“Report: Russian Army Facing ‘Increasingly Severe’ Manpower Shortages”

“Wagner Group, a Kremlin-linked Russian private military company, has been conducting a campaign to recruit Russian convicts for service in Ukraine. Prisoners have been offered commutation of their sentences, “as well as cash incentives.”

There’s a BBC-verified video of Wagner owner Yevgeny Prigozhin making a recruiting pitch to prisoners. Prigozhin emphasized he’s seeking “fighters for assault units.”

Russian military academies are shortening the graduation timelines of cadets so they’ll be ready for battle in Ukraine at an earlier juncture.

Russia’s manpower challenge has become “increasingly severe.” The acceleration of the cadet officers’ training, and Wagner’s demand for assault troops, suggest “two of the most critical shortages within the military manning crisis are probably combat infantry and junior commanders.””

Comment: Butcher’s meat. pl

Report: Russian Army Facing ‘Increasingly Severe’ Manpower Shortages | Newsmax.com

This entry was posted in Russia, The Military Art, Ukraine Crisis. Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to “Report: Russian Army Facing ‘Increasingly Severe’ Manpower Shortages”

  1. Sam says:

    KHERSON/2355 UTC 16 SEP/ With the recent destruction of three Russian Su-25 ground attack aircraft, and the interdiction of an Su-24 fighter bomber, UKR has demonstrated the lethality of its resurgent air defense network.This has allowed UKR to increase close air support sorties.


    This seems to be a point not extensively covered – the inability of the Russian military to achieve air superiority. It appears the Ukrainian military continues to fly their limited number of aircraft and drones. This was also seen in the Kharkiv offensive.

  2. Fourth and Long says:

    Very carnivorous. A troll who likes to criticize the Russians on Quora said that the young inexperienced troops they use as fodder are derogatorily called their word for Cucumbers. Either way, not nice. Maybe Prigozhin is carrying a hidden message. No we have no draft. But we can ——-son you for chewing gum on the wrong molar, and then ..

    On a boring note – the word is that their collapse of the SU military and the cutbacks and reforms later somehow forgot to include keeping their once extensive recruitment apparatus in prime functioning concussion. And they went from 2 yrs to 1 for draftees.

  3. Sam says:

    Putin’s “all volunteer”army is shrinking; in the low-income non-Russian peripheries that supplied most contract soldiers, returning coffins are dissuading enlistments. Putin must choose: declare war & mobilize the army to send young soldiers into combat, or stop fghting & talk


    The question is even if Putin calls for a draft, what impact does “returning coffins” have on enlistment? I think it is conceivable that average Russians contributing their sons may not have the same motivation to die for their fatherland as they may not perceive this war as worth them risking their lives. What if Putin calls for a draft and not many show up?

    • Bill Roche says:

      Sam: I’m sure you know a UMD is not an enlistment. Maaybe you meant draft dodgers? Then the question is to where does a Russian youth go whilst dodging the draft? Sympathetic adjoining nations are few (0). Or, what will Russia do to dodgers held in Russia; a two year prison sentence would be in order, but will that illicit anti-war demonstrations the like of which Russia has NEVER seen? A UMD is a moment of truth for the Russian soul. I have no knowledge b/y my intuition but, I don’t think young Russian men are willing to risk their lives to prevent Ukrainians independence. We’ll see b/c if Russia loses Kherson a UMD is Putin’s only recourse. He needs bodies.

  4. TTG says:

    I’ve been watching a lot of extended frontline videos to get a better feel for the nature of the fighting. In one interview with a TDF unit not far from Kherson, a commander noted that they see a lot less Russians in positions than they did a month ago. This was seen in drone footage. Where a month ago there would be ten in a position, now there are two or three.

    • Sam says:


      I was under the impression that the Russians moved a large number of forces to the Kherson region. Maybe they didn’t have that many to begin with prior to the Ukrainian offensive.

