I can suggest several versions of Wagner chief Yevgenii Prigozhin’s death along with Wagner comander Dmitrii Utkin on board a plane that crashed in Tver. I exclude an accident aboard the plane as not viable.
(1) Some among the state leadership with or without Putin’s approval shot down the plane with a drone or, less likely, surface-to-air missile. Suspects would be the top military leadership, GRU and/or FSB, etc. Regarding any Putin involvement, recall the interview where he stated the only thing he cannot forgive is “betrayal.”
(2) A Russian ultranationalist group shot down the plane.
(3) A Ukrainian diversionary group shot down the plane. In this regard it should be noted that one day prior to the downing of Prigozhin’s plane a drone attack destroyed one and damaged a second long-range Russian bomber at the Soltsy airfield in Novgorod Oblast, and it is likely given the distance and drone type used that the drone was launched from inside Russia (www.ukrinform.net/rubric-ato/3751422-drone-attack-on-soltsy-airfield-launched-from-russian-soil-british-intelligence-suggests.html). The Soltsy airfield is located less than four hours by car from the area in Tver Oblast where Prigozhin’s plane was destroyed.
EUROPE BOOKS, 2022
MCFARLAND BOOKS, 2021
MCFARLAND BOOKS, 2018
About the Author –
Gordon M. Hahn, Ph.D., is an Expert Analyst at Corr Analytics, www.canalyt.com. Websites: Russian and Eurasian Politics, gordonhahn.com and gordonhahn.academia.edu
Dr. Hahn is the author of the new book: Russian Tselostnost’: Wholeness in Russian Thought, Culture, History, and Politics (Europe Books, 2022). He has authored five previous, well-received books: The Russian Dilemma: Security, Vigilance, and Relations with the West from Ivan III to Putin (McFarland, 2021); Ukraine Over the Edge: Russia, the West, and the “New Cold War” (McFarland, 2018); The Caucasus Emirate Mujahedin: Global Jihadism in Russia’s North Caucasus and Beyond (McFarland, 2014), Russia’s Islamic Threat (Yale University Press, 2007), and Russia’s Revolution From Above: Reform, Transition and Revolution in the Fall of the Soviet Communist Regime, 1985-2000 (Transaction, 2002). He also has published numerous think tank reports, academic articles, analyses, and commentaries in both English and Russian language media.
Dr. Hahn taught at Boston, American, Stanford, San Jose State, and San Francisco State Universities and as a Fulbright Scholar at Saint Petersburg State University, Russia and was a senior associate and visiting fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Kennan Institute in Washington DC, the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, and the Center for Terrorism and Intelligence Studies (CETIS), Akribis Group.