The Russian Protests and

Putin’s Choices

December 22, 2011

Matthew Rojansky

Summary
You might think Russian president Vladimir Putin can rest easy now. Russia’s new State Duma has been
seated despite a wave of popular protests calling for a recount of the December 4 election that gave the
ruling United Russia party a renewed majority of 238 out of 450 seats. But it is a much slimmer margin of
victory than Putin and party leaders had expected, and it is further tainted by allegations of widespread
election fraud. The latest fall guy for this poor performance is Boris Gryzlov, former Duma speaker and
leader of the United Russia faction, who resigned from the Duma and will be replaced by another longtime
Putin ally, former Kremlin administration boss Sergei Naryshkin.
Of course, the Duma speaker is not and never was a real power broker—that role remains the exclusive
purview of Vladimir Putin himself. Yet the Putin system—a “vertical of power” sitting atop a carefully
“managed democracy”—is after ten years finally facing significant, perhaps even existential, challenges.
Regardless of whether Putin himself defines the terms of change or whether change is thrust upon him by
circumstances, it is clear that now for the first time in over a decade, the man and his system will have to
open up. Those at the top will have to share their wealth and power with a wider circle of Russians. Yet, even
this may prove insufficient to stem the tide of public anger.
Putin’s chances of overcoming the current crisis and hanging onto power are still very good. For more than
a decade he has dominated and shaped the Russian political landscape so that few voters recognize or respect
any other leading figures much less any genuine opposition. The population is so divided and the opposition
so underdeveloped that a Putin victory in March’s presidential election is likely, especially if he is willing to
invest real energy in conducting a campaign based on his record of accomplishments.
To avoid further alienating those who are sympathetic to the current protest movement, Putin will also
have to accept a more open and competitive process, in which he might fail to win an outright majority
of the first-round vote and would face a single challenger in a second round. Whether greater pluralism in
the Russian system is genuine or merely for show, Putin will only retain his position if he can succeed in
restoring a sense of legitimacy to the process.

Russia’s Swing Voters
Despite public protests in the month following the Duma elections that have
rivaled the scale of those that brought down the Soviet system, a revolution
is unlikely in Russia today. To understand why that is, just consider where key
segments of the Russian population stand vis-à-vis Putin and his system.
To begin with, about a third of the population is behind Putin and is prepared
to support him indefinitely for the simple fact that he has brought stability
and, in relative terms, assured prosperity. Fair or unfair, Putin is associated
with the period of growth and recovery over the past decade as rising energy
and commodity prices helped fuel Russia’s resurgence on the world stage and
recovery to nearly first-world-economy status. As important, Putin’s iron-fisted
rule is credited for shutting down the chaos brought by rampant criminality,
separatism, and terrorist attacks in the 1990s. Putin himself is unashamed to
claim credit for all of these accomplishments, and his claims are persuasive for a
great many Russians, especially those outside major metropolitan areas with little
access to unofficial or international media.
Another third of the population, though, will never support Putin. It is not a
homogeneous group. Rather, this anti-Putin third is a mosaic of ideologically
and pragmatically opposed factions, brought together only by their dislike
of what Russia has become under Putin, if not of the man himself. This set
includes dyed-in-the-wool liberals—people who trace their political activism
to the late 1980s and the fall of the Soviet Union, many of whom believed and
participated in Boris Yeltsin’s rise and were convinced that their mission was
to create a democratic Russian state out of the ruins of the Soviet Union. They
are today an angry and disaffected but increasingly marginalized bunch seen as
having allowed gangsters and callous foreigners to run roughshod over ordinary
Russians. The reflexive anti-Putin crowd also includes core supporters of the
Communists and so-called Liberal Democrats (actually a virulently xenophobic
nationalist party). They have likewise been on the political scene since 1991 but
have never actually been able to capture more than 10 or 20 percent of the vote.
The final third of voters could be considered Russia’s version of “swing voters.”
These are people who by and large have done well over the past decade, but
who read and listen to independent media when they can and think incessantly
about the future for themselves and their children. They have benefited from
some of the prosperity of the Putin era—many live in renovated Moscow or St.
Petersburg apartments, drive newish foreign cars, and hold decent-paying white
collar jobs that enable them to eat in restaurants and take frequent foreign trips.
But by the same token, this “swing” constituency sees real limitations on their
lives. They are turning out for the first time for the public demonstrations that
have occurred over the last month, albeit in modest numbers and often mostly
as spectators rather than to protest themselves. They are also people who for the
2

