Vladimir Putin’s regime and the dictator himself have become international lepers, outcast from the civilized world. The question is, how does that play in the short to medium term with the Russian people? They have access to Western information and liked their cosmopolitan lifestyle. Will they just roll over and see those goodies taken away from them by an aging despot? One analyst, Koffler, thinks they will get with the Putin program. Another, English, thinks they won’t take it and the signs are already showing. English, given the transformations in the last thirty years of Russian society, is correct.
FNC: “Russian President Vladimir Putin is becoming a ‘pariah’, an outcast, before the world stage amid his ongoing invasion of Ukraine, foreign policy experts say.
While experts believe it’s too soon to determine whether Putin will be successful in his attempts to take control of Ukraine — acknowledging that there will likely be some form of a partial victory — it is clear that the Russian dictator has done irreversible damage to his own country with the invasion.”
Block transport connections with Russia! This will be our step towards victory and more than one life saved! Russia is an aggressor country, an outcast country. And every Russian should understand this. pic.twitter.com/WEfXxZ9Z1Y
— Ігор Олійник (@igor_olijnik) March 18, 2022
“On the global scale, Russia will turn into a pariah. … It has already been on that path for several years and definitely the last year. Putin has been a pariah for even longer,” former Defense Intelligence Agency specialist Rebekah Koffler opines. “The deal with Putin is that he would rather be feared than [ignored] because fear, in Russian culture, means respect. He is quite used to the pariah status.
“They don’t think like Americans. They think like Russians. They have always wanted somebody who is as strong as Putin, bordering on being brutal, because that’s what Russians believe is good for the country’s security. Russian propaganda is very effective in swaying civilians.”
Robert English, a professor of Central European Studies at the University of Southern California, does not agree. “I think Putin’s future is grim. I think, at home, he will be under the constant threat of opposition — possibly of a coup, some kind of power grab — to remove him because even his closest allies are now seeing the problem. And if they gain less by staying loyal than they would if he’s replaced, it’s just a matter of how to do it.
“Eventually, the loss of troops, the loss of foreign investment, the loss of public support, the economic drain — all those are facts that he can’t ignore indefinitely. But I think he’s resisting that because he’s living … in a world of slanted intelligence and illusions and utopian ideas about a return of the Russian Empire that will take some time to crumble away. And he’s resisting it mightily, still trying to come up with that military victory, even as everyone else can see it grinding to a halt.”