New Year Greetings
January 2, 2012 by staff
New Year Greetings, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has sent New Year’s greetings to all Russians, though with some sarcasm toward those protesting his 12 years in power and his plans to return to the presidency for at least six more years.
Putin on Saturday wished well-being and prosperity “to all our citizens regardless of their political persuasion, including those who sympathize with leftist forces and those situated on the right, below, above, however you like.” In Russian, the sexual innuendo was clear.
Putin often uses crude language, especially when speaking derisively of his critics. His tough talk and the street slang that peppers his speeches have helped build his image as a man of the people.
His sarcasm toward the protesters backfired recently when he said the white ribbons they wear as an emblem looked like condoms. The protesters took their revenge at the next mass demonstration, where they held up a poster of Putin with his head wrapped in a scarf-like condom and another showing Putin and a condom with the words: “Attention! Not for re-use.”
Putin, who was first elected president in 2000 and remained in charge after moving into the prime minister’s seat in 2008, intends to reclaim the presidency in a March election.
Many Russians, especially young professionals in Moscow and other cities, have grown weary of Putin, who has squeezed out all political competition in centralizing his control and has allowed corruption to flourish.
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