Putin’s ironfisted rule
is credited
for shutting
down the
chaos brought
by rampant
criminality,
separatism, and
terrorist attacks
in the 1990s.

first time are willing to have a conversation about politics, and who inevitably
complain about the corruption and abuse they see around them.
Yet, the conversation still does not end with a call for fundamental political
change or revolution. So for all the pageantry of the street protests, despite
the fury of online message boards, and notwithstanding the catchy slogans
maligning Putin and the United Russia party, the core of this third is still open
one way or another to keeping the system as it is—prioritizing stability and
modest growth over possibly disjunctive change. With their support, Putin
could secure the 50-percent-plus-one he needs to hold onto the presidency in the
March 4 elections.
So, what is it that those swing voters actually want? This is relatively easy to
understand. Just browse through the thousands of comments that have appeared
on President Dmitry Medvedev’s Facebook page, read the still relatively free
Russian print and online press, or talk to some of those who stood on the
periphery of this month’s demonstrations.
First and foremost, Russia’s swing constituency demands an end to what they
see as petty corruption at all levels of the system, from the traffic cop who takes
a bribe, to local bureaucrats who saddle small businesses with endless red tape
in hopes of a kickback, to the mayors, governors, and police chiefs who simply
seize the assets they want from private citizens and hand them over to relatives
and cronies to plunder.
Individuals are also looking for a sense not only of security and stability but
of real possibility for a better life for themselves and their children. For now,
even many members of Russia’s relatively successful middle class feel confined
to looking for exit strategies abroad when they think about the long term. They
usually squirrel away cash in foreign hard currency accounts or buy property in
places like Austria, Bulgaria, or the Czech Republic.
Finally, this is a group of people who, if they are asked to participate in political
life, want to feel that they have a real choice. They are getting tired of an
imitation of democracy that demands only an imitation of citizenship from
them. They want to be real citizens of a real Russian state and society—perhaps
not a perfect democracy, which they are not sure can exist anywhere let alone in
this place, but they want more of a tangible say in the direction of their country
than they have today.

Preserving the System
So for the regime, what is to be done? How can Putin preserve the system and
maintain the support of both the third of Russians who are his core supporters

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Individuals are
also looking
for a sense not
only of security
and stability
but of real
possibility for
a better life for
themselves and
their children.

and the third who now feel ever more frustrated and more empowered to
participate in public protest?
Putin must distance himself from the United Russia party—now widely known
among Internet-savvy Russians as “the party of swindlers and thieves”—
after its poor performance and the allegations of fraud associated with its
claimed victory. Gryzlov’s resignation from the Duma may be a first step in
this direction, not only distancing Putin from the United Russia party but in
fact reducing the role and the significance of the party in the Putin system
of government as a whole. Still, the choice of Naryshkin to succeed Gryzlov
underscores Putin’s dependence on a tight circle of close associates who have
been with him since his early days in the St. Petersburg city government. It may
also disappoint ordinary Russians hoping to see new faces in power, even if they
remain Putin’s loyal servants.
Bringing new faces, new ideas, and new energy into Russian politics is high on
the wish list of many Russians, but it does not necessarily mean throwing out
the system altogether. Russians tend to be fearful of disjunctive and sudden
change, recalling their collective suffering after 1917 and 1991. Rather, many in
government and outside of it have talked about the need to bring younger and
more dynamic individuals into the system at higher levels, and to give them
real responsibilities. Some fear that as in Soviet times, the longer one small
group holds onto power, the more stagnation and indifference will trickle down
throughout the system and lead to gradual dry rot or a total collapse and the very
chaos voters want to avoid.
Indeed, this is why many ordinary Russians who have come onto the streets
in the past month are calling for more transparency and real competition.
While some chant “Russia without Putin” and seek to bring down the system
entirely, comments on Russian social networking sites suggest that the majority
of protesters’ goals are more modest: free and fair elections, a chance for their
voices to be heard, and an end to the endemic corruption that infects every
stratum of Russian life and constrains the potential of its most dynamic citizens.
The present moment of political crisis for Putin’s system may therefore conceal
a window of opportunity for Putin. If those who have been prepared in recent
weeks to pour out their frustrations on the streets and online can be offered
a real choice—an election without fraud or manipulation, and in which
independent opposition candidates compete freely—many may nonetheless
choose continuity of a reformed system over what is offered by the opposition.
In that way, Putin could actually return to the Kremlin on a wave of greater
legitimacy than Russia has seen since the early post-Soviet period.
And Putin can surely win a lot of swing voters by reminding them of his
record, namely the reductions in crime and separatist violence, and the high
economic growth rates for which he takes credit. With or without the so-called
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The present
moment of
political crisis
for Putin’s
system may
conceal a
window of
opportunity
for Putin.

