Putin will be finished if he loses war in Ukraine, warns ex-MI6 boss

Ukraine: Vladimir Putin’s position assessed by Richard Dearlove

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Vladimir Putin’s political career will be over if he loses the war in Ukraine, according to the former head of MI6. Intelligence expert Sir Richard Dearlove says the leader of Russia is very vulnerable as the conflict goes from bad to worse.

Sir Richard said it is not clear how Russians would go about getting rid of Putin but thinks there must be massive tensions within the Kremlin.

Speaking on GB News he said: “This is a conflict that Putin politically in Russia cannot afford to lose.

“So, if he does lose, and I think one would have to reflect on what loss means in this particular case, then I think his political future is probably over, finished.

“The mechanisms for getting rid of a leader in Russia are not clear. I think he’s just in a very vulnerable situation.”

He added: “There is a disastrous conflict he’s entered into, it’s going from bad to worse.

“He’s probably faced with another call-up. That clearly is deeply unpopular in Russia.

“There must be massive tensions within the leadership group inside the Kremlin, there must be massive tensions socially across Russia over this whole issue.”

In his interview on the Camilla Tominey Show earlier today, he added: “I just don’t think we can say if he will be deposed.”

Sir Richard went on to say: “I rashly predicted last year that on the grounds of probably his health, he gets shuffled off into a sanatorium and would disappear and then you would just have a probably a continuation of the same regime and in someone else’s hands.

“I still think that that’s a possibility. There’s clearly something wrong with him.

“Physically, I think. I’m not a clinician but I know there are clinicians analysing his movements.

“There’s something wrong with him and maybe that is affecting his political judgement as well.”

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Sir Richard also warned that China is on a path to world domination.

He said: “China is set on a road to attempt to dominate by 2049 – halfway through this century.

“So the idea that they sit there in a sort of benign state believing in peaceful coexistence, it’s rubbish.

“China has these ambitions, so you have the cyber threat, you have the cyber threat coming from China and from Russia.

“You have obviously the sort of destabilisation, the major war on the European continent, and the risks of escalation.

“The UK in particular, because we are a significant European power, a very direct threat.

“We still have the terrorist problem in the background and I think that also is something we have to worry about, maybe not quite to the same degree.”

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