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Putin, the new Tsar of Russia

If we want to understand Putin geopolitical vision, we must remember where the man comes from and what is the history of his country. During the Second World War, Vladimir Putin's father belongs to a NKVD (Soviet secret police) sabotage commando. On the Leningrad front, their mission is to blow up bridges and railway lines behind German lines. From 28 initial members, only four survive, including the father of Vladimir Putin, who remains crippled. While the father is still at hospital, Vladimir Putin's mother becomes very seriously ill. In the atmosphere of the time, she is thrown, half dead, on a pile of dead bodies. The father, just popped out of the hospital, saves her life, in extremis.

Vladimir Putin said he got the idea of working for the KGB by watching movies, such as the cult Spy series  "17 moments of spring", famous at that time in the USSR. He followed the classical path, which excluded moods: KGB instruction  (Andropov Institute of Moscow), political opponents "neutralization" in the KGB 5th department, then mission in Dresden, ex-GDR. An investigation by David Crawford and Marcus Bensmann reported that his activities included extorting undetectable poisonous formulas by blackmailing German scientists with compromising pornography...

On his return to Leningrad, Putin quickly assisted Anatoly Sobchak, his former law professor, who had become Leningrad mayor. He played an important role in the secret negotiations, in 1991, during the  Moscow Putsch", the failed coup against Mikhail Gorbachev. Boris Yeltsin, President of the Supreme Soviet, became the new strong man. He liquidated the Soviet Union in a few months, became President of the Russian Federation on 25 December 1991. Thanks to the brutal privatization of Russian economy, many oligarchs built gigantic fortunes by taking Natural wealth resources of Russia. The people suffered. In 1992, prices rose by 2600%. Boris Yeltsin was an alcoholic. Americans were in charge of his re-election in 1996, as reported by journalist Michael Kramer in TIME magazine, to prevent Communists from returning to power and to halt the planned liberalization of Russian economy.
http://content.time.com/time/subscriber/article/0,33009,984833-2,00.html
"Tsar Boris" was involved in several scandals. He needed urgently immunity before leaving the Kremlin in 2000, at the end of his term... Vladimir Putin artificially involved Attorney General Yuri Skuratov, who was investigating Yeltsin's accounts in Switzerland, in a sex scandal. Yeltsin had found the man he needed. In August 1999, Putin was appointed Vice-President of the Russian Federation. On 31 December 1999, Yeltsin resigned, officially for health reasons. Putin immediately signed a presidential decree granting judicial immunity to Boris Yeltsin.

When he came to power, co-opted by the oligarchs who thought he would be a puppet, Putin found a country in ruins. Liberalism was catastrophic for Russia; The army and the administration were in agony. Putin objective was to restore the greatness of Russia, and confidence in the army and among the population.
He launched the second war in Chechnya to crush the resistance, which had remained victorious in 1996. The new Tsar took over the administration and strenghened the "Siloviki", the security organs: army, police, services Information. Many men from these backgrounds replaced the oligarchs to regain control of the Russian economy. Vladimir Putin had selected these men from among his close relations, the "Piterskiye", those who come from Saint Petersburg, his hometown.He ensured their enrichment in exchange for absolute political fidelity.
In the economic field, many reforms have been introduced, income tax rates have been capped, VAT rates dropped, corporate tax dropped to 24%, state deregulation has been introduced, and competition opened up. We must especially mention the revival of energy exports, torn from the oligarchs clutches. This energy strategy, studied by Putin as a student, allowed the Russian economy to recovery. Today, Russia is the world's largest gas exporter, the second largest oil supplier, EU's largest supplier. This brought growth to the country, generating 1.7% of GDP growth in 2017. This economic strategy has enriched Russians. It also explains the growing popularity of Putin, who enjoys more than 80% of favorable opinion . Even the economic sanctions, intended to bring down Russia, developped a national manufacturing industry, reduced imports and ensured the country autonomy.

