With genuine interest watched the CNN film “The Most powerful man in the world”. My interest woke up with the first shot – filmed from a lower point Vladimir Putin stretches out his hands, it seems, over the world. The back On a black. The Anthem of Russia and the Soviet Union sounds. The quote of Winston Churchill “Russia is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma”. My interest lasted till the finale where the author, a well-known journalist, political scientist, one of the moderators of the St. Petersburg economic forum Fareed Zakaria, impressive says “To understand Vladimir Putin, you have to understand Russia”.
Kissinger offered to read Dostoevsky for this purpose, but I’ll tell you: the authors don’t pretend to provide competition with the “The Brothers Karamazov”.
Sometimes the film resembles a Hollywood classic with Arnold Schwarzenegger, where the hero pronounces the historic phrase, “What is your evidence?”
“So what’s so interesting?” – can you ask.
Interesting to me was if at least one non-trivial proposition will strikes the screen… Will the authors invent something non-trivial? Will they give any news or any opened secret. Maybe we’ll see a new commentator in addition to boring deck? No. There were all the same seasoned soldiers – John McCain, Hillary Clinton, William Browder, Robert Gates, Masha Gessen, Julia Ioffe, David Remnick. Plus Henry Kissinger and Dmitry Peskov for balance. In fact, the authors invited President Putin himself, but he, of course, “was afraid of the sharks of the pen and the camera and sent the press Secretary to be eaten.”
Vladimir Putin intends to eat different way. According to journalist Julia Ioffe, “He will eat Donald trump as a sandwich.
Suppose this frase was the only one the art of spoken. McCain simply repeated that Putin is a murderer. Clinton said he is the KGB agent. Browder expressed confidence that Putin’s personal fortune in the hundreds of billions of dollars, mentioned villas and yachts. Dmitry Peskov said that it is not his property, and the state… But Peskov, authors wink to the audience, is the concerned person.
I was affected. So, Trump came to power in the United States. I was good surprise for Russians, Trump is welcomed. The parliamentary deputy are happy, Vladimir Zhirinovsky drinking champagne for the victory… The participants of the talk show are drinking champagne, others are singing “We Are the Champions” in bars. Behind the scenes Fareed Zakaria by the dramatic baritone of Sergei Dorenko says: “The victory of Trump was a surprise for no one.” As a confirmation we see Putin who says at a big press conference “No one excep us did not believe he will win.”
The irony was appreciated. But not by the filmmakers. They are extremely serious. Titrated as “the biographer of Putin” Masha Gessen says: “It means that he wanted the election of the Trump.” Behind Putin demonic clouds storm on the screen. Zakaria: “This is a matter of life and death. What are hopes of Vladimir Putin after Donald Trump victory?” “I wanted to ask Putin himself if he influenced on American elections? Putin disagreed, instructing Peskov. Peskov: “There is a simple answer is simple: no. You humiliate yourself admitting that someone can interfere in the election process in your most powerful country in the world.” The authors do not believe again and look back to the days of the cold war to research there the evidence of Russia’s malice… And so on.
Don’t know how this movie was estimated by a Western audience for whom the hacker, bear and vodka is the knowledge of the realities of modern Russia on almost Harvards level. But for us the main drawback of the movie is that we remember something.
What we see? The former Minister of Defence and a high-ranking intelligence officer Robert Gates says something, looking grim. We remember him relaxed when he printed step on the Red Square with the words “This is my personal victory parade in the “cold war”. Most commentators in this film can’t be named objective, all they are “mccainlike.” All are on the same side, sympathizing the Democrats. They were waiting victory of Clinton. I remember after Masha Gessen vacation of a position of chief editor of the magazine “Vokrug sveta” I’ve decided to re-read her editorial heritage. I was surprised that even in the “Vokrug sveta” *Around the world), in the shelter of the cute pandas, the Aztec pyramids and Tibetan lamas, she managed to insert a note with a detailed plan how to behave at an opposition meeting in Moscow. In the case of its disrupting. But she refused to send a reporter to the famous Putin’s flight with cranes on a hang-glider. It’s politics, not ecological activity. Not format. She is an objective lady. By the way, Putin invited her – I think because of human curiosity.
If watching we can remember someone from Dostoevsky, it could be only Smerdyakov.
We watch not the standard shell of the information war. The film raises an important underlying question: if the usual abstracts of all the interviewees mentioned is true, then why is Putin so popular in Russia? Why he does the authority, not the wise and westernized opposition?
The answer is given by important line in the film which is shown in the relationship between Putin politician Hillary Clinton. According to the authors, Putin could not forgive her and Democrats in General the interference in the election campaign in Russia. And the opposition ran in the U.S. Embassy for exactly instructions. The film proves that the Americans announced the proposal to Putin not to go for another presidential term. And crossed the line. There were not any evidence that Putin harbored anger against Clinton and got his revenge in the last election in the US.
But the massacre of Gaddafi is shown in the detail. Don’t thing it can be a evidence that Putin felt a direct threat. Except that indirect. But the evidence in this movie is generally weak. They do not matter. Sometimes it seems that the authors set out to summarize all the propaganda cliches of recent years about Russia and Putin. Politkovskaya and Litvinenko glimp. Poor Nemtsov, lying on the bridge opposite the Kremlin. Cadres of Maidan. Of course Putin occupied the Crimea in the manner of Hitler’s Anschluss. He’s aggressive, he dreams of renewed Empire… But by the words of Henry Kissinger the authors put under the spotlight an important point: from the Russian point of view it looks completely different. Crimea has returned to home harbor. The national pride and power are being revived.
“Putin can say he made Russia great again” – tells us the voice-over
The more strange feeling engulfed me as the film was progressing for its finale. The authors struggled to prove thatPutin does not want any revolutions. He believes that Russia has experienced it abundance. And where he is wrong? He controls the situation in the country. He believes the collapse of the Soviet Union “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the twentieth century.” Together with the country he remembers where Perestroika brought us and what will happen to Russia’s weak power. I have to say the authors demonstrated the Nineties quite objectively.
The authors demonstrate tastefully how the police arrest the opposition, while Vladimir Putin passes the gilded halls of the Kremlin. They can not refuse themselves this standard parallels. And who can? But they quite accurately show how and why Putin wins elections. Being a strong believer that no Obama no Clinton and no America can’t dictate to us who to elect.
I don’t know if such a terrible totalitarianism horrifies of the American CNN viewers, but for us all could be perceived as too long for a campaign ad for Putin. Launched a little earlier than necessary. But it is a convincing.
Majority don’t not want neither revolutions nor of the nineties. And are secretly miss the Soviet Union. It’s not about only the older generation. Moreover the authors carried out a clear parallel: the Americans chose the Trump are very similar to the Russians chose Putin. In the final Fareed Zakaria says the following: “Russia is the largest country in the world… Ideologically it feels like a stronghold of Christianity, the Third Rome, the successor of the Byzantine Empire, fallen under the blows of the barbarians. Putin understands Russia. But he also understands the world… He can use the force asymmetrically. He understands the weakness of a free society and the fragility of institutions such as the European Union and NATO, the ideas of integration and diversity. In other words, Putin understands us very. The question is if we understand him? Does understand Donald Trump?
“Wait, Farid – we’ll have to see.”