russia in a DAF truck driven by an Armenian citizen, Artur Terjanyan. It was transferred to a different truck in Russia and subsequently exploded on the bridge.

The newly published video shows:
Read 15 tweets

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