Putin appoints another brutal commander in the Ukraine War 

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In April, Putin publicly promoted Dvornikov as new commander of the Ukraine war. Dvornikov was known as the Butcher of Syria. He only lasted a few months in the role. And was replaced by Surovikin as “head of the southern military grouping” this summer. 

 The new head of Russian efforts in Ukraine has a very dark history. He was once jailed in Russia. And was found guilty of selling weapons in illegal arms trade.  Eventually he was freed when it was claimed he had been framed.

British Intel sources note that “For more than 30 years, Surovikin’s career has been plagued by accusations of corruption and brutality.” 

As a military commander he led Russian forces in Syria in 2017. He was accused of “controversial” tactics including indiscriminate bombing of civilians.

His tactics got him listed in the October 2020 Human Rights Watch report. It claims Surovikin is a person “who may bear command responsibility for violations” during the 2019-2020 offensive in Syria. 

He also led soldiers against Russian pro-democracy protesters during the 1991 coup. And ordered his troops to open fire on the people. Three Russian civilians were killed.