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reuters OP t1_j60dy1l wrote

A rapidly expanding cemetery in a southern Russian village offers insight into the convicts who are fighting - and dying - for the secretive mercenary army of Wagner Group. There were around 200 graves at the site on the outskirts of Bakinskaya village in Krasnodar region when Reuters visited in late January.

Many of the men buried at Bakinskaya were convicts who were recruited by Wagner last year after its founder, Yevgeny Prigozhin, promised a pardon if prisoners survived six months at the front, this reporting showed. 

Read the full story for more information.


deftoner42 t1_j619nx6 wrote

>if prisoners survived six months at the front

if they survived. You better believe they get forced to sign up for conscription if they survived.


panda_gravy t1_j61hrc5 wrote

Nope! They just extend those 6 months forever, and if you say no? Sledgehammer time!

Some Wagner commander escaped to Norway and tried to get asylum because of that.


Graega t1_j61xt6d wrote

That was pretty much gonna be my guess. The commissar makes up some crime a guy committed and executes him in front of the rest of the slave-soldiers to ensure that they stay in line. The next one who survives in the next one in the firing line.


isjahammer t1_j639m99 wrote

I'm gonna take a guess here and say that would vary a lot even in different groups of Wagner. Impossible that all of them don't have anything humane left in them. But I guess it's the job of western news/propaganda to make them look as bad as possible. Disturbing occurrences just make for more clicks then saying there have been some cases of...


johnnybeehive t1_j63cdts wrote



isjahammer t1_j63ep6g wrote

Just want to keep a realistic estimate. Seems that reddit loves to make every single russian and soldier the literal devil without any refinement. I understand though because that's the easy way to go for most people that doesn't require any empathy or deeper thinking.


johnnybeehive t1_j63etrn wrote

I imagine you think a sizeable portion of these people are just doing their jobs.


Hairless_Ape_ t1_j643aoi wrote

Wagner is literally recruiting violent criminals. These aren't tax cheats. The system most highly incentivizes those serving the longest sentences, so it's the murders and rapists that are first to volunteer. So I am indeed short on empathy, but I think it's you who is short on critical thinking.

Given that Russia (through its predecessor, the USSR) still holds the world championship for civilian rapes (Berlin, 1945), then maybe you think that the Wagner guys are indeed just regular Russian soldiers...


isjahammer t1_j64jkjb wrote

They are recruiting criminals. But a) not in the higher ranks and b) not everyone in Wagner is a criminal.


Hairless_Ape_ t1_j64ksxw wrote

"Only some of them are convinced murderers and rapists, so they're really very nice people."

There doesn't exist enough napalm to give each and every invader exactly what they deserve.


axonxorz t1_j65aqh8 wrote

b) but they are still soldiers fighting in a war that their government started


Millerbomb t1_j64azca wrote

> job of western news/propaganda

Wagner uploading videos of them killing their own man with a sledge hammer does the work for western news


LatterTarget7 t1_j65ausp wrote

I mean this is like saying not everyone in the ss could’ve been that bad.

The Wagner group in Africa entire job is to clean out villages.

Their job in Ukraine is to kill any Russians who retreat. They also rape and beat the Russians before execution. They kill their own men if they don’t follow orders.

There’s no one left in the ranks besides the absolute worst. Cause if you aren’t the worst you are raped beaten and executed


ErikTheAngry t1_j627j0h wrote

Fingers crossed they give them all asylum. Encourage as many defections as they can. It hurts the war effort.

And then when it's all over, send every last one of them to The Hague for a reckoning of what they did in Ukraine, Africa, and everywhere else Wagner has operated.


oliilo1 t1_j631oky wrote

Nah, we don't want Russian criminals.
I'd much rather incentivize them to start a civil war in Russia. Convince Prigozhin he has a chance of taking out Putin and look like a good guy.


synapticrelease t1_j631xce wrote

civil war is not what you want with a nuclear power.


IcarusOnReddit t1_j643m90 wrote

Once the government falls, the west can send some troops to each silo as a peacekeeping force. Deactivate them. Leave.


synapticrelease t1_j64ji8n wrote

Lol ok.

I’m not even going to get into how heavily defended silos are. Talking literal bunkers with feet thick walls and doors designed not to get broken into simultaneously into triple digit sites deep into Russia which would require a coordinated effort from multiple fronts.

