A new Levada Center poll showing that more than half of Russians are tired of waiting for Vladimir Putin to bring them a better life but that nearly three-quarters of them still trust the Russian president has not surprisingly attracted a good deal of attention, commentary and speculation about the upcoming election.
But perhaps even more interesting than those global assessments are the listing and rankings Russians give to what they say are the Kremlin’s leader’s greatest successes and greatest failures, a set of figures that provides a more nuanced view of how Russians view Putin in the 17th year of his reign.
The rankings combine those who rated a particular action as a success and those who rated it as a failure. Putin’s greatest successes, in descending order, were:
- Raising the country’s military capability
- Strengthening the international standing of Russia
- Resolving the Chechen problem
- Restoring order to the country
- Improving ties with CIS countries
- Promoting optimism and hope
- Improving international relations
- Fighting crime
- Protecting democracy and freedoms.
The last “success” is only one point positive relative to the negatives.
His greatest failures, again in descending order from the most to the least, are, Russians say:
- Fighting corruption
- Improving the standard of living
- Bringing the oligarchs to heel
- Economic development
- Strengthening morality
- Improving ties with the West
- Creating conditions for private business
- Eliminating the threat of terrorism in Russia.
Again the margins for the last four are small, less than five points.
- Making Ukraine mono-ethnic – Putin’s greatest achievement and most fateful failure
- Russians angry at authorities for failing to prevent terrorist attacks, Gorevoy says
- After two fails, Putin starts ‘third stage’ of war against Ukraine, Piontkovsky says
- Russia ‘a failed state’ because it does not enforce its own laws, Shtepa says
- ‘Why should Russian taxpayers be interested in Ukraine?’
- ‘Young Russians love Putin, state ownership and socialism,’ poll finds
- ‘Crimea effect’ weaker but still significant for the Kremlin, experts say
- Russia’s geopolitical ‘successes’ rely on ethnic cleansing, Kyiv commentator says
- A new man emerges in Russia – Homo Putinisticus – Eidman says
- Statistical method reveals voting fraud of Russia’s pro-Putin party
- Putin elite’s anti-Americanism older and more deeply held than that of other Russians (study)
- Disentangling the ‘fraternal’ Russian and Ukrainian peoples in 1991 and now