Pavel K. Baev
The new year of cheerful celebrations and renewed hopes has failed to arrive in Russia, which is sinking deeper into the vortex of President Vladimir Putin’s devastating war against Ukraine. Putin has duly delivered his traditional New Year’s message, emphasizing the sacred duty of defending the motherland (Meduza, December 31). However, his best wishes did not produce any joy among the populace, which remains disconcerted with lost prosperity and worried about a new wave of mobilization (Nezavisimaya gazeta, December 24). The first wave of mobilization, which was announced in September 2022 after many reassurances from the Kremlin that such dragooning would be unnecessary, was a big shock for society as many Russians had preferred to pretend that the “special military operation” launched on February 24, 2022—again after many assertions that it would not happen—had no relevance for their everyday lives.
Russia Remains Stuck in 2022, a Year of Miscalculated War and Deep Degradation – Jamestown