The author of this article is a resident of east-Ukrainian Makiivka, the satellite city of regional capital Donetsk. Maintaining anonymity due to safety risks, he publishes insider reports and reflections on Twitter, mostly on the issues of the local economy and situation in general, under the pseudonym “Iosif Pinochet.”
Having access to the occupation force’s military sources, he states that “DNR” wouldn’t fling the forcefully conscripted locals into battle, because in case of a new hot phase in the Donbas war, the occupation authorities count on Russian regular forces to step in again as they did before.
Earlier “Iosif Pinochet” was an initiator of a journalist investigation which found that Russia supplied ammunition and fuel to the occupied part of Donetsk Oblast by rail in January 2015 amid the Battle of Debaltseve. He had also investigated the schemes of coal supplies from the occupied territories to free Ukraine.[/editorial]
The preparations for mobilization of the population under occupation kicked off back in November 2021 with preparing lists of inhabitants and putting together the military registration cards. The process was slow and dragged on for a long time. The next inspection in the 1AK (“the first army corps” – Donetsk-based army under the Russian control, – Ed.) revealed a complete failure in implementing all the prescriptions, and many heads came off.
At the same time, the accumulation of military materiel and POL (petroleum, oils, and lubricants) began using the railway and roads. Everything was carried out as secretly as possible so as not to attract attention.
As early as mid-January, a large number of the measures and the frequency of the drills unequivocally hinted at preparing for something serious, but what exactly? Even [“DNR head”] Pushilin doesn’t know an answer to this question – you can have no doubts about it. An order is to be relayed at the very last moment for the sake of surprise.
Video from occupied Luhansk showing the “LNR military commandant’s officers” taking men off the street and forcibly putting them on buses allegedly for forced conscription:
⚡️В Луганске военная комендатура забирает мужчин с улицы и насильно сажает в автобусы
План выполняет по отлову? pic.twitter.com/A44tPO9g28
— hochu dodomu v UA (@hochu_dodomu) February 20, 2022
Last Friday, 11 February, my sources in the 1AK made it clear that the mobilization wasn’t fiction, a mobilization order had already been written and the process of issuing draft notices was underway. Roughly by 11 February, everything was ready, the only obstacle was serving the military draft notices – as banal as it is, there simply were no people to do serve them.
In such conditions, their decision was to engage city administration employees, medical personnel, and teachers in the distribution of the notices.
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The population was faced with the fact of mobilization in a typically Russian manner – at the very last moment. Of course, for the most part, no one is going to go to the military recruitment office. Those who serve the draft notices are sabotaging the whole process – there are few people willing to fight for who knows what. The mobilization will fail.
To summarize, it should be noted that the rear part of the 1AK is completely unprepared to put 50,000 soldiers and officers under arms. It’s just a cover-up operation and sowing panic among the civilian population under occupation. In case of a hot phase of the war, the regular troops of the Russian Federation’s Armed Forces will go to war again (the Russian regular troops were actively engaged in military operations against Ukraine in the Donbas during the hottest periods of the war, in summer 2014 and winter 2014-2015, – Ed.).[editorial]
“As I wrote, the mobilization has died, they begin letting people go home and wait,” Iosif Pinochet told Euromaidan Press.
Nevertheless, earlier today an anonymous IDP from Donetsk, who’s been monitoring the local sources since 2014, wrote a warning on Twitter, saying that the occupation authorities started raiding separate neighborhoods in Donetsk for forced conscription:
“Now they are blocking the Shyrokyi [settlement]. What they do is block the entrance to a staircase and [check] the apartments, [taking] men to the military draft office, [saying] ‘we will figure it out there.'”
This may mean that the occupation authorities could have now focused their efforts on searching separate neighborhoods, rather than all over the entire occupied territory at once.[/editorial]
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