Vladimir Putin: More Psychopath Than Cowboy
The big story here in Britain right now is the attempted assassination last week of Sergei Skripal, a former Russian spy. Mr. Skripal and his daughter, Yulia, were found unconscious and deathly ill on a park bench in Salisbury last Wednesday. Both remain in hospital in critical condition.
In a press conference on Monday, British Prime Minister Theresa May said that Skripal and his daughter had been poisoned with a military-grade nerve agent (developed by the Soviets in the 1970s) and that it was “highly likely” that the Russian government was responsible. (Also on Monday, Nikolai Glushkov, a wealthy Russian businessman and noted Putin critic exiled in the UK, was found dead in his London home. Glushkov was reported to have had “strangulation marks” on his neck.)
on Wednesday, March 14, May announced that Britain would expel 23 Russian diplomats and it would not send government officials or members of the royal family to Russia this summer for the World Cup.
Luke Harding wrote in the Guardian on March 14 (the Guardian!) about the prime minister’s incredibly “modest” response: “Nothing May has announced is likely to deter Putin from future adventures similar to what happened in Salisbury. Justly or not, he will interpret May’s remarks on Wednesday as proof of what he concluded long ago: that Britain is lacking in allies and weak” (emphasis added).
Harding is right, but the issue here is larger than just Theresa May. There is a major problem with the manner in which British authorities and much of Britain’s media is perceiving, reporting and responding to Russia’s attempted assassination of a resident on British soil. This is generally being perceived more as a political or diplomatic issue, and not for what it really was. This was an attack on British sovereignty. It shows that the Russians have no respect or fear of Britain. And it reveals a lot about Vladimir Putin’s character and ambitions.
Russia’s attempt to publicly assassinate a man on British soil gives Britain’s leaders and its media a unique opportunity to see Putin up close and personal, to really see Russia’s leader for who he is, and to learn what he thinks about Britain’s sovereignty. It’s also an opportunity for Britain to show Russia where it stands, to draw a line in the sand with Putin.
The Russian government attempted to publicly kill a man and his daughter in broad daylight with a weapon that was easily traced directly to Moscow. Do we really believe Vladimir Putin will refrain from such behavior in the future because Theresa May tossed a few Russian spies out of Britain and declined to send spectators to the World Cup? (England’s team is still participating, by the way.)
The real issue here is the West’s view of Vladimir Putin. British officials and the media refuse to really consider his character, motives and aspirations. There is a propensity in the West to perceive Putin more as a schoolyard bully than a ruthless tyrant. We tell ourselves he is mischievous and unfriendly, but his behavior is just the result of insecurity. We think that if we ignore him, he will, as Britain’s defense secretary put it this week, “go away and shut up.”
More than a few in the West even admire Putin’s personality and behavior. For many, he’s a fetching anachronism, a holdover from a more traditional, macho, conservative world. He’s the John Wayne of geopolitics, riding the planet, defending the weak, and killing “bad guys.” Many admire Putin because he’s decisive, uncompromising and masculine, the antithesis of the soft, politically correct Western politician. He’s old-fashioned, conservative and pragmatic in a world growing ever more secular, liberal and idealistic.
This perception, as Gerald Flurry and other Trumpet writers have explained for more than 10 years, is naive and dangerous. “This man is not just an authoritarian leader!” wrote Mr. Flurry. “He is an evil, ruthless, vindictive agent with Soviet-style methods of psychological warfare, assassination and war!” Vladimir Putin has led Russian invasions of Georgia and Ukraine, he routinely incites trouble and conflict in nations and regions across the planet, he supports the world’s most dangerous regimes and terrorists, and he has destroyed democracy in Russia and murdered hundreds of his own people. Putin is much closer to being a psychopath than a cowboy.
If you haven’t seen it, this compelling video from our “In 90 Seconds” series will introduce you to the true nature of Vladimir Putin.
Finally, if you identify with the point I’ve tried to make here and are concerned about Putin and his impact on Britain and the world, then you really need to study The Prophesied ‘Prince of Russia.’ This booklet explains in detail how Vladimir Putin fulfills a specific Bible prophecy in Ezekiel 38. It contains the most insightful, most important intelligence available on Russia’s president and his role in end-time events. Frankly, it’s the only booklet I’ve read that sees Putin for who he really is.