A senior spy official from Denmark told how ‘delusions of grandeur’ and the Kremlin leader’s ‘moon-shaped face’ in early 2022 were signs of the side effects of hormone treatment for the malignancy.
This means the Russian leader may retreat even further from public gaze in early 2023 after having cancelled a series of events and appearances in recent months.
A bloated and uncomfortable Vladimir Putin grips a desk at a meeting with a military official earlier this year
The head of Russian analysis at the Danish Defence Intelligence Service, whose identity was given only as Joakim, said: ‘Delusions of grandeur are one of the known side effects of the type of hormone treatment that he was on…
‘It’s not something I can say for certain, but I think it did affect his decisions when he launched the war in Ukraine.’
The ‘biggest uncertainty’ over Putin was his health – ‘or someone removing him because of his failing health’.
The analysis suggests he has suffered from cancer and was undergoing hormone treatment for it when he started the war, but is not terminally ill.
Putin ‘had a moon-shaped face at the start of the year, which is another known side effect of the same type of hormone treatment’.
Russian independent outlet Proekt also noted that Putin has been accompanied by cancer medics, especially thyroid specialists, when on presidential trips.
An analysis given by a Danish intelligence officer claimed Putin is suffering from cancer and was undergoing hormone treatment for it when he started the war, but is not terminally ill
Though the Kremlin leader is unlikely to succumb to the disease, Russian power-brokers may seek to install a stronger figure at the helm.
‘It’s our firm impression that part of the elite do see they are heading down the wrong track,’ Joakim claimed, but added that Putin is ‘likely’ to stay in power for several years.
‘We don’t see anyone about to depose him. But if we did, the FSB would see it too, and that would probably get sorted very quickly,’ he said.
Putin’s personal decision-making is seen as a key reason for many of the failures of Russian forces on the frontlines.
‘We put a lot of the blame for this on Putin’s shoulders,’ said the senior intelligence official.
‘It wasn’t poor intelligence but Putin’s ideological convictions that led Russian soldiers to believe they would be greeted with flowers,’ reported Berlingske newspaper.
‘It was because of Putin that everything was planned by a narrow circle of people and only shared through the ranks at the very last minute.
‘Because of this, the Russian forces simply did not know what they were supposed to be doing.’
Meanwhile, Putin’s seemingly constant physical discomfort, which sees him gyrate his feet awkwardly while sitting down and grip tables for support – likely comes from a mixture of his ongoing health problems and ‘chronic pain’, Joakim claimed.
‘This is chronic pain that he has suffered from for quite some time now,’ said the official.
‘That’s why he tends to sit and grab things tightly. It’s to ease the pain.’
Kremlin press secretary Dmitry Peskov yesterday indicated there were now ‘state security’ concerns in Russia over Putin’s medical condition
The Kremlin has paved the way for Putin to retreat for health-related reasons soon after his annual prerecorded New Year message to Russian citizens.
His spokesman Dmitry Peskov yesterday indicated there were now ‘state security’ concerns in Russia over Putin’s medical condition.
‘You see virus mutations, you see strong epidemiological waves of flu of various strains,’ he said.
‘All of this, given the lessons from the pandemic, obliges those responsible for the security of the president and for his health to take precautions, because in such conditions the health of the president is a matter of state security.’
Peskov said there would be no return anytime soon to Putin’s modus operandi before the pandemic, when he regularly held public events and spoke with the media.
‘To be honest, it is unlikely that [communication with journalists] will be quite the same as it used to be before the pandemic in the foreseeable future,’ Peskov said.
‘To expect things to return to what used to be would be a mistake. I would say – no it won’t be [back to the same].
‘But as these waves subside to their lowest points, then it would be possible to communicate in a freer mode.’