When the war in Ukraine is over, the war in Russia will be just beginning. It’s people, who have prided themselves on defeating Nazi Germany in 1945, will be wondering how they themselves slowly became enrolled in a Fascist regime, which systematically undermined their rights of free speech and free assembly and perpetrated war crimes again a brother nation who shared much of their culture.
Whilst we in the West savor the word Democracy, in Russia the word has much more dire connotations. It is something to be feared. Russia had two short experiments with democracy: at the Russian revolution in 1917, hastily reversed as Lenin seized power and the so-called dictatorship of the proletariat began, and at the dissolution of the Soviet Union in the early 1990’s which was an unmitigated disaster for ordinary Russians, as chaos enveloped the country and oligarchs plundered assets. The Russian people quickly gravitated to what they knew best – an autocratic leader.
That has been the way with Russian history. The kingdom of Rus was established by Vikings in the mid-9th century, and their reign was brutal. Later the Mongol armies subjugated and ruled the land from the 13th to 15th centuries, establishing Moscow as the capital. They delegated their rule to Russian princes, who – eager to win favor with the Mongol overlords – ruthless crushed any dissent. Inspired by the rituals of the byzantine church Hagia Sophia in Constantinople, they imported and imposed on the people Orthodox Christianity and its Cyrillic alphabet, which marked the divergence of Russia from latinized Europe.
Learning to live with autocracy has been a genetic imperative for Russians. Part of that process has been to comfortably embrace misinformation and lies. In the West we may wonder why Russians fall for the euphemisms of “special military operation” (for war) and “fascist regime” (for Ukraine). But they don’t. Knowing the alternative could be the loss of their job, expulsion from university and, worst case, 15 years in a Russian jail, who in their right mind would contradict this narrative?
You’d have to be the bravest person in the world to risk everything just to express an opinion. And brave people there have been: dissidents like Sakharov (internally exiled), Solzhenitsyn (imprisoned), Navalny (poisoned and imprisoned), Maria Alyokhina from the group Pussy Riot (imprisoned), Boris Nemtzov (shot in front of the Kremlin) as well as many thousands of others. The majority of Russians learn to live with the lies, but they are not fooled. When the Soviet regime – after weeks of delay – finally admitted there had been a nuclear disaster at Chernobyl they assured the population that it was a small matter and there was no risk of radioactivity. Teachers at Russian schools immediately understood, and gathered their children indoors. When life is at stake, everyone knows what truth is.
So when the Russian army grinds to a halt and retreats in Ukraine, when the coffins are counted, and when the reality of civilian bombardment, the abduction of children and the destruction of their brother nation’s towns and villages sinks in, then the murmuring of a million voices in Russia will grow, and the carefully curated lies of the Russian dictatorship will no longer be able to stem the flood of guilt and anger.
Repression and imprisonment
This flood will arise at the conjunction of Saturn and Neptune, which takes place from July 2025 to February 2026. The sensitivity of Russian politics to the 35-36 year Saturn-Neptune cycle has been well-documented by astrologers. Michael Baigent famously predicted the dissolution of the Soviet Union 10 years before it happened (Note 1) partly because of the coming 1989 Saturn-Neptune conjunction. Going back in history, the end of Stalin’s oppressive regime took place on his death at the 1953 conjunction, and the Russian revolution at the 1917 conjunction. You can go as far back to the actual discovery of Neptune in 1848, when it was in conjunction with Saturn – a period that roughly coincided with the publishing of the Communist Manifesto and a social revolutionary period in Europe, or to the assassination of tsar Nicholas II and the accession of the repressive Nicholas III in 1881.
But actually, you can go back to any point in Russian history, which has always been characterized by repression and imprisonment. Saturn and Neptune are woven in to the Russian soul. Prison has formed society. Today in Russia, one in four people have either been in prison, or have had a member of their family in prison. (Note 3) Living in a country where dissent leads to imprisonment, people give up. They have families to look after. Vodka has traditionally been the cure. Life expectancy for Russian males hovers around 65 years today (whilst it is on average 80 for the EU). If vodka doesn’t do the job, suicide is an option – Russia ranks 3rd in the world for the highest rate. You can add to these the deaths from alcohol-fueled accidents and violence.
Corruption in the Russian Federation
Saturn-Neptune combinations are related to suffering, and corollaries like alcohol and imprisonment, but there is nothing wrong with the ideals behind this planetary cycle. Seeing the suffering of the masses (Neptune), governments (Saturn) want to implement policies to alleviate this suffering. The Communist Manifesto, whose release coincided with the discovery of Neptune, was not aiming for repression of populations. It sprung from an awareness of the appalling conditions of workers in newly-created industrial complexes. The early to mid-19th century was characterized by a huge collective effort to improve social conditions, health care and life quality.
