The Russian government critic and former world chess champion Garry Kasparov (60) does not believe that the drone incident on the Kremlin premises in Moscow was a Russian staging. “I doubt the popular version that it was a KGB provocation. I have no problem imagining the KGB creating fake events to arouse popular anger, but that’s the wrong aim,” he said he in an interview with the German Press Agency in Gmund am Tegernsee.

The KGB was the Soviet secret service, from which today’s domestic secret service FSB and the foreign service SWR emerged. “Against the background of the war, an attack on Putin’s Kremlin would be interpreted by the Russians as weakness,” said Kasparov.

Although he only has the information he got from the media and could be wrong, he believes that the incident at the Russian center of power is more like a “message from Ukraine: watch out, we can reach you.” Russia had said that two drones that were flying towards the Kremlin compound had crashed on Wednesday night. Moscow accuses Kiev of an attempted attack on Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin and threatens countermeasures.

“Loss of a war always led to revolts”

Kasparov, who was awarded the “Freedom Prize of the Media” at the Ludwig-Erhard summit in Tegernsee yesterday, sees “dramatic consequences” for Russia if the war in Ukraine ends and Putin is defeated. “We know from Russian history that while a war is being fought successfully, people can endure the consequences and accept sacrifices,” said the 60-year-old. “But the loss of a war always led to revolts and revolutions.”

Russia is in a “terrible state”. “I think there will be an explosion then. The question is: what will the result of this explosion be? And that will depend very much on our willingness to have a plan in case of an emergency and whether we can show Russia a way to to recover. It’s about offering a chance,” Kasparov said.

Well-known Kremlin critic

Kasparov became famous as a chess genius and in 1985, at just 22 years old, became the youngest world chess champion in history. After the end of his chess career, the son of a German-Jewish father and an Armenian made a name for himself as a sharp critic of the Kremlin. He was a co-founder of several opposition alliances, campaigns, organizations and parties and is now considered one of the leading Russian opposition figures. He lives in exile in New York.

“I think I have to play a role in bringing Russia back,” Kasparov told dpa. “It’s about the never-ending struggle between freedom and tyranny. And the outcome of this global struggle will depend very much on the results of our efforts to revitalize Russia and what was good in Russian history.”