Russian analyst predicts controversial decision by Putin post-election

Written by Henrik Rothen

Sep.16 - 2023 7:55 AM CET

Foto: Wikipedia Commons
Foto: Wikipedia Commons
Russian analyst predicts controversial decision by Putin post-election.

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As Russia prepares for its upcoming elections next year, all signs indicate that the incumbent leader, Vladimir Putin, is likely to retain his position.

According to Jekaterina Schulmann, a prominent Russian political scientist, the Kremlin is making concerted efforts to mitigate public discontent and protests leading up to the elections.

These efforts include financial handouts and censoring news related to the ongoing war in Ukraine.

However, Schulmann anticipates a significant shift in the political climate after the elections.

She predicts that Putin will make a highly controversial and unpopular decision, which could involve closing the country's borders and declaring general mobilization.

Schulmann describes the period leading up to the elections as a risky time for Putin's regime, especially given the heightened level of public dissatisfaction, much of which stems from the war in Ukraine.

Schulmann also challenges the official figures that claim 70% of the Russian population supports the "military operation" in Ukraine.

She argues that these numbers are unreliable due to war censorship and political repression.

According to her, the real sentiment among the Russian populace is far more nuanced. She estimates that around 20% are against the war, approximately 15% support the invasion, and the remaining are conformists who are undecided.

The Kremlin's strategy to suppress dissent and control the narrative is not new, but what makes the upcoming elections particularly significant is the level of public discontent.

Schulmann's predictions, if accurate, could indicate a turning point in Russian politics, where the government may resort to extreme measures to maintain control.

This raises questions about the future trajectory of Russian domestic and foreign policy, and how the international community should prepare for potential drastic actions from Putin's regime.

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