Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) attends a ceremony to sign documents, including a decree recognising two Russian-backed breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine as independent, with the leaders of the self-proclaimed republics Leonid Pasechnik (left) and Denis Pushilin (centre) during a ceremony at the Kremlin in Moscow on February 21. Photo: Sputnik/AFP
Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) attends a ceremony to sign documents, including a decree recognising two Russian-backed breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine as independent, with the leaders of the self-proclaimed republics Leonid Pasechnik (left) and Denis Pushilin (centre) during a ceremony at the Kremlin in Moscow on February 21. Photo: Sputnik/AFP
James V. Wertsch
Opinion

Opinion

James V. Wertsch

The grand narrative driving Putin’s vision of a strong and spiritually pure Russia

  • Having inherited the narrative of victimhood at foreign hands and the need for a strongman leader to realise Russia’s destined greatness, Putin is only putting it into practice
  • Moscow’s actions on Ukraine and Georgia can only be fully understood in this context

Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) attends a ceremony to sign documents, including a decree recognising two Russian-backed breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine as independent, with the leaders of the self-proclaimed republics Leonid Pasechnik (left) and Denis Pushilin (centre) during a ceremony at the Kremlin in Moscow on February 21. Photo: Sputnik/AFP
Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) attends a ceremony to sign documents, including a decree recognising two Russian-backed breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine as independent, with the leaders of the self-proclaimed republics Leonid Pasechnik (left) and Denis Pushilin (centre) during a ceremony at the Kremlin in Moscow on February 21. Photo: Sputnik/AFP
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