Kherson retreat causes rift in Kremlin circles – ISW

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Russia’s withdrawal from Kherson City is igniting an ideological fracture between pro-war figures and Russian President Vladimir Putin, eroding confidence in Putin’s commitment and ability to deliver his war promises, the Institute for Study of War writes in its latest report.

Particularly, he was openly criticized by pro-war ideologue Aleksandr Dugin, who noted that Putin as the “autocrat” has the obligation to defend “Russian cities” or “face the fate of ‘king of the rains,’ a reference to Sir James Frazer’s The Golden Bough in which a king was killed because he was unable to deliver rain amidst a drought,” ISW writes.

Chief propagandist Solovyov was not happy either and called for full mobilization and the firing of incompetent officials following the Russian surrender of Kherson City. As well, Wagner-affiliated channels are also turning on the Kremlin following the loss of Kherson Oblast, which may further elevate the influence of the siloviki faction, ISW writes.

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