Desperate Russian conscripts come up with a new battle strategy to pretend to be dead

The military call-up announced by Russian President Vladimir Putin sent hordes of fearful military-age men to the border, but even they failed to realize the true horror of what those unfortunate enough to be mobilized and sent to the front lines in Ukraine face to face.

Reports of conscripted Russians being sent into combat with grossly inadequate training and “barely usable” equipment have abounded for weeks, but a new report suggests recruits are pretending to be dead in the heat of battle to save her own life.

Independent Russian outlet Novaya Gazeta Europa spoke to the wives of three men who were mobilized into Moscow’s 423rd Guards Motor Rifle Regiment in late September. The women, whose names have been changed, said their husbands are now being court-martialled for leaving the front lines after being placed in a living nightmare in Ukraine last month.

The men’s training reportedly consisted of little more than digging trenches at a camp in the forests of Belgorod Oblast in Russia before being transferred to Ukraine’s Luhansk region just two weeks later on October 14. According to reports, the recruits were commandeered by two other mobilized men, neither of whom had combat experience. After their deployment, members of the troops did not hear from them until October 26, when the men desperately begged their wives for help.

A wife of a 24-year-old recruit said her husband’s company was shelled by artillery for 12 hours, with one of the commanders “torn to pieces”. The surviving commander ordered a retreat – only for higher military authorities to order them back to the front lines. “After refusing to return, they were offered new equipment, bulletproof vests, helmets or a court-martial,” said the woman, referred to as “Irina.”

She added that her husband is now hiding in an abandoned house along with 26 other survivors from his company. “Their bank cards are blocked, they are without a living, without money, without food, without water,” said Irina. “My husband told me he hasn’t eaten in several days and we don’t know what to do about it.”

Another woman, “Ekaterina,” said her 27-year-old husband was similarly trained only in digging trenches. He is said to have been sent to a sector of the front in Ukraine where 76 men were killed by shelling about two weeks before his arrival.

On October 25, says Ekaterina, her husband and his comrades themselves came under fire. “For many hours they just lay on the ground, pretending to be dead for one simple reason: they had no weapons other than machine guns,” Ekaterina said. “And there were mortars against them, drones flying over them, if they even lifted a finger, a drone would fly in and destroy them immediately.”

Reports of the appalling state of the Kremlin’s mobilized forces come after Moscow propagandists encouraged citizens to die a horrible death for Putin rather than face defeat in the war. Desperate Russian conscripts come up with a new battle strategy to pretend to be dead

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