All strongmen build "inner sanctums" to manage day-to-day governance. Composed of flatterers, family members and cronies, all of them chosen for their loyalty rather than their expertise, they shield him from any unpleasant counsel — and share handsomely in the profits from his thievery. This is certainly the case in Russia, a fully realized kleptocracy: In 2018, 3 percent of Russians held about 90 percent of the country’s assets, with Putin's oligarchs owning the lion's share of those... More here.
It feels as though, and if I am being optimistic, that this could be the first war where public sentiment around the world has a positive effect. Fingers crossed!