There’s a scared little man in the Kremlin

There’s  a scared little man in the Kremlin these days. Putin looks scared and his threats have no substance.  Zelensky who is leading from the front and fighting with his troops: Putin in contrast sits behind a large table and requires or orders others remotely to do his cruel bidding from a position of isolation and safety. Putin dare not go out among the Russian people so scared is he. He may feel that schoolchildren and airline hostesses  are acceptable to meet  because they pose no threat but in reality Putin is scared and increasingly  isolated from his people who are now suffering as a result of the sanctions imposed on Russia.

Putin has declared the sanctions of the West  as an act of war almost but it was telling that his response to that very real threat was measured in a style that we really aren’t  accustomed  to from him: backing down from direct confrontation. Increasingly  he is looking scared and vulnerable and possibly reflective about the damage and potential damage he has brought upon his own country and possibly  himself and his abilities  to carry on as  leader of Russia.

Putin now has limited options available  to him other than to impose martial law and cast Russia back several decades. To do this to a population considerably different from those of the previous generations  of the USSR would be a huge challenge ( perhaps even idealistically impossible). These old Soviet block policies may not work in days of mass communication and of Social Media. The challenges  of imposing martial law and making a citizenship believe in Old style propaganda is so much more difficult  in the digital age. People have got used to getting information  from many sources and government  propaganda probably  isn’t  high on their agenda.  It simply isn’t  going to be enough to control such a mass of people. So instead he must weild an iron fist threatening and bullying his population into mass capitulation. But this is also not a strategy that will work forever. Population  has memory and will make comparisons and come to conclusions despite what Putin tells them.

Where Zelensky  is Spartacus: an inspiring figure who is loved by those he commands: Putin is despised and feared.

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