The president has always had him with him since both were advisers to the mayor of St. Petersburg Anatoly Sobchak. But friendship didn’t save him. Among the diplomats he was known as the Cheshire cat due to his ambiguous smile
These are times when doves vanish into thin air. And if they then flew to the Kremlin, they might have met a bad end. Afternoon of February 21st. Dmitry Kozak is one of the strongest men in the Russian vertical of power. Vladimir Putin brought them all together in the Kremlin, at the summit of the Security Councilto announce their intention to recognize the two self-proclaimed republics of Donbass. the moment when the world understands that it no longer has to wonder if the Red Army will enter Ukraine, but only when it does. That meeting goes down in recent history for the abrupt way in which the president silences and humiliates secret service chief Sergey Naryskhinwhich was asking for more time to avoid military intervention.
But there had been another victim just before. Kozak the deputy director of Putin’s staff. But the bond between the two goes beyond any position held by the former soldier of the Special Corps. The president has always had him with him ever since both were advisers to the mayor of St. Petersburg Anatoly Sobchak, entrusting him with very delicate roles. For this reason, for five years, he put him in charge of the special operation, which at that date meant only the management of relations with Ukraine. When he starts speaking, Kozak explains how the Kiev government has not made any progress towards Russia. He makes a sort of mea culpa, saying that since 2015 there has been a stalemate even if some progress would still be possible through diplomatic channels. But there is something wrong. Out of the frame, you hear a spasm, a thank you said aloud by Putin. That’s enough, there is no need to add anything else. Kozak instead continues, while the president taps his hand on the table, visibly impatient. He spasms it this time it sounds even more peremptory.
Since, There is no longer any news of one of the most prominent and closest personalities to the Russian president. A shrimp race, up to dematerialization. On February 24, Kozak is removed from all positions. Starting with that of head of negotiators with Kiev. His name is also removed from the daily information agenda, as if it no longer exists. On May 22, Ukrainian sources reported that he was arrested for collaborationism, a circumstance that was re-launched by some independent Russian media, but without any official confirmation. In Moscow, experts give an almost natural explanation of his undeniable fall from grace. The president has lost patience with him, after having placed faith in the successful outcome of the negotiations that had been proposed to him. And for every failure, especially eight years long, he needs a culprit.
It matters little if a long-time friend from the days of St. Petersburg, twice minister, twice head of his presidential campaign, a representative man, among other things the highest able to receive Matteo Salvini during one of his famous trips to Russia. And then Kozak, who in diplomatic circles he was nicknamed the Cheshire cat because of his ambiguous smile, he is serving a double sentence. born and raised in Ukraine, where he kept his business, which also made him the target of the first round of international sanctions after the first war in the Donbass. It was the direct link between the Kremlin and the oligarch Viktor Medvedchuk, Putin’s personal friend, captured last April by the Ukrainian army while, as the official version goes, he was trying to escape from house arrest which he had been forced to since May 2021. One once the figure that the Kremlin had designated as the architrave of a possible regime change in Kiev has left the scene, perhaps Kozak’s utility has also ceased.
Especially since his name has become object of a propaganda in reverse. Mitya, but do you really agree with the slaughter of your people? The interview with his first teacher, who he calls him with the confidential nickname attributed to him as a child in Ukraine, just one example. Friends, acquaintances, relatives of the third degree have been told about him. Everyone asking him why. But wherever he is, Kozak the Ukrainian is now far away. And he sure can’t afford to answer.