The extreme sentences handed down to defendants in what is being called the “Network Case” is an ominous sign.
President Putin has embarked on a renewal of Russia’s ruling regime to make sure it weathers the political transition of 2024 and to preserve his personal power-base. The elite can be divided into five distinct groups, two of which, the “protectors” and “technocrats” may end up in a fierce ideological fight.
The Russian public’s appetite for change has increased considerably in the past two years, according to a new poll by the Carnegie Moscow Center and the Levada Center. What kind of change do people want, and what are they prepared to do about it?
If the thirst for political change continues to gain momentum in Russia, a full-scale demand for political freedoms and alternatives may emerge quite soon.
Something has obviously changed in the legal system, and that something is the logic of repression. Despite all the skepticism, it seems that public opinion does play a role in the degree of repression in each particular case.
Although former Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov was actually the first senior official to demand the return of Crimea, he remains best known for his signature cap and businesslike approach to managing the capital.
The combination of aggressive conformism and petty indifference is the basis of the regime’s popular support.
The ruling party will clearly retain its central place under any future scenario for the transition of power, and anyone who hurries to jump on the bandwagon today will likely come out on top.
Amid the uncertainty over what will happen when Putin steps down in 2024, everyone is striving to claim exclusive functions that could later be required by Putin during the implementation of his plan for the transition of power.
The replacement of Russia’s Human Rights Council head Mikhail Fedotov, who was completely loyal to the authorities, with United Russia party member Valery Fadeyev, determines the council’s status once and for all. It is first and foremost a presidential council, and only then a human rights council.