Russian soldier shares exactly what's going wrong with Russian army

Claire Reid

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Russian soldier shares exactly what's going wrong with Russian army

Featured Image Credit: East2West

A Russian soldier has written a book in which he shares what he believes to the failings inside Vladmir Putin’s army. 

Paratrooper Pavel Filatiev, 33, has gone into detail about the army’s shortcomings, including poorly fitting uniforms and rusting weaponry. 

Filatiev was part of Putin’s army when they invaded Ukraine earlier this year, but quit on medical grounds. 

Now, in extracts from his shocking book - titled ZOV after the symbols painted on Putin's military vehicles - shared by independent media outlets iStories and Meduza, Filatiev said: “We had no moral right to attack another country, especially the people closest to us. 

“When all of this started, I knew few people who believed in Nazis and, moreover, [who] wanted to fight against Ukraine. 

“We didn’t have hatred and we didn’t think of Ukrainians as enemies.

Pavel Filatiev. Credit: East2West
Pavel Filatiev. Credit: East2West

“Most of the army is dissatisfied with what is happening there. 

“[They’re] dissatisfied with the government and their commander, with Putin and his policies, [and] with the defence minister, who [has not served] in the army.”

Filatiev said he first became aware of how under-prepared his country was when he was given an ill-fitting, second-hand coat, that he refused to accept. 

He said training for the war led to many servicemen getting sick because they did not have the proper uniform - claiming ‘30 servicemen’ had to be admitted to a special unit for infectious diseases. 

He went on: “In mid-February, my company was at a training ground in Staryi Krym. I realised that something was definitely brewing — everyone who had been discharged or fallen ill was rounded up and sent to the training ground.

Credit: East2West
Credit: East2West

"Over the next few days we went to the firing range, where I finally picked up my machine gun. 

“It turned out that my machine gun had a broken belt and was just rusty. 

“On the very first night of shooting, the [cartridge] jammed.”

He also claimed the start of the war was chaotic and his own commander didn’t even know what he was supposed to be doing. 

“Where we were going and why wasn’t clear. [But] it was clear that a real war had begun. I [later] found out that [we had] orders to go to Kherson,” he wrote. 

“It became clear that we had attacked Ukraine. We already had wounded and dead [servicemen].

“The command had no communications. The commander didn’t understand what was happening.”

Once there, Filatiev said it became apparent that all of the training had been ‘on paper’, adding: “We still have the same tactics as our grandfathers."

Credit: East2West
Credit: East2West

Elsewhere in the book, Filatiev claims medics were sent out without syringes or painkillers. 

The paratrooper said: “I had to get treatment and buy medicines with my own money.

“For two months I tried to get treatment from the army: I went to the prosecutor’s office, I went to the command, to the head of the hospital, and I wrote to the president.

“I decided to go through the military-medical board and leave [the army] for health reasons.”

If you would like to donate to the Red Cross Emergency Appeal, which will help provide food, medicines and basic medical supplies, shelter and water to those in Ukraine, click here for more information 

Topics: News, Russia, Ukraine

Claire Reid
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