Le malléable M. Medvedev

LONDRES – Alors que Dimitri Medvedev attend dans les coulisses son investiture du 7 mai, les pays occidentaux analysent chacune de ses paroles, avides du moindre signe que le nouveau président de la Russie sera plus « raisonnable » et plus souple dans les négociations que Vladimir Poutine, l’homme qui l’a fait élire.

En cherchant bien parmi les preuves, on trouve des arguments relativement raisonnables pour contenter ceux qui veulent désespérément y croire. Medvedev avait une vingtaine d’années lorsque l’Union soviétique a éclaté : il est donc moins « contaminé » par la mentalité soviétique. Il parle couramment anglais et n’a pas de passé dans les services secrets. En outre, depuis près de 10 ans, il est pour les Occidentaux la figure phare de l’industrie énergétique russe. Et les déclarations de cet ancien avocat – formation qui a sans doute instillé en lui un certain respect de l’État de droit – ont été jusqu’à présent largement modérées, voire progressistes.

Malgré tout, les mots n’ont que peu de sens en tel pays byzantin. Medvedev sera le dirigeant russe le plus malléable depuis le tsar Nicolas II. Si ses instincts libéraux sont discutables, les forces déployées contre lui le sont sans aucun doute, notamment le clan Sechin, le clan Tcherkessov, les siloviki des services militaires et de sécurité, les rivaux qu’il a battus et, bien entendu, son mentor et prédécesseur, Vladimir Poutine.

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