I on the other hand, would not put anything past him. An economic crisis could encourage him to stoke up nationalistic fervour even more and invade the Ukraine (“to support the government”) and Central Asia (“to combat terrorism”) and in doing so to restore his beloved Empire of the USSR.
Anyone who underestimates the potential evil of Putin is – frankly – an idiot. Astonishing that so many people seem to have some respect for an ex KGB officer, part of the same security apparatus that murdered 16,000 Poles in Katyn Forest under a totalitarian regime that Putin has said he regrets the demise of – AND a man leading his country when its security services almost certainly murdered one of its enemies on the streets of London. (remember what happened to Trotsky?)
Putin is also a strong supporter of the mass-murdering Assad, who not only recently gassed several thousand people a la Saddam Hussein but for whom there is also strong evidence that his regime has tortured and murdered in cold blood multiple thousands of his enemies.
Putin as an extremely nasty human being. His country is one of the most corrupt in the world outside Africa. His democracy is a sham. The police, media and judiciary in Russia are almost completely under his control.
This hysterical anti-Americanism is just surreal. Nobody’s perfect, but the following are free thanks to the USA in particular: the whole of Europe, most of Asia, Kosovo, Iraq, Libya and no doubt others I have forgotten. The countries the USA failed to liberate include the dictatorships of North Korea, China and Cuba.
The countries occupied by Putin’s beloved USSR suffered decades of oppression, poverty and misery while those occupied by the USA have become rich and powerful (Japan and Germany in particular). If you are so thick that you can’t grasp all this, just compare North and South Korea.
Only a total moron – or a would-be totalitarian fascist – could possibly prefer Putin to the USA.