On Wednesday, Vladimir Putin was so desperate to save his disastrous war with Ukraine that he took it to a new, more terrifying level: He threatened to use nukes. But he also had another desperate plan up his sleeve: He announced he was calling in hundreds of thousands of reservists to go up against Ukraine’s perhaps surprisingly aggressive forces. Many of them don’t want to go, as witness a certain popular Google search.
As per Newsweek, after Putin’s announcement, a certain phrase was popular on Russia’s search engines: “how to break an arm at home.” To put it into perspective, Google Trends rank search terms from zero to 100 over any given amount of time. Before Putin’s speech, the phrase had a zero. After it, it had a 38.
Indeed, in the last couple months, the war has been going so bad for Russian forces that soldiers, desperate to not be killed for a war that seemed increasingly misguided, have been grievously injuring themselves. Those that aren’t threatening to hurt themselves are threatening to blow up commanders.
Not only are reservists potentially looking for ways to get out of a likely suicide mission, but Russia has seen a mass exodus of people hoping to get away from an out-of-control regime. Meanwhile, instead of condemning Putin’s nuclear threats, former president — and fan of his initial invasion, anyway — Donald Trump is amplifying it while moaning about how he’s no longer in office.