Russia can’t recover from Putin’s war until his legacy is totally dismantled

The invasion of Ukraine could result in the leader’s downfall. But author Mikhail Shishkin warns that his fellow citizens may opt for another strongman unless there is the equivalent of Germany’s deNazification

Head of state: A staff member of the Grévin museum in Paris dismantles and stores a wax statue of Putin as a reaction to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.Photo by Julien De Rosa/Getty

Mikhail Shishkin

It hurts to be Russian. When Vladimir Putin launched his “special military operation” in Ukraine, he claimed that its aim was to save the Russians, Russian culture and the Russian language from Ukrainian fascists. In the process, it is predominantly the Russian-speaking cities in the east of the country, together with their populations, that have been wiped out.