The New Yorker’s interview on Putin

24 Jan
Russian President Vladimir Putin’s proposed constitutional reforms are widely seen as an attempt to extend his hold on power. But, beyond that, no one really knows how he plans to reorganize the Russian state.Source Photograph by Mikhail Klimentyev / Kremlin Pool Photo / AP

Isaac Chotiner’s interview with Russia political analyst Masha Lipman — the money quote on Russian protest and resistance:

“However, the way it is in Russia—and I think this is what probably makes Russia different from some other countries where the regime is tough—the protests come in waves. And after the wave subsides, there is not much left there in terms of organization, in terms of an identification with a party, a movement, a leader. People rise and then they go back home and there is nothing for a long time.”

This begs the question, as much with Russia as it does with Turkey, of a people’s passivity, perhaps justified when faced with a monolith of power, or a people in paralyzed awe, simply, of intractable and dangerous authority. Asking without meaning to judge — though it’s tempting in Turks’ case — does every people get the government they deserve?

Comment: nikobakos@gmail.com

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