Yeah. It’ll go without a hitch 👍


Westfakia t1_j64t5q7 wrote

And who decides what happens to the fissionable components? You can’t exactly leave them lying around.


IcarusOnReddit t1_j64u03w wrote

Throw em in a helicopter and take them?


Westfakia t1_j64z601 wrote

Take them where?

Who’s gonna approve a flight plan for fissionables across international borders?

This isn’t tinkertoys, it’s weapons grade uranium and plutonium. I don’t want it flying anywhere near me, keeping it on the ground is much safer. The stuff is also highly sought after by undesirables, so it needs to be done with the utmost in security. Easier said than done.


ParanoidDroid t1_j63gsuc wrote

And if they succeed? Do you actually want Wagner mercs in charge of Russia? It's just one monster for another. They should be sent to the Hague to answer for their war crimes and imprisoned imo.


deftoner42 t1_j61ihu4 wrote

I read this morning they denied him and sent him back. Lol... he's in trouble.


avpthehuman t1_j61kitk wrote

Quite the opposite, actually. He applied for asylum and will soon be released.

> "The Norwegian police are planning to release a former member of the Russian mercenary group Wagner who was arrested for entering the country illegally after he fled Russia earlier this month, the National Police Immigration Service told local media on Wednesday"


deftoner42 t1_j61lyyz wrote

Ahh my bad, I read it on the r/worldnews live thread, probably a reason why I can't find the post again.


bak3donh1gh t1_j6255uf wrote

The Norwegians will give someone to another state for execution? Look i don't love the russians and any of them in Ukraine should expect to die, but booting someone back will just give the others reasons to stay and fight, or at least die.


Dudelies t1_j628osn wrote

No they will not.


bak3donh1gh t1_j62esg2 wrote

not fight or not leave. Cuz if they cant leave they're either getting executed by their 'commanders' or getting shot/shelled by ukrainians. As execution by sledgehammer is not how I'd want to go. Not that I want to go getting shot by Ukrainian since Slava Ukraine!

Or Norway wont transfer someone with the death penalty, cuz thats whats waiting for the guy. Whether or not Russia admits it on paper or not.

Edit: Ok sorry I misread the response or rather it wasn't clear. He's been released into Norway if I understand correctly.


JustForThisClaps t1_j62pebl wrote

He was arrested for entering the country illegally and will now get released from this arrest.


Dudelies t1_j62f6rc wrote

The Norwegians will not send him back


MerfinStone t1_j62c7zk wrote

I liked that moment when Prigozhin said: "It's hammer time!" and sledged all over the room


Pillowsmeller18 t1_j61a9dk wrote

If they survived the Ukranians, im betting they didnt survive the 2nd line forces ready to shoot their comrades.


Cheesesticks1977 t1_j61jp13 wrote

Imagine prison being so bad there that knowing you might not survive six months on the Frontline is a better option.


herbsandlace t1_j61mxlc wrote

Some of the men that are coming back now were in the first years of their 9+ year imprisonment. This does tell you the types of crimes they were in for though since in Russia a simple murder (one person killed another person) is usually 7-9 years. There are also rumors that some of the survivors who have been released may not really have done any fighting since some of them are very rich due to their criminal past.


RickytyMort t1_j61zxqw wrote

What, you think Russia is going to let those prisoners loose on the general population while they are shortstaffed at the front?

They'll be sent right back as meatshields. Russia puts innocents in gulags for bogus crimes and beats them to death. No way they are going to honor some promises they made to convicts.


bak3donh1gh t1_j625w67 wrote

No hes saying that rich ones get their family to pay for them to get a bogus 6 months service and get released, the rest die, eventually. I don't know the stats but some of the people have to be either good people or people who protested either this war or Pootin and are now being fed to a meat grinder because a man with a small dick thought war was the best way to make a legacy. The time that was possible is basically over; there's no legacy if everyone's dead, and that kinda the only way to win a war currently with a nuclear power.


chewiezzzz t1_j62qibv wrote

I've read a story recently about a businessman who was sentenced for a quadruple murder of a family of his business partner and an attempted murder of his niece, both times using contracted killers. He joined Wagner and went free and unharmed after 6 months of service, then flew to Turkey.


synapticrelease t1_j6320mu wrote

They have to honor it because if word comes back to prisons that they aren’t honoring the deal, no one else is going to sign up


DCrichieelias79 t1_j632xac wrote

Haha, you think they have a choice.


synapticrelease t1_j63fjju wrote

They wouldn't go around making pleas for prisoners if they could just simply pluck them out.


