Sergei Surovikin, known as “General Armageddon” because of the aggressive military strategies he adopted in Chechnya and Syria, seemed to be marked as a rising star among Moscow’s military when he was given command of Russian forces in Ukraine in October. However, he was quickly demoted and replaced by Valery Gerasimov, the Chief of the General Staff, in January. This may have been the start of his both his disillusionment with “the system” and his fall from grace, which culminated in him being removed from office after reports circulated that he had known about Prigozhin’s planned mutiny.
Now, some Russian military bloggers and media outlets have apparently identified where he is and what is happening to him.
In a Telegram post late on Sunday, Aug 13 the VChK-OGPU blog, which has close ties to Russian security forces cited several sources confirming that Surovikin was being held in one of his apartments “under a sort of house arrest.”
The blog went on to say that he is being allowed visitors, including a number of his former staff. One of these was, General Oleg Palguev, who previously served as Surovikin’s adjutant.
While it seems that no official investigation into the general has been announced, the blog asserts that he was held in prison for nearly two months and was forced to “answer uncomfortable questions.”
It now seems that he and his relatives have been ordered to adopt a full “silence mode” to make sure that Surovikin and his actions are quickly “forgotten.”
An unnamed source quoted by the blog said: “The decision on it should be made by one person, and the later this happens, the more it ‘cools down,’ the better. Moreover, this person is not Shoigu.” VChK-OGPU commented that it was clear that Surovikin’s fate lay directly at Putin’s door.
Surovikin’s case was brought up by the Russian MP Viktor Sobolev, a former lieutenant general, who confirmed in an interview with News.ru on Wednesday, Aug. 9, that Surovikin had been removed from his command, but suggested he might be reinstated “if he isn’t found to have committed serious violations.”
Kremlin spokespersons, when asked about Surovikin’s whereabouts or the reports of his involvement in the Wagner mutiny, refer to such questions as merely “speculation and allegations” that are being looked into.
The VChK-OGPU blog went on to comment that this action is more than a little reminiscent of what happened to a number of Chechen generals who fell afoul of Ramzan Kadyrov, either through performance failure or suspicion of disloyalty. After severe interrogation such individuals were then place in isolation for however long it took for Kadyrov to “remember them.” This banishment could last for months or even longer when the individual would suddenly reappear on TV screens.
However, the blog ended with the statement that in a number of cases the offender “might disappear forever...”
You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter