Ukraine War: Blessing in Disguise for Putin


Abdul Samad Khan

It is a widely-held narrative that crises usually generate opportunities.
Though this might be limited to a few at the cost of many, the few widely celebrate and advocate crises-driven situations wherein they may have several opportunities to boost personal stakes. This is usually done by parochial-minded persons. The same is applied to the state, which takes advantage of crises thrown its way. Taking this to the Russian World, one may easily find that Russian President Putin is getting stronger by the day in the ongoing skirmish with Ukraine. Sceptics and critics sum it so as his position is being strengthened by the ongoing crises.
The Russian President is brought under storm for driving the war with Ukraine for giving his rule a strong footing, thereby, crashing all the barriers to his rule. He is reported and even alleged, levelled by the neo-realists, to have deliberately extended the warlike situation and not intended to end the war with Ukraine. His philosophy behind the continuation of the war is that the war would keep creating crises and disturbances inside the country, which would, in turn, keep its inhabitants busy in conversation about it. Thus, he would keep himself on the safe side from the strong criticism of his countrymen.
He alleged to have intentionally kept the people of Russia from bringing his rule under storm by applying soft techniques to stick them to the war willingly. He has cloaked the war as an invasion of the sovereignty and independence of Russia. He uses catchy phrases such as the Russian World, Our Historical Land, etc, which hooked the masses while appealing to their sentiments. This is why he has been reported to have been supported by even his critic for his war against Ukraine. Thus, the Russian skirmish with Ukraine has added to the power of Putin.
Likewise, Putin has thrown one of the most celebrated causes behind Russian-the Ukraine standoff that the skirmish is fought to push Westernism back. He argued that the war with Ukraine has been unleashed as a response to the obdurate Western move to extend Nato and the EU to the world of the Russian sphere. Latently, the West had been alleged to have intended to install Western politico-economic and social order in the neighbourhood of Russia, which is in stark contrast with that of the Russian one.
Similarly, the Russian President has tried to justify his move by putting up the reason that Ukraine is a Russian sister country. Both were part of the erstwhile “pompous” Soviet Union. Moreover, Ukraine is home to millions of Russian language speakers and those who uphold Russian culture. Thus, the protection of such land, as well as their people, becomes a moral duty of Moscow. In this way, Putin succeeds in driving his masses in his way.
Apart from the above, Putin is reported to have put the country’s leading independent media outlets under the blockade. This is a widely-held belief that controlling the source of information may serve well as an authoritarian and dictated move. Common Russians have been deprived of access to a fair analysis of the ongoing war and, thus, they are just being provided with manipulated news, which creates a pro-war narrative.
Likewise, Putin is reported to have got more powers amid the ongoing crises as a result of the imposition of strong sedition moves. Under such measures, anti-war opinions are not only forbidden but also punishable. Thus, he just gets appreciation and support.
This has further been accelerated by the indulgence of the country’s military in the ongoing scuffle which has engaged them completely thereby keeping their eyes off the imposition of martial law or a military coup. Moreover, the same crises also favour the military men as they are being provided with massive financial and equipment support which they can rarely and even hardly obtain during peacetime.
Similarly, the strong position of President Putin is further strengthened by the fact that he has largely succeeded in calming down the possible voices of critique by recruiting more from the lower and working class in the fighting ranks. This has made the upper and middle classes silent since they can hardly lose their lives and for the rest, they damn care.
Notwithstanding all the above measures adopted to strengthen the posture of Putin as President, there has been massive financial and human loss as the country has lost almost 200,000 people as well as a huge death blow to its economic growth. The war has exacerbated internal situations and had turned the country into a depressed and poly-crises one. Amid this, though getting himself on a strong footing might be possible to an extent, there is a popular demand for taking tangible measures to set all the prevailing crises aside thereby installing a peaceful atmosphere.
While wrapping up this write-up, it is made clear that the presence of crises even the invasions has largely increased the powers of the Russian President. As mentioned above, he is gaining mostly pro-war continuation opinions as a result of the different measures adopted by him (mentioned above). Above all, the art of conflating an invasion with a move taken for national prestige and even for its protection can largely affect people’s way of thinking. Such a sentimental move may raise above logic and reason, which might reject any belligerent approach. In the case of Russia, the war might be of national importance, but at the individual level, classical realism–driven man–is solely responsible for mongering warlike situations or crises. The alleged popular concept of driven internal views of inhabitants to an artificial crisis made outside the border or even inside the border, though widely celebrated and practised, turns into a huge blow with a massive cost. Therefore, a responsible way out is strongly suggested.