The government’s reluctance to declare a new call-up is understandable; it’s likely that the last order in September resulted in more Russians fleeing the country — as many as 700,000 according to some estimates — than the number that actually went to fight in Ukraine. The order also provoked some of the largest anti-war protests seen since the war began.
“During the mobilization, people could see firsthand that it was orchestrated so poorly,” Andrea Kendall-Taylor, a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security, told Grid. “It provided a moment in which the regime’s incompetence was exposed to Russians.”
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