“They are cannon fodder”: This is how Russia exploits Storm-Z teams in Ukraine

“They are cannon fodder”: This is how Russia exploits Storm-Z teams in Ukraine

They were sent to the most dangerous areas of the worldUkraineAnd on the front line, and more generally, where the counter-offensive is taking place in Kiev. Their goal is to repel the advance of enemies, even at the cost of their own lives. there Russia He put what is called into practice Storm-ZSquads made up of drunken conscripts, rebel soldiers and prisoners. Cannon fodder, So. At best, Moscow has placed openings in strategic areas to prevent Volodymyr Zelensky’s men from penetrating lost territory and regaining control.

Storm-Z teams

This story was told by 13 people familiar with the above Brigades Quoted from the agency Reuters. “Attack fighters are just cannon fodder“said a regular soldier from Army Unit No. 40318, which was deployed last May and June near the city of Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine. The unnamed man said he provided medical treatment to a group of six or seven Storm-Z members who were wounded on the battlefield. .. among other things, disobeying the commander’s order to leave them to their fate.

The source said he did not know why the commander gave him such an order, saying that such an approach highlights how senior Russian officers would view Storm-Z groups, i.e. elements of Lower value Compared to regular forces. On the other hand, Russian media reported that Storm-Z teams already existed, and that they participated in fierce battles. Some of its members will even receive medals for bravery.

“Cannon fodder” Russia.

The teams consist of approx 100-150 men And include them in unitsRegular armyThey were generally sent from Moscow to the most vulnerable parts of the front. They often appear to suffer heavy losses and are busy fighting to repel the Ukrainian counterattack on the east and south of the country.

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Three of the five Storm-Z fighters interviewed by Reuters They conjured up horrific clashes during which most of their squads were annihilated. Regarding its composition, it hosts groups among its ranks Prisoners Those who volunteer to fight in exchange for a promise of amnesty, as well as regular soldiers who must serve Disciplinary violations And soldiers assigned to the deputyAlcohol.

Storm-Z is useful for Ministry of Defense Russian because they can be deployed as expendable infantry forces, according to the organization Conflict Intelligence Team. “Stormtroopers are simply sent to the most dangerous parts of the front to defend and attack“L explained Reuters. Although Moscow has never acknowledged the creation of Storm-Z units, the first reports of their existence appeared last April whenInstitute for the study of war He cited an alleged Russian document regarding the formation of the teams.

the previous

“He repeats”Punitive battalions“Established by Stalin For soldiers who left their posts during World War II, Storm-Z – the informal term used by Russian forces – would be nothing more than squads made up of expendable men.

It is no coincidence that there are precedents in the history of Russia for forcing criminals to join combat units. In 1942, whenRed Army While retreating the Nazi advance, Stalin ordered soldiers who panicked or abandoned their positions to form “punitive battalions” deployed in the most dangerous parts of the front. Just like the members of Storm-Z.

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