Sunday, 2 March 2008

Putin wins Russian election!

Wait, you may say, I thought Dmitry Medvedev won Russia's election today. True. But who is this mysterious Medvedev, who current President Vladimir Putin chose as his successor back in December. Simply put, Medvedev is a smaller version of Putin; he is the "nano-president".

As I said, Medvedev is slated to win the rigged election today.

Vladimir Putin's handpicked successor Dmitry Medvedev was cruising to an easy victory in Russia's presidential election Sunday, a result expected to give significant power to the outgoing president.

The Central Election Commission said that returns from 15 percent of Russia's electoral districts showed Medvedev with about 65 percent.

Some voters complained of pressure to cast ballots for Medvedev, and critics called the election a cynical stage show to ensure unbroken rule by Putin and his allies.

Sunday's vote came after a tightly controlled campaign and months of political maneuvering by Putin, who appeared determined to keep a strong hand on Russia's reins while maintaining while maintaining the basic trappings of electoral democracy and leaving the constitution intact.

Medvedev is expected to formally take over as president in May, and Putin has agreed to be his prime minister.

It will interesting to see Putin as PM. He will no doubt continue to weld power as presidential puppet-master. His popularity continues in Russia as he has brought the former Soviet republic new power by letting Russia's energy resources dominate his policy — petropolitics, it is called.

Major issues facing Russia right now are its relationship with the West, namely in terms of energy; its own economic diversification, including its hope to join the WTO; internal instability; the situation in the Balkans with Kosovo's new independence; the country's (limited) support for Iran, also straining relations with the West; and trouble Chechnya. The new president will also face increasing criticism in areas such as Iran and Russia's limiting of gas supplies to Ukraine. When you're dealing with Russia, many foreign policy issues deal with geopolitics.

1 comment:

chris Wilcox said...

So the question remains will we elect someone who can work with the Russians going forward or will we again see humanitarian considerations sold out in favor of fear mongering and profits for the military industrial complex?