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Putin fine tuned Yeltsin’s Russia back into Powerful Soviet Union

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01.01.2020

Opinion |

When I left Moscow after completing my second assignment in the Embassy at the end of 1989, I never imagined that I was leaving the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics for the last time. My next visit to Moscow was in 1993 when I saw an entirely different country. Russia is unpredictable.

It was on a New Years’ Eve in 1989, that then-president Boris Yeltsin dropped a bombshell in his customary midnight address to the nation by announcing that he was stepping down and telling his newly appointed prime minister Vladimir Putin to “take care of Russia.”

In his national address that same night, Putin said, “Dreams come true on New Year’s Eve. Especially this New Year’s Eve.” Putin’s rating at that point was just 2 percent, but it rose to over 50 percent by March when the presidential election was held, which he went on to win in what turned out to be Russia’s last fair and free election.

The “Empress of Europe” announced in October that she would not be seeking re-election as leader of her party or as chancellor in the 2021 national election

The “Empress of Europe” announced in October that she would not be seeking re-election as leader of her party or as chancellor in the 2021 national election

Through the years in power since then, Putin’s popularity kept rising and by 2014, after his move to annex Crimea, it touched dizzying heights — over 90 percent. Putin is indeed a paradox — a charismatic politician whose popularity must be the envy of his peers anywhere in the world, and yet, presiding over an authoritarian regime.

The Russia he inherited from Yeltsin and the Russia that he turned it into are unrecognizable from each other. Without a doubt, Putin has restored to Russia some of the geopolitical might wielded by the former Soviet Union. Russia has returned as a major power in the Middle East where Putin is today a kingmaker, and a similar feat may repeat in Africa.

Putin has deepened Russia’s ties with China to a historical level. He has revived Soviet-era ties with Cuba, Syria, Egypt, Libya, and Vietnam, made new friendships with Turkey, Iran, and Venezuela, and even turned around some old antagonistic relations into promising friendships, such as with Saudi Arabia, UAE, South Korea........

© Global Village Space