Russian General Fired For Criticizing Military Leadership, Accuses Shoigu Of Treason
A Russian general fired for criticizing military leadership, accuses Shoigu of treason. In a stunning revelation, Major General Ivan Popov, the commander of Russia's 58th Combined Arms Army deployed in Ukraine's Zaporizhzhia region, has accused senior military leadership of treason and claims that he was fired for raising concerns about the challenging conditions faced by Russian forces on the frontline. The recent development comes amidst escalating tensions within the warring factions of Russia's military command.
Popov's startling claims emerged in a voice message addressed to his former subordinates, which was shared on Telegram by lawmaker Andrey Gurulyov, a member of President Vladimir Putin's United Russia party. In the voice memo, Popov expresses his uncertainty about his fate and reveals the circumstances that led to his dismissal.
A difficult situation emerged with senior leadership, where I had to either shut up and make peace with that, and tell them what they wanted to hear, or say things as they are. I, in your name, in the name of our dead friends, our fighters, couldn't lie. So, I identified all the problems which exist.- Major General Ivan Popov
Popov claims to have brought his concerns to the highest level of the military leadership, highlighting the lack of counter-battery combat, the absence of artillery reconnaissance stations, and the significant casualties suffered by Russian soldiers due to enemy artillery fire. However, instead of addressing these pressing issues, Popov asserts that the senior bosses quickly devised an order from the defense minister and promptly relieved him of his duties.
While Popov does not explicitly mention Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu by name, his remarks leave little doubt as to whom he is referring.
The armed forces of Ukraine couldn't break through our army on the frontline; we were hit from behind by our highest boss, treacherously and vilely.- Major General Ivan Popov
It should be noted that the authenticity of the voice message and the exact date of its recording could not be independently verified by POLITICO.
This development serves as the latest indication of turmoil within Russia's military establishment, following the failed mutiny led by Wagner Group leader Yevgeny Prigozhin in June. Prigozhin's mutiny aimed to force the resignations of Defense Minister Shoigu and Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov, holding them responsible for the alleged botched invasion of Ukraine.
Ukraine War: Who is the dismissed Russian general Ivan Popov?
Adding to the intrigue, General Sergei Surovikin, an alleged ally of Prigozhin and the deputy commander of Moscow's forces in Ukraine, has disappeared from the public eye in recent weeks amid reports suggesting his prior knowledge of the mutiny. While a Russian lawmaker claimed that General Surovikin is currently "resting," the Wall Street Journal reportedthat he, along with several other high-ranking military officials, was detained by security services shortly after Wagner's failed rebellion.
The situation within Russia's military command remains highly fluid and contentious, with factional infighting and allegations of treason shaking the foundations of the armed forces. The claims made by Major General Ivan Popov highlight the growing disarray and raise significant questions about the stability and cohesion of Russia's military leadership during this critical time.