RUSSIAN PREMIER ABRUPTLY QUITS
Unlike Mr. Yeltsin, who was deeply unpopular and faced an uphill struggle to get his new Constitution approved by voters, Mr. Putin has amassed such overwhelming personal power and popular support that he can be confident of reshaping the system in virtually any way he wants.
His popularity, reinforced by the Kremlin’s tight grip on television and many other news media outlets, allows him to add a veneer of democratic legitimacy and avoid the path taken by China, where the Communist Party leader, Xi Jinping, has effectively established himself as leader-for-life through executive fiat.
One scenario now considered likely is for Mr. Putin to leave his post as president and create a system similar to that of Kazakhstan. In that Central Asian country, the longtime president, Nursultan A. Nazarbayev, stepped down last year as his country’s formal leader but stayed on as the head of the ruling party and took the new title of “leader of the people.”
Many countries are now facing fascist power grabs by the 1 percent, including the US.