Russia deployed units of the 76th Airborne Division to reinforce Russian positions near the village of Robotayne, which the Ukrainians managed to liberate after two months of fighting. He apparently moved there from Kremennaya, where the Russians attacked in the summer, and managed to move north of it.
The movement of part of the 76th Airborne Division was confirmed by footage of a drone attack on the BTR-82A transporter in Robotayne, which belonged to the 76th Division. Apparently, the Russians themselves destroyed the abandoned car with the help of a drone so that it would not fall into the hands of the Ukrainians.
Earlier, the institute stated that almost all Russian airborne divisions were deployed to those sectors of the front where the Ukrainians are conducting a counteroffensive. The 7th Guards Mountain Airborne Division was transferred from Kherson to the Zaporozhye region, paratroopers were also transferred there, faced with the flank offensive of the Ukrainians from Bakhmut.
ISW says the Russian command is dependent on airborne divisions, which are among the most elite in both defense and offense, although the core of these forces was destroyed at the beginning of the war.
He notes that the depletion of these forces weakens Russia’s ability to fight difficult defensive battles and undermines Russia’s intentions to resume a large-scale offensive, dependent on well-trained infantry, which Russia does not have. Therefore, he is being replaced by paratroopers, who, however, lose their advantage with this method of combat, which consists in the possibility of rapid deployment and a high pace of hostilities.
Russia cannot replenish its stocks
At the same time, Russia is failing to replenish the ranks, although it is trying to attract the high salaries that are also received by the newly mobilized, British intelligence warns. On February 4, 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that the lieutenant receives 81,200 rubles a month. In October 2022, he announced that even mobilized soldiers would be able to receive 195,000 rubles a month.
“Many lower ranks serving in Ukraine now receive more than 200,000 rubles a month. This is 2.7 times more than the average Russian salary of 72,851 rubles.
“It is likely that salaries and other benefits are a big incentive for people to join the army, especially from poor regions of Russia. However, it is unlikely that Russia will fulfill the requirements for the recruitment of volunteers,” she added.