Ukraine enjoyed seeing Putin flustered



2014/12/18 • Russia

Kyiv – At the annual press conference in Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin lacked confidence. What goes to show is the fact that he almost forewent mentioning Crimea, and instead of using his past favorite term ‘Novorossiya,’ he spoke about the southeast of Ukraine. However, Putin’s discourse included both peaceful and threatening motifs. 

What matters is not what the Russian President said but how he did it. In this light, non-faction member of the Ukrainian Parliament Boryslav Bereza says he enjoyed Vladimir Putin’s press conference, as the Russian President looked awkward and lost.

“Putin himself did not believe what he was saying. He was different from the Putin both Russia and the global community are used to seeing,” the MP notes.

Social psychology Viktor Pushkar also notes that the Russian President does not hold himself as confidently as before. According to him, Putin “is no longer playing the part of the cool macho.”

Putin did not post “Crimea is ours” 

Putin lacked confidence the most at the beginning of the press conference when, while characterizing the financial and economic situations in Russia, he assured that everything would right itself within two years’ time.

“It felt as though he were declaring a written text, separate from Putin’s thoughts. Putin admits that the situation is bad, but he does not want to acknowledge that it is a consequence of his policies,” says political expert Volodymyr Fesenko.

Putin understands the conflict, but has no idea of how to escape this dead-end situation.

“His rhetoric about the West is harsh – about the wall, about bear claws and teeth… He is convincing himself and his people that they are in the right. And the fixation itself – right or wrong, – testifies to a very serious conflict,” thinks Volodymyr Fesenko.

It is also significant that Putin did not mention Crimea when summarizing the year’s work. As to Ukraine, the Russian President spoke both appeasingly and menacingly. According to Fesenko, it seemed as though Putin had an olive branch of peace in one hand and a Kalashnikov in the other.

“There were many stereotypes he had used before: particularly the one about an armed coup which allegedly happened in Ukraine this February,” notes the political expert.

Experts also note the reaction of the press in attendance and the Russian population overall: Vladimir Putin’s jokes often failed to elicit approval in the form of applause.

Translated by: Mariya Shcherbinina
Source: Radio Liberty

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  • Rods

    If you look at Russia as a PLC with Putin chairman, until last week, he could afford to do deals largely on his terms. This week, we can all see the considerable financial stress and weakness Russia PLC is under, with collapse not out of the question, so the situation has now changed to Putin NEEDING to do deals to ease the situation.

    Putin’s best course is a deal to save the costs of the war in the Donbas and even more so the easing of sanctions so he now has access to Western capital markets again. It won’t be a deal at any price, as Putin will need to save face, but it will certainly be on better terms than a week ago.

    IMO he is will seek a face saving deal with guarantees over NATO and EU membership, no closed borders for supplying Crimea in return for peace in Donbas. After Lavrov’s recent speech I expect Ukraine get concessions especially on federalization. A higher risk strategy by Putin would be to make a short general war in Ukraine in a attempt to get better terms, but this would be very high risk strategy where in winter defenders have many advantages over attackers, so he may end up bogged down in months of war with the west supplying defensive weapons and further financial stress through the cost of the war and more sanctions. If the war gets bogged down, he will be in an even weaker position, than if he hadn’t started it and it may end up like in WWI, trying to win a battle and gain ground in the hope of strengthening his negotiating hand and that win never happening.

    In his speech talking about bears and claws etc., is IMO just rhetoric to cover the weakness of his current position and to get as many concessions from Ukraine as possible during peace talks.

    His talk of back to normal, economically, within two years I think is optimistic, where in 2008 government and economist’s growth figures for year after year, bad this year, flat next year and growth the year after, where in reality it has taken the US / UK 5-6 years from 2008 to be on the road to recover and the noose of the Euro means that Euro countries still have some way to go.

    • Milton Devonair

      Why does ol vlady look like that chimpanzee that puts his hand in a glass bottle, grabs a banana, then can’t take his hand out….and is confounded by it?

      • steve34609

        Brilliant! LOL!

