: :inin Kyiv (EET)

After Putin

A failed military intervention. The genocidal killing of citizens. Economic isolation by the international community. The arrests of anti-war protestors at home and the shuttering of independent media.
Any one of these factors could mark the end of an ordinary political leader. Yet Russian President Vladimir Putin has not only weathered these challenges, his popularity has actually risen. According to the independent Levada polling center, Putin has improved his support among Russian citizens from a 69 percent approval rating in January to 83 percent in recent days. That’s significant even when you discount the steady impact of government propaganda on the Russian capacity for critical thinking.
The bump up in Putin’s ratings results not just from the “rally around the flag” effect. Russian citizens think of their leader as the only person who stands between them and the complete ruin of their country. Such faith gives new meaning to the word “absolutism”—absolute fidelity to an absolutist leader to prevent absolute collapse.
Putin’s surge in popularity is also sobering news for anyone who imagines that the war in Ukraine and the sanctions squeezing the Russian economy will lead to some kind of regime change inside the Kremlin.
At best, the sanctions are designed to disrupt …read more

Source:: Institute for Policy Studies


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