Staunton, Oct. 29 – Vladimir Putin’s destruction of the real institutions of governance in the name of a single power vertical makes a real revolution almost inevitable because it leaves no one in place who can resolve the two most serious challenges Russia faces, relations between the center and the periphery and those between the rich and the poor, Abbas Gallyamov says.
“These are the classic contradictions of the industrial era,” the former Putin speechwriter says; but they haven’t been solved in Russia. Putin’s “hyper-centralization of the country … does not leave in place any chances that relations between the federal center and the subjects will be resolved” without a political struggle or that that will take place in strong institutions.
And the destruction of institutions such as trade unions mean that the struggle between the rich and the poor, especially in a country whose population is still animated by the principles of equality, will also overflow and upend the political system Putin has put in placehen (realtribune.ru/politicheskie-instituty-zameneny-simulyakrami-k-chemu-privedet-oslablenie-centralnoj-vlasti).
These may not come to a head while Putin is still in power, but unless something changes dramatically, they will when he leaves the Kremlin. Russia will thus face a repetition of the 1990s as far as federal relations are concerned, and serious conflicts between the rich and poor with no institutions around capable of reining either in.
There are no officials in place who have experience with addressing these problems within the political system, and the longer the current arrangements remain in place, the fewer people competent of addressing these challenges effectively will be around and the greater the risk of chaos and collapse. Indeed, their numbers are fewer than was true 30 years ago.
The consequences of the institutional vacuum Putin has created will be felt for a long time, Abbasov says. And there is no possibility that Russia will be able to move forward without chaos of at least the kind if suffered in the 1990s. None of those currently in office at the center or in the regions has the experience with taking decisions to prevent that.
As a result, the commentator says, Russia will be left in a situation much like in early 1917 when the current opposition will have to step forward to act in order to prevent the situation from getting completely out of control but whether they will be any more successful in preventing a descent into chaos than the Provisional Government was remains to be seen.