The rot runs deep

A police officer is silhouetted during an anti-corruption rally in St. Petersburg. The Russian Prosecutor-General’s Office reported that the most frequent cases of alleged corruption so far this year had been registered among law enforcement officers. (file photo)

The Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) appears to be conducting a large-scale overhaul of domestic security organs. Russian state-controlled outlet TASS reported on April 19 that the FSB and the Main Directorate of the Security Service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MVD) have been conducting mass checks at the Moscow Central District Internal Affairs Directorate and several Moscow district police offices for the past several weeks due to “the leakage of data from Russian security forces at the request of Ukrainian citizens.” Another Russian source noted that the FSB and MVD have already detained police officers as part of this investigation. Russian outlets reported that the suspected police officers leaked personal data on Russian security forces to external individuals, some of whom are Ukrainian citizens. The reported FSB and MVD raids on the Moscow police departments are occurring against the backdrop of a series of arrests and dismissals of prominent members of Rosgvardia (Russian National Guard) leadership. The Kremlin may be pushing for such arrests and investigations in order to conduct an overhaul of the domestic security apparatus to oust officials who have fallen out of Kremlin favor and consolidate further control internal security organs.

Comment: My first thought was that this was in reaction to the granularity of detail revealed in the “Discord Leaks.” However, it appears to be  just a simple case of widespread corruption among Russian security personnel. The culprits are selling information not as an act of defiance against the SMO or because they were recruited by a Ukrainian intelligence officer. They’re doing it to make a buck… or a ruble. The linked Russian Telegram account describes it in more detail.

This is the same seedy corruption that hollowed out the Russian Armed Forces and MIC. The culture of corruption was inherited from the bad old Soviet days and metastasized under Yeltsin and Putin. If Putin or his eventual replacement can ever put a muzzle on this culture of corruption, Russia and her Armed Forces may become as formidable as we all thought it was before this invasion. At least in the bad old Soviet days, there were some who really believed in the system. Now all we believe in is that greed is good.


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33 Responses to The rot runs deep

  1. Jovan P says:

    The Russian Armed Forces (and Wagner) are becoming quite formidable, the western deep state is losing the war (except if they decide to use nukes, then we all lose) and the world is becoming multipolar. We’re all waiting for the Ardennes Offensive.

    Shame for the lost lives in this war, I don’t know how people like Boris Johnson or Antony Blinken live with themselves.

    • TTG says:

      Jovan P,

      The Russian Armed Forces are certainly learning and adjusting. But they are left with a tarnished image and self-image as well as a greatly diminished capability. Putin’s invasion has caused tremendous destruction and loss of life and continues to do so. I don’t think Johnson and Blinken have any problem living with themselves. Recently I think it was Blinken who commented that this war is as clear a case of right versus wrong in recent history.

      • Jovan P says:


        before the war the Russians asked the US for written guarantees. Had Blinken wrote one sentence (,,the USA guarantees that Ukraine will not be accepted in NATO”, and asked for something in return) there would be no war, no death, no destruction, the mostly anti-Russian forces would remain in power in Ukraine, the West would still be arming the Ukrainians, building fortifications, whatever.

        Johnson travelled to Ukraine and pushed the Ukrainian government not to sign a truce and end the war early at the beginning (when the casualties were very low). Even at that time the Russian requests were relatively modest and negotiable.

        • TTG says:

          Jovan P,

          The Kremlin made it clear that Ukraine’s non-entry into NATO was not enough. They wanted their “near abroad” if not their empire. If Russia did not invade Ukraine, there would be no war. Even if they moved heavily into the DNR/LNR up to the line of contact, there probably would not have been a war.

          Russian troops were committing massive atrocities in Bucha and elsewhere by the time Johnson went to Kyiv. To refuse to acquiesce to that brutality and evil is not a hard decision. If Russia wants a truce and the killing to end, remove Russian troops from Ukraine. If that happened, I guarantee Ukraine or even NATO will not cross the border.

          • jld says:

            “I guarantee Ukraine or even NATO will not cross the border.”

            Amazing! How so?

          • TTG says:


            Both NATO and the US have been consistent in expressing no desire to invade Russia and we never had a force structure to do so. We still don’t

          • Leith says:

            jld –

            Why would they or we? Why channel Napoleon and Hitler whose invasions turned into unmitigated disasters? Ukraine’s GUR may well stage cross border incursions as deception. And there are probably some in Ukraine who hanker to take back the Kuban, which used to be part of Kyiv’s territory. But it ain’t gonna happen IMHO.

