After President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin, has announced a partial mobilization in Russia that starts today, on September 21, the State Duma deputy, Yuri Shvytkin, decided to support the initiative and his former fellow soldiers, and revealed his desire to join the Russian army. This provoked the speaker of the State Duma, Vyacheslav Volodin, to consider deputies’ participation in a special military operation.
According to the country’s Minister of Defence, Sergey Shoigu, soldiers will be taken during the partial mobilization only from the reserve, that is, it goes about those who have served, has a military accounting specialty and combat experience.
However, there are many volunteers in Russia who expressed their will to defend Donbass and prevent the West from attacking their Motherland. Such people are also found among the deputies of the Russia’s State Duma.
The Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Defense, Yuri Shvytkin, announced his intention to go to the front. According to him, the Pskov Airborne Division, in which he served for a long time, is now in the special operation zone along with other servicemen.
“My OMON [Special Purpose Militia Unit], SOBR [Special Rapid Response Unit], where my colleagues, my comrades-in-arms perform the task. And I felt that I was ready to be next to them,” the deputy said.
It is noted that Shvytkin has repeatedly applied for mobilization before.
Deputies to Front
The speaker of the State Duma, Vyacheslav Volodin, at a meeting of the chamber proposed to consider which of the deputies and employees of the State Duma may be in demand to participate in a special military operation. According to him, those who wish can become volunteers.
“Let’s study the issue from our side. Who can be in demand. We have assistants, an apparatus. These are civil servants. But let’s gather those who have experience, who work with us and would like to participate, maybe volunteer, we will only support [them],” he said.
According to him, before the President announced partial mobilization, “some colleagues wrote statements, until today we sent colleagues to the Ministry of Defense – if you are required, you can take part.”
Previously, it was reported that Moscow Mayor, Sergei Sobyanin, promised to extend the measures of material support, which were initially introduced for volunteers willing to participate in the special military operation conducted by Russia, to those who will be called up as part of a partial mobilization.
“I have made decisions on additional measures of material support for volunteers and their families,” the mayor said. “I consider it necessary to fully extend these city support measures to those citizens who will be called up in Moscow in accordance with the presidential decree.”
Moreover, the presidential order on the partial mobilization also states that those who will be called up as part of mobilization, will get financial and social support equal to those received by military men serving under contracts.
Russians’ view on possible threats
As for the regular people’s view on the current world situation, the study of the Russian Public Opinion Research Centre (VTsIOM) showed that the threats became more obvious for regular people. It is noted that over the past three years, the share of those who feel a threat of a military attack has increased by 10 percentage points, amounting to 41 per cent in August this year (vs. 31 per cent in 2019).
The Military Threat Index shows the subjective opinion of Russians about possible external military threats to Russia. The index is based on the question “Do you think there is a military threat to Russia from other countries now?” It is calculated as the difference between positive and negative ratings. The index value can range from -100 to 100 points.
Today, the corresponding index is -9 points, which indicates the average confidence of citizens in the reality of the military threat. During the August survey, every second the Russian reported that it does not exist (50 per cent).
Over the past five years, this index has been taking negative values. The minimum indicator for this period was recorded in August 2019 (-30 points). At that time, a third of Russians (31 per cent) felt the military threat, and more than half (61 per cent) denied its existence.
Today, Russians consider the US to be the main source of a military attack (62 per cent, +9 percentage points since August 2019). A third of respondents named Ukraine (32 per cent) a threat country; in December 2018 there were almost twice as many (57 per cent). This was the only time during the measurement period when Ukraine overtook the US in the national rating of military threats.
The share of those who call Poland a potential source of military threat has grown 6.5 times in three years (from 4 per cent to 26 per cent), the UK – 4.5 times (from 4 per cent to 18 per cent). The share of those who named China, on the contrary, significantly decreased (from 7 per cent to 2 per cent).
Sources: Lenta, Interfax