Friday, February 24, 2023

‘Biden’s in Kyiv and Putin Isn’t’ – Russian Bloggers on the Two Presidents

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Feb. 21 – Sometimes the title authors or editors select says almost everything that needs to be said. The latest case is the decision of the editors of the Kasparov portal to headline their compilation of the reaction of Russian bloggers to US President Joe Biden’s trip to the Ukrainian capital at a time when his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin remains in a bunker.

            They took the words of Volgograd blogger Aleksandr Saygin, who summarized his reactions to the events of the last several days with the words “Biden is already in Kyiv, but Putin isn’t,” a reflection of the commitment and even triumph of the first and the problems and looming defeat of the latter (

            Other comments that appear especially noteworthy:

·       Mikhail Khodorkovsky said that Biden’s visit to a city under Russian fire has called attention to the fact that Putin hasn’t even gone to secure rear areas in the course of his war.

·       Aleksey Lushnikov said that “Biden’s arrival in Kyiv is the most important sign of solidarity with the people of Ukraine. All the civilized world is with Ukraine.”

·       Tatyana Stanovaya said that Biden’s visit will be taken by the Kremlin as confirmation of Putin’s view that the war is not between Russia and Ukraine but between Russia and the West.

·       The Pezduza telegram channel said that “in response to Biden’s visit to Kyiv, Putin visited the other side of his desk.”

·       Vladimir Pastukhov said that in Putin may now move from “latent nuclear fetishism”” to “open nuclear exhibitionism.”

·       Dimitry Savvin said that Biden’s visit showed that the US knows what Moscow plans and wants to send as strong a signal as possible that those plans won’t succeed.

·       And the Kolokol XXI telegram channel said that “Biden has left but the humiliation of Putin remains.”

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