Russia Is Bringing Out Special Troops For Defensive Operations

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Putin is replacing Wagner’s contractors with Chechen forces and penal battalions, Express reports. Wagner troops have bore the brunt of the casualties in the Bakhmut offensive, reaching levels unfathomable to modern NATO armies.

A special commission headed by Major General Oleg Polguev, the deputy chief of staff of the Russian occupation troops in Ukraine, has been set up by the military leadership of the Russian Federation to help with this.

The effectiveness of prisoners as fighting units is questionable. While some recruits are predisposed to violence from their civilian life, they also have a strong sense of self-preservation which can conflict with the current Russian Army doctrine.

According to Prigozhin, among those who returned home, 83 crimes were committed, which he claimed was significantly lower compared to the number of crimes committed by individuals released from prison during the same period without any involvement with Wagner.

Chechen under Kadyrov have proved to be some of Putin’s most stalwart allies. Prior to the Chechen wars of the 1990s, Kadyrov and his troops had opposed Russia’s troops. Now, his elite troops are some of the most prized in Russia’s internal security apparatus. While not trained for mechanized maneuver warfare, Kadyrov’s men show high levels of aggression and brutality to keep their enemies quiet.

Wagner chief, Prigozhin, casually remarked that he was unsure of what Chechnya’s special forces were doing in Ukraine – the implication being they were having an easy time of it, while his militia had borne the brunt of the fighting on the frontlines.

Russia and the Soviet Union have a long history of using penal troops. During World War II, penal battalions provided critical support in defensive operations against the Nazis. Using penal battalions also has the effect of reducing prison costs in the country with the second highest number of prisoners per-capita in the world.

The United States has also used prisoners . During the Civil War, some Confederate prisoners of war were offered a chance to switch sides and became known as “Galvanized Yankees.” In times of high recruitment demand, some defendants or prisoners have been offered the chance to enlist in exchange for their sentence. However, prisoners are not grouped in unit in the Russian style.

While the update reported that Ukraine was on the offensive in these areas and had “made small advances,” it said that Russian forces were conducting “relatively effective defensive operations” in Ukraine’s south.


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