Conditions are ripe for Kremlin rats to offer secrets for safe passage out
Is the Putin-Prighozen spat just a distraction for Wagner to seize control of Belarus in a coup?
We are agreed!
For the moment, the fight is still on between Putin and Prigozhin and I, for one, don't even know what round it's in. Much more to come. What the CIA needs is volunteers, recruits, who can provide information on into the future rather than defectors, who can only tell us what has already happened. Useful, of course, but an active source is better. Remember that Putin and Prigozhin still have a lot in common, including that the US is the Main Enemy, as it was throughout the Cold War. These two thugs have never known a Russia when it was otherwise.
There is no evidence that Penkovsky had any idea of the Kremlin's plan to deploy missiles to Cuba.
Jeff, that the FSB and GRU are pale shadows of their forebears appears to be one of the conclusions to draw from the weekend's farrago. If Moscow's spy agencies can't detect and forestall Wagner's mutiny then they are incompetent or playing a complex, murky long game. Either way, wouldn't they be untrustworthy sources? It so, how much worth could be attached to a FSB officer who, say, defects with details about Russia's intentions towards the Zaporzhizhia Nuclear Power Plant (something that worries me far more than issues over nuclear weapons)?
Penkovsky never said a word about Cuba. He certainly didn't tip off anyone to the deployment of Soviet missiles!
During a dissolution, the nuclear command cannot be established for certain as competing elements of Russian military may render that command insecure.
The issue is what safeguards has been put in place for securing the nuclear warheads in the federated states which might seek independence? Ukraine surrendered its nuclear warheads with an assurance that Russian, Britain and the US would protect its sovereignty; on gaining independence, these states may not denuclearize considering Russian invasion of Ukraine and the assurance given did not include any commitment to the defense of Ukraine.
"It’s time to twist the blade." Perhaps. Or perhaps time to get nuclear talks back on track and to end the war in Ukraine and set us up for a comprehensive deal with China to take care of Taiwan and North Korea and even Syria. Let us make a deal - TIME.
Prigozhin's Fort Sumter moment created images inimical to Putin's authority and seeming invincibility and leaves us wondering how he could have missed the warning signs. US intelligence has a potential goldmine in his thoroughly monitored defensive game, a moment by moment instant replay of Putin's responses and non-responses to the crisis that reveals the flaws in his fail safe systems.