        • Milton Devonair

          Thanks. Very symbolic too. Gives another meaning to “banana republics”……

    • Dean Venture

      I don’t think a deal offering peace in East Ukraine for Crimea will ever be acceptable, and Putin must know that. Even better, he realizes now that he’s annexed a white elephant. The required infrastructure to connect the Crimea to Russia with transport, power, and water is much more money than any tax revenues the peninsula could hope to generate.

      The Crimea will be the albatross around Putin’s neck and it will plague him until he makes that right or it finally strangles him.

  • Michel Cloarec

    Nice show of Vlad the poor ! Is anyone convinced ? Not the journalists ( interesting to watch their faces ) What he said is only repetitions of earlier statements !
    In winter I hunt boars , that is how they look when they are catch and can´t retreat !
    We know about the Stockholm syndrome, now we know about the putin´s syndrome “” the agressor become the victim ! “”
    2 years looks more like 50 years to me !

    • Milton Devonair

      I wish we had hogs to hunt where I live, but we don’t, so we just have to shoot deer, bear and wolves. Some russian boars would be nice as our AR-15s in 6.8 would make them drop like a bag of rocks. We use the term DRT, meaning “Dropped Right There” or “Dead Right There”.

      • Michel Cloarec

        I fool them , because I feed them with korn and bread in winter. So I only have to wait for them when I need meat ! But I am a good strategist ! They are so stupid !

        • Milton Devonair

          Good. A lot of people use corn here to bait deer, but bear also show up. Don’t know if they eat the corn, but they eat the young deer at times.
          Do you use the 6,5 x55?

          • Michel Cloarec

            Carl Gustaf + 9,3 x 62 both till elk and boars
            Even effective for terrorists, but I have not found out the way to automat feed them with vodka !
            Here wolves and bears are protected, but not terrorists !

          • Milton Devonair

            That’s some big medicine cartridge. What kind of scope do you use? Knew someone in Finland and he highly recommended NighForce gives the best value for the dollar. Do you eat them? Big fan of Swedish/Finnish knives.

            Sweden has some great anti-tank missiles that hopefully will work their way to Ukraine…and Crimea. The 5,56 in 55gr is pretty good medicine against terrorists. Look at the videos of them on the newscasts and they are little more than untrained apes.

          • Michel Cloarec

            MINOX ZE-i (german) 5.5-25×56 Perfect till 700 m on elk. The boars I shoot between the eyes, otherwise too much damages with 9,3 x 62. Never buy meat !
            Ever tried hamburgare with wild meat ?

          • Milton Devonair

            Nice scope. I’ll look into that. For 0-400m, I use nikons with their nikoplex. Good for fast shooting and can estimate drop/windage sufficiently. I used mostly 40mms, but will put a 50mm on the wife’s AR-15 as she can’t see well in low light. One of my buddies says the larger front ends ‘bends the light’, but he’s a very gifted and trained long range shooter.

            I’ve got an old pair of west german Zeiss binoculars and am impressed with them, so might look into Zeiss. That was one of the German factories the russian apes stole, just like they’re doing in Eastern Ukraine. Those apes never create anything–they just steal.

            Good for you that you don’t buy meat. Healthier that way and more connected to the universe. We have a butcher that brings in cows from Colorado and local farms here raise their own. We also hunt and butcher our own, so we get 70% fat content ground beef then mix in some ground venison (deer meat).

            Lot’s of bad things at worst, not good meat/things at best when people buy meat from large meat plants.

          • Michel Cloarec

            Novorossya news agency is down, but replaced by Novorossia today ! With same kind of trolls activities. Here last outplay ! After press conference, looks good to the fan´s club !
            Russia sent 1 million dollars of the USA to provide assistance to the dwellers of Donbass
            on: December 20, 2014In: Novorossia, Novorossia AlliesNo Comments
            This information was published on the site of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia.
            Official announcement of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of RF.
            ‘Russian Federation transferred one million USA dollars to the International Committee of the Red Cross for the purposes of providing aid to the civil population of the South-East of Ukraine.
            This region became the victim of inner armoured conflict in that country. And Russia use all abilities to provide help to people who are in the zone of the conflict and invokes all the international humanitarian organizations to join the work of realizing the emergency situation. Russia calls also the government of Ukraine to stop the policy of economic blockade and start the cooperation with all who are interested in providing help to the civil population.