      • Fourth and Long says:

        These two guys writing at Newsweek don’t agree with you.
        There is nothing patriotic about an American flying a Ukrainian flag. Nor is there anything treasonous about an American questioning unlimited support for a foreign nation in a foreign war. To recognize that Ukraine will not defeat Russia without much greater American intervention is not pro-Russian, it is pro-reality.
        How often have we heard that poorly trained, poorly led, poorly equipped Russian troops, many of them mercenaries and ex-convicts, have suffered staggering losses and been driven back from territory they initially captured? This may all be true. It does not change the fact that Russia is now poised to take full advantage of the fall of Bakhmut once dry summer weather arrives. Seven months ago, Russia mobilized 300,000 reservists and used the intervening time to train them. It threw armament production into high gear and amassed significant quantities of equipment and ammunition. Hundreds of thousands of Russian troops are now deployed in Eastern Ukraine where they have begun advancing in numerous of locations along a 450-mile front.
        According to World Bank statistics, Ukraine had a population of 44 million when the war began, but today barely half that number are still in their homes. Eleven million Ukrainians have fled to Europe or are internally displaced. Several million more have fled to Russia and millions more now live in areas under Russian control.

        Last year the Ukrainian economy shrank by 30 percent, while Russian GDP fell by only 3 percent. The ruble is as strong against the dollar today as it was when the war began. The IMF predicts that in 2023 Russia’s GDP growth will surpass that of Britain and Germany. Clearly, Western sanctions have not destroyed the Russian economy.
        (Continues at link)
        Not to worry, TTG. JFK jr just entered the presidential race for 2024 and he bragged last night on Tucker’s show that his son Connor was over in Ukraine working a machine gun or something during what he grandiosely called “the Kharkov” offensive, fighting Russian servicemen. Great. (Sarcasm). My guess is he’s a trojan horse candidate of some sort. His great uncle JFK was represented to the American public as a martyr to evil communism (the Russians of that era) which triggered the 10+ year Vietnam war which followed on the heels of his killing. (Went to SU, married a soviet woman, refurned and worked for Fair play for Cuba which was communist). So JFK jr entering the race may signify, given his son’s activities and articles like the one excerpted above, an entry of US & or NATO troops into the ground war. He’s cleverly packaged as anti establishment enough (anti vax and anti CIA etc) to lead along the usual dopey liberals and pseudo leftists, and he’s got star quality and pedigree up the proverbial wa.. . Personally I think it’s uttery lunatic all around but the way things are of late nothing surprises me.

    • Fourth and Long says:

      Look at the president of Ukraine. More clues? It’s Dec 6th 1941. In a precedent setting act, FDR resigns his office in favor of comedian Bob Hope. It’s ok because the week before, with little or no fanfare, the US Vice President was replaced by Howdy Doody. Bozo the clown stepped in a Speaker of the House. General Patton has been seen rehearsing for parts in Hollywood musicals and Shirley Temple has been appointed supreme commander of Allied Forces Europe. The PM of the United Kingdom is Lassie. Ok? How does the war go? Onward to victory! I guess it’s a labored way of saying that Zelensky was a comedian. At least Bob Hope was funny.

      • PeterHug says:

        Don’t forget that Zelensky also has a law degree, and owned his own (successful) production company.

  2. Fourth and Long says:

    It might be neither 1- the result of the Discord leaks or 2- corruption and the fight against it. It may be a manifestation of the regime struggling to stay in control. The Ru antiwar community is talking about an upcoming or possibly ongoing transition – from a present (or recently present) authoritarian system into either a 1- terroristic system (crackdowns and roundups by policing groups which violate the constitution) or 2- a totalitarian system in which some overriding ideology is imposed and accepted enough so that the society polices itself in accordance with the ideology. In that outline, 2, the totalitarian, is thought to require less resources. There’s talk that mode 1 would lead to breakdown due to internal overheating. Consider.. if the wider population read that the only people being prosecuted were antiwar protesters or kids who used their crayons in school to depict a Russian and Ukrainian embracing while holding both flags and thus got sent to an orphanage because their dad was arrested and deprived of work and their family ceased to exist — while at the same time the crooks or “traitors “ described here went free and unprosecuted — how would that go over? Also, by blurring the lines between the criminal offenses of corruption and treason, you move toward the goal of self-regulating totalitarianism because everyone either knows someone who is to some degree corrupt or is corrupt themselves (by necessity or so it seems easy to rationalize) .. the idea may be to initiate cascading processes of denunciation .. to turn people against one another rather than against those in power. If corruption is indeed commonplace, which seems to be the case in certain sectors, then if you can successfully blur the line between corruption and treason you’ve accomplished something. Remember, one goal is to become able to motivate (or coerce) people to accept possible upcoming roles as cannon fodder.

