Expert: – Indicates that Vladimir Putin is very unhappy

Expert: – Indicates that Vladimir Putin is very unhappy
Expert: – Indicates that Vladimir Putin is very unhappy
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On Sunday, it became known that Russian President Vladimir Putin is making changes to his government after he began a new presidential term. Among other things, Defense Minister Sergej Sjojgu has been replaced.

Professor at the Staff School, Tormod Heier, believes that the news to the outside is a sign that conditions inside the Kremlin are much more strained than the Russian authorities give the impression.

– Because when the head of the Russian Ministry of Defense is dismissed, it indicates that Putin is very dissatisfied with the lack of progress that has been made in the Ukraine war. And that is understandable, says Heier to ABC Nyheter.

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In recent months, Ukraine has had a shortage of ammunition and weapons. Heier is surprised that the Russian forces have not had more results.

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– In that sense, the dismissal can be seen as an expression of frustration within the Kremlin that the Russian forces have not been able to get a bigger payoff. Now the window of opportunity is closing as US defense equipment becomes more prominent on the Ukrainian side.

– This was a strong signal of dissatisfaction

Shojgu, who has been Minister of Defense for twelve years, is being replaced by former Deputy Prime Minister Andrej Belousov. Heier believes the change is not very surprising.

– After all, Shoigu’s second-in-command, Timur Ivanov, was fired and accused of corruption two weeks ago. This was a strong signal of displeasure, perhaps from Putin himself, but at least from the security services. Because by removing one of Shoigu’s closest supporters in the Russian state apparatus, Shoigu’s status, reputation and position were also seriously weakened, the professor believes.

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However, Shoigu does not disappear from the Russian top management. He has been appointed head of the country’s National Security Council.

– Putin has painted himself into a corner

Heier believes that Russia’s defense has lost much of its credibility and operational capability in recent years.

Tormod Heier is professor of military strategy and operations. Photo: NTB

– Shoigu’s credibility was further weakened after the famous Wagner uprising in June 2023, where former Wagner leader Yevgeny Prigozhin accused the defense leadership of incompetence and lack of leadership after the victory in Bakhmut, he says.

– Cost what it will cost

Heier does not think the change will have any consequences for Russia’s warfare in Ukraine.

– The installation of Belousov must rather be seen as an expression of Russia’s intention to continue this war, whatever the cost, as long as victory is within reach. The appointment is thus also an expression that Putin has painted himself into a corner, and that he now needs help from economists in Russia to channel enough resources into the military, but without it causing unrest in a civil society that also expects increased standard of living in the coming years.

The article is in Norwegian

Tags: Expert Vladimir Putin unhappy

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