Retired US Army General Jack Keane on Thursday criticized Russian President Vladimir Putin’s efforts to partially mobilize and said that some reservists recruited by the Russian military were medically and mentally “incapable”.
Keane’s comments came after Putin announced the first partial mobilization of Russia since World War II, which Russian officials say means the country’s military could call on up to 300,000 reservists to war in Ukraine.
In an interview with Fox News in which Keane is an analyst, the retired general was asked if it was possible for Putin to bring additional troops to the battlefield.
“The extreme right is pushing him to more action, they want full mobilization. He knows it would be a disaster. He cannot get there politically because of the opposition. You can see his opposition in the streets by simply calling in 300,000 reservists right now, Keane said.
“We wouldn’t even see them on the battlefield for three or four months, and then, when they join the battlefield, some of them are medically disabled, some of them are physically disabled, many of them are mentally disabled in the sense that they really don’t want to. Be there. And then they will join the armed forces which have already shown considerable incompetence, I don’t believe they will be decisive, ”added the retired general.
Newsweek asked for comments to the defense ministries of Russia and Ukraine.
In an interview with Newsweek This week, Sean McFate, a senior Atlantic Council fellow and assistant professor at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University, called Putin’s move to partially mobilize the country an “act of desperation.”
“He has emptied all prisons and used up all the mercenaries, and now he is going to turn to the core of Russia,” said McFate.
Last week, Yevgeny Prigozhin, a Russian billionaire who the U.S. government says is the head of the Wagner Military Group, an elite paramilitary force that sent mercenaries to fight in Ukraine, reportedly unveiled a plan for Russian prisoners of war.
Former Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov said Newsweek in an interview published on Thursday, he believes that Putin’s partial mobilization will lead to his removal.
“His decision means that even those people who were neutral or generally supportive of Putin will start rethinking their attitude because they are now obliged to go to the war they previously watched,” Kasyanov said.
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