DCrichieelias79 t1_j63gclo wrote

They write stories for the public that they are making pleas for prisoners. Just the same as they write stories that they are only conscripting 300,000 or 500,000 able bodied men of a certain age.

The reality in Russia when they show up with papers to sign is the other hand is holding a hammer.


synapticrelease t1_j63kbum wrote

hm. I'm not buying it.

If it's a big PR thing, then why even write that you're having to dig for prisoners rather than just saying they were patriotic volunteers.

Also, we have the words from captured Wagner forces themselves.


DCrichieelias79 t1_j63m4mh wrote

Those very same wagner POWs are the ones saying the prisoners are basically meatshields sent out to soak bullets. There is zero intent to let them survive. Only the ones with families wealthy enough to pay bribes get to come back alive.


synapticrelease t1_j63rooe wrote

Yes I agree with you. But that’s not the same as what we are talking about.


hurleyburleyundone t1_j6327ib wrote

Dudes not wrong.

You think its implausible that a mercenary army wouldnt take money from a crime boss to look the other way? Its criminals dealing with criminals and free profit.


Baneken t1_j633z49 wrote

And likely in typical Russian fashion a thick wad of cash handed to local Wagner Brigade-General who takes the pile and admits that "war doesn't need one man" and lets him get off easy by putting the guy into laundry-duty for 6 months or something instead of being in the reserve-list for the next suicide-wave at Bahmut.


Ouatcheur t1_j67kfec wrote

Except for a few of the prisoners that got filthy rich through their crimes.

In a country led by oligarchs and kleptocrats, where even the military is super corrupted from top military general all the way down to mere squad leaders, money always talks. As long as one can pay a sufficient amount of big bribes, he can walk away scott free and makec a *lot* of "behind the scenes" deals. Or be relatively treated ok (or even with favors) while remaining in prison.

This does't include those that were super duper filthy rich: those just bribed their entire sentence right away in the first place, and never went to prison.

But the "merely" criminally rich might have preferred to hang on to their illicit cash secretly, while remaining patient and in prison until they get out and then live well, because bribing their wait out prematurely would mean that once out they wouldn't be rich anymore. But now that "choice" has turned into either keeping your secret riches but going to the front and probably die, vs freedom and relative safety albeit not rich anymore.

But that probably applies only to a few. Most prisoners just would not have the money to make those kind of "deals".


daimemo t1_j61uwuv wrote

All things aside, its a different approach to punishment. In most western countries the imprisonment and the lack of freedom are the punishment itself. And other countries the lack of freedom is just part of the punishment.


Ouatcheur t1_j67jgwx wrote

I fully expect those that don't want to sign for the conscription to be "gently encouraged" to do so by the reputedly ever so fair annd amiable Russian police, military, and prison staff.

"No torture involved no sirrreree, never! They all jumped at the chance to defend the homeland, and all signed volontarily!"

(Said eery Russsian media spokesperson)


bigbangbilly t1_j61rq69 wrote

It's like that Lord of the Rings second dinner meme but with second conscription


crashcanuck t1_j6468xf wrote

Or the pardon doesn't mean they get to stop fighting, it just means they are pardoned for their crimes.


iVladi t1_j62ph6p wrote

There are videos of Wagner sending them home with a hearty goodbye, this isnt true.

Wagner has more recruits than they need currently as they only have 1 base and word of their successes spread.


wwosik t1_j62rwd9 wrote

is that putin's own account?


iVladi t1_j62twvt wrote

Just because you don't like the information, doesn't make it false. The guy above is simply speculating, when there is evidence of the complete contrary that exists.


html_question_guy t1_j6325b6 wrote

>Wagner has more recruits than they need currently

Wagner tactics literally involve sending waves of people to their death to deplete Ukrainians of ammunition and locate their soldiers. There's probably over a hundred videos demonstrating this just at Bakhmut alone. The idea that Wagner doesn't need new recruits is laughable.

