Russian soldier shows ‘terrible’ camp condition, says half of men sick

A video shared on social media on Sunday is said to show the “grim” conditions faced by newly conscripted Russian soldiers.

The video was shared on Twitter on Sunday afternoon by Julia Davis, founder of media surveillance group Russian Media Monitor. In it, an unidentified man who was recently drafted into the Russian military claims to have faced extremely poor conditions in a camp where theft and disease are rampant.

“Meanwhile in Russia: Check out how the newly mobilized recruits are being treated,” Davis wrote alongside the video. “An unnamed man complains that his shoes, money and mattress have been stolen. He says that’s the way it is. Everyone got sick because they hardly heat the tents.

About two and a half hours after it was posted, the clip had garnered nearly 80,000 views.

In the clip, which runs for 90 seconds, the unseen and unnamed soldier offers a first-person view of the camp he was sent to and appears outside wearing only socks.

“I don’t have tennis shoes or tactical boots,” says the soldier at the beginning of the clip. “Everyone here is from Khanty-Mansiysk. All our boys, we find our own ways.

Russian soldiers video in terrible conditions
Above a representative picture of Russian soldiers. A video shared on Sunday is said to show the “horrific” conditions at a camp for recently conscripted Russian men.
Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Khanty-Maniysk is a city in west-central Russia and the administrative center of the Khanty-Maniysk Okrug Autonomous Region. It lies on the banks of the Ob and Irtysh rivers.

The soldier finally enters a tent, which he calls his quarters, along with several other men. He finds that while the tent is large enough to accommodate several people, it only has one stove to provide warmth.

“It didn’t help,” says the soldier about the stove. “You can hear how hoarse my voice is, it’s horrible. Half the boys caught cold.”

The man goes on to claim that mattresses were stolen from his tent and describes theft as the only “way to survive here”. Even stoves could be taken away from the tent, he explained. His personal items such as sneakers and money were also stolen. Despite this allegedly rampant theft, supervisors seem uninterested in helping.

“Like the deputy told me, ‘Am I your mom or your dad? Find out for yourself,’” the man continued.

Reports of disorder and chaos in the ranks of the military have been rife in Russia since President Vladimir Putin ordered a partial mobilization in support of efforts in Ukraine, the country’s first since World War II. Not long after the mobilization began, a video allegedly showing drunken soldiers asleep while being taken to the front lines surfaced on the internet. Another video shared by CNN showed soldiers complaining about their lack of training before being sent into combat.

news week turned to Russian officials for comment. Russian soldier shows ‘terrible’ camp condition, says half of men sick

Rick Schindler

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