Vladimir Putin is serious: This week the Kremlin despot announced the partial mobilization of its armed forces after Russia had recently suffered severe setbacks in the Ukraine war . But apparently many men are no longer behind the President and are already making plans to avoid being drafted into the military . In addition, Putin must be afraid of a new competitor who was actually one of his allies.
Vladimir Putin soon replaced by Wagner boss Yevgeny Prigozhin?
Christo Grozev from the investigative research network "Bellingcat" now claims this on Twitter. He published two short videos on the short message service, in which Yevgeny Prigozhin, known as "Putin's cook", climbs out of a plane at night and, in the second recording, talks to soldiers. They apparently belong to the Wagner mercenary group, which the 61-year-old leads. Grozev writes: "Prigozhin continues to post videos showing him in his role as supreme commander (in this case, at that 3 a.m. meeting with the commanders). The Wagnerians tell me they would choose him over Putin anytime, and I have the impression that he smells blood." Anders Ostlund from the American think tank CEPA (Center for European Policy Analysis) can also imagine that Prigozhin will soon seize power. He points out that Prigozhin has the Wagner Group, Putin has the Rosgvardia, the Russian National Guard. "It could be an interesting game after Russia's defeat in Ukraine."
Prigozhin continues leaking videos of him in commander-in-chief role (on this one, doing that 3 am meeting your commanders thing.— Christo Grozev (@christogrozev) September 22, 2022
Wagnerites tell me they'd vote for him over Putin any time, and it seems to me he smells blood. pic.twitter.com/8pvIbmMgQt
Prigozhin has his pretorian guard in Wagner, Putin has his in Rosgvardia. Where are FSB, SVR, GRU and the Girkin-style nationalists in this? Could be an interesting game following Russia's defeat in Ukraine. https://t.co/M8eLMDmWxW— Anders Ostlund - Ї (@andersostlund) September 22, 2022
Who is Yevgeny Prigozhin?
Just a few days ago, video footage of Yevgeny Prigozhin recruiting criminals in a prison for the Ukraine war caused a stir . The Wagner group is said to even recruit cannibals and rapists for the front.
Yevgeny Prigozhin was born in Leningrad in 1961. According to the "Süddeutsche Zeitung", he was in prison for nine years until 1990, among other things for robbery. He then sold hot dogs and opened two fancy restaurants. He entertained Putin, supplied schools and the Russian army with his catering company. According to "Bild", Prigozhin is said to own a private jet, a million-dollar yacht and several noble villas and to help with Putin's propaganda on social networks.