Yesterday, SOFREP reported on Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decree to increase their military forces to 2 million by 2023. While there are existing recruitment problems in the Russian military, Putin is optimistic that they will be able to fill in the gap. One way Kremlin is doing that is by pushing for immigration to Russia.

During an interview on the Russian-state TV show “Who’s Against?” Anna Revyakina, deputy chairwoman of the Public Chamber of the “so-called Donestk People’s Republic in occupied Ukraine,” expressed how attractive it is to be an immigrant in Russia nowadays. However, instead of highlighting their losses during the war and the potential insurgency within Russia’s general public, Revyakina said the government should push for more ways to attract foreigners to Russia.

“All of us Russians and our government should create maximally attractive conditions for the citizens of other countries to come to us, augmenting our population,” she said. “We have an enormous territory, a huge country, maybe not even fully developed, 140 million people—of course, we need more. Vladimir Vladimirovich [Putin] is concerned about this, with various programs for families with many children.”

Kremlin Moscow
St. Basil and the Kremlim Moscow. (Source: Mariano Mantel/Flickr)

She also said there are Russians who live in the Baltics, which could potentially add to the gap in their immigration numbers. However, Revyakina said they would have to be “loyal, in love with Russia and speaking the language.” Over the years, Russia has always aimed to educate residents of the Baltic states to learn the Russian language. They have the state media propagandists showing leisurely shows in the Russian language to encourage locals to speak and learn it.

Meanwhile, the gap also accounts for the massive losses in their workforce in the public and private sectors. Since the war started, as younger Russians enlisted, the economy depended on people working overtime, even during the weekends, holidays, and their days off. As if this was not enough, Russian propagandists even urged authorities to employ prisoners who fit certain qualifications.

“There’s nothing better than receiving a ready-made specialist, who already has an education and work experience,” Revyakina said.

Last year, a spokeswoman for the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs also appeared on state-TV “The Evening with Vladimir Solovyov” and claimed they were receiving a lot of inquiries from former US President Donald Trump’s supporters looking for Russian citizenship. However, there was no confirmation on whether the inquiries actually converted into positive Russian immigration.

These types of public conversations within state media are commonplace in Russia as they try to askew their citizens’ perception of what’s happening in the war. To appease those experiencing discontent, they would usually provide propagandist content that shows the advantages of being “loyal” and proud Russians.