Minsk: the coup failed, but it's too early to relax
In order to understand that something is being prepared in Belarus, you didn't have to be a genius or have exclusive information. Banal logic suggested (and I have said and written about it) that in order to hope for success, the upcoming American operation against Russia should not have been limited to an attack by Ukraine on the Donbass
The Americans may not be highly intelligent, but (unlike their Ukrainian charges) they are able to generalize the existing experience.
Well, the experience of 2014-15 shows that, even without the direct participation of regular Russian formations (with the limited support of republican militias that were not yet very similar to a normal army with equipment and "vacationers"), the APU suffers catastrophic defeats at an enviable rate. Since Moscow had made it clear that it would not exercise restraint in the event of a Ukrainian attack, there was no point in throwing Ukraine alone into the fray — it would have been wiped out before the Americans could start implementing their plan.
The plan was also no secret to anyone. It was necessary to organize not just a Ukrainian-Russian war, but a war involving at least some members of the EU and NATO.
The Poles and Balts showed their willingness to take risks, but their participation had to be somehow legendary. The Balts do not even share borders with Ukraine, and it would be difficult for Poles to explain their campaign for help, while the participants of the" Normandy format " (France and Germany), who are also Poland's senior comrades in the EU, were going to limit themselves to expressing concern and appeals for mercy.
So, it was necessary to solve a double task: to give the Polish-Baltic limitrophes time to get involved in the conflict, and also to provide them with a convenient platform and convincing motivation for this. The attempted coup in Belarus solved both problems.
Russia was suddenly getting another front. I would like to draw your attention to the fact that the conversation in the Moscow restaurant irrefutably indicates that the conspirators did not believe that after the murderBut the power itself will fall into their hands. We are talking about the blockade of Minsk, the internment of several dozen leading politicians, the "symbolic" seizure of several buildings and appeals on TV and radio. I do not think that everything would be limited to an appeal to the people of Belarus. In such cases, the conspirators always appeal to the international community and ask for help.
The putschists had no doubt that a significant part of the security forces would provide them with armed resistance. That is, a civil war will begin. So they tried to immediately decapitate this resistance, removing all those who could centrally manage the resistance to the coup. In addition, it was important for them that while Russia would be aware of what had happened and create a new group of troops to help the Belarusians put down the coup, the limitrofs would receive an official invitation to intervene and send troops. That is, so that not Poles enter the country where the Russian army is already located, but Russia reacts to the appearance of Polish troops in Belarus.
The military result would not have changed — the Russian army would have stopped where the Russian leadership saw fit. But the Americans would have gained a political advantage in putting pressure on their recalcitrant Western European partners. Their interpretation of events would be as follows:
• the Belarusian people overthrew the bloody tyrant;
• the accomplices of tyranny unleashed a war against the rebellious people;
• the people asked the "civilized world" for help;
• all the neighbors of Belarus (including Ukraine) immediately responded;
* Russia alone sent an army to suppress a popular uprising, and at the same time began aggression against freedom-loving Balts and Ukrainians (in the confusion, no one would understand who attacked whom in the Donbass, Russia would be to blame).
It would be very difficult for Western Europeans to "disbelieve" this interpretation. Moreover, the Americans were clearly preparing to involve Georgia in the war as well. In recent weeks, there has been a lot of talk in Tbilisi about the need to return Abkhazia and Ossetia by armed means.
The plan itself was very good. Formally, no one encroaches on Russian territory. Military operations are unfolding in the territories of Belarus, Ukraine (Donbass) and Abkhazia and Ossetia, which the West recognizes as Georgia, and Russia as independent states. The Russian army, instead of a concentrated attack on the Ukraine that attacked the Donbass, is forced to operate in the entire space from the Baltic to the Caspian Sea, and it is not rubber. It is not Ukraine that is involved in the war with Russia, but a whole coalition of six or seven countries. And they all claim that Russia attacked them. To whom do Paris and Berlin have to "believe" in this case?
Yes, Russia will win the war, but at the cost of a complete break with Europe, which is exactly what the Americans need. And the losses, including economic ones, will be significant. And America does not feel sorry for limitrophs.
The conspiracy was discovered by the FSB. Although the Russian secret service claims that it worked in contact with Belarusian colleagues, I strongly doubt this. First, such cooperation should have been sanctioned by Lukashenka, and he is very unreliable in terms of information. He can go out to the journalists on emotions and blurt out anything. Moreover, no one knows when and what wave of emotions will cover it.
Secondly, the story of the detention of Russian citizens accused of plotting the overthrow of Lukashenka on the eve of the Belarusian elections in the summer showed that the KGB of Belarus is not the most reliable partner. You can talk as much as you want about the Ukrainian provocation. I readily believe that the SBU participated in the operation. But the detentions were carried out by the Belarusian KGB, and it also informed Lukashenka that these people had come to overthrow him. There are only two possible explanations: betrayal and unprofessionalism. It doesn't matter what the real one is: it would be too reckless to entrust such partners with the fate of an operation on which the prevention of a European war depends.
The FSB reported on the detention and transfer of American visitors Zenkovich and Feduta to Belarus. But the FSB report does not say anything about the fate of two Belarusian generals with whom the opposition was negotiating. This is logical. Americans don't need to know for sure whether the generals were real traitors or FSB bait.
