Russia’s partial mobilization decision: ‘Putin raises his hand in dangerous game’

9 hours ago

Steve Rosenberg | BBC Russia Editor, Moscow

Source, Reuters

Before the invasion, Russian leader Vladimir Putin said that he had no plans to invade Ukraine.

He also said that he had no plans to declare mobilization after the occupation. But yesterday he declared partial mobilization.

Whenever Putin has to make a choice, he always uses the ‘climb’ option.

A few months ago, I heard the phrase “deviated from the main road” for Putin.

In his final address to the nation, he did not extend an olive branch to Kiev, and did not use any conciliatory expressions against the United States or NATO.

His speech was full of expressions of anger and threats targeting the West and Ukraine.

This is Putin’s invasion. This is Putin’s war with the West.

And it is deeply immersed in the war. But he seems determined to pull a victory out of here.

Against Ukraine and against the West altogether. Even if that requires some threat of nuclear war and hundreds of thousands of Russian reserves.

It is often said that Vladimir Putin is a political poker player. He raised his hand in this dangerous game with the decision of mobilization yesterday.

But this is a gamble. Mobilization, albeit partial, was a step Putin had so far avoided.

Perhaps this is because he fears that the Russians are not very willing to fight.

Putin told his people it would be a “special military operation”.

Source, EPA

Why mobilization if not war?

Well, if this is not war, why is mobilization declared?

The problem for Putin is that from the start the invasion of Ukraine did not go as planned.

The Ukrainian army, supported by the weapons of the West, put up a much greater resistance than the Kremlin had expected. The Russian army was in trouble and recently lost some of the lands it had previously captured.

The Kremlin decided that more troops were needed at the front, and as a result partial mobilization was declared.

So how did the Russians react to this development?

A youth named Sergei said, “I’m afraid this is just the beginning. I worry that full mobilization will follow.”

Margarita said, “If our leaders want it, it’s our duty to do it. I trust Putin one hundred percent. We are a great force,” she says.

Now there are two difficulties. One for Putin and the other for the West.

Vladimir Putin’s challenge is to convince the public that the West planned to declare war on Russia (which it wasn’t) and intended to destroy Russia (which it didn’t).

If Putin fails to do so, he will have a hard time convincing the public of the necessity of mobilization.

The West’s challenge is dealing with a Russian leader who has made it clear that he can use nuclear weapons to avoid defeat.

The article is in Turkish

Tags: Russias partial mobilization decision Putin raises hand dangerous game

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