Vladimir Putin, Dictator and Family Man

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Russian President, Vladimir Putin, is having to answer a lot of questions about the shooting down of Malaysian plane MH17, and the deaths of its 298 passengers over war torn Ukraine 10 days ago. The Netherlands is especially intent on getting answers since 193 of the passengers were Dutch . . .  and Putin’s daughter was living there, or was she?

This is only one of the barbaric acts of aggression attributed to the dictator. He has a record worse than Hitler, according to Russian history expert, Alexander J. Motyl.

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Thrilled to be Daddy

But, it may surprise you, Mr. Putin is also the protective father of two daughters, the product of a marriage lasting 30 years. His family life though, with the exception of a few details, is shrouded in mystery.

 

First, the op-ed of Professor Motyl appearing in KyivPost July 25, 2014:

Alexander J. Motyl is professor of political science at Rutgers University-Newark. He was associate director of the Harriman Institute at Columbia University from 1992 through 1998. A specialist on Ukraine, Russia and the former Soviet Union, Motyl is the author of six academic books.

 

Author

Alexander J. Motyl

Vice President Joe Biden recently confided a sensational bit of news to the New Yorker magazine: In a 2011 meeting with Vladimir Putin, he had actually told Russia’s then-prime minister that he had no “soul.” Even more remarkable was Putin’s response. “And he looked back at me, and he smiled, and he said, ‘We understand one another.’ ”
Many people — in Ukraine, Europe, America and even Russia — probably share Biden and Putin’s estimation of the Russian president’s spiritual condition. In saying Putin has no soul, it means he seems to lack both the capacity to feel emotions and to show empathy.

 

Russia’s leader certainly has a long record of inhumanity. He was an agent of the Soviet secret police, a criminal institution with a record that goes back to the purges of Stalin, a record more bloody than that of the Nazi SS.

 

And now what we know about Putin’s daughters, possibly:

The revelations that Vladimir Putin’s daughter has had to flee her Dutch home will cause fury for the Russian president who has always fiercely shielded her from publicity.

 

Very little is known about Maria, 29, and her sister Ekaterina, and the president’s spokesman has admitted that Putin demands a ‘closed system’ about his daughters.

As she goes into hiding, here’s what we do know about Russia’s first daughter.There are no official portraits of them as adults, but a photo of Maria recently popped up on Facebook, where it was grabbed by a Ukrainian news website that re-posted it — infuriating Putin, according to the Central European News photo agency.

Maria has lived with her boyfriend Jorrit Faassen in a penthouse in Voorschoten, an upscale village in the province of South Holland, not far from the Hague, since last year.

 

There were reports that Ekaterina planned to wed the son of a South Korean admiral, though her life is shrouded in mystery too.

 

Their upbringing and schooling was hugely disrupted by their father’s various jobs, initially as a KGB spy in East Germany.

 

They returned to Russia in 1991, and moved to Moscow in 1996, when Maria, aged 11, was enrolled by Putin in the Friedrich Haass German International School.

 

Later when he headed the FSB secret service and went on to become prime minister, he withdrew Maria from the international school, and she – and later her sister – were educated at home evidently for security reasons.

Putin has always denied that his daughter was in Holland, and in a television interview said that “both his daughters live in Moscow, where they’re combining their studies with part-time work.

 

“I’m proud of them,” [Putin said].

Can a soulless dictator be a loving, protective father? You be the judge.

THBby T.M. Burroughs

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