Russian President Vladimir Putin holds an open lesson "Talking about important things", attended by the winners of Olympiads and competitions in the field of culture, art, science and sports among school students at the museum and theater-educational complex in Kaliningrad on September 1, 2022. (Photo by Alexey MAISHEV / SPUTNIK / AFP)

Just a few days ago, Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a decree ordering the expansion of the Russian army. How exactly the enlargement is to be carried out seems unclear to experts.

Russia has suffered numerous deaths and injuries in the Ukraine war and has been trying for months to increase its troops with recruiting campaigns. According to British intelligence, even the mercenaries of the Wagner group are now accepting rejected or criminal applicants. Russian nationalists had therefore recently called for general mobilization again.

The “New York Times” has now tried to find out why this has still not happened (source here). For example, the newspaper spoke by phone to a former separatist leader and pro-war man who calls it a “blatant injustice” that life in Moscow is going on the way it was before the war. While soldiers risked their lives at the front, many in the country lived “a perfectly relaxed life,” he complains.

The newspaper writes that experts say Putin is keen to maintain a sense of normality, also to prevent public backlash. For example, pro-Kremlin political analyst Sergei Markov told the New York Times: “One of Putin’s main philosophical paradigms from the moment he came to power was leave the people alone.”

He continues: “Ideally, they should be almost unaware of this particular military operation. It should not affect their lives in any way.”

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