Interesting cross section of opinions, thank you all for your thoughts. My questions are these:
My questions are these:
1.What does the average Russian think of Putin?
2. Is the Russian Orthodox church supporting Putin? If yes!, then why?
Like Edmond Dantes, I neither admire or necessarily like Russia. But I would like to understand Russia, honestly and objectively, and not just succumb to undemonstrated assertions.
Two years ago, I enrolled in a study of the Byzantine empire, and the former convenor of the study unit (a Dr. Ken Parry) challenged us (his students) to attempt to understand how the Eastern Roman Empire's intellectual principles had survived in Eastern Europe and Russia. The messianic west believes its ideals are universal truths. But that's only the west's understanding. The rest of the word does not speak English or related latin/germanic based languages
Kaik thinks that, Russia "is driven by messianic complex to subject everyone. Dear me, couldn't such a statement equally describe the colonising powers of the nineteenth century, which includes the USA.
Kaik, also thinks that the Russian economy is about to collapse. It may, but I have my doubts, the sheer size of the energy contract between China and Russia could indicate the opposite. The very Fast Train line to be built between Beijing and Moscow will add another strand of connectivity between China and Europe, and it will likely be the nucleus of another belt of prosperity that China seems intent on building out from their borders. Will the Chinese succeed? We will have to wait and see.
Village Idiot thinks that he has heard Putin is the richest man in the world. Hmmm! I've heard it said (before) that the former Chinese premier, Wen Jiaobao was the richest man? Both statements are unverifiable.
However, it does seem that George Washington, was not only the richest man in the English colonies, but that he gained immeasurable additional wealth as a result of American Independence. (See Howard Zinn's," A People's History of the United States.") Does that item of information affect the American view of Washington?