An oligarch close to Vladimir Putin has warned friends that his ‘psychiatric health is bad’ and there is a ‘very real’ threat he could use nuclear weapons.
The prominent billionaire has told associates that the Kremlin leader’s ‘psychiatric health is bad indeed, and ‘stories about him going bonkers are not a joke’.
He and others with huge business empires closely tied to Putin, 69, are fearful over his next moves in the barbaric invasion of Ukraine.
Rumours about the Russian leader’s ill health have been circling in recent months after he was seen holding a table for support and shaking his hand uncontrollably.
Sources have claimed he is suffering from Parkinson’s or cancer and he has been seen in public less frequently.
Bloated Putin was seen gripping a table while slouching in his chair during a televised meeting last month with his defence minister Sergei Shoigu
Russian analyst and investigative journalist Christo Grozev (pictured right) said Putin is no longer trusted by billionaires
The revelation comes as Putin today hosts a vast Red Square parade with 11,000 troops, showing off his missiles and tanks in a display of might to the West.
His Doomsday plane – from which he can control Russia in a nuclear war – is also featuring in the Victory Day commemoration for the first time in 12 years, a sign of deep tension with the West.
A trusted source said: ‘People who personally know [this oligarch close to Putin] and other [insiders] have told me that big business closely affiliated to power are sitting as quiet as mice because the emperor’s madness is real, and the nuclear strike’s threat is very real, too.
Those ‘most strongly opposed to the war’ in the elite ‘have shut up’ because of the dangers of challenging him.
‘They told me that Putin’s psychiatric health is bad indeed, and stories about him going bonkers are not a joke.
Putin’s Doomsday plane – from which he can control Russia in a nuclear war – is featuring in today’s Victory Day commemoration
‘There is some really serious trauma there, with everyone scared of its consequences.’
The oligarch is a well-known name in Russia, and he has known the Russian leader closely for many decades.
His concerns come as well-placed Russian analyst and investigative journalist Christo Grozev, told Ukraine-24 TV that Putin is no longer trusted by billionaires hitherto close to him, who believe he is suffering from cancer.
‘I have no exact data about his health condition, but…people who are close to him, including oligarchs [believe he has cancer],’ said Grozev, who is associated with British-based Bellingcat open source research group which has run investigations on Russian corruption.
‘One oligarch…close to him [has told] about Putin’s serious oncological disease.
Hardliner Nikolai Patrushev will reportedly take control of the war in Ukraine while Putin is under the knife to treat abdominal cancer
‘Once again, I cannot tell you this is really so, but I can say they talk about it.
‘People next to him believe he has such a disease. It becomes a factor in Russian inner politics.
‘Because people do not believe Putin any more, do not believe he can be their guarantor [in future].
‘And this is [the feeling] throughout the elites.’
Other reports suggest Putin is suffering the early stages of Parkinson’s disease, and grips a desk to avoid involuntary shaking.
General SVR – which uses the acronym of Russian foreign intelligence – said last month that Putin may soon vanish for a period as undergoes surgery linked to cancer.
He has allegedly secretly nominated his hardline security council security secretary Nikolai Patrushev – a former KGB counterintelligence officer who once headed the FSB – to take ‘control’ of Russia while he is incapacitated.
Shadowy Patrushev, 70, is seen as a key architect of the Ukrainian war strategy and the man who convinced Putin that Kyiv was awash with neo-Nazis.
The EU and US are considering sanctioning Putin’s supposed partner gymnast Alina Kabaeva (pictured together)
Grozev said he expects new revelations about Putin’s family.
This comes as the EU and US are considering sanctioning his supposed partner gymnast Alina Kabaeva, 38, with whom he is believed to have at least two children.
Until now there had been a reluctance to reveal the truth about Putin’s vast wealth.
But he said: ‘The fact that Kabaeva is almost guaranteed to be included in the sanctions list means that all this unwillingness to publish the data about his offshores, the people who hold his money, can change in the next week.
‘Investigations are still ongoing, real journalistic ones.
‘I know that colleagues, journalist-investigators from Russia, managed to obtain new information on what his daughters are doing, so in a week, or in the coming days, they will publish this.’
Putin has two officially acknowledged daughters — Maria, 37, and Katerina, 35, both from ex-wife Lyudmila, once Russia’s first lady.
Dr Maria Vorontsova, a year younger than Kabaeva, born when the Russian president was a KGB spy in Germany, is an expert in rare genetic diseases in children.
She is a leading researcher at the National Medical Research Center for Endocrinology of the Ministry of Health of Russia, and an authority on dwarfism.
