The Russian military is regaining prominence in the war of Russian aggression in Ukraine.
Marion NadlerRedaktor news
Can Yevgeny Prigozhin (61) bury his dreams of power and influence in Russia in the future? According to it Institute for the Study of War (ISW) Kremlin boss Vladimir Putin, 70, wants to fire the head of the Wagner mercenary group.
Prigozhin was praised many times Sergey Surovikhin (56) Already on January 11, he was demoted by the commander of the Russian army to the deputy of the new army chief Valery Gerasimov (67). A few days later, the Ministry of Defense announced far-reaching reforms to expand and reorganize the Russian Armed Forces. In the process, Prigogine gets a kick out of it too.
His promise to the Kremlin to capture Bagmut for Russia is now likely to become a problem for Prigozhin. After months of fighting, a completely destroyed city in Ukraine is still not in Russian hands. Apparently, Moscow has lost patience with Wagner’s mercenaries, and now the regular army is on the way.
Major Losses: The video reportedly shows the graves of Wagner mercenaries(00:34)
The Defense Ministry mentions Wagner only in passing
In addition, the Ukrainian secret service recently reported on a deal between Surovik and Prigozhin that helped Wagner troops acquire heavy weapons. That doesn’t seem to have gone down well with the Kremlin and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, 67.
Although Wagner mercenaries continued to contribute to the Russian war effort in Ukraine, their importance diminished significantly during the reforms. This is clear from the beginning captured the city of SoledarNot far from Buckmutt, Wagner makes no mention of militia.
Only after pressure from Prigozhin did the Ministry of Defense mention the mercenaries in a statement. According to Wagner’s interpretation, the success of the soledar was largely due to the mercenaries. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, 55, indirectly accused Prigozhin of publicly fomenting the conflict between Wagner and the Russian defense minister. The Kremlin is fed up with the “hypocritical” rhetoric of the man known as “Putin’s chef”.
Prigozhin has tried several times in the past to portray the Russian army as dependent on Wagner’s forces. According to ISW, the reality is different: without the support of the Russian military in logistics and weapons, Wagner did not stand a chance. Military experts paint a picture of a disorganized force. In addition, Prigozhin finds it difficult to recruit new fighters – even though he is already heavily involved in Russia’s prisons.
Prigogine’s most influential beliefs were shattered
At the same time, Ukrainian secret service and elected Kremlin officials are reporting the possibility of a second wave of mobilization in Russia. Additionally, according to ISW, the Russian military has been reviewing its professionalism and its chains of command in recent weeks.
Wagner would also lose importance here if he could manage a severe shortage of troops with the help of additional men. Mercenaries were also used in Ukraine, as the invasion turned out to be significantly more expensive for the Russian military than initially thought. The British Ministry of Defense estimates that Wagner is deploying 50,000 fighters in Ukraine.
ISW’s hard decision: Gone are Prigozhin’s hopes of seizing control of Russian military affairs from Commander Gerasimov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu (67). The ambitious businessman’s vanity burst like a soap bubble.
Prigogine reaches the limits of his power
“The recent decline in Prigogine’s grace and influence may reflect the very real limits of his power,” the conference of American think tanks said. The former Putin friend’s group is still not officially recognized in Russia. Russian criminal law prohibits the operation of mercenary unions.
But all this shows is that the Russian armed forces in Ukraine are getting angry. The new commander, Valery Gerasimov, is very popular with Wagner’s mercenaries. Prigozhin reportedly did not like Gerasimo’s profile, with his fighters insulting the army chief in a video late last year. The Daily Beast reported.
Prigogine has not given up yet: He has now launched a series of campaigns in which he tries to cast himself as Russia’s self-sacrificing hero in a crusade against petty and corrupt Russian officials. According to a report “build” status as an independent army.
ISW assumes that Prigozhin will continue to be a vocal critic, but that this will lose weight as a result of the removal of the Kremlin. Whether the ruckus continues will also depend on how much Gerasimov and the Russian military succeed in the coming months.
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