Foreign Policy Russia Vladimir Putin

Putin ‘Startled’ By Anti-War Protests In Russia – And Terrified They Signal An ‘Uprising’ Against Him

As Russian troops continue to attack Ukraine at the behest of Russian President and mass murderer Vladimir Putin, there are increasing reports that anti-war protests are taking place across the country in response to the sudden incursion into a neighboring country.

The Guardian reports:

Vladimir Putin has said there is broad public support for the invasion of Ukraine that he announced just before dawn on Thursday morning. But by evening, thousands of people in cities across Russia had defied police threats to take to central squares and protest against the military campaign.

Police had made at least 1,702 arrest in 53 Russian cities as of Thursday evening, according to the OVD-Info monitor, as they cracked down on the unsanctioned protests. Most of the arrests were made in Moscow and St Petersburg, where the crowds were largest.

The protesters chanted: “No to war!” as they exchanged shocked reactions to the attack on Ukraine.

If Putin expected the Russian people to support his unproved attack without saying a word, it appears he was badly mistaken, and that, according to a noted Russia expert, must have the Russian leader terrified.

Appearing on CNN, David Remnick, who has researched and written on Russia for decades, was asked what he thought about whether or not Putin actually wants to try and rebuild the old Soviet Union. He responded:

“I think in a sense that what Biden seemed to be talking about the re-creation of this old Soviet Union — and all 15 of what were republics and what are now independent nations — is not only impossible but crazily expensive. Why did empires collapse all over the world, historically, not only the Soviet Union but Austria-Hungary and all the rest? Empire is expensive. Russia is not a wealthy country. Its entire economy is the size of the economy of Texas. And most of those resources come right out of energy extractions and very fragile economy for a country that large. Today we saw the ruble crater. We saw the Russian stock market crater.”

Remnick then turned his focus to the anti-war protests which began shortly after the Russian military began its illegal incursion into Ukraine:

“We also saw something very curious, and I have to say maybe even unexpected. Despite the continuing crackdown on dissent in Russia that’s been going on for years, we saw protests of modest scale in dozens of Russian cities. And over — according to one report over 1,500 arrests, brutal arrests and so on. So to see politics on the street is, I think, startling to Vladimir Putin as what he dreads the most, what he fears the most is some kind of uprising against him. And so we — we’re coming to a reckoning here where internal Russian politics are concerned, too.”

All of this, Remnick concluded, suggests that Putin may not know exactly how he can extricate himself from the precarious position he has created for his country, which could lead to his downfall:

“The question here that has to be at the center is, what does Vladimir Putin think he’s doing? Toward what end? How, in any way, does this help bring prosperity or even security to Russia? What threat is he responding to? Was Ukraine threatening Russia? Was NATO threatening Russia? No. I think that Putin, in large measure — not to make this into a novel — but in large measure, is responding to his own self-drama as a man of great power and wanting to expand Russian power, revive Russian power, after his failure to bring prosperity to Russia after 22 years in power.”

That last line is especially telling when it comes to Putin: He has failed to bring prosperity to Russia after 22 years in power. So now he thinks he can make up for that failure by invading his neighbors and threatening the NATO alliance. Sounds like a scenario that ends with Vladimir in a bunker under the Kremlin, gun in one hand and a dose of cyanide in the other. Here’s hoping that scenario plays out soon.


By Andrew Bradford

Proud progressive journalist and political adviser living behind enemy lines in Red America.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *