An uncertain future awaits Russian soldiers on the front line in Ukraine.
Jenny WagnerNews editor
For about a month, women’s protests against the war have been growing in Russia. The mothers and wives of Russian soldiers drafted by Putin, 70, for his war of aggression in Ukraine are demanding answers from the Kremlin.
Answers that Putin is missing. He did not expect so many people to die in the war. Citizen resentment is growing, especially among desperate parents whose sons died in the war.
To reassure the worried mothers, the war chief held a meeting with mothers of Russian soldiers on Friday. In it, among other things, he said he shared his “pain”. But: women are not mothers of soldiers, but civil servants loyal to the government.
They are asking Putin for help
Mothers and wives of real soldiers are now standing up for their husbands. They protest in the streets and post critical video messages on Telegram and the Russian network “VKontakte”.
A woman from eastern Moscow explains that Putin and Defense Minister Shoigu, 67, have promised to send only experienced soldiers to the front. “Our soldiers”, on the other hand, landed directly at the front, unprepared, unarmed, without food and warm clothing, “will do».
Women demand that inexperienced men be excluded from the front line. Another woman said her son was being treated at the hospital after being injured by a piece of shrapnel on his head. However, he should return to the front as soon as his health permits. Despite the censorship, the calls spread like wildfire.
“They are not professional players,” the woman from Volgorod says in the video. “Make it clear. We know only you can help us,” the woman in the video said, speaking directly to Putin — just days before Putin met with the “mothers.”
Olga Sukhanova is the founder of the Russian organization “Council of Mothers and Wives» and became the face of women’s protests on social media. “Vladimir Vladimirovich, are you a man or what?” he asked in a video. It takes courage to be so critical of the regime in public. Sheer desperation drives wives and mothers to take this step. Because it is now clear what the circumstances are ahead. Conscripts are sent into battle without equipment and ammunition.
Fear of “awkward questions”.
There was no sign of the protesting mothers at Putin’s staged event – many of whom were still in Moscow, protesting in front of government buildings. “Do you dare to meet us mothers and wives?” Sukhanova asks. ‘Not with the women of your choice, but the ones in your pocket. But real mothers come from all over the country in their own way,” she adds. But Sukhanova is adamant that they were not invited to the meeting with Putin for fear of “embarrassing questions”.
Women from the “Council of Mothers and Wives” already met in Moscow on Wednesday for a press conference and invited representatives of the Russian Defense and Interior Ministries. But no representatives came.