"Men in Russia are obliged to join the army." This was announced by Vladimir Putin in his speech last Wednesday, and there was an uproar throughout Russia.
When Putin declared war on Ukraine in February, he predicted he would win it easily in a week. However, that did not happen in reality. Ukraine put up fierce resistance and refused to surrender. Russia has also suffered immeasurable losses in the ongoing war. Now, the Ukrainian army has started recapturing the cities occupied by the Russian military. As part of that, Russian men have been ordered to join their military duties.
Also, those below 35 years of age and those who have served in junior positions in the army for some time are given individual notices. At the same time, many others have been called and ordered to appear. "They've been behind me since February," says a Moscow resident who previously served in the Russian army. They want to contract with me to join the army again."
However, this compulsory conscription has caused great unrest among Russian citizens. Two internet searches from Russia after Putin's speech indicate the people's state of mind there. Of course, the first thing that is asked around the country is, "What are the ways to escape from Russia to the neighboring countries?" And another thing people are looking for is, "How to get rid of a broken arm at home?"
This second search can predict the mood of the people. A broken bone is one of the most painful injuries a person can suffer. But people know that breaking their arms will get them out of the army. People are willing to go through that terrible pain to avoid conscription.
The number of people who want to leave the country by buying a plane ticket has suddenly increased. As a result, flight tickets from Russia to abroad become costly and sell out quickly. A woman named Anna lives in Moscow and has two children. One of them is a 24-year-old boy. "I have been dreading something like this since February," she says. I tried to stay calm. But now, there is no other cure left before me. I will send my children to Armenia this week. Why should we send our children to war? Why risk their lives? What is the purpose of this war? We never want this war."
An engineer in the IT sector in Moscow is of such an age that he can be ordered to join the Russian army anytime. He has not yet received such an order. But he says, "We have started preparations for our family's immigration immediately. We should be out of here by early October, at least. After that, it might be too late, and then you won't be able to leave the country. But there is still work to be done, and the tickets available now cost more than $16,000. I can't afford it.
People who can are trying to leave the country. Those who can't are wondering how to avoid enlisting in the army, even if it means breaking their arm. In such a case, who wants to fight this war? And for what?
Do anything, But leave the country! There are huge queues of people trying to leave Russia at the borders of both Finland and Mongolia. People fear that if there are restrictions on leaving the country, it will become impossible to do so after a few days.