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Tom Ironsides being unavailable for comment this weekend, we turn to former CIA man Larry Johnson for an intelligent take on the Wagner, Prigozhin show and Werewestern overreaction.

I give credence to Alexander Mercouris’ reporting on the history of Wagner — i.e., it was formed under the direction of Russia’s military intelligence outfit, the GRU, and the Russian version of the FBI, i.e., the FSB. In other words, Wagner is more akin to the CIA’s Special Activities Division (i.e., SAD) [Dr. Ironsides’s old unit], which is the military arm of the CIA, and the French Foreign Legion. Wagner, in my opinion, is not under the operational control of Prigozhin. Not only is he a master of the culinary arts but he is a damn, fine actor. Prigozhin presents the world with the image of a man teetering on the edge of madness and megolamania and the intelligence agencies in the U.S. and other NATO countries lap it up.

…Prigozhin’s recent highly publicized outbursts, including expletive laden diatribes hurled at Russian military leaders, have raised hopes in NATO military and intelligence circles that maybe, just maybe, Putin’s inner circle is starting to crumble and that Russia really is nothing more than a gas-station with nukes.

I do not believe in coincidence. The fact that Prigozhin is linked so publicly with a military organization and an internet information operation that are all under the control of Russia intelligence, leads me to believe that he is an important actor in the Russian campaign to deceive and confuse the West about its true military plans and objectives. Last week, Prigozhin did his best to convince the NATO countries that Wagner was on the ropes and faced with a real risk of being overrun by newly energized and supplied Ukrainian troops. That was then.

And they fell for it, as idiots are inclined to do. The Clowns are, at best, conmen, and conmen, someone once said, are the easiest people to fool. Beaten, badly, by “Putin’s chef”.