But then again, most things tankies say are laughable


iVladi t1_j6807zw wrote

BBC themselves found Russia has suffered only 12k casualties (potentially 60% more) by mid Jan, so worst case it's around 20k. We had Ursula herself confirm 100k Ukrainian soldier deaths way back in November.

So either those "suicide squads" are really damn effective or maybe, just maybe, listening only to Ukraine propaganda doesn't really fully explain how shock troops that identify targets to shell really work. Because as it turns out its really damn effective and a whole lot better than Ukraines tactic of sending waves of troops to sit in trenches to eat shells.


[deleted] t1_j66w2g7 wrote

"word of their successes spread", yeah they’re very successful in transitioning to corpses in Ukraine


iVladi t1_j680bqt wrote

A whole lot fewer corpses than Ukraine.


CityofGlass419 t1_j61kp08 wrote

Why does a private security company have the power to pardon prisoners?


MoltenGeek t1_j61q2w7 wrote

Russia needs cannon fodder. Someone at Wagner comes up with the idea, it gets presented to Putin, he okays it and has it written into law.


hikingmike t1_j629lkz wrote

They are contradicting so many of their laws so probably the law part isn’t even necessary.


Baneken t1_j634bkl wrote

Like the part in their constitution which explicitly forbids "wars of aggression" to be fought... Putin hand-waved this by declaring the war as "Special operation".


hikingmike t1_j65h6go wrote

I wasn't aware of that. But I did know that -
PMCs are technically illegal under Article 359 of the 1996 Russian Criminal Code, which states: “Recruitment, training, financing, or any other material provision of a mercenary, and also the use of him in an armed conflict or hostilities, shall be punishable by deprivation of liberty for a term of four to eight years.”

"the use of him in an armed conflict" - that implicates Prigozhin and probably Putin (just need some evidence for the link which is obviously there).


_aware t1_j61wsbv wrote

Because the owner of the PMC is one of Putin's close associates.


Baneken t1_j634g98 wrote

Nicknamed as Putin's Chef by the international press.


SVZ0zAflBhUXXyKrF5AV t1_j62bp3h wrote

Nothing can happen, especially something like this, in Russia without Putin being involved. He's told the FSB to leave Wagner alone, much to their control freak annoyance. Wagner are linked to the military and GRU, who the FSB also dislike.

Basically, Wagner is called a private army but actually do Putin's bidding through the GRU but if any questions are asked Putin has plausible deniability kind of like saying "It's nothing to do with us. They're not part of the military." We know it's a lie it's so obvious, they've been seen mixing with ordinary Russian troops, but it's one of the games Putin plays. Using plausible deniability also how Putin gives orders in the Kremlin.

That is a double edged sword though. In a different conflict, when one Wagner group got too close to an American outpost the Americans contacted their Russian counterparts who disowned all knowledge of them. The Wagner group didn't turn back so the American troops opened fire with everything they had. They heard the radio chatter of the men as they realised the Russians had left them to die rather than to own up to being associated with them. They're very expendable.

The reason for using prisoners and mercenaries in this current war is because Putin believes the Russian public won't care if that type of people get killed rather than the general Russian public.

They're also being used as cannon fodder. Some prisoners are given a tiny bit of ammo, just enough to make a noise and attract attention, and then sent out. Their sole purpose is to get shot by the Ukrainians and thus give away their positions to the Russians who sent the prisoners out to be massacred. They don't give them much ammo as there's no point, they really are meant to get shot. If they try to escape they're publicly executed in a rather gruesome way.


Minoltah t1_j62o0gn wrote

Same reason private security companies have the power to arrest people on, for example, public transport, or run prisons. Money money money, money!


maxgav3 t1_j62eq8u wrote

It's president pardon being issued to them.


LovecraftsDeath t1_j633viy wrote

Allegedly, Putin issues these pardons. Probably, a lot of time will pass before we will know the full story.


Rudy69 t1_j61wasq wrote

I’m surprised they haven’t resorted to mass graves to somewhat hide their body count. This shit is crazy


Cantholditdown t1_j6203w0 wrote

Never a better time to be in prison if you are in Russia! You get the choice to serve!


lswins t1_j621hiw wrote

I can see the starship trooper style doing my part propaganda being passed out to prisoners.


