On the pages of International Business Times, experts express an opinion that the Kremlin and, in particular, Russian President Vladimir Putin deliberately scare the Russians with the war in order to distract their attention from domestic problems, and gain rating, Joinfo.ua reports.
According to the recent opinion polls conducted in Russia by an independent research center “Levada-Center”, more than half the inhabitants of the country “fear” of a possible war with the West in the near future. Despite this, President Putin’s rating has reached a record high and now stands at 89%, writes Peter Carty in an article for the American edition of the International Business Times.
Probably, this “absolute record” of popularity of the Russian leader can be explained by the fact that the country approves his tough stance against the West. And it is an absurd of the USSR. After all, at the same time, polls show that a total of more than half of respondents (about 55%) are either “afraid” or “very afraid” of “the possibility of war between Russia and western countries.
Moreover, as evidenced by the numerous posts on social networks, many Russians believe that their country is already “at war,” International Business Times writes. Although, the other part of population “prefers not to acknowledge the issue.” Moreover, in May, President Putin signed a decree making it “a criminal offence to report Russian military deaths in peacetime,” the article says.
Opponents to the Kremlin believe that the Russian state media is deliberately “exaggerating” the external threat to distract public attention from the economic crisis in Russia. “The state channels are playing a terrible game with the public conscience. It distracts from real problems if tomorrow there is a war,” says Yevgenia Albats, editor of independent magazine New Times, in an interview with International Business Times.
While the independent Moscow-based analyst and journalist Maria Lipman warns about the existence of an “obvious gap” between the appetite of the Russian public for “pugnacious military propaganda” – which is most prominent in Putin’s “nuclear chest thumping” – and the “rising anxiety” which felt by many Russians. According to Maria, this anxiety is the main reason why the Kremlin “continues with denials that its troops are fighting in east Ukraine,” Lipman stressed in an interview with International Business Times.
Meanwhile, NATO officials confirmed their intention to deploy hundreds of armored vehicles near the Russian border, and the Kremlin announced the increase of nuclear arsenal. Both sides in the conflict in eastern Ukraine, which has already killed more than 6,400 people, are warning of a possible resumption of hostilities in the near future, the article says.
Earlier, we reported that, according to the Russian opposition leader and former world chess champion Garry Kasparov, President Putin did not need friends, he needed only enemies.