What unfortunately happened in Russia was the appropriation of these ideals by a criminal elite who subjugated the people to satisfy their greed and thirst for power. When the Soviet Union dissolved, those in power quickly shed their communist cloaks and donned capitalist attire. It is the same people in power, the same iterations of the Cheka, NKVD, KGB and now FSB. Ex KBG-colonel Putin has surrounded himself with the same ex-KGB cronies, and together they have plundered Russia. As Alexei Navalny documented, Putin has built his own palace with strip club, casino and all the other mafioso bells and whistles with his ill-gotten gains. (Note 3)
How Dissolution Began
So, on February 24th 2022, Putin invaded Ukraine, which Russia had recognized as an independent country in 1991. Prior to the invasion he, naturally, lied about his intentions. The horoscope for the invasion timed for 5 a.m. in Kiev shows Capricorn rising with an exact Mars-Pluto conjunction. This was the arrival of what Ukrainians call the orcs fighting for the Evil Empire. Mars-Pluto is the invasion force. Prior to the invasion Venus and Mars had repeatedly conjoined, as Venus (which has already conjoined Pluto then went retrograde – horrified by the demon it had met) went direct and picked up speed. So everyone was asking: Would there be war (Mars), or would there be peace (Venus)? The answer came that morning as missiles slammed into the towns and cities of Ukraine.
In the invasion chart, Mars and Pluto at 27 Capricorn are trine the North Node at 26 Taurus – appropriately on the fixed star and many-headed gorgon Algol. Now armed by the West with the sword of Perseus, Ukraine, protected by its NATO shield, is striving to cut off the head of its attacker.
Readers may think that there may be some justification for Putin’s action. Wasn’t NATO infringing Russia’s near abroad? But Ukraine – just like the Baltic countries – knows exactly what Russia is about. They saw the destabilization of Georgia, Transnistria, Crimea. The Russian bear is on the rampage; Putin wants to restore the empire. No wonder traditionally neutral countries like Sweden and Finland have rushed behind the protective shield of NATO. The results of this ill-judged Russian invasion is a radically enlarged and much stronger NATO, a united Europe, and a Ukraine that will turn its back on brother Russia for decades to come.
The Isolation of Russia
Immediately after the invasion Mars and Venus moved into Aquarius, and what was designed as a quick and dirty occupation of the whole country became something else. Here Aquarius shows the worldwide solidarity and compassion which was immediately shown to Ukraine, as millions were internally displaced and further millions of women with their children traveled to safe havens in Poland and the rest of the EU. This stream of refugees took place as Jupiter conjoined Neptune in Pisces – the first conjunction in this sign since 1856, which was, incidentally, the year Russia capitulated in the Crimean War against England, France and Turkey.
There are people who say that it is just the Western powers who obsess about this Russian invasion, and that countries in Asia or South America don’t attribute the same nefarious intentions to Russia. But at a recent UN resolution condemning the invasion, these were the countries that supported Russia: Belarus, Nicaragua, Syria and North Korea. Just four. Condemning the invasion were all other countries, including Kazakhstan, Armenia, India, Brazil… and even China. (Note 4)
The fat years for Russia were in the first decade of this millennium, with vast revenues from oil and gas, greatly facilitated by pipelines to Europe. Russian citizens – though still the privileged few – became prosperous. The rest were spared the chaos and humiliation of the 1990’s and prosperity trickled down. Putin built up vast reserves of cash, and the estimated 1.3 billion dollars gifted to him from his oligarch friends to build his palace was just a drop in the ocean.
Soon however, Russia will be living on fumes. People say that Russia has not been harmed by Western sanctions, but the astrology says different. Because of the historic kleptocracy of Russian leadership, its economy has always been its Achilles heel. The 1917 Revolution chart has Venus in Capricorn opposite Pluto in Cancer on the Moon’s Nodes. This shows the resources of the country disappearing down a black hole. To give the impression to the world that the Soviet Union was a success story, grain was exported, not least from Ukraine, to pay for industrialization. This period in the 1930’s was called the Holodomor. From two to five million people are estimated to have died from starvation. Imagine that. This crime was deemed by the European Parliament in 2005 as an act of genocide against the Ukrainian people.
