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ISW: Russia’s withdrawal from Kherson ignites ideological fracture between pro-war figures and Putin

by The Kyiv Independent news desk November 13, 2022 4:07 AM 1 min read
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Russia’s withdrawal from Kherson is eroding confidence in Vladimir Putin’s commitment and ability to deliver his war promises, the Institute for the Study of War said in its latest assessment. On Nov. 12, a pro-war Russian ideologist Alexander Dugin openly criticized Putin—whom he referred to as the autocrat—for failing to uphold Russian ideology by surrendering Kherson.

Dugin said this Russian ideology "defines Russia’s responsibility to defend “Russian cities” such as Kherson, Belgorod, Kursk, Donetsk, and Simferopol."

Some Russian military bloggers, the ISW suggests, have previously criticized Putin for his failure to respond to the attack on the Kerch Strait Bridge on Oct. 9, while others noted that Putin has failed to uphold the ideology of Russian superiority since 2014. "Direct criticism of Putin within the pro-war community is almost unprecedented, and Dugin’s high-profile and unhinged attack on Putin may indicate a shift among the Russian nationalist ideologues," the ISW found.

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