Putin weakened despite end of rebellion, former U.S. ambassador to Russia says
President Vladimir Putin appeared relatively unscathed in the aftermath of a failed attempt to upend Russia’s military, but a former U.S. ambassador to Russia said he may never be the same.
Win or lose, the attempt by Prigozhin to change military leadership to his liking would have likely seen Putin remain as the country’s top leader, said Michael McFaul, former U.S. ambassador to Russia under then-President Barack Obama.
Nonetheless, the attempted coup watched around the world left the leader with less power, McFaul said on NBC Nightly News Saturday.
“I don’t think he’s mortally weakened,” said McFaul, also a former Obama adviser who specialized in Russia. “I think he can survive this. But he is much weaker today than he was just 24 hours ago.”
Blinken assures Ukraine’s foreign minister U.S. support is steady
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken assured Ukraine’s foreign minister that America’s support for his nation is unwavering.
Blinken spoke with Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba on Saturday about the aftermath of the Wagner rebellion.
The repercussions of the apparent retreat for Ukraine weren’t clear, but Blinken’s spokesperson, Matthew Miller, reiterated that the United States, Ukraine’s biggest underwriter during the war, will remain undeterred.
“Support by the United States for Ukraine will not change,” Miller said. “The United States will stay in close coordination with Ukraine as the situation develops.”