The Russians react with defiance, anger and anxiety as a new phase of the war approaches

Russia’s tightly controlled state media reacted angrily to Western tank shipments pledged to Ukraine this week — and some Muscovites share that fury.

Sergey told CNN in the Russian capital that Ukrainian tanks would “hold back our forces”. “But we will win regardless,” he said, repeating the Kremlin narrative that Ukraine is a puppet government in the West.

An elderly woman added, “It will lead to another world war.” “We remember World War II very well, when I was a kid. No one will win another world war.”

But this is not the only spectacle found on the streets of Moscow. A number of Russians have expressed their indignation at the conflict, and some have directly criticized President Vladimir Putin.

“It’s disgusting… they should never have started the war,” said one of the women, calling Putin “guilty” of the invasion.

“There is a lack of public information,” said another, expressing frustration with the pro-war propaganda filling the Russian airwaves. “Things need to be explained to people… It would be good if experts start expressing their true opinions instead of obeying orders, both from the government and Putin.”

Others feel the time is right to leave Russia. I think this is a political war, not a people’s war. Another woman said, “Let them sort this out.”

“What are we supposed to do? Our opinion means squat squat.”

A film student who has friends fighting in the conflict said, “I’m about to cry here. I wish this special military operation never started in the first place, this war, and that human life was truly valued.”

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