Putin Army Chief ‘Fainted’ After Angry Rant from Subordinate: Audio ‘Leak’


Russian President Vladimir Putin, center, is seen with Chief of General Staff of the Armed Forces Valery Gerasimov, left, and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in Moscow on March 11, 2016. Gerasimov “fainted” after hearing an angry rant from a now-fired subordinate, according to an alleged audio leak.MIKHAIL SVETLOV/GETTY IMAGES

Russian President Vladimir Putin‘s top general, Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov, “fainted” after hearing an angry rant from a now-fired subordinate, according to an alleged audio leak.

The VChK-OGPU Telegram channel, which has close ties to Russian security forces, said it obtained a leaked audio message featuring Major General Ivan Popov, who commanded the 58th Combined Arms Army, but was dismissed in July.

Popov said in a voice message published by Russian lawmaker Andrei Gurulyov that he was fired as a commander after telling the truth about the Kremlin’s top brass and about the situation in Ukraine’s Zaporizhia region.

Russian sources, including the VChK-OGPU Telegram channel, are now claiming that former subordinates of Popov stationed on the front line in Zaporizhia have contacted him amid military setbacks.

“The officers of the 58th Army, not waiting for support from the new command and the General Staff, turned to their former commander Ivan Popov. In response, General Popov urged the officers to stand their ground and report only the truth,” the channel said.

It published a 23-second audio recording which allegedly involves Popov recalling a conversation he had with Gerasimov before his dismissal.

In the recording, Popov tells an unidentified individual: “You and I are absolutely alike in this, [that’s] just the truth. Especially when you have soldiers behind you and suddenly you have the lives of 1,000 people in your hands.

“If I were cowardly, then I would look into the eyes of my soldiers and officers, I would simply lose face for the rest of my life and then I would never forgive myself for this cowardice.

“I f***** [Gerasimov] up so bad that the b****** fainted. It was a straightforward conversation,” he said.

Newsweek was unable to independently verify the authenticity of the voice message and has contacted Russia’s Defense Ministry via email for comment.

The Institute for the Study of War, a U.S.-based think tank, said in analysis of the conflict in Ukraine on September 2 that Popov’s contact with his former subordinates, if true, suggests that his replacement has not won their trust “because he is less competent or because he is less forthright with senior Russian leadership about continuing challenges facing the Russian defense in western Zaporizhia.”

Gerasimov had also faced harsh criticism from the late Wagner Group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin, who was killed in a plane crash on August 23, according to Russian authorities.

Prigozhin had accused Gerasimov and Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu of “treason” for failing to provide his fighters with sufficient ammunition and support as they led an operation to take the city of Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine.

One comment

  1. Prigo’s men are already busy inside RuSSia. Putin is the biggest traitor of RuSSia. True ruSSians would never give themselves away to MURDER UKRAINIANS!

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