The 1921 horoscope for the formation of the USSR has Venus in Scorpio. Putin has Venus in Scorpio. The Russian Independence horoscope from 12th June 1990 has Venus in Taurus in the 8th house opposite Pluto (and exactly sextile Jupiter – that’s those plundering oligarchs). The Flag-Up horoscope from 25th December 1991 has an exact Venus-Pluto conjunction in Scorpio. Every time, prosperity is sucked from the people by the Plutonian monster. The people are exploited and robbed. The money goes to Premier League football clubs, private yachts (now parked in Dubai), Lamborghinis, and strip joints in secret palaces.
The 1990 independence chart has Venus at 15.08 Taurus and the 1991 Flag-Up chart has Venus at 22.54 Scorpio. Transit Uranus conjoined 1990 Venus in 2022 and this was a massive shock to the Russian economy. $500 billions of Russia’s financial reserves where frozen by G7 countries immediately after the invasion. Russia was excluded from the SWIFT international money system. Advanced technology exports to Russia ceased. Flights to Russia ceased. Gas and oil imports from Russia virtually dried up. Of course, there are workarounds for Russia, and oil prices shot up which brought extra revenue, but sanctions bite long and slow. In 2023, Uranus opposes Flag-Up Venus and the degrading of Russia’s economy will continue.
Syria, North Korea, Belarus and Nicaragua are not good company. Russia is now isolated and alone. Continuing historical trends from previous centuries, Russian talent – from Irving Berlin (composer) to Sergei Brin (Google) has fled the country to seed cultural and technological progress elsewhere. When Putin announced mobilization in September 2022, over half a million talented Russians left for Turkey, Kazakhstan, Georgia and the West. This will damage development in Russia for decades to come.
But does Putin care? Not at all. Let the intelligent people, who he called “traitors and scum” emigrate. This is just getting rid of potential trouble. Putin has his Sun in Libra in the 12 house on the Saturn-Neptune conjunction. His identity is subsumed by Russia, and martyrdom is his calling. He chose isolation during the Covid epidemic, and he is comfortable with isolation now. Now that the West has united against him, he is happy to assume his victim identity and call it Russia’s.
Putin is Russia
The head of the Russian Duma, a parliament which unconditionally supports its new tsar, said that Russia is Putin, and Putin is Russia. Putin sees himself as the new tsar empowered to bring Russia back to glory, just like Peter the Great or Catherine the Great, who he regularly refers to and seeks to emulate. Putin has the South Node of the Moon at 19.59 Leo. Catherine the Great had her South Node – incredibly – also at 19.59 Leo. They are joined by the invisible bonds of karma. Putin’s South Node conjoins Pluto at 22.49 Leo, and they are both conjoining the Midheaven, so he slips easily into the role of erstwhile tsar. His Scorpio Ascendant ruler Mars is at 26 Sagittarius, trine Pluto, so there should be no illusions about his power and willingness to use it. He was not a skilled judo champion for nothing.
From KGB to FSB
When George W Bush met Putin, he said “I looked the man in the eye. I found him to be very straightforward and trustworthy. . . I was able to get a sense of his soul.” Hillary Clinton made a much more accurate assessment: “I could have told him (Bush), he was a KGB agent; by definition he doesn’t have a soul”. Republican John McCain said it even better: “I looked into Putin’s eyes, and I saw three things, a ‘K’ a ‘G’ and a ‘B'”.
KGB is engraved in Putin’s horoscope. He has been trained by his handlers to be impossible to read. With the aforementioned Pluto trine Mars, the Scorpio Ascendant and the wary Moon in Gemini surveying a person’s words and feelings from its darkened 8th house, Putin is looking for weaknesses and ways to exploit them. A Mercury-Neptune conjunction in Libra in the 12th midpoint and sextile Mars-Pluto, square Uranus and sesquisquare the Moon, shows a man revealing nothing, lying when required, and just looking for a way to get someone off-balance.
Lies and misinformation are one of Putin’s favorite tools, and as his Sun progressed to sextile Neptune (2020), trine Pluto (2021), and sextile Mercury (2022) he conducted a clandestine plan to invade and occupy Ukraine, whilst denying it.
Isolation and Paranoia
He had no choice but to make war. From 2011-2013 there were massive and widespread demonstrations against the obvious manipulation of election results in Russia. After 12 years of power, the citizens of Russia realized that Putin had been building an autocracy, not a democracy. Putin’s ploy to sidestep the Constitution by appointing Medvedev as President whilst he played at being Prime Minister did not fool the electorate, when Putin stood for President again and won by a “resounding” victory.
Now, this was the time of the series of seven squares between Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn, which activated Putin’s 12th house stellium in Libra. From this point on Putin used all his skills to deflect unrest onto Western influence, imprison ringleaders, and shore up power. Boris Nemtsov, one of the ringleaders of the 2011 unrest, was assassinated in 2015. There was only one thing left to be done; like all dictators before him, Putin needed a war.
