Wednesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin stated that 300,000 Russian reservists will be called up as part of a dramatic escalation of Russia's war in Ukraine.
Putin talked in Russian. The following quotations were translated by Reuters.
"In such a circumstance, I deem it necessary to make the following choice, which is completely commensurate with the risks we confront. In order to protect our motherland, its sovereignty and territorial integrity, and to ensure the safety of our people and those in the liberated territories, I believe it necessary to support the defense ministry and general staff's proposal to conduct a partial mobilization in the Russian Federation."
"We are discussing partial mobilization." In other words, only people who are presently serving in the reserves and, above all, those who have served in the armed forces possess the necessary military abilities and experience. Only those will be required to serve in the military."
Fighting the West
"Today our armed forces are operating across a frontline that exceeds 1,000 km, opposing not only neo-Nazi formations but the entire military machine of the collective West."
"NATO conducts reconnaissance in the southern region of Russia. Washington, London, and Brussels exert direct pressure on Kyiv to initiate military operations against our country. They are openly advocating for Russia's military defeat by all means."
"Nuclear extortion has also been employed. We are discussing not just the West-encouraged bombardment of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power station, which threatens to trigger a nuclear disaster, but also the words of senior NATO members regarding the possibility and acceptability of deploying nuclear weapons against Russia.
"I would want to warn individuals who make such claims about Russia that Russia possesses a variety of destructive capabilities, some of which are more advanced than those of NATO nations. When the territorial integrity of our nation is challenged, we will employ every available resource to defend Russia and its people.
There is no bluff here. Those who attempt to blackmail us with nuclear weapons should be aware that the weathervane can tip in their direction."
"Parliaments in the People's Republics of the Donbas as well as the civil-military administrations in the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia areas have agreed to organize referendums on the future of the territories and have requested Russia's cooperation. We will do all possible to create safe conditions for the conduct of referendums so that the will of the people can be expressed.
"We will support the decision on their future, which will be made by the majority of residents in the Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson."
Western Attempts to "Destroy" Russia
"The West has violated every boundary in its aggressive anti-Russian agenda. We hear frequent threats against our nation and people."
"This West seeks to weaken, divide, and ultimately destroy our nation." They are already claiming that they were able to dismantle the Soviet Union in 1991 and that the time has come for Russia to dissolve as well. And they've been planning this for quite some time."