Penn Wealth Publishing

2018.07.15 Penn Wealth Report Vol 6 Issue 02

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Copyright 2018. All Rights Reserved. taCtiCal aWaReness 10 Penn Wealth RePoRt volume 6 issue 02 15 Jul 2018 Even without a rigged election, Putin still would have easily won. A certain segment of society will simply never get it: a dictator is a dictator is a dictator, and all of the flowery, erudite speeches and vac- uous tough talk will not change that fact. When out of power, the members of this segment can provide us with wacky enter- tainment by their harebrained commentary; when in power, their arrogance and mis- interpretation of reality can be downright dangerous. Just ask the British people shortly after Chamberlain's "peace in our times" speech. On 18 March, Vlad "the Impaler" Putin notched his fourth election victory for pres- ident of Russia. Was the election rigged? Of course it was. Would it have mattered if it hadn't been? Not a chance. The Russian people have a love affair with the former KGB leader. Consider his reign the Camelot of Russia. It doesn't matter how many people he kills, he will remain loved and adored by the masses. He tells the citizenry what they want to hear—that their pain and suffering is not due to what remains after 74 years of communism; it is due to the arrogant capitalism of the West. While Putin's fourth term has a six-year expiration date on it, he is, for all intents and purposes, ruler of Russia for life. For two decades he has been amassing his power and eliminating his enemies, often by the fine Russian art of poisoning, developed through- out the centuries and refined in a poison laboratory known as the "lab of death." His latest victim (that we know of ) was a former double-agent living in London, along with the agent's 33-year-old daughter. It is not hard to imagine the belly laughs in the bowels of the Kremlin after US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton presented Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov with a plastic red "reset" button, but there really was noth- ing funny about this level of naiveté. For the megalomaniac Putin, this was one more piece of evidence of his dominance over the useful idiots of the West. Sadly, in this case, he was not wrong. The United States and her allies sat idly by while Russia slowly reconstituted its empire, from the annexation of Crimea, to the exertion of influence in hot-spots like Syria, Turkey, and Iran. It isn't a strong defense Putin seeks, it is the dominance the country lost in the 1990s. The seismic shift in US policy towards Russia. The fanciful argument posited by Donald Trump haters is that Russia, under Putin's guidance, orchestrated the American election like a maestro. If one is capable of stripping the emotional component from this argument and looking at it with an analytical mind, it crumbles. Would an authoritarian bent on rebuild- ing his country's greatness rather face a chief adversary holding a red plastic reset button in their hands, or one who campaigned on rebuilding America's military might? Sowing chaos among the American people was the goal, not electing a president unafraid to label his enemies for what they are. Containing the Russian Menace Eastern Europe Hillary Clinton's red reset button shows just how naive the US has been with respect to Russian aggression; that is changing

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