The general in charge of overseeing the struggling logistical operations of the Russian military in Ukraine has been sacked by Vladimir Putin.
The defense ministry announced on Telegram on Saturday that Gen. Dmitry Bulgakov, a deputy minister of defense, had been fired.
According to the ministry, the 67-year-old was “released” to transition into a new position.
He will be succeeded by Col. Gen. Mikhail Mizintsev, who oversaw Moscow’s ruthless siege of the coastal city of Mariupol.
After sending Russian soldiers to Syria in 2015, Gen. Bulgakov, who has been in charge of the military’s logistical operations since 2008, was in charge of ensuring their continued supply.
As a result of the disorganized logistical operations that have hampered Russia’s advance and left their troops undersupplied, experts claim Putin has lost influence in Moscow in recent months.
In order to obtain fresh artillery and drone supplies, the Kremlin has recently been obliged to contact Iran and North Korea, two of its last two friends.
The firing of Gen. Bulgakov comes as social media videos showing freshly conscripted Russian cadets carrying rusted assault guns have gone viral.
Hardliners will probably be pleased with the nomination of Gen. Mizintsev, who was sanctioned by the UK for his involvement in directing the Mariupol siege, as opposed to the firing of him, which was applauded by pro-war forces in Russia.
Many Ukrainians referred to Gen. Mizintsev as “the Butcher of Mariupol” because he oversaw Russian soldiers in Syria and is suspected of planning a merciless bombing campaign that destroyed Aleppo.
In March, the UK foreign office announced sanctions against the 60-year-old man, claiming that he had engaged in “reprehensible methods” and “atrocities” in both the Ukrainian and Syrian wars.
Apparently taking personal control of the military effort and beginning to give orders to Ukrainian generals directly, Mr. Putin made personnel changes.
The increasingly “dysfunctional command structure” in Moscow, according to US sources, drove Mr. Putin to get more involved in the conflict.
After senior defense officials started to make fun of the top general’s “ineffectual and out-of-touch leadership” last month, UK defense officials suggested that Mr. Putin had removed his defense minister, Sergei Shoigu.
In the meantime, the New York Times reported that Mr. Putin had refused to grant his commanders permission to leave the southern city of Kherson, where Ukrainian forces are subtly approaching.
The newspaper said, using US intelligence sources, that his unwillingness to take a pullout into consideration has led to a decline in morale among the Russian forces in the city, who are mostly cut off from their supply lines and depend on a series of pontoon bridges to be re-equipped.