Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, is all about a feeling as 2023 comes to an end. He wants to project confidence while he sails towards his inevitable reelection in march.
The Russian presidential elections can be best described as a form of political theatre. Putin is Russia’s only serious opponent. His most prominent rival, is imprisoned 40 miles north of Arctic Circle. And the media, which has been fawning over him, portrays him as indispensable. This spring’s election is a public ritual that will be important for the Kremlin Leader, who hopes to through the end of this decade.
Putin announced his candidacy in a casual manner. Putin spoke on camera with servicemen from Ukraine who attended a ceremony honoring “heroes” of Russia earlier in December. The men, not surprisingly, asked the president to run for office in 2024.
Artyom Zogha, a representative from the Russian-occupied Donetsk Region, asked that you take part in this vote on behalf of your people, Donbas and our reunified land. “There is so much to do… You are our President, and we’re your team.” “We need you and Russia needs your help.”
Putin’s aw-shucks reply?
“I will not deny that I have had different opinions [about this] at different times,” he . You are correct, it is time to take a decision. I will run for president of the Russian Federation.”
The moment was clearly scripted in order to portray Putin as a beloved national leader. It also highlighted what Putin is proud to promote as the most significant achievement of his full-scale invasion in Ukraine: which violates international law.
Putin must manipulate the facts if he wants to run as a wartime leader. The war in the Ukraine has cost and Russia’s Black Sea Fleet .
The war is literally coming home to Russia. Recently, Ukrainian drones Although Kyiv denies the attacks, they have had a psychological impact – especially when the drones managed to last May.
The biggest fallout from the war in Ukraine was in June when Russian mercenary leader and marched into Moscow.
Prigozhin’s Wagner paramilitaries stopped just short of the Russian Capital, in a murky agreement that was reportedly mediated by Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenko. Wagner forces, which were rolling almost unopposed towards Moscow and downing Russian military aircraft in the process, dealt a major blow to Putin’s reputation as the protector of Russian internal stability.
Prigozhin died two months after the mutiny: He was killed in a at the end of August. Putin survived the greatest challenge to his power in more than two decades. But the rebellion undermined the aura of invulnerability that he had built up.
Tatiana Stanovaya, a Russian political analyst, wrote that many ultra-patriots had been baffled at the initial mercy shown to Prigozhin. They interpreted this as a sign weakness: of both the state and Putin himself. Even if Prigozhin died in a true accident, the Kremlin would do all it could to convince people that it was retribution. Putin views this as his contribution to strengthening the Russian statehood.”
The situation in Ukraine on the battlefield has provided Putin with another chance to project confidence. The much-vaunted Ukrainian counter-offensive has failed to produce any breakthroughs, and the Biden Administration’s request for $60 billion in aid from Congress due to Republican demands regarding border security and immigration policies. Hungary l to Ukraine.
Putin wants to convince the world, as well as his own electorate, that he’s winning. He is also counting on Ukraine losing its support. When asked at his press conference about the peace in Ukraine, Putin used the same formula that he used in order to justify the full scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022.
He said, “When we reach our goals that you mentioned, there will be peace.” “Now, let’s go back to these goals. They haven’t changed.” “I would like to recall how we stated them: demilitarization, denazification and a neutral state for Ukraine.”
The Russian military demonstrated what denazification means in action on Friday by launching the biggest missile and drone attacks against Ukrainian cities since the start of the full-scale war.
Unintentionally, the relentless attacks against Ukrainian civilians may have a negative effect. Ursula von der Leyen of the European Commission, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunder and France have all called for Ukraine to continue receiving support following the latest round of strikes. In 2024, it will be interesting to see how Ukraine’s allies are able to deliver on their promises.