Perhaps Intelligence Agencies Shouldn’t Have Facebook Accounts | National Review

Perhaps Intelligence Agencies Shouldn’t Have Facebook Accounts | National Review


Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a meeting with members of the Security Council via a video link at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow, Russia March 3, 2022.
(Sputnik/Andrey Gorshkov/Kremlin via Reuters)

As much as I would like to believe that Russia’s elites are about to attempt to kill or overthrow Vladimir Putin and end the invasion of Ukraine in order to restore economic ties, as the Chief Directorate of Intelligence for the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine asserts on Facebook, I find it unlikely to occur. The Google translation of the Facebook post follows:

Poisoning, sudden illness, accident – Russia’s elite is considering removing Putin

A group of influential people in opposition to Vladimir Putin is being formed among the Russian business and political elite.

A certain part of the Russian political elite of the Russian Federation considers as the successor of Putin – the director of FSB Alexander Bortnikov. It is noteworthy that Bortnikov has recently fallen out of favor with the Russian dictator. The official reason for the disgrace of the head of the FSB – fatal miscalculations in the war against Ukraine.

It was Bortnikov and his department who were responsible for analyzing the mood of the Ukrainian population and the capacity of the Ukrainian army.

It is known that Bortnikov and some other influential members of the Russian elite are considering various options for removing Putin from power. In particular, poisoning, sudden illness, or other “accident” is not excluded.

It is possible that these processes are connected with the recent “downpour” of the location of Chechen units in the north of Kyiv.

The information came from the Russian side. Probably, this is how the FSB leadership is trying to weaken Kadyrov’s influence. It may also be an attempt to establish cooperation with the Ukrainian authorities in advance, bypassing the current leadership of the Russian Federation.

Today’s Morning Jolt is all about the oligarchs in Russia, and the short version is that these guys are loyal lackeys of Putin who have the privilege of their enormous wealth and run their various companies and industries specifically because they’re the least likely to ever turn against Putin. Oligarchs who have disagreed or disobeyed Putin in the past have ended up dead. (A lot of Putin critics have “died under mysterious circumstances.”)

But let’s assume the Chief Directorate of Intelligence for the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine has received reliable reports that an effort to depose Putin is in progress, and that indeed, a group of Russian elites really are plotting to remove Putin. For this plot to work, the plotters absolutely must have the element of surprise. Those Russian elites would need to corner Putin, cut him off from loyalists, and remove him from power (and perhaps execute him) very quickly – or they would need to get close enough to him to poison him. Putin lashes out at anyone who he suspects of any disloyalty at all.

In other words, the last thing these anti-Putin Russian plotters would need would be Ukrainian intelligence revealing the whole thing is in the works on Facebook.

This is more likely a Ukrainian effort to stir up even greater paranoia in Putin, and to make him feel he cannot trust anyone.





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About the Author

Tony Beasley
Tony Beasley writes for the Local News, US and the World Section of ANH.