There’s a ton of negativity pointed towards Vladimir Putin and Russia right now, and rightfully so.
But there’s a number of Russian soldiers who do not want war, a number of Russian citizens who don’t want war, and a whole lot of friends and families will either lose or have already lost loved ones.
Not to mention, there’s been rumors that Russia misled their troops into going to Ukraine, and gave them false belief that they would “be welcome.” There has also been reports that some Russian families didn’t even know that their sons have been deployed.
Take this Russian soldier for instance, who shared a heartbreaking text exchange with his mother only moments before he died.
According to Fox News, Ukrainian Ambassador Sergiy Kyslystya read the screenshots out loud at a meeting of the United Nations General Assembly.
The texts read:
“I’m scared, we’re hitting everyone, even civilians. We had been told that people would welcome us here but they jump under our vehicles, not letting us pass. They call us fascists.
Mom, it’s so hard.”
His mother was under the impression that he was in Crimea training, but he said otherwise:
“We were told that (civilians) would welcome us.”
The mother asked her son if she could send him a package, but he responded:
“The only thing I want now is to hang myself.”
Here's a transcript of a Russian soldier's last text messages to his mother that Ukraine's Ambassador to the UN just read out from screenshots at the emergency session of the UN General Assembly pic.twitter.com/j8fTAz3xwr
Worth noting that this has been a key part of Ukraine's messaging: Zelensky and other Ukrainian officials have repeatedly emphasized the tragic toll of young Russian soldiers' lives, often with empathy for their families back home & speaking directly to Russian mothers.
According to Independent, the texts have only been verified by Ukrainian sources, but still a horrifying thought, nonetheless.
As Russian closes in on the capital city of Kyiv, Russian forces are preparing to launch “high-precision strikes” against the “Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) and the 72nd Center for Information and Psychological Operations (PSO)“ in Kyiv.
They have urged residents to flee:
“We urge Ukrainian citizens involved by Ukrainian nationalists in provocations against Russia, as well as Kiev residents living near relay stations, to leave their homes.”
As of Monday, Ukraine has reported a civilian death toll of 352, however a Russian attack on Kharkiv later in the day added to the number.
The Ukrainian defense minister Oleksii Reznikov said that more than 5,710 Russian soldiers have been killed by Ukraine’s forces since the beginning of the invasion.