Politics

Vladimir Putin is ‘no more of an aberration’ in Russia than Boris Johnson or Donald Trump, new biography claims


Philip Short has written a comprehensive biography of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Philip Short has written a complete biography of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Putin: His Life and Times, by famend journalist Philip Short, which is to be printed on the finish of this month, offers an perception into the early lifetime of the president, the place he grew up in a modest family which was not involved with politics and targeted closely on his “sambo” martial artwork.

The ebook reveals Putin’s early affiliation with the West – which was at odds with different senior members of his celebration on the time, who have been nonetheless sceptical of the brand new world order. It appears to be like at post-Communism and charts Russia’s relationship with the West – and NATO – for the reason that collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

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Mr Putin has cited his need for assurances that Ukraine won’t ever be allowed to hitch NATO as a purpose for his invasion. He has additionally made latest threats over plans for enlargement of NATO membership to incorporate international locations equivalent to Sweden and Finland.

Mr Short, who spent eight years researching and writing the ebook, together with finishing up nearly 200 interviews in a dozen international locations, explores the persona of Mr Putin and appears at what forces and experiences formed his choices since he took on the position of president in 2000.

He additionally considers what Russia would seem like as soon as Mr Putin leaves the publish – however warns there is not going to be main change.

He writes: “There is no reason to think that when Putin leaves the scene, the West’s problems will be over. Whoever succeeds him – whether an individual or a collective leadership – is unlikely to put Russia on a fundamentally different course, either at home or abroad.”

The book quotes an interview published in a St Petersburg newspaper shortly after the fall of communism, where Mr Putin stated the International Monetary Fund conditions for helping Russia were carried out in a “balanced and targeted way” and that the West’s philosophy is to “create in Russia the nucleus of a future effective market economy, to get things moving from a standing start, to help our enterprises to understand the philosophy of market relations. And that is all correct”.

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He added: “We want overseas assets, Western expertise, new ecological expertise. We do not should be afraid of attracting giant scale Western capital.”

The feedback are a stark distinction to latest opinions expressed by the president, who has warned that main corporations’ latest withdrawal from Russia can be to their detriment – not Russia’s.

The ebook additionally raises questions in regards to the affordability of the lavish way of life of Putin’s household within the mid-Nineties when he was head of the authorized division on the General Affairs Office, after which of the Kremlin’s Control Directorate. It particulars holidays taken by the household, together with a visit to the Cote d’Azure, a number of days in Finland, a snowboarding vacation in Davos, and household journeys to Hamburg, Vienna and Mauritius.

Putin: His Life and Times, by Philip Short, is printed on 30 June by Bodley Head.



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