Day 315 of the Invasion of Ukraine: Expectations of New Russian Mobilization

World » UKRAINE | January 4, 2023, Wednesday // 10:34
Bulgaria: Day 315 of the Invasion of Ukraine: Expectations of New Russian Mobilization

Here are the highlights of events related to the war in Ukraine over the past 24 hours:

"France will answer for this!" An angry Rogozin sent the French embassy a letter and a piece of shrapnel that wounded him

The former head of Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin, sent an angry letter to the French embassy in Moscow, accompanied by a shell fragment, and threatened the French with bear responsibility for the attack in Donetsk in which he was injured, NEXTA reported. Rogozin was struck while celebrating his birthday, and according to various sources, Ukrainian shrapnel hit him in the head, back and "south of the back" in the buttocks. The letter does not make it clear from which part of Rogozin's body geography the piece of metal was removed. The fault of the French lies in this: the attack was carried out with a French-made Caesar howitzer.

The letter, distributed by NEXTA, is addressed to Paris's ambassador to Russia, Pierre Levy, and begins in a diplomatic tone, recalling Rogozin and Levy's joint walks on Borodino Field and Baikonur. After that, the tone cools down and the author of the correspondence talks about the deplorable position of France and NATO in "cultivating a military threat along the Russian borders", which led to a tragic outcome (the war in Ukraine).

Rogozin slams France, declaring: "Official Paris has betrayed the cause of the great De Gaulle and has become one of the most bloodthirsty states in Europe." The wounded author mentions, however, that Paris did all this by "obeying the dictates of Washington and becoming a puppet state" with a Vichy-type government (a pro-German puppet government in Vichy during World War II).

In the third paragraph, the former deputy prime minister of Russia recounts the substance of his complaint and describes how, as a result of a "vile terrorist act in Donetsk," he was seriously injured and only thanks to the "great skill and patience of Russian military and civilian doctors" was alive again and almost healthy. "In this envelope, along with my letter, you see a fragment of a shell fired by a French 155 mm self-propelled artillery gun 'Caesar.' It pierced my right shoulder and lodged in the fifth cervical vertebra just millimeters from killing me or immobilizing me. This shell fired from a French howitzer killed two of my friends and left their wives widows and their children orphans," Rozogin touches on these facts and tells the ambassador that "these guys" accompanied them on the trip to Baikonur. “You've been shaking their hands. Now they are killed with a weapon delivered to Ukraine by your country," wrote the Russian, whose pain in his back and buttocks is nothing compared to the pain in his soul from being wounded precisely by a French weapon.

I hope you understand the extent of your personal responsibility for these murders. You are the ambassador extraordinary and plenipotentiary of the Fifth Republic, you will be responsible," says Rogozin and demands that the ambassador hand over the piece of French shrapnel to President Emmanuel Macron with a warning that he will not avoid responsibility for war crimes, and the victims will also be on his conscience, as well as the existence of fascist Ukraine on the map of Europe. Finally, the former head of Roscosmos, who is currently barred from any public office, tells Ambassador Levy that with all due respect to him, his mission in Russia is over.

The air trembles: Russia is preparing a new missile attack, it may strike during Orthodox Christmas

Russian troops are preparing for another massive missile attack against Ukraine, possibly on January 6-7. This was announced by the spokeswoman of the Operational Command "South" of VSU, Nataliya Gumenyuk, on the air of the national television marathon broadcast on all channels.

Ukraine's military leadership is calling on all citizens to be especially careful on Orthodox holidays and to respond to air-raid warning signals. Orthodox Christians in Ukraine traditionally celebrate Christmas Eve on January 6, and Christmas on January 7.

"We understand and, after analyzing, we expect that this (air strike) may be around Orthodox Christmas," Gumenyuk suggested.

At the same time, as Vadim Skibitsky, a representative of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, noted earlier, the invaders take into account not only the calendar and holidays, but also the weather and other factors when preparing for shelling. At the moment, according to him, the weather favors Russia's use of high-precision weapons.

Ukrainian intelligence has detected activity between Russian airfields that indicates base-to-base training flights in preparation for an attack. The Russians are probably waiting for new munitions to be produced for the attacks.

Since December 29, Russia has launched several large missile strikes as well as combined missile launches with Iranian drone launches at night to inflict as much damage as possible on the energy system and wear down air defenses. Military experts admit that Ukraine shoots down cheap Iranian "air bikes" with much more expensive missiles. Taking down an Iranian drone costs 7 times more than launching it.

The UNIAN agency reported that the Russian aircraft for radar detection and control has arrived in Belarus - the Beriev A-50U flying radar, which is used to guide missiles, which has proven itself during the hostilities in Syria and is considered one of the the most reliable components of the air defense system and aviation with the ability to track air targets at a distance of 650 kilometers and ground targets with a range of up to 300 kilometers. At the same time, the A-50U can monitor about 300 ground and 40 air targets at the same time.

