Staunton, July 15 – Vladimir Putin’s recent essay on Ukraine and his decision to publish it not in the mass media but on the Kremlin portal, an indication that its contents are state policy, shows that he is preparing to go to war because he believes he must strike before others launch an attack on himself and Russia, the General SVR telegram channel says.
Putin’s words, the telegram channel which offers itself as a reflection of the views of Russia’s foreign intelligence service, were directed at both a domestic and foreign audience to justify military action against Ukraine as one of the means of restoring “justice” (https://t.me/generalsvr/417).
Moreover, the channel continues, it is the latest indication of a standing principle of Putin’s, the idea that “if he does not act first, then others will attack him.” And he is concerned less with a direct military attack, something he considers improbable, than a hybrid offensive by the West given that he firmly believes Russia is surrounded by “a ring of enemies.”
Another reason behind Kremlin leader’s commitment to using force against Ukraine is that today, “practically the entire force lobby, including Patrushev and Shoygu, who are not otherwise close to one another although they are never hostile to each other, form a united front when it comes to supporting Putin’s militarist initiatives.”
“Now,” the telegram channel continues, “a genuinely complex situation has taken shape when the sick ideas of the president are supported by a majority of his entourage.” They are united in believing that Russia is subject to attack and it will not be hard for Patrushev to arrange things so they will continue to believe that.
The many in Russia and abroad who argue that there won’t be a war repeatedly “underestimate” Putin and fail to recognize what drives him. “Putin plays by rules which he establishes and thus to expect predictability from him is a major error,” the General SVR channel continues.
He really is committed to using force and believes that works to his advantage as long as he strikes first. Tragically, however, in this case in particular, the channel warns. “an attempt to realize any of his existing plans will lead to catastrophic consequences.” But there are compelling reasons to think he will go ahead.
According to General SVR, “Putin today is a seriously ill and psychologically unstable individual, but that only makes the situation worse and creates the possibility that he will push the country into the abyss.”