The recent publication in UK tabloid Daily Star stated quoting sources in British MI6 Intelligence state that Putin is be dead and is substituted with double while recent addresses might’ve been prerecorded.
While it’s intriguing idea, the main problem is that even if is true, it might not change much for the world affairs, war in Ukraine and for russia itself. At least in the beginning.
The idea that Putin has doubles is not new. In 2016 russian journalist Oleg Kashin even published a table detailing differences between 7 Putin doubles and when exactly they might’ve been used (with a speculation that “original” Putin might’ve been killed in the 90-s.
While differences in Putin appearances sometimes indeed raised some questions and lead to simetimes entertaining speculations, we still have little to no proof to say for sure.
There’re also speculations Putin might be removed. Dramatic ones suggest that by being killed by someone from his entourage, less dramatic – that by removing from public eye, linking to health issues. Richard Dearlove, former MI6 head, says it might be to sanatorium. He adds that this зробить це не зовсім по своїй волі. Після цього диктатор втратить владу, а у 2023 році його вже не буде в живих.
Indeed, reports suggest that Putin has troubles with health. Parkinson’s and cancer are mentioned most often. Christopher Steele, who led MI6’s russia desk,said Putin is so seriously ill that requires round-the-clock care
There are number of speculations who might be next in line after Putin. According to many experts, it might be Nikolai Patrushev, secretary of RU Security council, ex-FSB head and KGB guy just like Putin himself
And since the ideology Patrushev demonstrates is not falling too far from Putin’s , even if he will (temporary or not) substitute Putin, there is no real reason to believe russia’s politics will immediately change
There is different point of view, that Putin might chose a different successor, say, younger but still loyal. And again, in this case there is also not much reason to wait for any real change.
Also, even if/when Putin IS dead, russian establishment will likely hide that fact for as long as they can since becoming this public will inevitably lead to fight for power among those who were close to Putin but not limited to them.
And with russia’s “thing” for mausoleums, personal cults and preserving the dead (think Lenin) there is high chance, that even if/when Putin is dead and it goes public, Putin might be put Putin in mausoleum to keep Lenin company on Red Square
There is though a chance that Putin, if/when dead, will become not Lenin but Stalin – meaning will be blamed for all what’s wrong with russia and even if will get into mausoleum at first, will be thrown out few years later
But considering how invested russians are getting in Putin’s version of reality w each passing day and each killed/disabled russian serviceman,it might be ppl of russia who won’t let deputinization to happen since it might feel like deaths of their close ones were for nothing
Acknowledging that Putin was wrong, as were his politics and this war, will lead to need to accept that supporting it and dying for it and going to war against Ukraine was pointless and cruel and makes those who did that not saviors but villains
It might be so hard to accept this was ultimately evil and wrong, especially for those from Russia who lost sons, husbands, that maybe it’ll be easier to continue glorifying Putin and his “Russian world” and believe they “died for a reason”.
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