El Kursk y la democracia rusa

MOSCÚ: El hundimiento del submarino Kursk y la muerte de toda su tripulación, ¿hundirá también la revolución de Putin? Hasta ahora, el poder del Presidente Putin había sido único en la historia de Rusia: se basaba en su gran popularidad, y estaba legitimado por el voto. Podía acobardar a los oligarcas del país hasta la sumisión y hacer que la cámara alta de la Duma se plegara a su voluntad porque su popularidad era universal y los demás elementos del gobierno, desprestigiados en su mayor parte, lo sabían. Sin embargo, el manejo que dio a la crisis del Kursk dañó ese mandato democrático porque Putin se vio tan desdeñoso de la vida humana como todos sus predecesores en el Kremlin. El éxito que tenga en recuperarse determinará si la revolución de Putin sigue siendo democrática o si regresará a la autocracia para alcanzar sus metas.

No tengo duda de que Putin encontrará gente a quién culpar por no haber buscado ayuda del exterior para el Kursk a tiempo. De hecho, la crisis del Kursk podría ofrecerle la oportunidad de hacer una limpieza más profunda en las fuerzas armadas. Las primeras pruebas para su capacidad para recuperarse se encuentran en las próximas elecciones regionales que se llevarán a cabo en toda Rusia. Entre octubre y diciembre, más del 40% de las gubernaturas de nuestro país habrán de disputarse. Dado que la recuperación de la autoridad de Moscú sobre el país es pieza central de la plataforma del presidente, necesita reparar su popularidad con urgencia.

Aunque las reformas de Putin a la cámara alta de la Duma han conseguido quitarle a los gobernadores su excesiva concentración de poder y su inmunidad parlamentaria, las gubernaturas conservan poderes amplios en sus regiones. Pocos pueden capturar la escena nacional o desairar al Kremlin, como lo hacían durante la era de Yeltsin, pero su poder es real y controlarlos no va a resultar fácil.

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