Russia’s shadow army boss interrupted Vladimir Putin’s Victory Day speech on Red Square to mock the Russian military and take aim at the “complete asshole” leading the war effort.
In a nearly half-hour-long video released through his press service, Yevgeny Prigozhin on Tuesday re-upped his “treason” allegations against military officials and declared them the “main enemy” of Russia rather than the Ukrainian military.
Around the same time Putin delivered a speech calling on the nation to be “proud” of Russian troops fighting in Ukraine, Prigozhin described humiliating scenes on the battlefield, as he admitted to Russian troops fleeing in droves and said the “state can’t protect its own country” from Ukrainian forces along the border.
“Instead of fighting,” he said, Russia’s Defense Ministry is constantly “scheming.”
“That’s why our army will run. They will run because today the 72nd brigade [a division of the Defense Ministry] pissed away [a strategic foothold] where I lost 500 people… They just up and hauled ass,” he said, accusing the troops of “abandoning their positions.”
“This is not good. If this continues then we will not be able to fight,” he said, addressing top military brass to warn that either Putin or ordinary Russians will “tear them a new one” when the war is lost.
“Our soldiers are getting killed and the happy grandpa thinks he’s doing well,” he said, without specifying who the “happy grandpa” he’s referring to is.
“What will our country do… what will our children, grandchildren, the future of Russia do... if it turns out the grandpa is a complete jackass?” he asked.
He went on to warn that Ukraine’s counteroffensive is imminent and “will be on the ground, and not on TV,” adding that “in our country everyone thinks that everything needs to be done on TV and Victory Day celebrated. Victory Day is the victory of our grandfathers, and we do not deserve this victory by a millimeter.”
It’s not the time, he said, for leaders to “show off on Red Square.”
Days after vowing to pull some of his mercenaries out of Bakhmut by May 10, Prigozhin said he’d been warned that the move would amount to treason—so he now says Wagner will hang on a bit longer.
“We won’t leave Bakhmut, we’ll push [for more ammo] for a few more days.”