Russian FSB ‘Whistleblower’ claims Putin’s War will be ‘Total Failure’
A published report insinuates Russia will fail in its invasion of Ukraine; specifically, Putin’s war will be a “total failure.” The report, which was published Friday, allegedly came from a Russian FSB agent.
The Daily Mail reports that an analyst from the investigative journalism group Bellingcat showed the report to FSB sources who they had “no doubt it was written by a colleague.” In the over 2,000-word report, the agent writes Russia’s forces have “no options to victory, only defeat.”
The Kremlin has only acknowledged the deaths of 498 of its soldiers, but the FSB’s report claims over 10,000 Russians could already have been killed in Ukraine; the number is similar to one provided by Kyiv officials.
Daily Mail reports:
The whistleblower also claimed the FSB – Russia‘s successor to the Soviet Union’s feared KGB – was being blamed for the failure of Moscow’s forces to make significant progress into Ukraine, despite being given no advanced warning of the invasion.
The report also said Russia’s government has lost contact with a number of its divisions that have been sent into Ukraine, meaning they had no accurate death toll.
It came as former Russian Foreign Minister Andrei Kozyrev insisted that Putin is not ‘insane’ but ‘immoral’ as he said the president believes his invasion is logical because he has started to believe his false propaganda that Ukrainians are ‘neo-Nazis’.
The report also said even if Putin succeeds in taking out Ukrainian President Zelensky, Moscow still would be unable to occupy Ukraine. “Even with minimum resistance from the Ukrainians we’d need over 500,000 people, not including supply and logistics workers,” the author claims.
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Saudi Arabia-Israel Deal Remains Biden’s Win to Lose
The Biden administration has recently become very vocally supportive of the Abraham Accords. At this week’s speech to AIPAC, Secretary of State Antony Blinken stated that the administration plans to have staff dedicated to expand the Abraham Accords, and also called normalization between Saudi Arabia and Israel a “real national interest” of the United States. Outgoing US Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides recently called such relations “hugely important” to American interests, and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan reportedly discussed the prospect of normalization with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Two unnamed US officials told Axios that the Biden administration would be pushing for closer Saudi Arabia-Israel relations in the next six to seven months. This is tracking with Israeli foreign minister Eli Cohen’s statement that there is a “good chance” of a Saudi Arabia-Israel deal “in half a year, or in the coming year.”
Saudi Arabia and Israel appear to continue to inch closer to normalization. Saudi Arabia continues to improve its textbooks regarding their portrayal of Israel and Jews, and Saudi Arabia and Israel are in “very complex negotiations” to secure hajj flights of Israeli Arabs to Mecca.
But while the Biden administration is setting high expectations for a breakthrough, its uncompromising positions on issues of Saudi and Israeli national security may inhibit a grand deal for Saudi Arabia-Israel normalization.
Resuming Negotiations with the Palestinians
First, the Biden administration’s continued obsession with a two-state solution could upend a deal. Secretary Blinken suggested that progress on the Abraham Accords should be linked to a “two-state solution” for Israel and the Palestinians in his speech this week to AIPAC (and mentioned a “two-state solution” or “two states” a whopping eight times). Both the Biden administration and Saudi Arabia have expressed that they want Saudi Arabia-Israel normalization in exchange in part for Israel to restart negotiations with the Palestinians that would result in a “separation” of Israel from the Palestinians. At the recent Arab League Summit, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) stated that “the Palestinian issue was and remains the central issue for Arab countries, and is at the top of the kingdom’s priorities.”
However, Palestinian nationalism in its current form is toxic at its core to Israel, and will likely be a bridge too far for Netanyahu’s government. If the Biden administration makes Saudi Arabia-Israel normalization contingent on substantial advancement towards a two-state solution, it is unlikely that a Saudi Arabia-Israel deal will materialize.
Overhauling Judicial Reform
Another example of the Biden administration getting in its own way in securing a deal is that it also wants Netanyahu’s government to abandon its judicial reform initiative in exchange for normalization. With Blinken stating that “we welcome efforts to find consensus on any [judicial] reforms,” the Biden administration is signaling that it will continue to meddle in this affair. If the If the Biden administration makes abandonment or revision of judicial reform as a condition for normalization, the deal will likely fail given Netanyahu government’s plan to continue such reform.
