This article from the Daily Mail caught my eyes – Adviser to the Kremlin breaks ranks to say he ‘cannot comprehend’ Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and says ‘many of us are depressed’.
As James Angleton said, we are in the wilderness of mirrors. And care must be taken to interpret what is going on.
There is information here. Just not in the way it’s intended.
Kortunov’s statement cannot be taken at face value. It looks like he is basically an insider. Part of the institutions of the Kremlin.
For comparison, when was the last time you heard someone in America’s DoD come out publicly and say in such striking terms a core Biden policy is wrong? When was the last time a higher-up at CNN came out and said Biden is destroying America?
It is inconceivable.
Whatever sort of control “the swamp” of DC has on thought, is doubled, tripled, or ten fold true for the people of Moscow.
So, yes, normal Russian people may be upset, afraid, or protesting. But an insider? To come out so stridently against a core Putin policy? No. This is hard for me to believe.
Moreso, look at the timing of his statement. It comes a week into the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine. While everything is up in the air. While the Kremlin is winning.
If we put aside the pro-Ukraine propaganda, and I certainly don’t blame them for it, but it does muddy the analysis, but put it aside a moment, and look at the facts. Russia has planned this offensive for years. They are following a methodical plan. They are winning.
Consider Roggio’s excellent article for further information on that.
When Kortunov says that the Kremlin’s invasion wasn’t “feasible” and isn’t “possible” – he is simply wrong and lying.
But moreover, people don’t survive in politics by being naive dummies. They read the political winds. And he is coming out against Putin even as Putin advances his armies. I have seen no serious evidence, putting aside wishful thinking, that Putin is about to be taken down from within by anti-Putin Russians. And if he isn’t taken out, and is arresting protesters, as he unleashes his army, it stands to reason he will have more power domestically. This is when Russians must be most silent for their own security.
I have one Russian friend, who is in America, who won’t even write again.st Putin on Facebook now because he thinks the KGB will read it and prevent him from visiting family in Russia
And yet we have Kortunov, the insider, on the eve of victory as Putin is coming down against dissent, saying Putin is making a big mistake.
No Sir. I do not believe it.
So let’s continue this reasoning a little further. Kortunov is lying, presumably with KGB support. Why? What is he trying to achieve?
He wants the West to think there is hope of stopping Putin with limited tactical measures. That if we just wait this out Putin may fall. That, rather than taking strong measures to defend ourselves, we must be friendly to them, to encourage the moderates, like Kortunov.
This is an old game: Be nice to us. Encourage the moderates. We have plenty of moderates in here. Really!
The most concerning part of this sham to me is what it says about Putin’s standing. He is so confident in his success, and feels so secure in Russia, that he will actually encourage Russians into saying he is about to fall.
If you are actually about to fall, you don’t do that. You only do that if you feel supremely powerful.