(Business Insider)–Given the smoke and mirrors that seem to be de rigueur in Russian politics (not to mention the sincere Russian love of conspiracy theories), it was inevitable that someone would look deeper at Mikhail Prokhorov’s election bid and find something fishy about it. Talking to Gazeta.ru, Stanislav Belkovsky, a political analyst and associate of Boris Berezovsky, argues that Prokhorov’s intentions are not to beat Vladimir Putin in next year’s presidential elections, but to placate Russia’s angry middle classes by giving the impression of choice, and to then take Dimitry Medvedev’s place as Prime Minister of the country.
Here’s a Google-translated version of his comments:
“After the rally at the Bolotnaya area, when it became clear that the urban educated class went against the government and does not hide its position, the Kremlin puts Prokhorov in order to neutralize the energy of this protest, that we all have expired sweet saliva on what a good candidate is nominated the presidency “
While we have no idea whether this is true (and it seems foolish not to question Belkovsky’s intentions too), there are a few issues swirling around Prokhorov that do invite curiosity.For one, the timing of the announcement seems, at best, inopportune. Alexander Rahr, the director of the Russia-Eurasia Program at the German Council on Foreign Relations, told Russia Today that the oligarch has little real chance of really entering the race, let alone winning, at this point. “I doubt that Prokhorov will get enough followers,” Rahr said. “He needs a party, he needs a movement. He has the money to conduct a campaign, but he needs the people who will operate for him.” Prokhorov’s exit from Right Cause, a pro-business party, earlier this year was a little confusing, to say the least. At first Prokhorov denied criticisms that the party was a pro-Kremlin device designed to capture middle class votes in the Duma. Then he said the Kremlin had infiltrated it. Then he quit, calling the entire thing a “farce”. And then there’s the possible links to Former Finance Minister Alexei Kudrin, who announced that he and Prokhorov were considering forming a new party this afternoon. Kudrin, who left the Russian government in acrimony this summer, is seen as close to Putin and had been considered a possible Prime Minister himself until some kind of internal power struggle forced him out.
I mean this is just down right diabolical. Putin works in political corruption like Picaso worked in oils. When his term limits were up, he simply just created a new position higher than President. Then said “meh, fuck it…I think I will just be president again…without an election”. Now some people in Russia are a little bit salty…so what does old slick Vladdy do…oh just get a billionaire oil tycoon to fake run for president. Let people think they have a choice, then just stay President because all Prokhorov cares about is getting Dwight Howard to the Nets. Prokhorov has like no political experience. This could never happen in America. Can you imagine if Obama had it set up so he could campaign against some guy who had no political experience, or maybe somebody that divorved his wife while she was dying of cancer, or a guy who openly hates gays, or a guy who …I mean Obama would be thrilled. Instead he is going to have a real battle on his hands against….well…shit. Obama swag for the win.
PS: All joking aside…the Republican field for president is pathetic. There is one really good candidate that NOBODY is paying attention to…John Huntsman. Just a dream resume. No candidate is perfect, but this guy is easily the best of the bunch. Oh and…he has hot daughters(Especially Abby)…just saying.