Russian President Vladimir Putin accepted a deal that ended the threat that Yevgeny Prigozhin’s private army could storm Moscow on Sunday, as the mutinous leader agreed to go into exile in Belarus.
Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko had quickly cobbled together an agreement to end a long-standing feud between Prigozhin and military top brass over the conduct of the Russian operation in Ukraine.
By early Sunday, Wagner had pulled out of Rostov-on-Don where troops had seized a military headquarters to the sound of residents chanting support as they left.
Then Putin vowed to carry on with the war in Ukraine, speaking in a pre-recorded interview that was broadcast on state television on Sunday.
The interview had been taped on June 21.
“I’m focused primarily on the special military operation,” Putin said in the interview with Rossiya-1 TV, using his regime’s term for the invasion of Ukraine. “My day begins and ends with this.”
“Lately, I stay up quite late” monitoring the situation, he added. “Of course, I always have to be communicating.”
Ukraine reveled in the chaos and mocked Putin’s apparent humiliation, with analysts saying the mutiny exposed weakness in the Russian president’s grip on power.
The Putin/MAGA wing of the GOP reacted, of course, in apparent defense of Putin.
Most accusations fell along two lines, implying that it would be worse to have Wagner chief Prigozhin in charge of Russia than Putin, or vaguely implying that the U.S. government under President Biden somehow supported the uprising.
TFG: “A big mess in Russia, but be careful what you wish for. Next in may be far worse!” he said.
Arizona Rep. Andy Biggs: “The world was a much safer place with Donald Trump as our president,” he said.
Tucker Carlson: Silence.