The societal model that Putin imposes are traditions, attachment to family and religious values. The Bolshevik revolution of 1917 and communism bled the Russian population and civilization. Between wars, Stalinian purges, abortion and alcoholism, tens of millions of Russians died; And perhaps fifty millions of Russians fled Russia, taking with them the memory of former Russia. Numerous initiatives, such as the reunification of descendants of Russian emigrants in embassies, the Assembly of the Nobility, which reappears, tend to bridget over the Bolshevik period to regain eternal Russia. Vladimir Putin considers the Orthodox Church as a factor of cohesion for Russia. President Putin willingly displays his friendship with the Patriarch of Moscow, Cyril 1st, and communicates much about his orthodox faith.
The obsession of the new Tsar, as well as all the leaders of the Siloviki, was to rebuild a respected Russian army. Its annual budget has increased from $ 8 billion (under Yeltsin) to, probably, 70 today. This is nothing in the face of the more than 600 billion of NATOs budget, but judiciously placed in a strategy of hybrid war (launchers of intercontinental rockets superior to those of NATO, cyber-technology and commandos post-modern) it could be effective .
NATO forces intrusion (Operation Deliberate Force) in slavic Serbia, in 1995, had been a very sour experience for Vladimir Putin. Russians speak of Serbia, Bulgaria, as of "the close foreigner." The area broadly corresponds to the former USSR, with Belarus and Ukraine to the west, the Caucasus to the south, and Central Asia to the east. This space is considered by Moscow as its sanctuary. Thus, the United States' willingness to integrate Ukraine and Georgia into NATO, or the increased presence of China in Central Asia, are perceived as aggressions. In the face of the systematic encirclement to which Washington (Poland, Ukraine, Georgia, Turkish-speaking regions, Syria) proceeds, Russia tries to regain control of the area. On 20 December 2016, in Moscow, the foreign ministers of Russia, Iran and Turkey settled the Syrian problem, ignoring NATO. Russian army had intervened decisively. Russia took also control of two enclaves in Georgia, absorbed Russian Crimea, and remained in the Moldavian republic of Dniester (Transnistria) and eastern Ukraine.

Russia has a relationship of love and hatred with the Western world. If General Leonid Ivachov clearly declares that the Western world will never be Russia's friend, Russian political theorist Alexander Guelievich Dugin defends Eurasianism. According to him, Russia represents the only Orthodox and Muslim, socialist, continental force capable of resisting the American, Protestant and capitalist thalassocracy. The ideas of Dugin have more and more influence on Russian leaders. In 2014, Putin gathered in Moscow the four Orthodox patriarchs of Alexandria, Antioch, Istanbul and Jerusalem. These personalities hailed him as the "Christian Orthodox President", independent of the Western world.

Russia has always been interested in the East and the Mediterranean. In 1780, Catherine II of Russia had already imagined to recreate the Christian empire of the East, of which Constantinople would have been the capital. Nicholas II entered the First World War with nothing but this idea in mind. The revolution of 1917 caused the enterprise to collapse. The 1956 conflict over the Suez Canal had allowed the USSR to move closer to Syria and Egypt. It is with this historical background that Russian intervened, in Syria, in 2011, is in order to save the regime of Bashar el Assad; Likewise for the Iranian-Russian bases of Tartous and Hmeimim; The same goes for the recent agreements with Erdogan Turkey, after Imam Fethullah G├╝len coup attempt, supported by the CIA, failed.
Russian diplomacy, allies itself easily with the Muslims. Russia is home of 20 million Russian Muslims. It opens the doors of the Organization of the Islamic Conference. Similarly, the large Jewish diaspora of Russian origin in Israel makes it possible to ease relations between Tel Aviv and Moscow.
As for Western Europe, for now, this is no time for confrontation. But it is not excluded that, thanks to an American withdrawal, Russian armies invade degenerated and pro-American Western Europe. Leaning on the Chinese partner in the East, Russia would then constitute its famed "continental island", an old Russian dream. It is perhaps with this in mind that, as early as 1996, Minister Primakov had made Russia enter the Shanghai group, now the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).

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