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Natylie Baldwin – Vladimir Putin: Neither a Monster Nor a Messiah

Many westerners are understandably disillusioned with Western policies and culture (largely led by the US), both of which have degenerated. The former into unabashed imperialism, militarism (both at home and abroad), and oligarchy and the latter into crass consumerism, sexual exhibitionism and social alienation. Consequently, many of these people are looking for something.

Enter into this picture, Russian president Vladimir Putin — pointing out the tragic folly of western policies (again, largely led by Washington) on the world stage in public forums, countering said folly with a combination of diplomacy and limited military actions in reaction to western provocations and general mess-making. Simultaneously, in the search for social glue, Putin has encouraged a re-discovery of Russia’s pre-Soviet cultural heritage, with the Orthodox Church playing a significant role and Russians’ social conservatism acknowledged. All this reflects the concept of boundaries, rootedness and order where the west seems to have long-forgotten each in the arrogant belief it doesn’t need them.

There is also a strong sense of duty and loyalty that Putin personally values — sometimes to an extreme. These qualities make him attractive to western conservatives, despite the fact that in many ways he is a statist.

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