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All #FSBletters translated as of August 14th, 2022 - Chronological Order - Look Inside

Before reading these #FSBletters from the #WindofChange, please watch/listen to the following audio for the origin & context of these le...

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Food shortage, luring Ukraine to counter-attack Russia, mass-cleansing of the General Staff, plan for Odessa - 17th letter from the Wind of Change inside the FSB

My translation of the 17th #FSBletters from the #WindofChange inside the FSB to Vladimir Osechkin. Dated 4/18. Topics: Global food shortage, luring Ukraine to counter-attack Russia, impending mass-cleansing of the General Staff, Odessa, chaos surrounding the missing & economy. Please share far & wide.

Please listen to this audio as it explains the context and the genesis of the #FSBletters. It will help you understand the prism through which these letters are to be read. You will understand in real human terms why #WindofChange writes to Vladimir.

As always, my comments for clarification are in (parenthesis). #WindofChange's parenthesis are in [brackets]. So, let's roll:

“I’ll say it upfront – I can’t provide 100% accurate prognosis because the situation is so dynamic that it’s difficult to keep up. Besides, there’s often a rift between plans & actualization.

This explains why there have been no direct explosions of residential buildings [so far], confined to shelling by "Ukrainian" helicopters/DRG of certain vacant areas and non-residential buildings.

I will try to break the letter into themes [or rather, I will try to collect a number of themes in the letter].

1. Using migrants for blackmail and the unexpected flip side of the coin.

As I wrote earlier, the main bet in the protracted war with the Western world is the use of migrants as blackmail (against the West): by knocking out Ukraine's grain exports and refusing to export potash fertilizers, Russia effectively launches a scenario of hunger riots and widespread migration from developing countries.

In theory, the window of opportunity for blackmail is as follows: give more grain to developing countries - reduce the flow of migrants. Naturally, all this could be in response to mutual concessions from the West.

But already we are facing opposition from the West: almost all developing countries have taken a neutral position in the war with Ukraine. In the current geopolitical situation, this can be credited to Russia. But such a game of hunger [and Ukraine's fuel reserves and grain export logistics are now being destroyed very systematically and precisely] can turn developing countries against us much earlier than we reach the point of possible blackmail. And the West is actively conducting this "explanatory work" right now.

2. Belgorod Oblast.

In the current situation, there are political decisions and there are military decisions. From the military point of view, allowing Ukraine a "sudden" offensive with a significant advance on Belgorod Oblast is unacceptable.

From the political point of view – quite possible.

At the moment, we are fighting internally to push through an option where, in the event of a serious military defeat in the Donbass direction, we can give the AFU (Armed Forces of Ukraine) a "corridor to enter" the Belgorod region. The corridor would look like a total surrender of a piece of territory, which would allow to:

- Demonstrate a picture of the risk of war on Russian territory; (to the Russian population)

- Move toward total mobilization without regard to what problems it will bring;

- Create a "terrorist precedent" in all the territory controlled by the AFU [they (Russians) plan to give them only part of the region].

This could block the "Bucha factor" for the outside observer, at the same time distracting the internal observer from the problems in the economy. The main thing is to get them in - explosions and all the other delights will be in abundance, and the military knuckleheads from the General Staff will be made responsible for this.

This cannot be done with Crimea, precisely for political reasons. The military is against such approaches in principle, but the military is a separate issue; they are now acting as losers to some extent.

3. Military. The question of corruption in the army gets zero attention until after the end of the war. This does not mean that everybody has forgotten about everything - even investigations are being carefully carried out, but for now they will not touch on the old stuff. It is left for after the war.

Taking care of the so-called "unreliables" (those in the Russian military that do not support Putin) is much more urgent now, especially in the command staff. It is the military that now represents the main threat to stability [not my personal assessment - I am stating the assessment of the Service (FSB) and the country's leadership], and the scale of the threat is growing, as they say, both wide and deep.

The number of unreliables is growing, the level of radicalization of sentiments is increasing. Military counterintelligence alone will not suffice here - the military is not a closed system – its contacts [and a certain political weight] penetrate deep into society. Further, the military, by definition, has both the organizational structure and the human resources, as well as the necessary foundation.

Right now, the situation with them is infinitely far from a riot, but in the case of the expected "military contingencies" you can get a bunch of very adult problems.