“administrative resource” tipping the scales in Putin’s favor, millions of Russians
are likely to recognize in the privacy of the voting booth that they would rather
have another six years like the last twelve than take a chance on any of the
untested—and in some cases, downright dangerous—oppositionists who will
stand against Putin. Putin’s promise of stability is not without costs, particularly
in terms of widespread corruption, continued plundering by the ruling elites,
and missed opportunities for the country as a whole. However, when evaluating
the range of likely opposition candidates, Russians will see plenty to worry about
as well.

The Perennial Opposition
Consider first the traditional liberal camp, represented by the Yabloko party,
the Solidarity movement, and a handful of other parties that were denied the
right to register for the Duma elections. They have played a substantial role in
postelection public protests but do not have very deep or wide public support.
At most, figures such as former Yeltsin-era officials Grigory Yavlinsky (Yabloko)
and Boris Nemtsov (Solidarity) can muster 10 of 15 percent in Moscow and St.
Petersburg—drawing on those cities’ liberal and highly educated populations—
but only single-digit support nationwide. This is because they are seen as having
had a chance to implement their vision for the country in the 1990s, and having
failed miserably.
The Communists, led at the federal level by Gennady Zyuganov, are similar
to the 1990s liberals in that they are seen as representing something from
the past—a poor fit for a modern Russian society which is now fully part
of the globalized world. Still, with strong support among traditional labor
constituencies and pensioners to whom they promise Soviet-style social welfare,
they can muster some 15 to 20 percent of the vote nationwide. They are also the
de facto alternative to United Russia in many remote parts of the country where
other opposition groups are not represented—thus in some cases, Communist
candidates have actually been elected to local government positions when they
have promised to implement reforms and tackle corruption.
Nationalists come in many stripes, and it would not be wrong to characterize
United Russia and Putin himself as one variety. What many Russians think of
when they hear the term “nationalist” in politics, though, is the aggressively
xenophobic, race-baiting party of Vladimir Zhirinovsky, ironically named
the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR). This is by definition a fringe
movement that cannot muster more than 10 percent of the vote nationwide. It
draws most of its strength from the anger and frustration of ordinary Russians
about the fecklessness and corruption of their government, and their own
apparent powerlessness to do anything about it. At the same time, the LDPR
can be accurately described as a tool of the Kremlin, and Zhirinovsky himself
is often deployed to give inflammatory speeches and mount outrageous public
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rallies—a conscious effort to frighten moderate Russians by showing them just
how bad an alternative to the current system could be.
Last in the panoply of likely alternatives to United Russia comes what might
be considered the most mainstream crowd of European-style social democrats.
This group is largely represented today by the Kremlin-loyal A Just Russia party,
headed by former Federation Council speaker Sergei Mironov. The party’s
credibility as a true opposition movement is of course hampered by its close
ties to the Kremlin and its leadership’s unvarnished statements of support
for President Dmitry Medvedev. Yet at the same time, it taps into a desire
among ordinary Russians to see reform and reorientation of the society occur
gradually, without dramatic confrontation between forces loyal to the regime and
revolutionaries who could bring chaos and disaster.
In addition to A Just Russia, a handful of other parties compete for the attention
and support of those Russians who want change, but are not so cynical that
they reject the system as a whole. Some movements, such as that led by lawyerturned-blogger and anticorruption activist Alexei Navalny, are primarily Internet
based. While Navalny’s supporters seem increasingly prepared to engage in
political life, they have not spawned a genuinely new and independent opposition
party. Rather, they find themselves, sometimes uncomfortably, sharing the stage
with existing opposition groups.

