Most every day suspicious transports arrive at secluded terminal of Moscow’s main international airport and a small, familiar, parade follows.
While Moscow’s military continues to modernize, only small portions of it has transitioned completely meanwhile, over two-thirds is old Soviet Union era including most of Putin’s Syria “humanitarian aid” still using mostly 1970’s hardware.
According to some renowned military experts familiarized with the Kremlin and its nuances, military plans for rearmament started in 2009 while NATO nations trimmed their military spending.
Putin and company spent enormous amounts of cash gained from lucrative Siberian oil to modernize the Russian military something that continues today although recent sanctions have stymied this effort.
All experts agree that Kremlin’s main focus always was on Ukraine, that surprisingly imposed unexpected heavy requirements for Russia’s unlawful military misadventure.
Taking Crimea after a carefully planned weakening of Ukraine’s military through years of underfunding and cuts meanwhile, ransacking the country’s treasury by their mole Yanokovich provoking the Maidan revolution made it a “cake walk” for Putin’s special forces “little green men”.
Annexing Ukraine it turns out to be much more harder to do now that Kremlin’s dirty little secret is exposed.
The Russian military found themselves unprepared, simply not structured to hold on to substantial territory like Ukraine, where sustained conflict is assured, despite having superior material advantages, manpower, and even sophisticated nukes.
Yet despite extensive modernization, most of Kremlin’s forces still rely on ill trained conscripts and obsolete, dilapidated, Soviet-era materiel limiting Putin’s intentions.
Beginning in 2014 casualties resulting from Russia’s hybrid wars in Ukraine and Syria, its latest “humanitarian” help zone, continue to mount making those famous “Cargo 200” shipments more necessary.
If last week’s sudden spike following an American airstrike in Deir Ezzor and today’s booby-trap bomb blast in Tabiya Jazira are an indication, Cargo 200 will be very busy.
Recent polls show more than half of Russians surveyed indicated they want their “boys” pulled out of Syria despite Kremlin’s state-controlled propaganda initial claims this was a humanitarian gesture relatively casualty-free.
When this line failed to work, they claimed the bulk of combat casualties were non-Russian “Wagner” volunteers.
The real truth about the “Wagner” pseudo-mercenary force is it is almost entirely Russian, many ex-military, whose losses Moscow cares little about and refuses acknowledgement as a way to hide reality from the Russian public.
This is my contribution for WP single word prompt: “SUSPICIOUS”.