The Legion of Free Russia presents a plan to overthrow the regime in the Kremlin

Caesar, the deputy commander of the Free Russian Legion (FRL), which is fighting on the side of Ukraine and wants to overthrow Russian President Vladimir Putin, had an extensive interview with Politico in Kyiv

by Sededin Dedovic
The Legion of Free Russia presents a plan to overthrow the regime in the Kremlin
© Danjori / Youtube channel

Caesar, the deputy commander of the Free Russian Legion (FRL), has a strong message for Tsar Vladimir Putin. In a candid interview with Politico, Caesar expresses his unwavering support for the Ukrainian people and his commitment to fight alongside them.

Despite being a former fitness coach from St. Petersburg and a father of four, he is ready for a long-term fight that goes beyond the current conflict in Ukraine. His determination is clear: "If I stay alive, I will return to my homeland with weapons in hand to remove Putin's regime." He operates under a nom de guerre to protect his family from reprisals, although his true identity is not a secret to Russian authorities and has been circulating on social media.

The Legion of Free Russia is one of three militias opposing the Kremlin and fighting for Ukraine. Although attention often gravitates towards the Russian Volunteer Corps (RVC) due to its controversial origins and leadership, Caesar's FRL remains committed to its cause without provoking similar controversies.

Recent headlines have spotlighted all three militias after significant attacks on Russian soil. Caesar and Denis Kapustin, the leader of the RVC, debate the size and influence of their respective militias, but both maintain secrecy about their forces, following military protocol.

Fredoom legion of Russia poses with Russian peace flag which they want to make official when they overthrow Putnss regime© Danjori / YOutube channel

During an exclusive interview in Kyiv, Caesar outlines his ambitious long-term plans.

He envisages the mobilization of forces to liberate the regions of Russia, the formation of a government and the gradual expansion of their influence, culminating in a march towards Moscow. Despite the enormous challenges ahead, Caesar remains steadfast in his conviction.

"When we have enough forces, we will liberate the entire Russian region. We will form a government. We will mobilize the people. We will train them. The rebellion will grow, and we will move to other regions until we attack Moscow.

We are not Prigozhin," he adds, referring to Wagner's mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin's failed rebellion and coup against the Kremlin at the end of June last year. "We are not adventurers. We are political soldiers. We clearly understand our goals.

Step by step we reach victory. It won't be soon, like this year. Maybe it won't be next year. But it's only a matter of time," he says.

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaks during a press conference on the second day of the G8 summit venue of Lough Erne© WPA Pool / Getty Images

Acknowledging his far-right origins and affiliation with the Russian Imperial Movement, which the United States has designated as a terrorist organization, Caesar clarifies his position.

"There were very good Russian special forces officers in the movement and I learned very well. That is why I knew something about the war before I joined the FRL. I'm still on the far right, but I'm not a crazy neo-Nazi or a National Socialist, or anything like that.

Of course, I am a Russian patriot, but I understand Tatars and Dagestanis and Chechens. And they want to be lords of their land, and they should be," he says. Despite the danger, the FRL continues to attract recruits, including Russians from Ukraine, Europe and America, attracted by their shared commitment to the cause.

The FRL was created a few weeks after Russia's attack on Ukraine as a symbol of Russian resistance against Putin's expansionist policies. "We disobeyed orders and refused to fight the Ukrainians. They reached the Ukrainian commanders through their relatives in Kharkiv in order to defect," he says.

"Amidst the chaos of the early days of the invasion, it wasn't that challenging to pull it off. The Russians listed them as killed in action or missing. Now it's different on the front line: if you want to defect or surrender, it's very dangerous.

There are minefields, drones, artillery shelling, and it's very risky. The front lines were much more fluid two years ago," Cezar explained to Politico. The families of FRL members in Russia suffer intimidation and threats from the FSB, and the personal sacrifices made to achieve their goals are great.

The FRL is being hunted by the Russian military, which wants to identify their bases to reduce the chances of them being targeted by missiles or drones. FRL units are dispersed when on Ukrainian soil, gathering only for major attacks.

Highlighting the FRL's recent military successes, including significant casualties inflicted on Russian forces, Caesar explains that the ultimate goal is the overthrow of Putin. He claims that the only way to get rid of Putin is the way the FRL is going.

"In the last major attack, we killed around 700 Russian soldiers and wounded another 1,300. We destroyed 10 tanks, about three dozen armored vehicles and three dozen howitzers. Our losses were very small. It was a great military result and had a great political and propaganda impact because it showed that Putin is not in control," he says.

Russia Ukraine Vladimir Putin