Financial TimesFinancial Times

‘They break the rules of war’: Ukraine conflict fuels Russian military brutality

By John Paul Rathbone

03 Jun 2022 · 4 min read

Putin’s growing authoritarianism undermines the modernisation he once sought for the armed forcesThe mobile phone of Lieutenant Yuri Shalaev shines a cold light on Russia’s military culture and the alleged human rights abuses it has spawned in Ukraine.

Shalaev was deployed as a motorised rifle platoon officer in late February and was captured by Ukrainian soldiers in April. The videos and text messages on his phone were later turned into a 24-minute documentary by Ukrainian journalists.

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