According to the "Belarusian Hajun" telegram channel, the flying radar landed at Machulishchi airport at 21:25 on January 3. The last time this machine was in Belarus was on February 24, the day Russia invaded Ukraine. On December 30, another Il-76 A-50U "Sergei Atayants" airborne radar, which had been in Belarus since December 14, returned from Machulishchi.

The Russians killed in Makiivka are now 89. Russia accused the soldiers who used mobile phones

89 Russian servicemen were killed in the New Year's missile attack by the Armed Forces of Ukraine in Makiivka. The main reason for the attack was the unauthorized use of mobile phones by soldiers, said the Russian Ministry of Defense, the BBC reported.

"This factor allowed the enemy to locate and determine the coordinates of the location of military personnel to launch a missile strike," said Lieutenant General Sergey Sevryukov of the Main Military-Political Directorate of the Russian Armed Forces.

According to him, immediately after the attack, the command and officers of the military unit, junior commanders and servicemen from other units took all possible measures to save the injured. The strike was carried out after Ukrainian forces intercepted mobile phone conversations of Russian soldiers who had arrived in Makiivka.

During the clearing of the debris, however, the number of dead rose to 89 people, said Lieutenant General Sevryukov. According to the Ministry of Defense, the deputy commander of the regiment was among the dead.

"It is already obvious that the main reason for what happened was the inclusion and mass use by the personnel, despite the ban, of mobile phones in the area of the range of enemy weapons", said Sevryukov and added that measures are being taken to prevent such tragedies in the future.

Sergey Sevryukov also said that a commission is investigating the circumstances surrounding the case and based on the results of the investigation, those responsible for what happened will be held accountable.

Captain HIMARS: “Russian soldier, give us the coordinates of the headquarters and equipment, come home alive

The command of the Ukrainian army recorded a video address to the Russian soldiers fighting in Ukraine on behalf of "Captain HIMARS". The footage emerged after the tragic attack on a Russian army base in Makiivka at 00:00 on New Year's Day, when between 89 and 400 Russian servicemen were killed, according to conflicting figures from both sides. The strike was from HIMARS salvo fire system with six missiles of which two were intercepted by the Russians and four reached their target.

Russian soldier, my name is Captain HIMARS. I'm giving you a chance to come home alive. Give me the coordinates of the places where the armored vehicles are located, where the headquarters and ammunition are located, and I will not hit the places where the manpower is deployed. I will destroy only the tanks, artillery, shells and fuel. Then no one will send you to attack as cannon fodder. That's how you save your life and the lives of your friends," the recording reads.

VSU arranged unforgettable New Year's fireworks of the Russian command in the zero minute of the New Year by striking with HIMARS on a school where 600 personnel and ammunition were deployed.

Late on Tuesday, the Russian Defense Ministry officially acknowledged 89 people had been killed in the Ukrainian New Year's attack and said the Russian military had destroyed four HIMARS systems in return fire. Thus, the total number of destroyed HIMARS, according to Moscow, reached 27 out of 20 delivered.

The Institute for the Study of War: Prigogine tries to blame Wagner's failure in Bakhmut to Shoigu

The owner of the private military company Wagner, Yevgeny Prigozhin, is trying to shift the blame for the failures of Russia's Bakhmut offensive to the Russian Defense Ministry and Sergei Shoigu, analysts at the Washington-based Institute for the Study of War (ISW) say in their latest report.

The institute's analysts write that Yevgeny Prigozhin, who had taken over the Bakhmut region as his own area of responsibility, tried to justify the lack of progress of his private company in the combat zone, thereby confirming earlier ISW assessments, that the Russian forces at Bakhmut had reached the peak of their capabilities.

ISW draws attention to the fact that in an interview with one of the Russian propaganda media on December 31, Prigozhin said that the "Wagnerites" could not break through the Ukrainian defenses in Bakhmut. He explains that offensive operations are very exhausting since every house in the city is a "fortress". Prigozhin also says that the Ukrainians have defensive lines in Bakhmut every 10 meters and therefore the Russian troops have to clear building after building.

"This is an important turn for Prigozhin, and he for the first time presents PMC Wagner as unsuccessful in Bakhmut. In October, Prigozhin stated that the Wagnerites operating in the Bakhmut area were advancing 100-200 meters per day. His company carried out purely information operations, claiming to have achieved success in Bakhmut without the help of other Russian forces," the ISW report said.

Analysts believe that Prigozhin is most likely creating information conditions to shift the responsibility for the failures of the "Wagnerites" in Bakhmut to the Russian Ministry of Defense or the Russian defense industry.

"Wagner's mercenaries told Prigozhin that they were unable to break through the Ukrainian positions at Bakhmut due to an insufficient amount of armored vehicles, ammunition and 100 mm shells. This statement is intended to remove personal responsibility from PMC Wagner and Prigozhin, attributing their inability to take Bakhmut to the broader problems of the distribution of Russian resources," the institute noted.

