Staunton, April 16 – The Putin regime, like the Stalin regime before it, Irina Pavlova says, rarely provides advance information about what it plans to do, thus opening the way for competing interpretations, ranging from condemnation to exoneration, of what its top leaders do say.
That pattern, the US-based Russian historian says, means that unguarded outbursts by those in or near the center of power are especially valuable; and in her latest post, she focuses on the implications of what she calls “the revelation of Sergey Markov” about what may be next for Putin’s Russia (ivpavlova.blogspot.com/2016/04/blog-post_15.html).
At the end of a talk show on Moscow’s Central TV yesterday, Markov, a political analyst close to the Kremlin may have said more than he intended when he “blurted” out the following, Pavlova suggests.
“The Russian people,” Markov said, “are not against the strong; they are simply against the strong stealing … As concerns ideology, the Russian people really wants justice. This is its ideology. The ruling elite however prefers to steal the country and therefore its ideology is glamour and shamelessness raised to the point of a principled position.”
He continued: “The group of former KGB officers who took power in the country and saved it knows that this is the ideology of the people but it is afraid. It wants to reconcile this elite and this people because it understands that the future is in reconciliation and not in civil war.”
“What follows from this?” Pavlova asks rhetorically. What is this “group of former KGB officers,” of whom some have said Markov himself is one, planning? Given that there is unlikely to be anything new, the most likely outcome are “show trials against representatives of the elite who have stolen in particularly large amounts” intended to “reconcile” the elite and the people.
That would constitute, the Russian historian says, “a new edition of the Great Terror.”
“Such trials,” she says, will again be “a warning for the rest” especially because the Russian elite knows that far from all of its members will be able to “flourish abroad for without Russia it is nothing.”