Russia’s war against Ukraine started on February 24; since that time, the world has been on edge.
What are Russia’s plans and what is the strategy of power-mad leader Vladimir Putin? Is he a rational player on behalf of Russia? Or, has power gone to his head with dreams of empire lighting eastern Europe on fire?
What we can now say for certain is Russia’s internal politics are a complete mess. Now, something very worrisome has happened to Russia’s top nuclear official.
Meet Vadim Zimin
Vadim Zimin is a colonel in the Russian forces. He carried Putin’s nuclear briefcase and is a leading assistant to the Russian president. Before Putin, 53-year-old Zimin carried the briefcase for former President Boris Yeltsin.
This colonel has a lot of responsibility and plays a crucial role in maintaining Russia’s world power status and nuclear capability.
However, on June 22, Zimin reportedly tried to kill himself after drinking with his brother. This appears to be a thinly fabricated lie, of course.
What we know at this point is Zimin had been accused of corruption and taking bribes. He was under house arrest. He was one of those who could access the three nuclear briefcases. Two more remain, accessed by other officials.
Colonel Vadim Zimin, who carried Putin's nuclear codes, found seriously wounded at his home, about 4 hrs ago. pic.twitter.com/VV3VPK94UR
— Fuat (@lilygrutcher) June 22, 2022
Who Did This?
The investigation into this apparent “suicide” is ongoing. Zimin is in hospital in critical condition.
What seems clear is there are many spy games going on in Russia and that anyone close to the top nexus of power is in immense danger.
Whether this is the West score-settling, internal purging of some sort, or a rival faction carrying out a hit, Zimin is a symbol of how unstable Russia truly is.
It is hard to sleep soundly at night knowing that 6,000 nuclear missiles are in the hands of a regime that’s constantly vying in power games and assassinating each other.
At the same time, if this was a western-backed hit, it brings into question whether Russia truly still has the nuclear codes in its possession or what exactly has become of them.
That is not entirely clear at this point, and the extent of Zimin’s current involvement in that is also not obvious.
Some are speculating that Zimin was still loyal to Yeltsin and an entirely different power faction within Russia’s elite. They say that he or those close to him may have been planning a coup, which could be related to the corruption charges and hit against him.
What we know for sure is Russia’s never been so unstable.
THE PURGE: Vadim Zimin, a retired colonel in the FSB, was responsible for carrying the nuclear ‘football’ Russia's nuclear ‘go codes' which always accompany Vladimir Putin. Zimin was found shot in his Moscow home yesterday. He's now in critical condition. https://t.co/SOyl66lXCh
— Chuck Pfarrer (@ChuckPfarrer) June 22, 2022
The Bottom Line
What exactly is going on in Russia?
We will continue to monitor this alarming story as it develops and track for breaking developments, including the ongoing official status of Zimin.