Staunton, April 20 – Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin famously suggested that as long as there is Putin, there is Russia; but this apocalyptic prediction has come true sooner than he expected, Vladimir Pastukhov says. “Putin is still around but Russia isn’t any longer. It ceased to exist as a geopolitical reality in its traditional and familiar form” on February 24.
What gives Russia the appearance of continuing to exist are the 140 million “scattered cells” who are “continuing their private and individual existences within the dead body of Russian civilization,” the London-based Russian analyst says (kasparov.ru/material.php?id=625FEC1C17634§ion_id=50A6C962A3D7C).
Russia’s “frozen body” which will remain “while Putin is alive,” Pastukhov argues, “floats in liquid nitrogen in a gigantic cryo-chamber the size of one-seventh of the earth’s land surface.” As soon as he is gone, this body will leave that chamber and “under the influence of high temperatures, disintegrate into individual tissues and organs.”
For that reason, he says, “there is no alternative history in prospect for Russia. Both those who hope Putin will live forever and those who dream of an eternal life for Russia after he is gone will have to get used to the idea that there will not be any return to normality.” Instead, “there will be something new, unfamiliar and frighteningly unknown.”
But whatever happens, Pastukhov suggest, the attitude of those now called Russians to the Russia before February 24 “will be approximately the same as that of modern Italians toward classical Rome and modern Egyptians toward ancient Egypt.” That is, to something they know they came from but share little in common with.