Published on 5th January 2015 by

The Putin Question: What’s the real story behind Putin’s aggressive international posturing, and what does it mean for the world?

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Following crises in the Crimea and Ukraine, Vladimir Putin’s political agenda has come under close scrutiny. In his quest to halt Western influence in Russia, how far will this head of state go?

“Russia will always defend their interests using political, diplomatic and legal means”, declares Putin. Yet the world has been in outrage since flight MH17 was shot down over Ukraine, leaving 298 civilians dead. Meanwhile Ukrainians say their ill-equipped forces are “dying for their country” as Russian aggression continues. Before the inauguration of his third term tens of thousands took to the streets of Moscow in protest. What began as peaceful demonstrations led to bloody confrontations and show trials. “Just imagine the average Russian person living in a small village. They only receive pro-Kremlin channels. Sometimes 100% on how bad things are in Western Europe and the United States”, says one Russian commentator. Whispers of a return to old Soviet times are rife. With media that is critical of the regime now restricted to dark corners of the internet and those that protest declared traitors, Putin’s rule is based on a clear policy of the expansion of traditional Russian values. This insightful report explores the experiences of those living with Putin’s policies, defined by historian Lilia Shevtsova as “Close the doors, close the windows and consolidate the society on the basis of the enemy”.

KRO – Ref 6339

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