      When Ukraine’s light armor colums scythed their way behind their lines, Russian forces trying to react were held back by precision attacks against targets selected with precision Intelligence: Hqs, ammo & fuel stores & tank clusters. But to liberate the south, Kiev needs tanks


      Luttwak believes Ukrainian military needs more tanks for their southern offensive. Dunno if this is the right analysis. How does the fighting change in the winter? Must get pretty cold out there.

      In your experience when a military that has been primarily on defense goes on offense and vice versa how does it change the psychology of the men doing the fighting?

  5. Fred says:

    “While he conceded that the Kremlin has attained “minor tactical success in various parts of eastern Ukraine,” “…. “Saying that it’s too soon to judge the offensive near Kherson, Milley ….”

    “”It’s early days, but we’re seeing real effectiveness on the ground. …. Blinken said.”

    After six months of this war Russia is strategicly defeated; or not. So we can expect another decade (Iraq and Afghanistan) long financial war of attrition? And a human one too, one in which the Russians are not fully mobilized but fully committed to shooting their own convicts if they attempt to escape combat they volunteer for.

    What can we expect the US and her NATO allies to do to anyone who criticizes foreign policy or otherwise wants to change the financial and military commitements of their nation? Ursula Von Der Leden is trying to get the EU to strip Hungary of its voting rights within the EU, Germany to ‘fundamentally transform’ the EU by eliminating the need for unanimity in determining policy (Democracy! to quote Biden). Biden is using the FBI and DOJ to round up political opponents (he went after more than two dozen former officials of Trump’s administration and even siezed the electronics from the pillow guy.) The State of Massachussets called out the national guard to round up 50 illegal immigrants who arrived on the “sancturary city” island that is home to the richest of America’s citizens (and the Obamas). This is “why we fight”? Or rather this is what we do while supporting the defense of the sacred and inviolate borders of Ukraine, a nation that did what for the USA in its entire existence, besides firing that prosecutor?

  6. Sam says:

    More than 28,000 prisoners including murderers, rapists and thugs – one in 20 of Russia’s entire jail population – have been freed to fight in Ukraine


    It will be interesting the implications of these criminals returning back after their frontline tour.

  7. Barbara Ann says:

    What sort of attrition rate can we expect in these units, not from enemy action but from summary executions for desertion, mutiny, murder and the rest? Perhaps decimation will make a comeback.

    • Fourth and Long says:

      You prefer that law abiding citizens raising children should be fed into a pit of live ammunition and exploding shells?

      There’s a double meaning / signal being sent. Ok we have few troops (as TTG surmises above). But what does that imply about our inhibitions regarding use of powerful weapons in the conflict zones?

    • Fred says:

      Barbara Ann,

      Wagner will have a firm cadre of gang loyalists who are familiar with gang rules, gang hierachy, and gang rewards; who if they survive will have some combat experience, and if they don’t stay on be ready for hire to the surviving oligarchs in case the later need a private army.

  8. Otis R. Needleman says:

    So the Russians are recruiting anywhere they can and shortening cadet training. Means nothing now or any time soon. Unless they want these men as instant cannon fodder, takes months to train a decent infantryman. Question how well some of these released convicts will do in their infantry training. And question how long these ex-cons will last in combat before becoming casualties or surrendering. Should they not be paid and supplied as promised, these ex-cons may just desert, defect, and frag on the way out.

  9. Leith says:

    Stalin also used ‘penal battalions’ known as Shtrafbats.

    Some of the prisoners just recruited probably signed up in order to attempt desertion at the first opportunity. Prigozhin would know that of course and increase security and the number of blocking troops with orders to shoot anyone retreating or trying to surrender.

    What would Ukraine do with those that surrendered? I assume that legally they would have to be treated as other POWs. And Ukraine might welcome those that had been political prisoners. But those that were murderers, mafiosi, or thieves would probably be returned to Putin.

  10. Babeltuap says:

    US has a manpower shortage of their own. Army recruiting is down 70% due to obesity, drug use and low aptitude and it’s not changing anytime soon. I guess they could be “conscripted” but what’s the point. Activists will rally around them and the military will kneel.


Comments are closed.