‘No longer Putin’s war’: Why the next leader of Russia will not stop the Ukraine invasion

“At the very least, they need to have some sort of a narrative of victory in order for them to agree to a ceasefire.”

The simulation found that unless the war provides Russia with political gains or some narrative victory, the Kremlin will likely try and draw it out for as long as possible. 

Mathieu Boulegue, Senior Research Fellow of the Russia and Eurasia Programme at Chatham House and one of the experts involved in the simulation said: “There is probably very little evidence at this stage that the foreign policy course of the Kremlin will change with Putin’s death unless there is a software change inside the Russian system.”

Despite the masses of speculation surrounding the state of Putin’s health, it is not clear who the Russian leader’s successor could be. 

Keir Giles, Senior Consulting Fellow of the Russia and Eurasia Programme at Chatham House and another expert involved in the simulation said that there is “no doubt that Vladimir Putin will have given serious thought to who will succeed him, even if that thought is motivated more by preserving his fortune for his family than by preserving the future of Russia.”