Geopolitics

Vladimir Putin speaks at the accession ceremony

Vladimir Putin speaks at the accession ceremony of Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporozhie and Kherson

Russia’s online portal for state television programming smotrim.ru has put up the full address by Vladimir Putin earlier this afternoon to the joint session of Russia’s parliament in the St George’s Hall of the Kremlin. The speech was indeed substantive and very important, as had been tipped in advance by the presidential team. It was followed directly by the signing of papers incorporating into the Russian Federation the four territories of Ukraine which have just completed their referendums on accession: the Donetsk People’s Republic, the Lugansk People’s Republic, the Kherson oblast and the Zaporozhie oblast.

In what follows, I will direct attention first to how this speech broke new ground in Vladimir Puitn’s description of Russia’s difficult relations with the world’s powers that be which first took concrete form in his speech to the Munich Security Conference in February 2007.  I will be brief. I will not attempt to summarize passages or go into great detail, because the speech itself will very quickly be made available in English on the presidential website and will be carried in full on Johnson’s Russia List.

Next I will offer what the text does not provide: my observations on how it was delivered, that is to say, the state of mind of the speaker, and on how it was received by the audience, judging by facial expressions of the ministers and other high officials in the front rows who were given greatest coverage by the cameras.

Finally, I have a word to say on what this speech means for Russia’s backers in the ongoing showdown with the Collective West, China, India and Iran, and what it means for the further conduct of the war in Ukraine.

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Categories: Geopolitics

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