Russia braces for 'potential coup' to fix Putin's 'error of judgment'
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Russia is primed for a “potential coup” according to Russian analyst Alexey Muraviev as military bosses look to fix Vladimir Putin’s “error of judgment” over the invasion of Ukraine. Professor Muraviev argues that there are tensions within the Kremlin between Putin and elements of Russian intelligence over the conduct of the war.
Mr Muraviev told Sky News Australia: “In terms of potential for a coup yes, I believe there may be a potential for the coup but not for the reasons that we want to assume and understand.
“If the coup is to take place and the coup would be executed by say, Russia’s security, law enforcement, or the Russian military, for that matter it’s not because they want to stop the war.
“It’s because they would want to win the war, to see the success of the war.
“I think that there have been tensions between Russia and the intelligence community and Russia’s President Vladimir Putin.”
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“Because clearly, there’s been a clear error of judgement that was made and it was probably driven by Putin himself about the situation in Ukraine,’ added Curtin University’s Associate Professor of National Security and Strategic Studies.
“About the initial planning and the initial phase of the invasion where the Russian military naturally assume that they’re going there as liberators rather than the invaders.
“I think that sort of false narrative was presented to them by the Supreme Commander in Chief, and when it fired back when the Russians began taking heavy casualties, Putin began quietly blaming the security services.
“Which I don’t think went really well also because he’s coming from within the security apparatus.”
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It comes as Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine would undoubtedly achieve what he said were its “noble” objectives.
Speaking at an awards ceremony at the Vostochny Cosmodrome in the Russian Far East, Putin was quoted as saying by Russian news agencies that said Moscow had no other choice but to launch a military operation to protect Russia and that a clash with Ukraine’s anti-Russian forces had been inevitable.
Russia sent tens of thousands of troops into Ukraine on February 24 in what it called a special operation to degrade its southern neighbour’s military capabilities and root out people it called dangerous nationalists.
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Ukrainian forces have mounted stiff resistance and the West has imposed sweeping sanctions on Russia in an effort to force it to withdraw its forces.
Defence minister James Heappey has told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “There’s 120 armoured vehicles that will go to Ukraine, and Ukrainian troops that are going to drive and command those vehicles will be coming to the UK in the next few days to be trained up on them.
“There are more shoulder-launched anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles that we are sending as well as loitering precision munitions, and as you heard the Prime Minister say at the weekend, we’re also sending an anti-ship capability as well.”
Asked if the British Government believes Ukraine has the ability to hold off Russian forces, he added: “We absolutely do. I think… there is hubris in the Russian plan for the next phase.”
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