MinorFragile t1_j63ai21 wrote

I love the usage of rapidly. What’s a word that means faster than rapidly? I think that’s the next step for the Wagner graveyard


Ouatcheur t1_j67j34d wrote

I also love the usage of 'rapidly'.

Look closely at the photos, guys. That plot of cemetary is about the same size as only two normal houses properties. It's got 14x17 = 238 graves in it as of somewhere in the beginning of january, and 50 graves end of November. This is less than 200 dead in a bit over a full month. 7 dead per day is mere peanuts compared to how many really die at the front.

Those aren't all the Wagner soldiers, just a fraction.

Sure, those graves loolk real cheap: a colored drape with flowers, and a cheap wooden post and signboard with a bit of paint. But even then, given that they don't even give new "unwanted groups (prisoners, etchnic subgroups, etc.)" Russian soldiers much more than a couple days of training (if even that) plus a rusty old gun with only a few bullets, and no water no food no armor next to nothing, I don't expect Wagner to pay anything to put up nice looking graves for what they see as mere "cannon fodder". Those graves are for the "real" hardened Wagner boys that died, not for the fodder.

If all the dewad since the start of this stupid atrocious war were there, the graves would fill up (assuming a conservative 60000 dead --- not just specific Wagner loosses, though) then you'd need over 2400 of such cemetary plots. Take the *full* image, make it about 5 times wider and 5 times talller (i.e. 25 times that image), and that would be much closer that the minimum "real" size of Russian dead troops.

From Google Maps in Satellite View, that little plot is about 20 meters x 40 meters = 800 square meters, for about 250 graves. Let's be a tiny bit conservative and use only 3 square meters per grave. So for 60000 graves you'd need 180000 square meters, or a square cemetary about 425 meters on a side.

That's huge and the reality is probably even worse.

Fortunately for Poo-tin's army leaders, they don't have to pay much to bring back and bury all those dead, as they just leaves most of the dead right on the battlefield and pocket the money instead!

Typically in a war there are more wounded than dead, right? I'd be more interested in knowing where all the wounded are. Nobody in Russia seems to have seen tons of wounded soldiers brought back to Russia hospitals, so... Where are they all?

I suppose for Russia maybe there are next to no wounded: You're still alive? Well... the oligarchs already pocketed all the army's medical budget, ya know, o just plug that tampon in there to stop the bleeding, and just go back to fight! Even if you're three-quarter-dead, at the very least you should just go take another a bullet or two for our Glorious Mother Russia! Be hopeful: If you survive 6 months of this Hell on Earth total nightmare, you'll get a Lada.

(and the don't tell you thery fully expect to have to really give only about 200 Ladas, tops. Errr... only 50, really, because the corruppted military leaders will want to give some of those Ladas to their kids and friends).


alllballs t1_j65hgru wrote

"Ah, comrade. Congratulation. You survive 179 day. You will be pardon tomorrow. Have borscht sandwich." *click-BANG*


macross1984 t1_j60nzs9 wrote

Russians don't mind. It empty their prison and many of them will most likely not survive the minimum six months to be released as they are likely to be sent in as canon fodder.


ajaxfetish t1_j60tcyy wrote

And as a bonus, it frees up space for them to lock up all the dissenters who've been protesting the war or criticizing the administration!


postsshortcomments t1_j6315yc wrote

And then people who do mind or people like you who refer to this special military operation as a war can be used in labor camps to support the special military operation effort or later be offered pardon in exchange for six months of service to the country! Fascism, ho!


Test19s t1_j60opgo wrote

Putin’s regime is grotesque.


macross1984 t1_j60phgj wrote

Yup, Putin knows he is cornered and fighting simply to survive and Russia be damned.


Youve_Got_Parvo t1_j618b0s wrote

And if they do survive, it's not like they actually have to pardon them


zerombr t1_j64nrxi wrote

Wait, they don't keep as many people locked up as they can? Their prisons aren't privatized?


lhazorous t1_j623bno wrote

Good. What a disgusting culture to fester on the planet.


Crimento t1_j613eoq wrote

A little more details: I used to live in Krasnodar and still have ties there

Initially Prigozhin asked Kondratiev (Krasnodar governor) for kind of "hall of fame" inside the Krasnodar main cemetery. Kondratiev declined the request and instead gave him a completely new plot 50km away from the city

That's the thing you can see on the photos


Benzol1987 t1_j628g31 wrote

Good thing Russia is so big, it will need the space for all the graves.