On New Year's Eve, the creator of PMC "Wagner", also called "Putin's Chhef", personally arrived in the Artyomovsk region, as the Russians call Bakhmut, and got acquainted with the situation with the losses in the ranks of his fighters, including Russian prisoners. In a video circulated on social networks, Prigozhin, together with representatives of the PMC, inspects the "Wagner" base, where the black sacks with corpses, called "Gruz 200" (Cargo 200) in Russian army jargon, are stored. "Their contract is over, they're going home in a week," the Chef nods at the sacks of corpses stacked on a man-sized chamber. According to Ukrainian sources, 70 mercenaries from Prigozhin's army were killed in an attack on Wagner on New Year's Eve. In the video, the owner of the company explains to someone, possibly accompanying journalists, that their deaths were heroic.

A second mobilization? "Soldiers’ Widows of Russia" support

Only two months after the end of the partial mobilization in Russia, in which up to 300,000 reservists were sent to the front, there was renewed talk of the need to refresh the fighting ranks.

And the appeals come not from anyone, but from "Soldiers' Widows of Russia" - a Telegram account whose administrators insist that the men who are on the run should sacrifice themselves for their country.

"We are the soldiers’ widows of Russia. We are the ones who did not hide their husbands behind their skirts. We are the ones who are ready for anything in the name of our great Victory," begins an appeal on the social network with the title "SOLDIERS’ WIDOWS OF RUSSIA - FOR MOBILIZATION!"

In case you didn't understand, "today all the evil of the world has united against Russia, the whole Western world has taken up arms against us".

Therefore, for the "widows" there can be no choice - "Either us - or them".

"And we ask our President Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin to allow the Russian army to conduct a large-scale mobilization to match the situation that is developing on our borders. There are tens of millions of men of military age in Russia - there is someone to rely on and with whom to meet the enemy. But what can our men who are sitting at home, without skillful command, supply, and uniforms? Mobilization—that is the way to be saved."

Who should Putin look for inspiration from?

From Stalin, of course.

"Now is not the time for cowardice, now is not the time for bargaining - when Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin issued Order No. 227 ‘On measures to strengthen discipline and order in the Red Army and prohibit arbitrary withdrawal from combat positions’, which we remember as the order ‘Not a step back’, then he did not think about his ratings and the dissatisfaction of the ‘dissidents’ - he thought only about Victory".

The message ends with an emphatic call for a new mobilization.

"We are asking our president, our commander-in-chief, to ban men of military age from leaving Russia. We have every moral right to demand it: our husbands also died protecting these men, but who will protect us if they escape?

Military widows of Russia - for a great mobilization! Russia - for mobilization! This is our request, our decision, our request. And we believe that the authorities will hear us!


The identity or number of "soldiers’ widows" is a complete mystery. In early December, Putin held a meeting supposedly with widows of fallen occupiers, but they later turned out to be actresses. At the same time, "France 24" published the stories of relatives of killed soldiers who were not allowed in the Kremlin.

Therefore, with relatively high confidence, we can assume that "Soldiers’ Widows" is another example of Kremlin’s propaganda machine.

And according to Zelensky, mobilization is imminent

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his evening address that Russia was preparing "new mobilization processes" and called on the West to strengthen Ukrainian defense. In his words, Kyiv has "no doubt" that "Russia's current masters are throwing everything they have and anyone they can catch to try to turn the tide of the war and postpone their defeat."

Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov also spoke about a new mobilization wave prepared by Moscow, according to whom residents have "about a week" to avoid mobilization.

Three months after mobilizing more than 300,000 people for the war, Putin said there would be no need for a new wave, although the decision late last year to increase the size of the Russian army raised the question of how the personnel will be replenished - the spring and autumn appeal are not enough.

Formally, the mobilization, which began with Putin's decree of September 21, did not end with another decree - the Kremlin, after a short hesitation, declared that one was not necessary. Some Western experts expect a new mobilization in the spring.

Putin demands war films in cinemas

Russian President Vladimir Putin has tasked the country's culture ministry with ensuring the broadcast of documentaries dedicated to the war and "the fight against the spread of neo-Nazi and neo-fascist ideology."

This was stated in a message on the Kremlin website after a meeting of the head of state with mothers of military personnel.

In addition to ensuring the screening of films dedicated to the "special military operation" (the war, as Russia calls it), a festival of patriotic documentary cinema will also have to be organized. The Ministry of Defense will have to provide assistance to those who wish to create such production for the war.

Specific proposals must be prepared by February 1. Another of Putin's orders is to create "public spaces, art sites and school museums" for those involved in the war. The ministries of culture and education will also have to conduct lessons on this topic.

Russia has already introduced lessons about the war in upper secondary schools as part of a new curriculum that also includes basic military training.

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