Things have been pretty rough for Russian President Vladimir Putin of late, as his failing invasion of Ukraine continues to sow doubts about his leadership ability and his military acumen.
The tyrannical leader has done well to keep his people from revolting against him, (through various strong man tactics), but it appears as though there are new concerns that a coup may be getting cooked up in the kitchen of the Kremlin itself.
Cronies of Vladimir Putin are reportedly plotting a coup against him, while another trusted aide is lying low and preparing to act as kingmaker, according to new reports.
In a further blow to Mad Vlad, there are claims his whisky-loving foreign minister Sergei Lavrov is “drinking because he is depressed” and is suffering “health problems”.
On top of this, there are recurring rumours of the dictator’s poor health, with some believing he may have cancer.
According to insiders, there were two key meetings on Thursday (December 15) where he had to stay in the same position and sit on a special cushion.
The identity of the potential usurper was quite a surprise.
One report even claims to Kremlin’s top chef, Yevgeny Progozhin, would be the man to start a coup against Putin.
Prigozhin, 61, had a remit much wider than merely serving up grub to the Kremlin elite, and even has his own private army and is thought to have recruited tens of thousands of mercenaries to fight in Ukraine.
“This is uncharted territory for Putin,” said Christo Grozev, the chief Russia investigator for the Bellingcat investigative journalism organisation.
“Prigozhin has 20,000 bloodthirsty, armed and aggressive men…
“They’re telling me, ‘We’re wondering if we should just lay down our arms because we’ve been turned into cannon fodder and go to Moscow?’ That’s in their thought process already.”
Putin’s military has been facing dwindling morale for months, and reports of several brewing mutinies have long had Moscow on edge.