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Putin's Spy Chiefs At the Receiving End of His Fury Over Ukrainian Disaster

Alexei Nikolsky/SPUTNIK, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP

Guy wrote earlier this week about Russian intelligence officials warning that their military faces disaster in Ukraine. The invasion has not really gone according to plan. Russian forces are stalled. Major cities have not been taken; the capital of Kyiv has not been taken. The 40-mile convoy outside of the capital, which is supposedly the force that will deliver the death blow, has not moved in days. The Russian death toll ranges are all over the place. The Ukrainians claim that at least 12,000 Russians have been killed. Other estimates are in the 4-8,000 range. The truth is we don’t know, and we may never know. 


We have reports that hospitals in southern Belarus are absolutely overrun with Russian war dead. They’re filled to the brim, with some suggesting that the Russian military has mobile crematoriums to mask the true death count. There are also suspicions that mass graves for dead Russian troops have been created. If true, it means that the Ukrainian estimates are more accurate and that the Russian death toll is catastrophic. 

Russia has not been able to gain air superiority, which has allowed Ukrainian defenders to inflict heavy losses against their Russian invaders. We’ll see how long that lasts. They’re holding, and that’s a good thing. 

Did Russian intelligence know this and not tell Putin out of fear of upsetting him? Either way, some heads are going to roll. One person who could be a prime scapegoat candidate is Putin's top military adviser, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. For now, it’s his top spy chiefs who have been placed under house arrest (via Daily Mail): 


Vladimir Putin has placed the head of the FSB's foreign service and his deputy under house arrest after blaming them for intelligence failings that saw his army handed a series of embarrassing defeats in Ukraine, it has been claimed.

Andrey Soldatov, a respected author on the Russian secret services, said sources inside the FSB told him that Sergey Beseda, 68, head of the agency's foreign service, has been placed under arrest on Putin's orders.

Also arrested is Anatoly Bolyukh, Beseda's deputy, according to Soldatov, who said Putin is 'truly unhappy' with the agency - which he ran before becoming president.

Putin is said to blame the agency for intelligence which assured him ahead of the invasion that Russian forces would face only token resistance from the Ukrainian army and that Ukrainians themselves were eager to be rid of their leaders.

Among the reasons for the repressions are the embezzlement of funds allocated for subversive and undercover work in Ukraine, as well as deliberately false information about the political situation in Ukraine. 

The FSB security service allegedly handed him intelligence suggesting that Ukraine was weak, riddled with neo-Nazi groups, and would give up easily if attacked. 


That hasn’t happened. They thought they could roll in there, take key positions in less than a week, and brush off the new sanctions slapped against them. It’s now a new ballgame. This will be manpower intensive, which is the case with all urban-based warfare. Russia mobilized a total of 190,000 men for this operation. That’s not going to be enough. 

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