So in 2014 Putin took over Crimea and sent troops to the Donbass to create two separatist statelets. Putin was again the most popular man in Russia.
By all accounts, Putin hid away in his dacha during the Covid pandemic from 2020-2022, only receiving very few visitors who had been quarantined in advance. His paranoia took hold with the Uranus-Pluto transits to his Sun in the 12th house, which exacerbated the isolation that invariably envelops dictators. By this time, the people left in his circle were sycophants who told him what he wanted to hear, and Putin became a victim of his own misinformation successes. This would account for his totally flawed invasion of Ukraine based on wildly optimistic ideas about being welcomed by the population.
War and its Consequences
Putin has Jupiter in Taurus and the 7th house. Its dispositor Venus is weak in Scorpio in the 1st house. He covets the wealth of others and wants to make it his. He coveted the land and resources of Ukraine, and as his progressed Jupiter moved retrograde to 11.42 Taurus, exactly opposite the ruler of Taurus, Venus, at 11.42 Scorpio he pounced. But the result has been, and will be, the impoverishment of his own country Russia. Even his ex-wife, Ljudmila, called him a vampire. Putin is sucking Russia dry of men, material and money.
Vladimir Putin: 7th October 1952 9.30 am Petrograd (Time unconfirmed)
Two months after the invasion, Uranus was at 14 degrees Taurus – exactly opposite the Sun and square Saturn in the 1917 revolution horoscope, which indicates that this chart still has validity. Uranus transits 1917 Sun and Mercury until the spring of 2023, clearly reflecting the bombing and cyberwarfare, and the resulting alienation of Russia. In the same period progressed Sun in the 1991 (Flag-up) chart conjoined Saturn at 5 Aquarius, whilst transit Saturn conjoined the Descendant in Aquarius. As the Sun rules the 1991 chart, it shows the invasion coming to a dead stop when it meets the combined defense of Ukraine and the NATO coalition. If you prefer to look at the 1990 Independence chart, the Sun progressed was in opposition to Saturn progressed and it goes opposite Saturn radix in 2024. And the IC progressed was exactly on Saturn at the invasion.
That’s a whole lot of Saturn. This suggests that unrealistic expansion plans hit a brick wall.
It is also worth noting that the 1990 Independence chart has a Descendant at 26 Pisces, so transit Neptune conjoins this point from 2022-2024, and as Putin’s Ascendant ruler Mars is at 26 Sagittarius, then no matter how many armaments and men Putin throws into the killing fields, it is almost impossible to gain traction. The horoscope for NATO (Note 5) also has the Descendant at 25 Pisces, the Moon at 25 Gemini (conjoining Uranus at 26.55 degrees) so NATO too has its work cut out trying to make an alliance of 30 countries into a cohesive whole. Ukraine has its Mars at 25 Virgo in the 8th house – that’s where there young men go to die. Zelenskyy has Jupiter at 27 Gemini opposite Ceres (corn export?) at 26 Sagittarius. No one is spared the chaos, as Neptune transits the last degrees of Pisces.
Neptune Enters Aries
After the chaos, refugee streams, mud and suffering of Neptune in Pisces, everything changes as Neptune enters Aries, which is does initially in March 2024 and then finally in January 2026.
Saturn catches up and nearly conjoins Neptune in July 2025 at 2 degrees Aries (within 8 minutes of arc) at which point both move retrograde back into Pisces. They finally conjoin on February 20th, 2026 at 1.43 Aries. This therefore is an extremely powerful conjunction which weaves a transition from the old to the new. Saturn-Neptune in Pisces is a different kettle of fish, compared with Saturn-Neptune in Aries, where everything starts afresh.
A Wave of Reform
Political structures will dissolve and re-form anew in Russia in this period from July 2025 to February 2026, and beyond. Pluto in Aquarius will be in sextile to the Saturn-Neptune conjunction, and moving on to 5 degrees Aquarius from 2026 to 2027, which will show a restructuring of power blocks both in Russia and China (which has the Moon at 3 and the Ascendant at 5 Aquarius.) Five degrees is important because the 1990 Independence chart has the Moon at 5 Aquarius (the people rebel), the 1991 Flag-up chart has Saturn at 5 Aquarius (the government is replaced), and Zelenskyy has a Sun-Venus conjunction at 5 Aquarius (For Zelenskyy it may be time to go).
