Russia's 'Shortcomings' Clearly Seen in Ukraine, Moscow Politician Admits

  • Russian pundits are questioning the Kremlin's approach to the war against Ukraine as the war passes its one-year anniversary.
  • Pundit Andrey Gurulyov suggested that Russia would be unable to defeat NATO in a conflict.
  • Putin has threatened nuclear war against NATO allies multiple times, however support for Ukraine continues.

Russian pundits are beginning to question the Kremlin's approach to Russia's war against Ukraine.

Throughout the war, the Kremlin has initiated an array of strategies, such as a partial mobilization to add thousands of soldiers to Russia's troops. Russian President Vladimir Putin also has threatened nuclear war several times against North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) allies, including the United States. Russian state media previously supported the claims, but now pundits are beginning to question if it's the best approach as the year passes its one-year anniversary.

On March 6, Russian pundits appeared on a panel with TV host Vladimir Solovyov during his show "An Evening with Solovyov". Some of them publicly expressed doubt for the Russian military's capabilities against NATO.

War-ravaged Ukraine; the Kremlin
In the main photo, people stand near a Ukraine flag and look out over the war-ravaged nation. Russian pundits have started to question the Kremlin, inset, in its strategy, referring to some of the decisions as "shortcomings". Getty

Solovyov praised the troops fighting in the Russian military, but questions of Russian society were doing enough to ensure the troops succeed on the battlefield.

"Can our army, in its current state, with its current numbers of people and with our military-industrial complex, fulfill its goals—which are not about the war against Ukraine, which does not exist—but against NATO?" Solovyov asked.

Later in the clip, State Duma deputy Andrey Gurulyov, a former leader in the Russian military who has formerly supported the threat of nuclear war against NATO according to a report by the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA), answered Solovyov's question with a doubtful tone.

Gurulyov criticized Russia's approach to the war rather than the soldiers fighting on the front lines.

"We clearly see all current shortcomings of the nation, not of the Armed Forces," Gurulyov said.

Gurulyov expressed doubts about how Russia could respond if NATO were to continue its support of Ukraine or become more involved in the war.

"All of us understand very well that we are fighting against NATO, we've discussed it on many occasions," Gurulyov said. "I am asked: 'Can we defeat NATO?' If you use math and calculate the correlation of forces and means, in the best-case scenario, we can merely defend ourselves."

Gurulyov's stance on nuclear war seems to have changed drastically. In June, the pundit and Putin ally appeared on Russian TV show "Vremya Pakazhet" and suggested that London would be the first city to be hit by Russia if World War 3 were to break out.

The Russian government has threatened NATO members in various ways, with Newsweek reporting that Putin has threatened nuclear war at least 35 times. However, instead of scaring NATO allies away from supporting Ukraine, support for the war-stricken nation continues.

Instead of backing down, allies have continued to supply Ukraine with funds and munitions to continue its fight against Russia, including tanks, missiles and other types of military equipment that have drastically impacted Ukraine's performance on the battlefield.

Newsweek reached out to Russian Federation by email for comment and to NATO's press office through its online comment request portal.