AnthillOmbudsman t1_j62ac3l wrote

I know OP was being hyperbolic but I had to figure the size of the cemetery.

100,000 plots 10x10' in size = needs a cemetery about 3200 x 3200 ft or 1 x 1 km. Maybe double that for the roads, paths, and trees you would need.

Someone could probably do a rendering of this imaginary cemetery in Blender or something to drive home the waste of life this is, all for some guy's ego. Then of course another cemetery across the way almost the same size for the other side that was dragged into this war.


Baneken t1_j634u6q wrote

No need, it likely looks close to this one in Normandy, once the war is over and the Russians keep burying them instead of cremating. Though likely not as nice as the one in the video but the size matches.


SoUnProfessional t1_j61eyws wrote

Terrible, Russia is already birth/dead replacement ratio is pointing to negative population growth.

With their army and these mercenaries throwing a whole generation away it will be very negative in the long term.


nav17 t1_j61zkd7 wrote

Don't forget over 1 million dead from covid.

Also don't forget 800,000 more who fled mobilization.


RamieruThe5th t1_j64o3qj wrote

The more UAF kill those russians now, the less it'll have to kill in the future. russia don't change. if they are not completely defeated and country itself is not dissolved, they will try again as soon as they can.


sdogg t1_j61i81k wrote

>Russian state-owned news agency RIA Novosti published footage in early January of Prigozhin visiting the cemetery, crossing himself and laying flowers on one grave. He told local media that the men buried there had expressed a wish to be laid to rest at a Wagner chapel outside the nearby town of Goryachiy Klyuch, rather than having their bodies returned to relatives. The Bakinskaya plot was provided by the local authorities, he said, after the chapel ran out of space. In 2019, Reuters reported on the existence of a Wagner training camp in the village of Molkino, around 5 miles (9 km) from Bakinskaya.

yeah, sure. these guys thinking they had 6 months until they’re free told Wagner that if they died they actually just wanted to be quietly buried in a Wagner cemetery. literally everything russian officials say is a lie.


BazilBroketail t1_j60jkj9 wrote

So, who's their army then, the Russian army or Wagner?

This is a great article about the emergence of "Putin's chef" but I'm still confused on who Russias official army is, is this guy just the public fall guy and he's like the top shadow general of the regular Russian army? Also, not a great article as I said before, they go over the same shit like 6-7 times. It's like it's written by a college student trying to pad the length. Maybe I'm just in a bad mood, I don't know... but that article was a slog to get through.


AlphaMetroid t1_j60ogys wrote

Wagner is Putin's special 'plausible deniability' unit. In the past they filled the role of Russia's military when it was too inflammatory to send official Russian military units somewhere. They would do the dirty work that would otherwise put a very negative spotlight on Russia's foreign policy and Putin could pretend to not be responsible because they're just an independent mercenary group.

In this case, Putin has dropped all pretenses of acting like they're unaffiliated. However, they're still technically separate from Russia's military and have their own separate command structure. While they fight with the same goal as the Russian military (taking ukraine) and they still answer to Putin, them being a separate entity has led to a lot of competition with the official Russian military.

To answer your question, 'Putin's Chef' is not a secret leader of the Russian military, he's just the leader of Wagner. Thanks to Putin's cronyism and tendency to favor his friends, Prigozhin has aspirations of outshining the official Russian military overseen by Defence Minister Shoigu. The reason it gets so confusing is because what Putin has essentially done is taken the Russian defence budget and split it between the official military and the 'unaffiliated' military and put two different cronies in charge. Then he sent conscripts (civilian and criminal alike) to join the official military and allowed Wagner to privately recruit mercenaries from the remaining population to avoid too big of a draft during their 'limited mobilization' last fall.


Marandil t1_j61d6jo wrote

To make things even more complicated, there is also Rosgvardia, Kadyrovites (theoretically also a part of Rosgvardia, but afaik Kadyrov answers to Putin directly) and possibly other military structures.


panda_gravy t1_j61j16y wrote

LNR and DNR (the separatist republics) also have separate military structures, and Shoigu, the Russian minister of defense, even has his own pmc that he’s sent to Ukraine, which is another one.

Highly recommend Perun’s latest video. He tried to tackle just how much of a shitshow it is.


pimparo0 t1_j622fzl wrote

I honestly felt like I needed to make a chart after watching that video for all the different units and the cast of anal fissures leading them. He did a excellent job linking this structure to the way the Nazi military worked too.


TjW0569 t1_j61utik wrote

If I had to guess, this a strategy so neither military gets too much power, and each can be used against the other.


AlphaMetroid t1_j61vzu6 wrote

Makes sense, I'm sure a coup is one of Putins biggest worries. I almost want to say it's a smart idea, but then I look at how his war is going for him.


LatterTarget7 t1_j65b4lt wrote

The Russian national guard was in Ukraine. They were called back. Likely just in case of protests for new mobilization or a coup attempt


LurkerInSpace t1_j60q0tr wrote

Wagner are essentially a parallel army that's outside the normal command structure - the Kadyrovites are the same. Putin is still at the top, but the rest of the hierarchy is absent (which in theory makes them more flexible and makes it easier to learn what is really happening).

Back in World War II this was sort of done with the NKVD though their units were put in the Red Army when it was necessary (most famously at Stalingrad). Germany's SS was likewise an army outside the usual Wehrmacht command structure - gaining more power throughout the war as Hitler distrusted his generals.

The reason they are in fierce competition is because they're trying to win the same resources from the centre. The army has struggled to get these resources because its leaders aren't part of the ruling clique (who are instead drawn from the "siloviki" - high ranking FSB and other security services).


FarawayFairways t1_j60zwdg wrote

It's not dissimilar to the way medieval armies were structured with various Dukes and nobles commanding private armies but which were periodically pooled to form some sort of national identity (when they weren't fighting each other or trying to support their own preferred candidate to become king)


-Knul- t1_j60uqwi wrote

Like many autocratic regimes, Russia has multiple armies. It's a way to make coups more difficult to pull off.


PhillipBrandon t1_j60lp98 wrote

I was really looking forward to finding out about the previously unknown legions of Richard Wagner and just came a way disappointed.


Krivvan t1_j618uhx wrote

Many autocratic regimes have entire multiple competing militaries, not simply divisions of a single military. It makes it harder to overthrow a leader by simply taking a single institution, but the competition also causes infighting like we are seeing in Russia.


Katin-ka t1_j627hha wrote

They are all fighting for a spot under the sun. Putin doesn't care (or, he doesn't have a choice) as long as his goals in Ukraine are achieved. I'm waiting for when the Wagner group and the Russian army start really fighting cause, as I understand it, they hate each other.


koolbro2012 t1_j61h54y wrote

All these deaths and lives lost, so unnecessary


n00chness t1_j61uzjg wrote

The value of Cannon Fodder:

Defense - just having someone in your trenches is better than no one.

Offense - the Ukrainian forces are required to give up their position by firing on a suicide attacker.


m48a5_patton t1_j63z70w wrote

Wagner Prison Recruit

ATK - 1 | DEF - 2 | VAL - $200

SPECIAL - Forced Recruitment: At the beginning of a turn roll 2 D6 and if the result is more than 8 the player gains an extra Wagner unit.


autotldr t1_j60lfku wrote

This is the best tl;dr I could make, original reduced by 96%. (I'm a bot)

> Toughening sanctions on Wagner this month, White House national security spokesman John Kirby branded the group "a criminal organisation that is committing widespread atrocities and human rights abuses." In a short open reply to the U.S. government, Prigozhin asked Kirby to "Please clarify what crime was committed" by Wagner.

> Last month, Reuters reported that the U.S. intelligence community believes that Wagner had approximately 40,000 prisoner recruits deployed in Ukraine as of December, accounting for the vast majority of Wagner personnel in the country.

> A Russian graveyard reveals Wagner's prisoner army.

Extended Summary | FAQ | Feedback | Top keywords: Wagner^#1 Reuters^#2 Russia^#3 Ukraine^#4 prison^#5


Capable-Rutabaga5877 t1_j624edf wrote

So let me get this straight. Russia is taking criminals. Putting them in situations where either they die or learn how to use weapons to survive. Even if they do survive, the environment they were subjected to is so hostile that most survivors walk away with at least some form of mental trauma. Added to that is that a good percentage of the people already have substance abuse problems and lack impulse control.

