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Russia Remains On The Brink Of Civil War


Despite having quelled a mutiny, Russia is still not far from the edge of a civil war. The conflict between Wagner's head Prigozhin and Putin’s defense ministry is reconcilable only in the form of a major concession to Prigozhin that would give him power Putin will not want him to have. This was only the first mutiny, and likely not the last.

By way of context, Wagner mercenaries (with zero resistance) made their way from their positions in Ukraine across the border to Rostov-on-Don (in southern Russia). There, they took control of Russian military headquarters, took two Russian generals hostage, and then pushed on toward Moscow.

Under normal circumstances, Prigozhin would have been... canceled. But these aren’t usual circumstances. Since his forces are primarily responsible for any gains made in the war in Ukraine, he has been a necessary evil for Putin, and along the way, has amassed far too much power. That was made clear by how the mutiny was “quashed”. It wasn’t really quashed at all; a deal was made with Prigozhin in which he withdrew to Belarus (because Lukashenko actually brokered the deal) and all charges against him were dropped and there was no punishment at all (neither for Prigozhin nor his mercenaries) - yet. In other words, both were forced to make a concession. 

So, there was a peaceful resolution here, and it forebodes a major crisis for Putin who will have a very difficult time regaining the power he has lost. In an attempt to regain some…

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