Earlier today, the German Foreign Ministry announced that two Russian diplomats in Berlin had been declared personas non grata. Such a high-profile statement and the subsequent deportation of Russian diplomats followed a report by the federal prosecutor's office of Russian intelligence involvement in the August murder in Berlin of a Georgian national.
Of course, information on the involvement of Russian intelligence, namely the GRU, in the murder of Zelimkhan Khangoshvili was available almost immediately, thanks to the detention of the assassin. But, nevertheless, such a situation leads to thinking that Sergei Shoigu and his military intelligence are an actual international problem-producing factory for the Kremlin. And the problems it creates then result in new sanctions and other unpleasant surprises for Moscow.
If we recall all Russian defense ministry and GRU's failures since 2014, we'll simply lose count. It's the MH17 case, a failed coup d'etat in Montenegro, the attempt on the Skripals, the murder of the Bulgarian businessman Emelian Gebrev, liquidation of Khangoshvili, the exposed election meddling in the U.S. and across the EU, etc.
And I'm more than sure that one day we will learn much more details about the GRU role in terrorist attacks in Europe in 2015-2017 under the guise of ISIS, radicalization of the yellow vest movement and protests in Catalonia, the financing of radical parties and neo-Nazi movements across the EU, and many other destructive projects funded and supervised by the Russian military intel.
It is also worth noting that the "feats" of the GRU are exposed not only due to their constant and systematic failures, but also due to the efforts of their rivals, the FSB/SVR, who are always out there to show the public their competitors' dirty secrets.
Just as much they are ready to run up to Putin to whisper into his ear some new stories about the GRU mishaps.
That is, so much for GRU "help" to Putin ahead of a summit in Paris, where Merkel would definitely ask him questions, while Macron, after being criticized at the NATO meeting, is unlikely to become a fairly stable, unshakable pillar for the ageing leader of the hybrid "superpower".