Staunton, June 26 – There is a widespread belief among Russian liberals and in the West that Putin’s regime is a kleptocracy and that it is so concerned with maintaining and increasing its wealth that it would be brought low if Western countries were to confiscate all or even most of the money the Russian leadership has in the West, Irina Pavlova says.
But that is a mistake, the US-based Russian historian says. Putin and his entourage are not simply kleptocrats. They have a far greater goal, the acquisition and spread of their power both within the Russian Federation and abroad; and they would certainly be ready to sacrifice some wealth in the pursuit of that larger goal (ivpavlova.blogspot.com/2022/06/blog-post_23.html#more).
It is of course possible that confiscation of Russian wealth held abroad could exacerbate conflicts within the Russian elite; but it is a fundamental error of political judgment to think that all Putin cares about is the money and property he has, Pavlova says. That is not his primary concern; and he is beyond doubt confident that he could always get more if he gets more power.