Familiar Faces, New Roles
Given the current rising tide of political engagement from all corners of the
opposition spectrum, Putin can anticipate that quite a few candidates will
come forward to contest the presidency in March—that is if he allows them to
participate. Two prospective political competitors to Putin deserve particular
attention. Both are widely respected though not especially popular, but more
importantly both maintain close ties to Putin despite their recent and very public
breaks with the regime.
The first is Mikhail Prokhorov, the larger-than-life billionaire who has declared
his intention to run for president in March. Prokhorov made his initial fortune
in the 1990s, but continued to profit handsomely under Putin and has remained
largely out of politics until the past year. Yet Prokhorov’s entry into the race
could represent the most significant shake-up of the Putin political elite and
the so-called power vertical that we have seen to date. Whether Prokhorov has
thrown in his hat on Putin’s invitation or on his own initiative, his presence
will appeal to a part of the swing constituency that has not previously felt that
they had a viable choice in the elections, most of all to businessmen who are
frustrated and tired of dealing with petty corruption in the system, with endless
red tape, and with promises of reform that are never fulfilled.

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Even if Prokhorov plays the role of Putin’s fig leaf in the presidential race, his
return to politics after being first invited to take the leadership of a pro-Kremlin
opposition party, Just Cause and then being booted from that position in
September, underscores Putin’s need to widen the circle of leadership and break
his own cardinal rule that oligarchs should stay out of politics. Rather than a
Putin-Medvedev “tandem,” we may now see a tricycle. Either way, Prokhorov is
genuinely powerful, charismatic, independently wealthy, and comfortable with
risk precisely because he has done this dance with Putin before.
The second potential candidate worth watching is former finance minister
Alexei Kudrin, who has not declared himself a candidate for the presidency but
says he will seek to form an opposition political party to represent the interests
of middle class Russians. Kudrin is known for his careful stewardship of the
Russian economy over the past decade-plus, including protecting the state from
default during the 2008–2009 global financial crisis through a “stability fund”
built from windfall oil and gas revenues. Kudrin was dismissed in September
for remarks critical of Medvedev after the announcement that the president and
Putin would swap jobs in 2012, and Kudrin also criticized Putin for taking too
dismissive an attitude toward the protesters. Still, Putin has described Kudrin
as a long-standing comrade, ally, and close friend, whom he expects to see in
government again.
Whether these new players are genuine challengers or mere straw men, Putin has
clearly been forced to accept the intervention of other actors at the highest levels.
He may for the first time be in a real fight to preserve the system he has shaped
and dominated for more than a decade—and this could quickly descend into a
fight for his own political survival.
Even if he denies the more radical opposition candidates the right to register,
with the quasi–social democratic Prokhorov and Mironov in the race, plus
the Communist Zyuganov and the nationalist Zhirinovsky, and depending on
turnout, the vote could be split widely enough that Putin is forced into a second
round in March. If that happens, it will shatter Putin’s image of invincibility, and
may be a blow to his ego, but it would ultimately be to Putin’s own advantage,
showing that democracy can work and that the system can become more
transparent and pluralistic. These arguments could mollify swing voters who
have joined the protest movement simply because they feel they lack a voice in
politics. And if Putin can win in the second round after a basically clean election,
he will enjoy much greater legitimacy in the eyes of middle class Russians.
Permitting a free and fair presidential contest actually makes sense for
the regime. After the outcry provoked by the ham-fisted manipulation of
December’s Duma vote, Putin should now understand that a plurality in the first
round followed by a second round victory would be far preferable to permitting
the kind of obvious fraud that would send potentially hundreds of thousands
of Russians into the streets. And in the end, Putin is more likely than anyone
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Putin may for
the first time be
in a real fight
to preserve
the system he
has shaped
and dominated
for more than
a decade—
and this
could quickly
descend into
a fight for his
own political
survival.

to prevail in a second-round vote. He still enjoys high popularity ratings (above
40 percent, higher than any other political figure, according to a poll taken by
the Russian Public Opinion Research Center on December 10–11), even if the
numbers have fallen below the functionally unanimous support he enjoyed in
polls last year.
More important, Putin is not personally tarred with as bad an image as that of
the oligarchs and bureaucrats who surround him; he enjoys a unique “father of
the nation” status, and may be permitted to stand somewhat above the fray of
the December vote-rigging scandal. He is still by far the most widely recognized
politician in Russia, and name recognition always counts. If Putin can actually
campaign successfully on his record of accomplishments and win a true majority
of the popular vote—however slim—he may find himself in a stronger position
and enjoying far greater legitimacy at home and in the world than he has
ever known.