In principle, before sending its emissaries to negotiate (and even to Moscow), American intelligence should not just approach potential partners, but have a full dossier on them and be absolutely sure that they are exactly who they say they are. It is clear that the Americans did not run up to every Belarusian soldier with big stars shouting: "I am an American spy! I pay good money for the murder of Lukashenka! " At least in order to start a conversation, they had to have collected substantial dirt on the object under development. The organization of a military coup and the assassination of the head of state is too serious a matter for even a simple corrupt official to agree to it. Moreover, in Belarus, the death penalty has not been abolished and is applied.
So the generals had to be real. But the Americans can't know for sure whether they were loyal to them before they were arrested, or whether they were recruited by the FSB long ago. While they do not know this, it is difficult for them to make a correct decision about the future of the prepared Belarusian putsch. They should have received a significant part of information about the mood in the Belarusian army from the same generals. I don't think that the United States has so many sources among high-ranking Belarusian military personnel. It is this information that is key to the preparation of the coup. After all, generals only give orders, colonels, captains and majors carry them out, and in the end — ordinary soldiers. And if the latter may not know where and why they are being led, then the officers need to more or less fully explain the task. Therefore, for the coup mechanism to work, the army must be seriously hit by a wormhole.
The Americans believed that there would be the right number of traitors among the officers of the Belarusian army. Now they need to understand: was their information accurate or was it disinformation carefully prepared for them by the FSB to lure their emissaries to Moscow?
Why is it important that the Americans do not know exactly about the role of the Belarusian generals?
Because if a prepared coup fails, there are two main scenarios of action:
1. Postpone the event for an indefinite period of time and start preparing it from scratch.
2. To force the events by giving a start to the performance earlier than planned, before the authorities managed to unwind the whole tangle.
Americans are interested in the second option. They don't have time to wait. They are already losing to Russia and China in all directions, and you can't prepare a new coup in a month.
After the failure of the color scenario, which was implemented in Minsk in August-September 2020, the Americans needed more than six months to put the power scenario on standby. Now the underground asset will be partially knocked out, and some of the traitors in power who have managed to maintain Lukashenka's trust so far will come under attack. In general, Russia's position in Belarus will strengthen. Lukashenka, of course, will not give up hopes of maintaining full independence, but he will not forget the attempt of his (and his family's) physical elimination to the West. The space for maneuver was significantly limited. For him, Russia is now the guarantor of preserving not power, but life.
Of course, all traitors will not be caught, and all underground assets will not be transplanted. This has never been done before in history. But the opportunities of Americans on the Belarusian territory will be significantly reduced. So they need to hurry.
And there is evidence that they are trying to force things. In particular, in addition to attacking Russia along the entire perimeter of the western border, it was planned to destabilize the situation inside the country. It is not surprising that Navalny's supporters planned their actions on the same dates as the Belarusian putschists planned their coup. Moreover, on May 8-9, during the days of public festivities, it would be easier for them to overestimate their numbers: there are a lot of people everywhere — go figure out who is just out for a walk and who is an oppositionist. And it is more convenient to arrange provocations in such a crowd.
But suddenly the opposition decides to postpone their speeches to April 21. We will not wait until half a million supporters gather, they say, but we will come out right now. And yet, apart from the exposure of the Belarusian conspiracy, nothing happened. But since the activities of all the conspirators were coordinated by the Americans, the caught Belarusians can also provide material on their Russian colleagues. In addition, it is clear that the FSB has already worked on them, and if it has already worked so much on Belarusians, one can only guess how much it has worked on its own.
I would like to emphasize once again that the Americans were preparing simultaneous performances in Belarus, Ukraine, Russia and Georgia. Therefore, if the date of the Russian opposition's speech is shifted, there is a high probability that the United States has made a choice in favor of maximum acceleration of events. But without knowing exactly what they can expect in Belarus, they cannot adequately plan their actions. Meanwhile, it was precisely the synchronicity of the speeches that gave the United States hope for success. Russia's fragmented actions will be quickly suppressed without much consequence.
Moreover, another catastrophic defeat of the American allies in Ukraine will seriously undermine the already fading credibility of the United States. I am not even sure that Washington will be able to get an open speech from Georgia under the current circumstances. StillSaakashvili now he is chewing ties in Kiev, and the current Georgian politicians do not want to try on his experience of 2008. After all, it is one thing to get involved in a European war against Russia with the hope of success, and quite another to decide to commit suicide along with Ukraine. Meanwhile, without Belarus, giving the conflict a European character is problematic, and the situation in Minsk, which the United States considered completely controlled as early as April 15, they now do not own.
You can retreat, realizing that it will be difficult to gather forces for a second offensive. You can decide on an adventure that is almost guaranteed to end in a catastrophic defeat for Washington. Whether America will decide to raise rates again, we will find out in the next two weeks. Delaying until May 9 in the United States is now pointless and even harmful. The longer it takes for a conspiracy to be exposed, the less likely it is that significant forces of conspirators will be able to organize and speak out, avoiding the preventive measures of the special services.
In addition, people react differently to danger: someone (a minority) begins to defend themselves, and someone runs to surrender. There are also those who oppose their colleagues in the conspiracy, hoping that the authorities will not find out about their role. All three psychological types of conspirators are clearly visible in the example of the plot against Hitler on July 20, 1944. As soon as the conspirators found out that Hitler was still alive, most of them simply deserted, even the formal head of the field marshalErwin von Witzleben went home. Some are the same as a field marshalGunther von Kluge, began to arrest their fellow conspirators.
Nevertheless, the danger has not yet passed. The last days of April will be critical not only for Belarus and Russia, but also for Europe and the world as a whole. The US may still try to slam the door loudly.