The founder of the private military company "Wagner" Yevhen Prigozhin and the head of Chechnya Ramzan Kadyrov remain independent figures due to the dependence of the Russian dictator Putin on their forces in the war against Ukraine. This is reported by analysts of the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) in a regular report dated November 7.
Analysts report that Russia's pro-war faction of the security forces, to which ISW includes Yevgeny Prigozhin and Ramzan Kadyrov, is increasing its influence in part to advance personal interests in Russia and the occupied territory of Ukraine, not solely to win the war.
ISW reports that Putin's dependence on the military formations of Prigozhin and Kadyrov allows them to remain "independent figures" by Russian standards. Thus, Russian journalists often ask Prigozhin about his ambitions for the Kremlin, which, despite his repeated denials, show that he has created a perception in society that he can take a position in power.
It is noted that such discussions differ from the positioning of Putin as the only possible leader of Russia. Prigozhin also appears to retain access to key Kremlin officials, and the Center for Ukrainian Resistance even reported that he met unofficially with Putin's administration chief, Anton Vaino.
"Prygozhin and Vaino allegedly discussed Putin's negative influence on the Russian military campaign and hostility to the Russian high command," ISW informs.
At the same time, Prigozhin continues to pose as a strong Russian leader in foreign affairs, promoting his own involvement in election meddling.
In addition, it is reported that Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov is also trying to get business opportunities amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine.