I think western media likes to talk of the oligarch having so much power over Putin, but they really don’t. The power is with the generals, as it always has been in this country. Once you start firing generals, you are skating on some very thin ice.
A weakened Russia will be much more in the hands of China. Which I don’t think is a good result for anyone. It is easy to talk of hoping this is the beginning of the end of Putin, but then what? Who replaces him? It’s likely someone even less democratic or someone who is China’s man in Moscow.
Btw what’s your take on that weird televised security meeting that they had before the invasion? Because here the reading was always that he was shaming them and that it was very awkward and and and but of course that also cements him being an isolated tyrant which i tend to think is probably an over simplification on our part
Yeah yeah i just feel they might ultimately tip the scales more with smaller gestures than the West with all their actions. My guess is they ultimately also don’t want a huge war and maybe if it escalates to that they’ll have to take some sort of stance. But never mind im just digressing cause it’s all anybody talks about here all day, Ukraine
I’ll admit, i never understood what Putin’s endgame might be. He doesn’t have a son he is grooming to take over for him (right?) like north korea and you’d think once you’ve amassed a few hundred billion (or even a couple hundred million), you’d find a gorgeous location to retire to. Rub elbows at fancy parties, jet around for the best skiing/swimming/hookers/etc…i’m just saying, if i had that kind of money, 1) i wouldn’t tank the currency by starting a stupid war and 2) i wouldn’t be working even if i was an eternal head of a corrupt nation (honestly, especially then. Id fake my death and retire in secret)
and one of his big goals of course was the weakening of NATO. Needless to say it has had the complete opposite effect. I sadly do believe that he will ultimately subjugate Ukraine, at least for the time being. But in every other way Putin will have his goals utterly defeated.
Listen I do not think you can be so sanguine about that. There have been pro Russian governments in Ukraine before – thats what 2014 was about, there are other pro Russian governments in the region (its not just Belarus how about the Georgian Dream party in Georgia for example???) and Putin clearly has no problem using force indefinitely. The spirit of the Ukranians is over the top courageous – I believe in large part because of Zellensky’s leadership – but Putin is capable of subjugating them in all likelihood and maintaining it for some time.
I read that as assuming that while Putin can probably occupy Ukraine if he throws enough resources at it, it will be an incredibly costly endeavour, in many senses. Money, lives, international standing. There’s also bound to be a significant insurgency, particularly if they carry on targeting civilians and thus creating a cohort of people who feel they’ve nothing to lose.
It is not just Russia that will suffer long term, but an ever more powerful China, with Russia in its pocket is a much greater threat to the West than anything you’ve seen from either country so far.
The problem now is the knee jerk reaction with sanctions, which has become an exercise in virtue signalling and PR. With many corporations inventing their own, because it looks good. They still deal with every other unsavoury regime though, particularly China. For Putin, he could stop right now, but so much of the damage has been done already. It means he has nothing to lose by continuing