WWNC – One of the tens of thousands of Russians who have been enlisted since last month to hold the frontlines in their nation’s waning war in Ukraine is a lawyer from St. Petersburg named Andrei Nikiforov.
His call-up papers arrived on September 25. He passed away on October 7, just two weeks later. The leader of the Nevsky Collegium of Lawyers, of which Nikiforov was a member, Alexander Zelensky, declared, “We don’t know what happened. His call-up and passing were confirmed by Zelensky and a relative of Nikiforov. Only a location and a date are available.
One of the most hazardous locations close to the frontlines was Lysychansk. The first coffins carrying the remains of common Russians who were first promised a fast “special military operation” but were instead conscripted to fight in a war are already making their way back to Russia from Ukraine. Their demise could signal another turning point for Russia in this conflict, where poor leadership has sparked Kremlin factionalism and at least 500,000 men have been drafted or fled their homes to avoid it.
After Vladimir Putin announced the mobilization on September 21, the newly minted soldiers passed away just a few weeks later. Five mobilized soldiers from a single military commissariat died, according to an announcement made on Thursday by the Chelyabinsk region. According to reports on Saturday, the Krasnoyarsk region alone had claimed four more lives. Some of the dead men’s families claimed that two months of training had been promised before they were deployed to the front lines.
According to BBC Russian, 14 more people have already passed away before they arrived at the front due to conditions like suicide, heart attacks, conflicts, and other unexplained illnesses.
In contrast, Nikiforov performed the role that the Kremlin required of him: he was obedient, capable, and willing. He was not surprised to be called up because he was a military veteran who had served in Chechnya.
Zelensky stated, “He didn’t hesitate,” and added that military recruiters had sent his call-up paperwork to his house. “He made no attempt to avoid performing his duties. He assembled his belongings and left. His actions were brave.
However, the suddenness with which deaths have occurred—some just days after soldiers have been enlisted—has angered many at home.
The Moscow authorities mobilized Alexei Martynov, 28, on September 23, according to his father. On October 10, his death was confirmed. On October 13, he said, “My son has died, what am I for?”. He told the Observer, “We don’t know anything beyond what was placed on the internet.
Two months after finishing his necessary service, Martynov was captured in old photos from Victory Day in 2016 wearing an army uniform. He was a member of the Semyonovsky regiment, whose primary duties are ceremonial, according to Natalya Loseva, the deputy editorial director of the RT television network.
Martynov became the most well-known victim of the wave of mobilization last week when Loseva, in a furious tweet, claimed that Martynov “had no combat experience.” “Within a short period of time, he was ordered to the front. On October 10, he valiantly passed away.
According to Roman Super, a Russian journalist who has written about the resentment of government workers, Martynov’s passing had sparked a backlash among the educated classes of municipal workers.
Leaders in the armed forces, this is not the time to lie, stated Loseva. You don’t have the right to lie, and doing so is now illegal.
Anger at Russia’s military leadership had caused significant internal strife in the Russian government, with an uprising led by Ramzan Kadyrov, the head of Chechnya, and Yevgeny Prigozhin, the founder of the Wagner private military company, naming specific commanders by name for their failure to stop the Ukrainian advance.