Almost two years after the outbreak of the war, Volodymyr Zelensky is increasingly in difficulty. Elected as a symbol of Ukrainian resistance in the face of the invasion of Vladimir Putin’s troops, the president is going through the most difficult phase of his political life. International support is limping, with the West increasingly tired of this conflict that undermines international stability and the economy. But not only. The failure of the counter-offensive – always denied – dented the popularity of the former comedian, who came into conflict with the military leaders. In particular, with Valery Zaluzhny, the head of the armed forces identified as a scapegoat. But his dismissal risks costing Zelensky dearly, considering the fifty-year-old’s popularity: i soldiers are all on his side.
Zaluzhny’s dismissal was expected at the summit called yesterday by Zelensky, but this was not the case. According to what was highlighted by Repubblica, it is about matter of time: the Ukrainian president has already warned the White House, despite the usual denials. There are no details on the project of Kiev’s number one, who is willing to do anything to regain popularity: Zaluzhny would be torpedoed for his refusal to accept second-rate positions. As for the replacement, the rumors about the head of military intelligence Budanov, the chairman of the Security Committee Danilov and General Syrsky were confirmed but all three declined. In other words, a hole in the water for Zelensky.
The head of the armed forces, who is highly critical of the political management of the war, added fuel to the fire between Zelensky and Zaluzhny. Moreover, the soldier, just like the president, has acquired great notoriety with the conflict and the polls reward him even more than his “rival”: as anticipated, the support of the armed forces is higher than that of the former comedian, 98 percent against 93 percent. This is certainly one of the reasons behind the change of pace decided by Zelensky, who at the stavka also discussed the change of part of the military leadership according to Yuriy Butusov, director of Censor.net.