Tomorrow’s coverage of the Russian political crisis in Nezavisimaya gazeta illustrates the fact that President Putin is still reeling from the surprising depth and extent of the protests over Naval’ny’s incarceration. Today he held a meeting for one hour, twenty four minutes with students from around Russia evidently to show that he too could relate to the young. He was remarkably well prepared and poised. Most of the questions were respectably acceptable until the stone-faced but confident student from Ufa raised an issue everyone else must have been thinking about but had not the courage to ask. What about the palace that was shown on the web? In denial, Putin even joked.
But when Ms Morozova, taking her first year of international relations in Kazan’, raised the issue of Saturday’s protests, Putin tried to sound coherent, stressing the importance of staying within the law, but then went widly off piste talking about the October revolution and much that followed. Were we supposed to gather from this that Lenin and the others should not have used force against the authorities? Hard to say, but Putin basically argued that he rode to Russia’s rescue after the chaos and the near civil war of the 1990s. And throughout the entire discussion he could not even get himself to say Naval’ny’s name. The trouble for him is that these same students only have to ask their parents and grandparents about the nineties to know what actually happened.
Путин пролистал видеоподборки из фильма Навального
Президент заверил студентов, что дворец в Геленджике его семье не принадлежит