Saudi Arabia Wants To Increase Nuclear, Defense Ties With United States
The Biden administration could also come up short on normalization if it fails to reach an agreement with Saudi Arabia on nuclear and defense guarantees that it wants in exchange.
First, Saudi Arabia reportedly wants the United States to help jointly develop Saudi Arabia’s civilian nuclear program in exchange for normalization. Previous US-Saudi negotiations on this issue stalled over Saudi demands to produce nuclear fuel in Saudi Arabia. But if the Biden administration does not come to an agreement on this, the US will likely be leaving money (and influence) on the table, as Saudi Arabia will pursue nuclear cooperation elsewhere. Saudi Arabia’s relationship with China and Pakistan are cases in point.
Israeli officials are split on the issue of Saudi Arabia gaining nuclear technology. Israel’s energy minister recently opposedthe idea of Saudi Arabia having a civilian nuclear program. However, Israel’s National Security Advisor did not outright reject the idea of Saudi Arabia having civilian nuclear technology, but rather suggested that such a move should be coordinated with Israel. Additionally, even though the Saudi request reportedly includes the right to enrich uranium independently, Israeli officials have stated that this is a mitigatable concern.
Additionally, MBS wants the Biden administration to sign a US-Saudi defense treaty and unfreeze several weapons agreements previously put on ice by the Biden administration, according to Israeli press. MBS is also seeking improved military coordination between the US and Saudi Arabia, access to US munitions for the Saudi Air Force, and to gain access to complex US military platforms, according to Axios.
It remains to be seen if the Biden administration can come to an agreement on the nuclear and defense issues. But if these remain at an impasse, they would significantly harm the prospects of Saudi Arabia-Israel normalization.
The Biden administration stands on the precipice of securing a huge foreign policy win by securing a Saudi Arabia-Israel normalization deal. But while Netanyahu was prepared to forgo annexation of Judea and Samaria to secure deals with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan (and was contemplating doing so to get a deal with Saudi Arabia in December), the Biden administration’s demands on Israel for a two–state solution and dropping judicial reform efforts could prove to be a bridge too far. The Biden administration must also somehow make an agreement with Saudi Arabia on its defense requests in order for such normalization to have a chance at survival. But as Saudi Arabia recently promised cuts to oil production, met with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, and is getting closer to China, the Biden administration faces significant headwinds.
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March 8, 2022 at 3:13 pm
I pray for the poor innocent people in Ukraine that are caught in the crossfire.May God in heaven please help them.
A Concerned American
March 11, 2022 at 10:23 pm
I’m sure it was quite obvious to the Russian military while even planning these operations that they could not sustain any form of occupation even if they got the Ukrainian government to fall. Ukraine is a nation of 44 million. Even 1% fighting a guerrilla war is 440,000 people, supported from behind by a much larger number. Ukraine is bigger than the size of France with many hiding places for guerrilla bases and a support network.
The biggest worry at this point is if the Russians don’t succeed, will they pound the Ukrainians day and night into submission? Or will the brewing ‘revolt’ within Russia extend well enough to topple Putin and his cronies? What about the sequence for the unleashing of tactical nuclear missiles? Strategic nuclear missiles? Tactical on the heads of the Ukrainians? On the heads of some NON-NATO country that is supplying weapons to the Ukrainians (e.g. Finland)?
And why hasn’t the media spoken about the crimes of the Ukrainian government and army in the Donbass region for the past eight years? The Ukrainians are NOT the ‘good guys’ in all this either. BOTH SIDES are guilty of criminal action that has led to this situation, albeit Putin is the one who invaded openly this time (and took the Crimea a few years ago).
It’s NOT in the core US interest to fan the fires here. The solution for everyone seems to be to “Finlandize” Ukraine, i.e. turn it into a buffer state, hand the Donbass and Crimea to Russia officially, and get a guarantee of non-intervention by any side in Ukraine (i.e. no Ukraine joining NATO or the EU, nor any ‘association’ with Russia). Pure neutrality perhaps with a beefed up army (armed neutrality like Switzerland). No association with ANY ‘bloc’. And guarantee of EQUAL RIGHTS for ALL Ukrainian citizens, including the use and teaching of their languages in school (the Swiss, by the way, have FOUR languages that are protected within their country).