Take our simple quiz to find out.
a. Do you support Vladimir Putin?
b. If you answered ” yes ” you may go.
c. If you answered ” No “, drink this…
In spite of my cynicism about the Russians I have to admire the way they control what the rest of us see of them. It speaks of a large and effective machine to manage international press coverage. Of course it is matched by an equally efficient division that manages internal information – that has been a feature of the nation since well before the October revolution.
The various Czars’ police forces worked throughout their land on a regular basis, regardless of who was on the throne. You might regard them as sort of social gardeners – weeding out any opposition. They had it easier in the 19th century – the monarchy was single-minded who the enemy was and could apply constant pressure. They were wrong to do it but right in their perception of the threat. It eventually bit them in the ass and shot them in the basement.
The current Czar has been on the throne for some 20 years or so, and has made arrangements to continue for the foreseeable future. The peasants support him as they are generally uncomfortable with short-term change. He also has the support of the orthodox church, as he allows them to have the souls of the peasants and a dip of the coffers every now and then. The aristocrats support him as he does not enquire into their souls and allows more dips, more often. The military support him because he will let them buy more sabres and rattle them. He’s also found them a soft target that they can shoot up to their heart’s content.
There is a small matter of the occasional poisoning of an opposition politician…but this is done on a far less frequent basis than the old Stalinist purges or the Romanov pogroms. So, apart from the EU and the BBC squalling, it can largely be ignored.
Well, that cleared that up. I’m glad my cynicism has gone away. I think I’ll have a vodka and tonic.