A number of high ranking Kremlin insiders have growing concerns about Putin’s war in Ukraine.
10 insiders told Bloomberg of their concerns about the economic and political impact of the invasion.
They also share fears of US intelligence that the Russian president could turn to nuclear weapons.
A small but growing number of Kremlin insiders are questioning President Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine and have serious concerns about its potentially devastating economic and political impact, Bloomberg reported.
Bloomberg cited ten sources with direct knowledge of the situation in its report and described the critics as being spread across senior positions in government and state-run businesses.
According to the report, the Kremlin insiders regard the invasion as a catastrophic mistake that will set the country back decades.
They told the outlet that Putin is surrounded by a group of hardline advisors, and has dismissed attempts to warn him of the steep economic and political costs of the conflict.
Bloomberg’s sources reportedly share the concerns of US intelligence officials that Putin could resort to the use of tactical nuclear weapons in Ukraine.
But the report says that while Putin has acknowledged the damage Western sanctions will do, he claims the conflict was pushed on him by Western powers.
Putin regards himself as being on a historic mission, Bloomberg reported the sources as saying and believes he has the support of the Russian people. They see no prospect of a serious challenge to his power domestically.
Bloomberg’s report echoes previous claims from analysts that the Kremlin was surprised by the breadth and scale of Western sanctions, and underestimated the stiff Ukrainian resistance Russian forces would encounter.
Russia initially expected to seize the Ukrainian capital Kyiv in a matter of days, analysts say. After nearly two months of fighting, its forces have pulled back from the city, and efforts are instead being focused on seizing territory in the eastern Donbas region.
Putin has publicly claimed that Western sanctions have failed to undermine Russia’s economy, with the value of the ruble recovered in recent weeks after a 40% collapse in value in the wake of sanctions.
The head of Russia’s central bank, however, has warned that the full impact of sanctions is yet to be felt, and Moscow’s mayor said that up to 200,000 jobs will likely be lost in the Russian capital.