Staunton, November 5 – Many commentators are speculating on whether Russia’s elite groups, now threatened by Vladimir Putin’s policies, will find a way to remove him from office and install someone more to their liking. Andrey Piontkovsky has focused particular attention on this issue (nv.ua/opinion/piontkovskiy/putin-protiv-rossijskih-elit-78063.html
There is an obvious and simple conclusion from this, Gudkov suggests. “If the current elite wants to preserve itself, it must change” the basis of its power and rely on the support of the people via a democratic process. Only if it moves in that direction, he says, can the elite hope to peacefully stay in power and, when the time comes, peacefully and with dignity, exit it
If Russian elites don’t decide to move in that direction, he says. “the days of the current era are already numbered” not just for the supreme leader but for the elites around him.