I’m not sure that I trust any of the news coming out of the area – even (especially) by Western journalists – but something is up in Russia. Putin’s response validates that this is a serious threat. Or it could be a planned provocation to give Putin an excuse to seize more power. But does he need more power? He’s proven that he has full control of the nation already. So it maybe that this is exactly what it looks like… an armed rebellion by the Russian power players who are frustrated with Putin’s actions.
ROSTOV-ON-DON/VORONEZH, Russia (Reuters) -Russian military helicopters opened fire on Saturday afternoon on a convoy of rebel mercenaries already more than half way towards Moscow in a lightning advance after seizing a southern city overnight.
President Vladimir Putin vowed to crush an armed mutiny he compared to Russia’s Civil War a century ago.
Fighters from Yevgeny Prigozhin’s private Wagner militia were in control of Rostov-on-Don, a city of more than a million people close to the border with Ukraine, and were rapidly advancing northwards through western Russia.
A Reuters journalist saw army helicopters open fire at an armed Wagner column that was advancing past the city of Voronezh with troop carriers and at least one tank on a flatbed truck. The city is more than half way along the 1,100-km (680-mile) highway from Rostov to Moscow.