Russian Colonel-General Andrei Kartapolov admitted in a recent appearance on Russian state television that the Kremlin’s military in Ukraine is facing a grim situation.
Kartapolov’s admission comes more than seven months after Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine on February 24. Kremlin officials initially hoped for a quick defeat against their Eastern European neighbors. However, the “military special operation” revealed several weaknesses in their military, including challenges in recruiting and maintaining motivated troops, and leadership issues.
These weaknesses, coupled with Kiev’s stronger-than-expected response and Western military aid, have allowed Ukraine to launch its own counter-offensives in recent weeks to retake Russian-held territory. Ukraine has said it has reclaimed thousands of square miles of land in eastern Ukraine near Kharkiv – inflicting a massive loss on Moscow that has forced Putin to order a partial mobilization of troops.
Kartapolov, also chairman of the Duma Defense Committee, admitted that Russia faced several challenges in Ukraine during the TV appearance covered by journalist Julia Davis, founder of Russian Media Monitor and columnist for The Daily Beast.
“The lying has to stop,” he said.
He slammed the Defense Ministry for not commenting on Russia’s fighting in Ukraine – including the fact that Ukraine is now “on our soil”. He added that the Russian people learn about Ukrainian successes “through the Telegram channels, our war correspondents and from no one else.” He warned that officials who are not honest about the situation in Ukraine “could lead to a loss of confidence”.
“Our people are not stupid, far from it,” he said. “They see that they are being disregarded – that they are being told not even the whole truth, but even part of the truth.”
Kartapolov said that Russia calling for more troops for service in Ukraine will make no difference as long as they struggle to “supply and equip” troops who are already fighting.
His comments appeared to be related to Putin’s partial mobilization ordered in September, which could see 300,000 reservists sent to Ukraine’s front lines. The order has caused hundreds of thousands of Russians to flee the country to avoid conscription, and experts have suggested it may not solve all of Russia’s problems in Ukraine.
Kartapolov said Russia’s “main problem” is the lack of intelligence – and not the troop issue.
“Not the armed forces, but the reconnaissance means that could allow us to fully uncover enemy objects. There are many objects, they exist, but each object requires power and a certain amount and type of ammunition. Maybe there’s ‘ Today they are not enough to complete all the tasks,’ he said.
Hosts and guests of Russian state television have defended Putin’s war and often parroted Kremlin talks. They have also adopted firmly anti-West and anti-NATO rhetoric, sometimes even issuing nuclear threats, as tensions between Russia and the West remain tense.
Michael McFaul, former US Ambassador to Russia, responded to the clip on Twitter on Saturday, tweeting: “Wow. There is no better proof that Russia is losing its war in Ukraine than this.”
news week has asked the Russian Defense Ministry for comment.
https://www.newsweek.com/russian-general-admits-dire-reality-putins-war-lying-has-stop-1750127 Russian General Admits Dire Reality of Putin’s War: ‘The Lying Must Stop’