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Russia’s in trouble. Time for Putin to take his shirt off.

As we all know, photos are a key part of showing the public who a politician is and what he/she stands for. This weekend, ten years after becoming Boris Yeltsin’s heir, Vladimir Putin posed for another set of mostly-shirtless vacation photographs (and a video here). I’ve been lucky enough to receive secret memos pairing these ...

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As we all know, photos are a key part of showing the public who a politician is and what he/she stands for. This weekend, ten years after becoming Boris Yeltsin's heir, Vladimir Putin posed for another set of mostly-shirtless vacation photographs (and a video here). I've been lucky enough to receive secret memos pairing these photos with the specific messages Putin's handlers wanted to send. 

"Can build his own fire...with the help of 8 people and two boats."

As we all know, photos are a key part of showing the public who a politician is and what he/she stands for. This weekend, ten years after becoming Boris Yeltsin’s heir, Vladimir Putin posed for another set of mostly-shirtless vacation photographs (and a video here). I’ve been lucky enough to receive secret memos pairing these photos with the specific messages Putin’s handlers wanted to send. 

“Can build his own fire…with the help of 8 people and two boats.”

“Forces rivers to flow backwards with his mind”

“Remembers to remove his shirt when lost”

“Kind and sensitive to his trusty steed…and owns a killer pair of Foakleys”

“Is a freakin’ sea monster”

More seriously, the Moscow Times points out the collapse of the Russian economy and oil prices have barely affected Putin’s popularity among Russians (H/T to MW).

ALEXEY DRUZHININ/AFP/Getty Images

James Downie is an editorial researcher at FP.
Tag: Russia

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