Wagner Group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin is leading his troops back across the border into Russia in open rebellion, making his way toward Moscow.
Russia is a former superpower that retains muscle memory from its better days. Both in its near periphery and beyond, it’s capable of doing damage. But as the Ukraine war goes on, the impact of its extraterritorial adventures could take a toll at home.
Putin’s approval rating has risen since the invasion of Ukraine. Russians once again are rallying behind their leader in a war state propaganda portrays as defensive.
Asian economies have considerably reduced the impact of Western sanctions by acting as new customers for its commodity sales.
If Russia falls into internal crisis, Yevgeny Prigozhin will become a kingmaker, even if not a king himself.
A non-official unit aligned with Ukraine’s armed forces and a group of anti-Putin Russian fighters have engaged in an attack on Russian soil.
A post-Putin Russian leader will have an opportunity to re-evaluate the costs and benefits of close ties with Beijing.
The infighting between Wagner and Russia’s military has become a soap opera played out in front of a global audience.
Declaring Wagner Group a terrorist organization send a strong signal that would deter support for an entity that has clearly used terrorism.
Russia’s shift toward Asia may be gradual, focusing on China, India, and ASEAN countries, but the direction has been set.
Unless the attack was simply motivated by the kudos of demonstrating an ability to strike at the heart of Russian power, it makes no military sense on Kyiv’s part.