Them to top it off you organize them into a for profit criminal gang led by a guy determined to be the next dictator of Russia....

Yeah this is going to be very very very bad even if the Ukrainians push the Russians out...


bgat79 t1_j61qef6 wrote

" He had been convicted in May 2022 by a court in the picturesque tourist town of Suzdal of stealing a string trimmer and a sanding machine valued at a total of 5,500 roubles ($80) from a garage. "

in an unfortunate sequence of events dimitri's life ended up valued at 80 dollars


USSRisgone t1_j621it9 wrote

I’m sure in the future these graveyards will be levelled to hide the shame of the defeat.


frozenpissglove t1_j61wrku wrote

Willy OAM (YouTube) just posted an interview not too long ago. It’s of a foreigner fighting for Ukraine. He talks about Wagner in it, and it gives you a little insight into what is going on with Wagner from his perspective on the ground.


BlizzardArms t1_j60qx7p wrote

“Includes people with alcohol problems”

From Russia!?! No way!


deftoner42 t1_j617ree wrote

Zinky Boys 2: Rumble in Kherson


Obviousstatement- t1_j61wfuj wrote

That’s horrifying, I guess one has to ponder what it will be like when the surviving prisoners get to go home and victimize the honest people again. They will be well hardened by then. Maybe they are planning that they will all become mysteriously casualties.


oneoldfella t1_j61l0rf wrote

“thought that he’d take a quick trip to Ukraine and earn some money.”Ya how did that work?


MinorFragile t1_j63afgi wrote

Here lies wagnorite z. Conscriptovich. Died raping and pillaging Ukrainian lands for the almighty leader Putler


Big-Zoo t1_j63pscd wrote

These guys are gonna be unstoppable once they've figured out how to raise the dead


BoringWozniak t1_j63vnzx wrote

Doesn’t really seem like an army. More like a bullet sponge intended to find Ukrainian positions and consume their ammo.


Anal-Churros t1_j648a6p wrote

Surprised they even give them the dignity of marker tbh


ZachMN t1_j65u4a6 wrote

“Congratulations on six months’ service, Comrade Nekulturny! Here’s your pardon. The front line is that way.”


Jim3001 t1_j65zyjk wrote

Oh no..........anyway


[deleted] t1_j60lxxm wrote



MrPapillon t1_j60m9ke wrote

Wagner is voluntary.


[deleted] t1_j60s6an wrote



MrPapillon t1_j60vsfe wrote

I have not seen any evidence that they forced recruitment from prisons. All bit of information I have seen is that it was on a voluntary basis. Unlike the army that is mobilizing people in a very chaotic and brutal way.


CSI_Tech_Dept t1_j61f452 wrote

If as you admit, the mobilization is chaotic and brutal what do you think they do with prisoners, especially as they used as cannon fodder by Wagner goup? The organization that originally supposed to not exist and also using which is against Russian constitution?


MrPapillon t1_j62trv5 wrote

I don't have to imagine anything. These are different organizations with different philosophies and different goals. The army can mobilize at will, Wagner is a private international entity that has to attract people, now and after the war.

The point of using facts is to avoid unnecessary extrapolation, especially when we are far from having the optimal knowledge. Until now, I have not seen any claim that Wagner is forcing recruitments in prisons elsewhere, it is just comments in this thread by people who like to extrapolate everything to shape their own world. Much like for some people Putin is already dead and replaced by look-a-likes, etc. It's just disinformation and noise.


CSI_Tech_Dept t1_j62x4lm wrote

They had video smashing guy's skull because he surrendered. If they operated legally the guy would be sued for breach of contract at most.

What facts do you have regarding PMC that few months ago we were told it doesn't exist? Now we know it is operating side by side with the Russian army.


MrPapillon t1_j62z9yp wrote

The fact that they act out of legality does not allow baseless extrapolation. Legality is only one of the many and many constraints. I can imagine plenty of reasons for Wagner to not have the intent to force prison recruitments despite them smashing heads. The extrapolation is mostly bound by the limits of your imagination. That's why facts are important, to avoid plenty of disinformation from the variety of imagination of around the world.


smkejmpr777 t1_j6450th wrote

Look at all that fertilizer.