Marten: Wagner soldiers also offer the Russian government “plausible deniability” if something goes wrong

PONARS Eurasia
08 Aug 2018

(Global News) Three Russian journalists wound up dead last week in the Central African Republic, where they’d been following a shadowy paramilitary force that often backs Kremlin causes.

It’s unclear who killed the three men, but they died while trying to shed some light on the mysterious Russia-based security firm known as the Wagner Group. [...]

Wagner soldiers also offer the Russian government “plausible deniability” if something goes wrong, according to Kimberly Marten, chair of the political science department at Barnard College and a member of Columbia University’s Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies.

“By using these contract forces, it allows [Russian leaders] to put people in harm’s way without having to worry so much about the public opinion consequences if they end up being injured or killed,” Marten said.

Here’s what we know about the mercenary men who fight and die for Russian interests on foreign soil, but who are ignored and disowned by the nation pulling their strings. [...]

Read More © Global News