A desperate Russian commander is said to have resorted to drugging his troops to stop the demoralised squad from running away from battle.
The desperation comes from intercepted messages and phone calls, with an exasperated Russian commander claiming to be "shooting up" the reluctant troops in the hopes of making them continue their fight in the war against Ukraine.
Messages intercepted and shared by the Ukrainian secret service revealed the extreme lengths the Russian commander is willing to go to keep his troops from fleeing.
A video re-enactment, dubbed in English by Ukrainian voice actor Ivan Doan, explained the bizarre situation.
The chat appeared to be a series of texts between two Russian commanders on a messaging app, with updates shared between the two on the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
With the first asking: "What's up?" the second replies: "Not good."
Apparently referring to his group of soldiers, he says: "They're running away. My guys are also very scared now. Everybody's tired. No strength left. I'm even shooting them up. Doesn't Help. I think they're very tired."
The video adds an intercepted phone call, again dubbed in English, allegedly held between two Russian soldiers, The Sun reported.
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One asks the other "how's it going?" while the other replies: "It's ok. Everybody's apathetic already. Completely demoralised."
Seemingly referring to the high death count of Russian troops, he continues: "The companies are like 10-15 people left at best. The officers are already panicking. They want it all to end. All-in-all, everybody's fed up with all this."
The soldier described some of the younger recruits brought in to bulk up Putin's invading forces as "f***ing cowards" and added that after a Ukrainian ambush, many of the troops "f***ing panicked".
He added also that all he wants to do is "go home, hug the kids, wife. That's it, I don't want anything else".
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