Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Has The Kremlin Lost Touch On What Russia Wants?

Miodrag Soric, DW: The Kremlin fears its own people

Russian police reacted with force and arrested more than 1,000 people during opposition protests in Moscow. As the nervousness of Russia's rulers increases, so does the courage of its opposition, writes Mirodrag Soric.

Law enforcement officers clash with protesters during a rally in Moscow (Reuters/M. Shemetov)

Victories give you strength. And during the clashes between state forces and the opposition in Moscow, it's the latter which emerged as the moral victors.

Who, after all, could possibly defend the actions of a police officer taking a baton to a woman already beaten to the ground simply because she dared to voice her desire for free and democratic elections?

Who on earth would applaud secret service operatives carting away youths who they had beaten bloody, because they exercised their right to demonstrate?

Who could take the side of masked state operatives setting their viciously trained dogs upon protesters?

Read more ....

WNU Editor: All of these protests are being primarily driven by people under the age of 40. And while concerns over democracy and freedom of speech are high on the list for the protesters, much of these protests are being driven by economic fears and frustration. The life of an average Russian today is like this: (1) Everyone is working, but to have a better life everyone needs to take on a second job and/or start a small business. The economy is doing well because the official stats do not incorporate the growth of small businesses, but you have to put 70 - 80 hours a week to do well. (2) Sanctions have resulted in the absence of many cheap western goods. This has resulted in a spike in inflation as more expensive goods fill this void. Inflation is something that no Russian likes to see. (3) Housing in the cities have become incredibly expensive. My cousin from Moscow is visiting me this week, and he is giving me a heads-up on how expensive housing and land has become in Moscow and St-Petersburg. To say that my mouth dropped when I learned all of this is an understatement. (4) Corruption is not as bad as it was during the Soviet days, but it is still bad among senior levels in government. And while the older generation always treated corruption as a away of life, the younger generation have no tolerance for this. (5) The Kremlin's move to regulate and limit the internet is producing a backlash among the under 30 crowd. This generation loves being wired to the world, and I know from my cousins kids they are 100% angry about this.

My prediction for the future. The Kremlin and President Putin have lost touch on what the people want in the major cities. I think this is because Russian President Putin is slowly withdrawing from the day to day activities of running the state, especially on domestic issues. By the looks of it and from what people are telling me, he is committed to retiring after the end of this term. What this means is that others who want his job are now positioning themselves to place their allies and supporters in positions of power, and they are exercising themselves in ways that are rankling many Russians. This weekends brutal crackdown on protesters is a harbinger of what is to come, and I will not be surprised if it will gets worse before President Putin officially retires.


Roger Smith said...

A digital door has been opened and while attempts to close it are occurring the WW11 generation is gone for all intents and purposes and the torch is passing to the new social media generations.

Good riddance, "Uncle Joe". It wasn't nice knowing you.

Andrew Jackson said...

Rise up Russian boy"s kill the Putlerite scum!

Bob Huntley said...


Daniel said...

Err, what cheap western goods? I haven't noticed anything disappear.

Anonymous said...

If he voluntarily does retire at the end of his term it would be astounding.

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