Her divorced sister Katerina Tikhonova is deputy director of the Institute for Mathematical Research of Complex Systems at Moscow State University.
She is a former high-kicking ‘rock’n’roll’ dancer.
Both daughters have been sanctioned by the West, unlike Putin’s unacknowledged ‘love child’ Luiza Rozova, 19.
Luiza is the daughter of cleaner-turned-multimillionaire Svetlana Krivonogikh, 45, now part-owner of a major Russian bank, one of the country’s wealthiest women with an estimated £74million financial and property fortune.
The tell-tale tremor of a doomed tyrant: How Putin’s ‘uncontrollable’ shaking hand bears the hallmarks of Hitler’s Parkinson’s disease
Amid rumours about his poor health, a video showing Vladimir Putin’s shaking hand as he greeted Belarus’s leader resurfaced last month.
The clip, which was filmed just before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February, showed him gripping a chair and pressing his hand to his chest to stop it shaking as he greeted Alexander Lukashenko.
It fuelled further speculation of the state of his health after footage and images appeared to show his bloated face and slouching posture.
But the scenes of Putin’s apparent struggles are reminiscent of a clip that showed Adolf Hitler’s own failing health as Germany faced total defeat in the Second World war.
A resurfaced video showing Vladimir Putin’s hand shaking as he greeted Belarus’s leader Aleksander Lukashenko in February is reminiscent of a clip that revealed Adolf Hitler’s own failing health as his country faced total defeat in the Second World War.
In what was one of the last times the dictator was seen alive outside of his Berlin bunker, a propaganda video filmed in April 1945 showed him decorating members of the Hitler Youth who had been called up to defend Berlin.
The film was supposed to show how Hitler was still in command, even as the Soviet Union’s troops closed on the capital.
But a telling part of the footage was cut from the final version and was supposed to have been destroyed.
The clip, which was discovered in an East German film laboratory in the 1970s, showed the Nazi leader’s left hand shaking violently as he held it behind his back while greeting military officers during the same trip outside his bunker.
Many historians and experts believe that Hitler was suffering from Parkinson’s disease at the time the video was filmed. The condition hampers muscle control and impairs mobility.
British historian Richard Evans previously told how Hitler began to show symptoms of Parkinson’s disease earlier in the war.
He told the Smithsonian Channel in 2014 that symptoms of shaking in his left hand were ‘for a time’ cured after he was injured by the bomb that went off in the 1944 attempt on his life.
‘He had a shake in his left hand and for a time that was cured as it were by the bomb that went off on July 20, 1944.
‘As he said, that’s not the way I would choose of curing it. But soon after that, the shaking came back in his right side.
‘He began to drag his feet and shuffle. He began to speak in a more flat, less animated sort of way. Normally.’
Comparisons of footage filmed in 1940 and 1944 showed how Hitler’s mobility had appeared to decline during the course of the war.
Surviving records show how Hitler’s personal doctor Theodor Morell first noted Hitler’s tremor in 1941 but put it down to stress.
Then, in the final days of the war, he concluded that Hitler was suffering from ‘shaking palsy’ – the original name for Parkinson’s disease.
As well as impairing thought processes, Parkinson’s can impair posture and muscle control.
Hitler killed himself inside his bunker, which was built near Berlin’s Reich Chancellery, on April 30, 1945.
The mass murderer took his own life alongside his wife Eva Braun, who he had married the day before.
By then, Germany was on the brink of total defeat against Allied and Russian forces.
The Nazi dictator had launched a doomed invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941 which saw Joseph Stalin’s forces fight back and ultimately triumph against German troops.
Earlier this month human rights officials claimed that, just like in Nazi Germany, the Kremlin has resorted to recruiting children to boost its troop numbers in eastern Ukraine.
Moscow was said to be recruiting from youth clubs and conscripting 16-year-olds to replace the estimated 30,000 soldiers either killed, wounded or captured so far in the war.
So-called ‘patriotic clubs’ sprang up in Russian-occupied parts of eastern Ukraine following its invasion in 2014 as part of a campaign to promote the country’s culture in Luhansk and Donetsk.
The Ukrainian parliament commissioner on human rights Lyudmyla Denisova said: ‘The occupation authorities [of Luhansk and Donetsk] are conducting the mobilisation of children who participated in the so-called patriotic clubs, to the levels of illegal weapons formations.
‘They have been doing military training and there have been deaths among these teenagers [in Ukraine].
‘Now they are promoting the entry into the army of civilians, including children in the temporarily occupied territories.
‘In doing so, the Russian Federation has violated the laws and customs of war provided by the 1949 Geneva Convention on the protection of civilians… and the rights of children.
‘The recruitment of children is a violation of international law.’