Endgame for Vladimir Putin
There are several scenarios for Putin in this period. His presidential period expires in March 2024, and he does not have to run again – he was born with a Saturn-Neptune conjunction, so this would mark the completion of its second cycle and he will be 71. He may be required to retire because of failures in Ukraine. In March 2024, Putin’s progressed Sun is at 25.43 Sagittarius, whilst his natal Mars is at 26.31. That does not look like the signature of a leader who will go peacefully; this could be his life’s biggest fight.
His progressed Mars in March 2024 is at 19.49 Aquarius which is exactly on the North Node at 19.59 Aquarius and square Jupiter at 19.44 Taurus. This activates a stubborn ideological extremism symbolized by his natal Jupiter square Pluto on the nodal axis. This could be a time when war crimes initiatives can become very real, because he runs into the judgment of the international community. If his birth time is correct (and there is no hard evidence that it is) then Mars goes on to conjoin the IC at 21 Aquarius, which would show domestic strife.
Then in June 2026 Uranus conjoins Putin’s Moon at 2.54 Gemini and squares 1990 Russia’s Moon and 1917 Revolution Mars, both around 3 degrees Virgo (finally moving on in April 2027). By this time a breathtaking series of reforms (best case) or revolutions (worst case) will be sweeping through worldwide autocracies. It’s unlikely that Putin is at Russia’s helm at this time, or even that he survives past March 2024, but if he decides to battle it out, then he will be swept away by the collective force of Uranus on his Moon, Pluto trine his Moon and Neptune sextile his moon in 2026.
Ingresses of Pluto and Neptune
If we look at historical precedent, Pluto last entered Aquarius at the time of USA’s independence when the British monarchy was expelled, and at the time of the French revolution, where the aristocracy met an even worse fate. Pluto in Aquarius brings a profound leveling in society. In France the sans-culottes – the working class laborers who did not wear fancy trousers (culottes) – were the driving force behind revolution, advocating the complete abolition of all the privileges of those in power. If you wanted to avoid the guillotine at this time, you had to show your non-aristocratic credentials.
We can expect this leveling influence to acquire the force of a tsunami in Russia after Saturn and Neptune enter Aries, and a little later as Uranus enters Gemini. The oligarchs will be stripped of their assets, and autocratic government structures will dissolve. (The same fate will await the superrich and autocrats worldwide). Last time Neptune entered Aries, the American Civil War (1861-65) – a fight for the emancipation of slaves – decimated the population of the United States. This time around, there will be a dissolution of the autocratic principles that keep the Russian people under tight control.
A Peaceful Transformation?
The question remains how peaceful this process will be, and who will take over. As Putin is a fighter, he may seek to prevail, in which case there may be considerable violence. Uranus on his Moon in Gemini shows a country divided, and if his Mars progressed truly does conjoin his IC at this time, then Russia will be at war with itself. Though Russia has traditionally been ruled by autocrats, leveling principles in the 21st century may produce a slightly more democratic society, when Putin goes. Whilst England abandoned serfdom in 1574, and Europe in 1807, Russia did not abandon serfdom until 1861 – when Neptune entered Aries. As regards democracy, Russia is behind the times, but it will also catch up.
This transformation of the Russia Federation will also lead to a centrifugal effect which will see other countries in Russia’s orbit spinning off into full independence. This will include Belarus, Chechnya, Armenia, Georgia, and Muslim states to the East and South.
The Future for Ukraine
The 2022 invasion will have served to make Ukraine a strong and united country, completely free from Russian influence, indeed allergic to Russia for decades to come. As Russian power dissolves from 2024-2027, land that Russia occupied will be abandoned, just as Russia quickly abandoned East European and Baltic countries after the Berlin Wall fell. Russia will be focused on its internal struggles.
Ultimately Ukrainian dreams of being a part of the European Union will be fulfilled. This will probably happen around 2028, with full accession in 2030. Although Ukraine’s horoscope shows a land forged in chaos and strife (with a Uranus-Neptune conjunction on the nodal axis on the Ascendant) its Moon in Aquarius opposing Mercury, Jupiter and Venus in Leo shows a country determined to develop international alliances. It’s an incredibly creative and outgoing influence, showing the allure of the West. Both Mercury and Venus are retrograde in this founding chart. In 2028 Venus progressed, having moved direct in 2011, returns to conjoin Jupiter and Mercury – a strong indication of joining a prosperous union.
In this way Vladimir Putin will have engineered his own downfall, helpless in the face of cosmic cycles, which are determining the fate of his country.
Adrian Ross Duncan
May 17th 2023
1. Mundane Astrology – Michael Baigent, Charles Harvey & Nick Campion
2. Info from “My Russia – War or Peace” Mikhail Shishkin
3. Putin’s palace: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kkwp5CKudWU
4. UN resolution demanding the withdrawal of Russia from Ukraine: