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Leonid Bershidsky

Putin's Patriotic Frenzy Is Turning on Him

A sobering harbinger of what Russia may be like after his presidency.


Photographer: Alexei PavlishakTASS via Getty Images

A Russian high school student expresses sympathy for a German soldier who died in a Soviet prisoner camp after World War II. A wave of condemnation rises on Russian social networks and spills over into parliament. At first glance, nothing to be excited about: Russia is the troll capital of the world. But it also looks an awful lot like a sobering harbinger of what Russia may be like after President Vladimir Putin.

QuickTake Vladimir Putin