ST. PETERSBURG (Dagbladet): When president Vladimir Putin at his annual press conference before christmas got questions about what he remembered best from 2018, he said the presidential election in march, and the football world cup in the summer. Hardly completely random, there were two thunderous successes he chose to remember. The presidential election was won with nearly 77 percent of the votes, appropriately enough, with a little ritual electoral fraud, which anyway would not have changed the result.
And the football world cup was an unforgettable success for those who experienced it. It showed off the russians from their best side, as warm, friendly and hospitable people. Also played the Russian made good soccer, where it came to the quarterfinals, and lost to finalelaget Croatia on penalties. A success.
But glansbildet of Russia so Putin chose to remember it, is not representative. It is far deeper has characterized Russia in 2018 is large and persistent resistance to the raising of the retirement age, and foreign policy an increasingly colder conditions to the West - with the tightening of the sanctions as a result - because of Ukraine, and drapsforsøket on dobbeltagenten Sergei Skripal in Salisbury in England in march.
the Year 2018 are for Russia, not one that will go into the history books for their solskinnshistorier. Rather, it is a year when Russia and the political ideology one could call putinismen saw the writing on the wall. Yes, one can even say that 2018 was the year when Russia met the wall. For the writing on the wall tells us that the raising of the retirement age from 55 to 63 years for women and from 60 to 65 years for men, has changed the russians ' trust to the power. The president tried to sugar the bitter pill with all that he has learned of the strategy and forførelseskunster after 18 years at the power. The proposal was launch in the middle of the euphoria during the world cup, it was thoroughly and openly discussed and explained, and it ended with that Putin made a rare compromise when it comes to the retirement age for women. Despite the good political craft so dropped support for Putin virtually over-night with 20 per cent, down to the level it was at before the nationalist euphoria because of the annexation of Crimea in 2014.
support fallen from 80 to 60 per cent, it figures to live with for any manager. But there are other numbers to worry about. 61 percent of russians hold namely, Putin is fully responsible for the country's problems, according to a measurement made by the Lavada centre in november. It means that the government is no longer in the same degree is the lightning rod and scapegoat, as it has been in most of Putin's reign.
Putin is no longer immune from criticism, so has been for big voter. One expression of this is the young rappers as in the summer and in our have experienced that the local authorities have closed konsertarenaene their, because they are using the Putin's extremist laws on the rappernes texts. Some of rapperne replace the now course, from Putin's nationalist agenda, to a more a criticism of society's perspective.
Even the cases that look out as a success, after closer examination turn out to be the opposite. There are at least two two-pronged swords Putin is struggling with. One is the success of the football world cup. The party showed that the world was far from as russofob and hostile to Russia that Putin and the government for several years has said. The visitors to the country was just as happy and satisfied as the russians were.
The other two-pronged sword is Putin's summit with Donald Trump in Helsinki in the summer. The actual meeting was a big success for Putin. He mastered the topics, while Trump was uncertain and fumbling. But the meeting was such a success that it became quite useless to promote the Russian positions. For in the united STATES was the criticism of Trump's appearance as strong and hoderystende that the american president was even more vingeklippet in relation to Russia and Putin. The last time Putin and Trump met each other in Buenos Aires in november, then cancelled the Trump of the planned meeting because Russia still held the 24 Ukrainian marines who were taken in the Kerch strait a few days earlier caught.
In 2018 was also Russia blamert of Skripal-matter, when it was revealed that they suspected to have tried to kill dobbeltagenten, are officers in the military intelligence GRU. There is status in it we go into a new year. And not 2019 is dressed in cheerful colors for Russia. Several things suggest that Putin may have met the wall, and have trouble finding the door through the.