The Victory Parade, which Russia is usually so proud of and which it always uses as the main tool of military propaganda, this year should be referred to not only as a shame parade but also a marker of the inevitable end of the regime that broke its back in a "mongoose jump."
Here are the main things that the shame parade showed today, May 9, 2022.
It showed that, since Valery Gerasimov, Chief of the General Staff of the Russian armed forces, was absent at the event, he appears to have been wounded at the least or liquidated at the most. I have repeatedly noted that May 9 will show whether the rumors about Gerasimov being wounded or killed near Izium are true, since he hadn"t missed a single parade.
Also, the aviation part of the shame parade was called off, allegedly due to weather conditions. However, the weather in Moscow today is just right for flyovers. What was it about then?
According to one version, Putin was wary of a provocation by some pilot-gone-rogue, while another version suggests that the famed Il-80 Doomsday plane failed to take off. And it is this version that I find most plausible as just the other day I noted that Russia"s Il-80 aircraft are not in the best condition, or better say, in critical condition.
So, proceeding with the aviation part of the event with no Il-80 in sight despite propaganda announcements would have given rise to rumors that Putin has no last-resort command post to lead the country amid a nuclear fallout. Therefore, the Kremlin just canceled the whole air show altogether.
I should note that the shame parade was held under the slogan "Happy Victory Day!", But at the same time, there were no "Z", "V", or "O" symbols at the event.
This was rather unexpected because in the last two and a half months, these symbols had been pushed quite widely and extensively to become part of the public agenda. It is hard to believe that the regime couldn"t find enough white ribbons or chalk for the shame parade. Or perhaps this could be a sign of the regime distancing itself from this dubious symbolism?
As for Putin"s speech, many expected a general mobilization announcement — but not me. No such statement was voiced. Neither were there any success stories regarding the so-called "special operation," which are regularly reported by the Russian defense ministry.
In general, Putin delivered a defeatist address, while looking rather confused with his speech being quite crumpled. As for the narratives, there was nothing new there. It was just a set of messages repeated from year to year, with a slight nuance added – the mention of the so-called "LPR" and "DPR" in a very peculiar context.
Putin spoke of the pseudo-republics in a tone suggesting that it was because of them that Russia was forced to unleash a war against Ukraine. This is precisely a hint that might allow Russian propaganda to maneuver to justify failures and collapse in their own country. It is all because of these "LPR" and "DPR", propaganda will be able to claim, that all these economic problems emerged, along with the country"s international blockade, skyrocketing impoverishment of the population, as well as hundreds of fresh graves in every Russian city…
In fact, the shame parade showed that the Russian leadership is deeply depressed by the realization of their imminent defeat. The event was held without Gerasimov, without the Il-80, without the lion"s share of prominent military hardware, and the main combat-ready units, to replenish which Russia will have to work for not years but decades.
The shame parade showed the end of the regime in all its colors.