If Putin can
actually
campaign
successfully
on his record
of accomplishments and win
a true majority
of the popular

What Does Putin Want?
Unfortunately, it is hard to say whether Putin sees the future possibilities for
himself and his country in these terms. His motives are undoubtedly complex.
It is likely that as Putin’s power has grown, so too has the scale of his ambition.
Yet now, in the face of the first real challenge to his absolute authority in over a
decade, he may be forced to concentrate on much narrower priorities of personal
welfare and thus to think rather differently than he has for the past several years.

vote he may
find himself
in a stronger
position and
enjoying

It is natural to assume that when Putin rose to prominence, first in St. Petersburg
city politics, and then on the national scene as Yeltsin’s handpicked successor,
he was initially interested in the same things that every powerful Russian has
sought: security for himself and his family, with high living standards and
personal privileges, and, if possible, a fortune that could be transported out
of Russia.

far greater

While direct evidence of Putin’s assets and living conditions is slim, judging
by those of his inner circle and the businessmen who have succeeded during
his tenure, Putin long ago achieved all his goals related to personal welfare and
wealth. His dogged persecution of oligarchs such as Mikhail Khodorkovsky and
Boris Berezovsky is in part because he sees them as parasitic products of the
corrupt 1990s, but even more because he considers them threats to his personal
power and control. (Contrast that with his more recent outreach to Prokhorov,
every bit the oligarch, to bolster the system’s appeal to moderates.)

has ever known.

On a second, perhaps higher, level, are Putin’s aspirations for his country—
and let there be no doubt that he considers himself a Russian patriot. These
objectives began to feature prominently in Putin’s policies in the mid-2000s
as Russia recovered from the previous decade’s economic collapse, and began
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legitimacy at
home and in the
world than he

to wield greater global influence once again. What began as a reaction to the
dominance and apparent expansionism of the traditional West—especially in the
form of NATO and the European Union—has evolved into a wholly distinct
vision for the future of the post-Soviet and related space. While grandiose
visions of a new “Eurasian Union” and trade and energy flows from Europe
to Asia dominated by Russia may always be the stuff of fantasy, Putin seems
genuinely to believe in his country’s destiny as a great power determining the
contours of the future world order.
Now, as Putin concentrates on dissipating the latest wave of unrest and
orchestrating his return to the Kremlin in March, he must once again narrow
his ambitions. Whatever one thinks of him as a statesman or strategist, he is
certainly an effective tactician, as his meteoric rise in the late 1990s attests.
Today, with all the resources of the Russian state at his disposal, it is hard to
imagine that he will have trouble blunting the force of opposition activity
and offering average Russians at least a taste of the reform for which they
are clamoring.
But Putin has been known to be petty and shortsighted as well, and years at
the top, insulated from any real sense of what’s going on at the street level, may
have dulled his senses. His latest quip, claiming the protesters’ white ribbons
looked like condoms, suggests he is out of touch with the mood in the country.
Ironically for a leader with origins and close ties in the intelligence community,
Putin may not actually realize the scale of what is going on in Russian society, or
what he should do in response.

While grandiose
visions of a
new “Eurasian
Union” and
trade and
energy flows
from Europe to
Asia dominated
by Russia may
always be the
stuff of fantasy,
Putin seems
genuinely
to believe in

Putin’s Choice

his country’s

If current trends continue, the wave of frustration unleashed by the Duma
election results may once again constrain the circumstances in which Putin
and his system are able to operate. Putin may not only be forced to fight for
his political survival against external political challengers, but also to combat
rumblings of dissension, leaks, and other manifestations of disloyalty from
within the ranks of his own political elite.

destiny as a

One cost of satisfying the broader public’s call for new faces in politics could be
the alienation of those long-standing allies and servants whom he will have to
remove from positions of power and privilege. Recall the fate of Mr. Gryzlov,
who must feel that he was unfairly punished for the December 4 fiasco when he
was just one of many figures dutifully carrying out Putin’s own wishes.

of the future

Similarly, to keep public demonstrations from spiraling into a mass protest
movement with a life and momentum of its own, Putin will have to make firm
but judicious use of the apparatus of state power, including the dreaded special
police units that have already arrested hundreds of protesters. He will have to
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great power
determining
the contours
world order.