  3. Whitewall says:

    Well, not to be out done on the Western Front, we see this headline:

    Putin is now capable of drama after a surprise inspection. The poor admiral must be part of the rot.

    • Poppa Rollo says:

      for Whitehall, most likely the admiral expressed far too much concern about material and strategy and far too little enthusiasm for suicidal defense of the motherland.

      • Leith says:

        You’re right. Admiral Avakyants was a bit slow in giving up PacFleet aviation for use against Ukraine. He also dragged his feet on giving up his Kaliber cruise missiles.

  4. Leith says:

    It’s not just Police and Rosgvardia being rousted. Putin dismissed Colonel-General Nikolai Grechushkin from his post as Deputy Head of the Ministry of Emergency Situations just two weeks ago. Speculation on telegram is Grechushkin helped himself to finances allocated for disasters. Probably got canned for not giving the boys in the Kremlin a slice of the cake. So it will all continue with different grifters in charge.

    Where is Chief Inspector Arkady Renko when the Russian people need him to uproot all the payola and palm-greasing?

  5. Sam says:


    This corruption rot is deep & endemic globally.

    The US establishment is equally corrupt. We too are hollowing out our economy on the altar of greed by the ruling class. Our military expenditures don’t provide value on investment as so much is siphoned in the graft.

    The one thing we have going for us is that we remain the cleanest shirt in the laundry. It is after all a relative world.

    • Whitewall says:


    • ked says:

      Sam, you make a very good point. however, it is lost on absolutists, ideologues & fundamentalists. it has always been a long hard slog to internalize the implications of revolutionary shifts. The one Einstein wrote-up about over a century ago still hasn’t fully sunken in – at least in the human behavioral regime – despite its handy utility in contributing to finish off a world war. even as it has launched a whole new paradigm of power that has yet to assure peace. the many shades of gray between black & white remain a tough road to hoe.

      as to the matter of Special Military Operations, in the unlikely case it “succeeds” in the non-relativistic sense, the Ukrainians appear to dedicated to an insurgency that would impress (while not surprising) Col Lang… methinks. such culturally deep-seated fights are known in history (even recent history) to outlast absolutist cliques. distant & recent history suggests that only successful genocide & colonization has a shot at displacing an entrenched people. ‘course, the Russian leaders may be up for pursuing that… for awhile, relatively speaking.

      • Billy Roche says:

        Those selfish kulaks will submit! We will show them the state is their boss. They will collectivise or we will kill them! Pick a number; 4MM, 6MM or 8MM. Kruschev said no one could count that high, but then, no one was counting. If they think it “helpful” Russian leaders will pursue another genocide in Ukraine to force Ukrainian submission. Problem is, people remember. Problem is, people don’t care.

  6. Fred says:

    Finally, an expose on the Biden’s corruption! Oh, wait, just more Russia Russia Russia.

    • TTG says:


      Perhaps the IRS whistleblower will assuage your hunger.

      • Al says:

        TGG, perhaps not. Just as the DOJ “whistle-blowers” Jordan pulled in had no factual info! Just 2nd hand innuendo

        BTW I recall that “Innuendo” is an Italian suppository brand.

        Kinda fits with these “whistleblowers” House Repubs pulling in from the bushes.

        • Fred says:


          Mike Morrell, former CIA director tied to Hillary – remember her- , said under oath Blinken, guess who he works for, was behind the “51 former intelligence officials ” letter.

          LOL just nobodies with “second hand” facts.

      • Fred says:


        Puff pieces in the “walls are closing in ” media on work on the NPCs. Flag to hear you believe the attorney general is independent and might actually indict his boss.

        • TTG says:


          Hunter Biden isn’t the AG’s boss. It’s Hunter that’s in trouble and it doesn’t appear to be near as horrendous as the right makes it out to be.

