MOSCOW (Realist English). Russia today is facing quite a tragic denouement — “either mobilization and waging a full-scale war with the Ukraine or a rather shameful defeat and economic tragedy,” says political scientist Yevgeny Suchkov.
“The consequence may be not only the loss of all the conquered territories, but also the destabilization of the entire domestic political situation. The point is also that the entire stability of the vertical of power in Russia for the last at least 20 years has been based on the positive image of Vladimir Putin that exists in the mass consciousness. And in the case of a dramatic destruction of this image, it cannot but lead to the destabilization of the entire administrative system of Russia.
For if one looks at the system of state management created by him, then only a small number of “managers” who largely depend personally on the president, called by Yevgeny Minchenko “Politburo 2.0″ and a narrow circle of their relatives can theoretically stay close to the president till the end.” the expert notes.
According to him, as the experience of 1991 shows, the probability of this is purely theoretical:
“About a year ago, debates about the format of the “transit of power” in 2024 were more than relevant in our midst. Now these conversations have subsided a little, but they shouldn’t have. The offensive launched by the Ukraine in almost all directions and the loss of part of the Kharkov region, in addition to purely military issues, also put the question of the very “transit of power”. That is, as if it gave a meaningful start to the presidential campaign in Russia in 2024.
And if I was previously completely sure that Putin would be replaced by Putin in the upcoming elections, then the denouement indicated by my colleague Valery Fedorov caused me some confusion in such an unambiguous position.”
Earlier, the head of VTsIOM, Valery Fedorov, wrote in social networks that after the counteroffensive of Ukrainian armed formations in the Kharkov region, the Russian authorities found themselves at a fork in the road:
“To continue everything in the same spirit (“the country lives as usual, professionals carry out a special operation that goes well and according to plan”) — or change approaches, moving on to a real war. Previously, such a choice could have been postponed, because everything was going well for us on the fronts. The Kharkov region has shown that luck is over, the laws of war are now working in full force, it will not be possible to go further on luck alone.”