walk a fine line between appearing to have lost his absolute grip on power and
using brute force so extensively that it offends the sensibilities of swing voters
who are already morally outraged.
Ironically, it is perhaps Putin’s ultimate personal interest and his grandest
ambition that could enable him to snatch victory from the jaws of apparent
defeat. Having secured so much wealth and power for himself and those close
to him, while at the same time presiding over a period of growth, recovery,
and resurgent self-confidence for his country, Putin now also looks to history
as well as toward the future. He knows that he will be remembered as the
leader who saved post-Soviet Russia from chaos and collapse, and he hopes
also to be thought of as a great architect of the new Russia, something like the
pre-Revolutionary prime minister Pyotr Stolypin to whom he often overtly
compares himself.
Putin must now recognize that his country has come to a historic turning point.
If he is to remain relevant and if he hopes to secure a lasting positive legacy in
Russian history, he can now only do so on the basis of the legitimacy conferred
by essentially free and fair elections. It should not be forgotten that for all the
pent-up frustration being released on the streets of Moscow and other Russian
cities, Putin remains a relatively popular figure, and as important, a known
quantity to the voting public. His core of popular support, matched against any
one of the likely opposition contenders, is almost certainly sufficient to prevail in
a second round without resorting to fraud and manipulation.
Moreover, while he will be held responsible for mistakes and abuses by
the government over the past decade, in the short term his mastery of the
administrative resource means he still has adequate assets to buy the loyalty of
many opinion leaders and interest groups. Those that cannot be bought can
be outmaneuvered, embarrassed, or outright intimidated. While such use of
dirty tricks and state power will erode the integrity of the presidential election
process, Putin will likely conclude—and rightly so—that he can accommodate
the public’s main objection to December’s Duma elections, and thus deflate
the protest movement, by making sure the vote itself is transparent and not
manipulated, even if it takes place against the backdrop of a political culture that
is anything but free and fair.
In effect, Putin has a choice of just how much pluralism and competition to
allow going into the presidential contest. On the one hand, he could permit
every plausible opposition candidate to register and compete, which would
certainly complicate the system, but might so overwhelm and concern Russian
voters that they stick with the certainty that Putin represents rather than take big
risks on untested oppositionists. In that way, by giving Russians just a small taste
of how messy real democracy can be, Putin might remind them why they have
tolerated his “managed” version of it over the past decade.

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On the other hand—and this now seems more likely—he may invite a handful
of credible but Kremlin-friendly opposition candidates to run mildly critical
campaigns in a carefully stage-managed competition leading up to March 4.
Allies like Prokhorov, Mironov, and Kudrin could all attract a few percentage
points from the business-minded middle class and liberal-leaning moderates,
while giving voters frustrated by the December 4 outcome a sense that their
demands have been at least partially accommodated. Whether Putin narrowly
wins in the first round, or is forced into a run-off against one of these
competitors, he is for now the only figure likely to win the presidency, and he
can still do it in a way that will restore at least some of the system’s legitimacy.
There is one other, much more disturbing and potentially more dangerous path.
That is if Putin refuses any kind of change and decides to fight the protests and
the political opposition with force instead of blunting them with (superficial)
kindness. In effect, he will be declaring war on his own people, following in
the footsteps of more than a few autocrats in recent memory. If Putin chooses
confrontation, it can only begin what will be a steep decline for Russia, a collapse
of the Putin system itself, and the dismantlement of a personal legacy of strength
and stability he has fought for twenty years to build.

Putin is for now
the only figure
likely to win the
presidency, and
he can still do
it in a way that
will restore at
least some of
the system’s
legitimacy.

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MATTHEW ROJANSKY is the deputy director of the Russia and Eurasia
Program at the Carnegie Endowment. Rojansky is responsible for advancing
the Program’s strategic priorities, ensuring operational support for resident and
visiting experts, and managing relationships with other Carnegie programs,
partner institutions, and policy makers. An expert on U.S. and Russian national
security and nuclear weapons policies, his work focuses on relations among the
United States, NATO, and the states of the former Soviet Union.
From 2007–2010, Rojansky served as executive director of the Partnership
for a Secure America (PSA). Founded by former Congressman Lee Hamilton
(D-IN) and former Senator Warren Rudman (R-NH), with a group of two
dozen former senior leaders from both political parties, PSA seeks to rebuild
bipartisan dialogue and productive debate on U.S. national security and foreign
policy challenges.
Rojansky is frequently interviewed on TV and radio, and his writing has
appeared in the International Herald Tribune, Jerusalem Post, and Moscow Times.

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