          “Federal prosecutors have considered charging Hunter Biden with three tax crimes and a charge related to a gun purchase, said two sources familiar with the matter. The possible charges are two misdemeanor counts for failure to file taxes, a single felony count of tax evasion related to a business expense for one year of taxes, and the gun charge, also a potential felony.”

          I wonder if the NRA will come to his defense on the gun charge.

          • Fred says:


            You sure do try hard. How’s Burisma doing and just when did Hunter testify against those guys that sold him the drugs that resulted in that discharge from military service and what jail are they in? His daddy didn’t get involved then, did he?

          • TTG says:


            As far as I know, Burisma is still around although they’re probably doing pretty shitty for the last year. At least they don’t have Kolomoisky pulling the strings anymore. Two Republican controlled Senate committees investigated Burisma and the Bidens and found nothing beyond Hunter being greedy and stupid. Nothing implicated Joe Biden of any wrong doing. As far as Hunter’s drug addiction, I’m surprised there’s not at least some kind of investigation beyond being drummed out of the Navy Reserve. Clearly crimes have been committed there, but it was standard procedure to issue an administrative discharge rather than a dishonorable or other than honorable discharge. No need for Joe to get involved for that.

          • Fred says:


            “Well son of a bitch, he got fired.”

            Drummed out of the navy? Please don’t insult your own intelligence.

          • TTG says:


            Joe Biden is openly proud of his central part in the dismissal of that prosecutor. That particular prosecutor was a serious impediment to the effort to rid the Ukrainian judiciary of corruption. Many EU countries and the EU leadership wanted him gone. Joe did it. The two Republican controlled Senate committees investigated this and exonerated Joe Biden of any wrong doing.

            Hunter failed a drug test for cocaine and was administratively discharged, standard procedure for those failing drug tests in the military. So yes, he was drummed out as in forced to leave usually for an act of wrong doing. What do you call it?

          • Fred says:


            Yes the Borg wanted the prosecutor in Ukraine removed so as to solidify their influence over the new government. The three crewmembers of one of the submarines I served in were not administratively removed, they were punished; excluding the one who had inherited 10+ million from his grandmother, his father, being an influential lawyer in Delaware, arranged buying his way out. Joe Biden used his influence as senator/vp to get his son a commission, then to avoid punishment. There has been nothing standard about it.

  7. Sam says:

    //the Bank of Russia…explains that Russian exporters and importers suffer from currency risks when settling their trade in the non-convertible and volatile renminbi. …there are not enough derivatives for traders to hedge the Chinese currency. The central bank says Russia has been selling renminbi since the beginning of this year…. in exchange for Western currencies. On April 5, reporters asked Dmitry Tulin, the first deputy governor of the Bank of Russia, why Russia had dumped yuan in February and March. He blamed Beijing for refusing to allow Russian companies and individuals to hold renminbi in cash. “Although renminbi has become a leading transaction currency on the Moscow Exchange and China is now Russia’s biggest trading partner, the Chinese central bank does not want renminbi notes to be circulated overseas,” Tulin said.//

    Lol! I’ve read about the demise of the USD and as a result demise of the US on the global stage for decades. I’ve read how the USD couldn’t compete with EUR. Now how the USD will die coz Chainsaw gonna price his crude in CCP paper. How the Xi, Putin, Ayatollah axis will break the USD. In every case none of the writers knew anything about the global financial system plumbing.

  8. wiz says:

    Here’s an interesting interview with a Ukrainian artillery officer.
    The video is an hour long but gives insights into a lot of aspects of this war.
    At least from the perspective of this one officer.

    Some of the topics discussed:
    – successes and failures of Ukrainian and Russian armies in Kherson and Kharkov offensives
    – professional insufficiencies of many Ukrainian commanders
    – goals of the Russian winter offensive (reaching comfortable defensive lines)
    – reasons for the loss of Soledar
    – the importance of Bakhmut, Ugledar, Marinka, Avdeevka and the Siversky Donetsk water canal
    – Russian defensive fortification lines
    – upcoming Ukrainian offensive and many other topics

    It is very interesting. I’ve been away from the blog for a while so this interview may have already been featured.


    Very sorry to hear about Col. Lang’s passing. My condolences to his family and friends.

    • Leith says:

      Wiz –

      Thanks for the link. Good insights. Hopefully Zaluzhnyi, Syrskyi and the General Staff is listening to him. First I’ve heard that RU is building subsidiary defensive fortifications behind and perpendicular to the main lines to keep any breakthrough in a channel.

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