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    March 25, 2015

    "Someone else could be Russia's president in 2018"--Putin


    Translated from Russian by J.Hawk

    The current president of Russia Vladimir Putin announced at the meeting of WorldSkills International director Simon Bartley that another politician could be Russia’s president in 2018.

    Putin said that commenting on Bartley’s statement that “the presence of the country’s leader at the opening or closing of the World Championship in Working Professions would be an advantage when considering the Russian application.” It is believed that the championship will be held in Kazan.

    Vladimir Putin believes that the president’s task is “to work for the good of Russia and its citizens”, without ruling out his participation in the next presidential election. He also said that he has no intention of being “the head of state for life”. According to Putin, those who are “holding on to their seat with hands and teeth” are unavoidably doomed to fail.

    J.Hawk’s Comment: It does seem likely that Putin will go into retirement in the next few years—at any rate, it’s hard to imagine him as president at the age of 70. Besides, his place in history books is secure, and it’s unlikely that Russian government policies would change much after his departure. He is not the “tyrannical ruler” of Western propaganda but, quite simply, the chief executive of the Russian state. That’s what he was picked to do, and that’s what he did well.

    The only question is of succession. It will almost certainly be a member of the “nobility of the sword”, or Russia’s national security apparatus. The business side of the government, the “nobility of the cloth”, has not performed as well, and its representatives (most notably—Medvedev) can’t hold a candle to the popularity of the “chekists.”

    So, who’s Russia’s next president? My educated guess is that it will come down to a choice between Sergey Ivanov and Sergey Shoygu.  They combine modesty, competence, and the ability to pursue the balanced internal and foreign policy that characterized Russia during Putin’s tenure as President and/or Prime Minister.
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