Richard Branson once said, “Take care of your people, and they’ll take care of you.” Though this was primarily attributed to businesses, it is fitting for the military too.

Since the war began in February this year, we’ve seen the stark divide between Ukrainian and Russian military leadership. While Moscow is busy replacing people in weeks or months, Ukraine’s “Iron General” Valerii Zaluzhnyi continues to steadily lead his troops forward with a clear vision in mind. Then, in September, SOFREP featured the memoir of a Russian veteran who was one of the first batches of conscripts called out to attack Ukraine. His story was very telling on how chaos is the norm in Russian operations. Despite media portrayal of the Russian military as the troop you have to be scared of, 34-year-old Pavel Filatyev said foot soldiers were treated like trash.

“Have you ever seen the paintings of the Sack of Rome by the barbarians? This is the best way to describe what was going on around me,” Filatyev said.

He added that the conditions were not only harsh but they were also starved and were not given the right kind of ammunition. They usually get a pile of firearms, and it is up to them to clean it up and fix it. This is very similar to the reports about the soldiers Russians have called up during their nationwide mobilization. Citizens are complaining about the lack of training, support, and weaponry. Another witness said the new recruits had to buy their own guns and food just so they could at least protect themselves on the frontlines. The new recruits’ parents and family members also exposed that their loved ones were sent away, and in a matter of weeks (or days), they came home in coffins.