Vladimir Putin is a man’s man, or that’s how he likes to portray himself. The Internet is full of pictures of him without a shirt. He shoots animals, rides horses, camps on the taiga, and spars with the Olympic judo team. He surrounds himself almost exclusively with male advisors. He loves to rub up against the military, like a bear that needs to scratch an itch. He refuses to acknowledge any illegitimate children.
Putin is also a champion of traditional values, or least his interpretation of them. He believes that marriage is only between a man and a woman, a principle he enshrined in the constitutional amendments he pushed through in 2020. He has gone after the LGBTQ community. Once an official of the officially godless Soviet Union, he now embraces the Orthodox Church as an instrument of Russian soft power and relishes Patriarch Kirill of Moscow’s assessment that his leadership of the Russian Federation is a “miracle of God.”
A proud illiberal, Putin will hook up with anyone, wherever they are on the political spectrum, to advance his own agenda. He has cozied up to Nicaragua’s putatively leftist Daniel Ortega, Italy’s far-right leader Matteo Salvini, and Brazil’s macho man Jair Bolsonaro. …read more
Source:: Institute for Policy Studies