I don't know what the final decision on them will be, but I estimate the likelihood of "isolation" through both direct imprisonment and dismissal with all the problems written off on the dismissed as high.

The fact that dossiers are now being prepared for the lion's share of those on the command staff to put them in jail with a beautiful pretext - I confirm.

Before they give the order to roll back the military operation [the reasons are not important], they will have to clean the "unreliable command staff", sometimes to a bloody crust, and sometimes even to the white bone.

4. Ukraine, the southern front. From the leadership's point of view, Mykolaiv is in some ways becoming as much of an irritant as Mariupol. So far there is no clear solution, and the cost of military pressure is prohibitively high. The calculation that Mykolaiv will break prior to the advancing (Russian) forces will break belongs to the same lists of calculations regarding capture of Kiev in 3 days.

But there is Odessa. From the military point of view, everything there is also extremely sad for our side - now we can say that the storm that blocked the landing earlier did not so much save Odessa as it saved our marines. The military counterintelligence of the Ukrainians [and NATO helps them - this is a fact] is a separate misfortune for us. Or rather, it is a misfortune for the military, which had its own plans to eliminate a number of key individuals. But there aren’t any particular direct military solutions there: the obviousness of the failure of a possible breakthrough operation to Transnistria is now apparent even to the most desperate.

In Odessa, however, they (Russian side) are betting on chaotization on all fronts except the military. Fact is the counterintelligence of the Odessa SBU (Ukrainian Security Service) is the weakest of the regional ones in Ukraine. In addition, the economic management of the Odessa region is conducted on the residual principle, i.e., it is not conducted at all.

That is why it is Odessa that will bear the brunt of the disruption: lists of names that are not on the guarded list, but whose simultaneous elimination could cause social and political chaos, are now being prepared.

The task is not to eliminate influential "enemies of Russia" - the task is to completely chaoticize the local space, to rock the situation and to start a mechanism of conflicts between everyone.

Our people (in the FSB) have already felt out Odessa: sabotage against military targets is almost unrealizable, but everything else is almost without resistance, and the local SBU is incapable of dealing with issues unrelated to smuggling and customs.

5. Kadyrov. He lurks and continues to establish his game. We are also starting to move on him from different sides, he understands that. Who, to whom, and how will do what in the end is still a trick question.

6. Missing Persons (Russian military losses in Ukraine). This problem will rise to full prominence after the war, but its scale is insanely large. The missing are now the main category in terms of current losses, with the numbers jumping around so much that the real situation is unknown.

Modern warfare is such that the heavy weapons will sometimes make it impossible to find physical bodies.

Many are indeed dead and just not evacuated. Some in captivity, some escaped, some have lost contact and may still return. The picture in this sense is the same for all agencies.

The Ukrainian side is conducting active work to establish a list of identities of those they have captured.

But no one knows anything (in Russia) about the overwhelming majority of the missing people - this data is classified and concealed like the top secret of the country.

Recognition of the dead will be made with extreme reluctance, and one should not look for malicious intent here: if there is a chance that a person may be found alive (if Russia jumps the gun on recognizing the missing as dead), then military bureaucrats will have a headache on their hands. Let us take the most cynical example:

the relatives will be paid compensation as is if the person is deceased, but the person will return, for example, with a serious wound, after having been found somewhere in captivity.

Ask the relatives to "return the money they received" and reclassify everything?

It’s cynical, but for the bureaucratic system it is also unsolvable, which means that even after the war people will still be on the list of the missing for a very, very long time. And there are thousands and thousands of people missing.

7. Overall. Nabiullina (Head of the Russian Central Bank) has already confirmed aloud what I wrote in the very first letters: by the end of May we are ending the "good old days" and moving into a new economic model. Which does not yet exist, which has not yet been invented, but for which we will pay a fantastic price for trying to create.

Import warehouses will be depleted of everything accumulated in the pre-war period by that time (end of May), whether the government will risk unlocking the strategic reserves - we wonder ourselves.

If you unpack it (the strategic reserves), up to another six months of time appears. That phase (the extra 6 months) would be on the level of the early '90s. And then... I don't even want to talk about it. And there is no point in looking that far ahead: earlier we tried to plan for years ahead, now it would be a success if we could predict a month out.

(END OF TRANSLATION of the 17th #FSBletters from the #WindofChange)