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What did putin’s promises turn out to be for russians

What did putin’s promises turn out to be for russians

Half a year has passed since putin came up with a speech to the federal assembly for the first time since April 2021. Traditionally, such a message is an annual program document that expresses the vision of the head of the kremlin on the strategic directions of russia’s development in the near future. The cancellation of the message in 2022 took place without explanation from the authorities, but it was unofficially associated with russia’s failures at the front. It was the failure of the “instant special operation” and the intensifying criticism of the kremlin leadership that prevented putin from using this speech in 2022 to celebrate russia’s large-scale “victory” in Ukraine.

Therefore, the message finally made public on February 21, 2023, in addition to Western accusations that “Ukraine was torn away from russia,” contained a number of promises to both native russians and residents of the so-called DNR/LNR, as well as the occupied territories of the Zaporizhia and Kherson regions. putin promised russians that the war would not affect their standard of living and well-being in any way, and “new russians” – the “increase of a large-scale program of socio-economic recovery and development” in the occupied territories.

It is now clear that most of putin’s promises have remained unfulfilled.

Firstly, the announced large-scale program of the so-called socio-economic recovery and development of the “new subjects of the federation” instead of the revival of enterprises and new jobs brought residents of the “new” regions daily missile strikes on the key Crimean bridges and infrastructure facilities. The allocation of additional funds for the implementation of a number of programs for free gasification, construction and repair of housing and communal services systems failed due to the low solvency of the population and the reluctance of Gazprom to expand gas sales at prices lower than on the world market. Moreover, the “new regions” have become yet another platform for the embezzlement of federal budget funds allocated for infrastructure projects in the Zaporizhzhia and Kherson regions, which ultimately nullifies the real “improvement” in the front-line zones.

Secondly, the promised targeted assistance to the families of fallen soldiers and veterans of the “special operation” failed. It was assumed that the created special state fund would coordinate the provision of social, medical, and psychological support to wounded russian military personnel for their rehabilitation, help in employment, entrepreneurship, higher qualifications, and obtaining a new profession. Although the “Defenders of the Fatherland” fund was created de jure in early April 2023, in real life 97% of the money received by the “Defenders of the Fatherland” from this year’s budget will be used for the salaries of the fund’s employees, organizational costs and technical equipment. Even the Commissioner for Human Rights in the russian federation, t.moskalkova, was forced to admit the drastic increase in the number of complaints about the delay or unfair calculation of payments to “special military operation” participants and their families. In addition, putin’s promise to provide “parental care for the socio-psychological condition of military personnel participating in hostilities” in practice resulted in a ban on giving vacations to those who fight on the front lines for 10 months or more, and those who dare to complain about such violation of rights, persecuted.

Thirdly, putin proposed to launch a special program of subsidized rental housing for employees of the defense industry and promised that “the rental rate for them will be significantly lower than the market rate, and the state will cover a significant part of the cost of housing.” In fact, there is no evidence that at least one employee of the defense industry actually received this new mortgage, as well as explanations as to why the program for issuing mortgages for this category of employees at 3.99% per annum, announced in 2020, did not work.

Fourth, according to putin’s promises, already in the second quarter of the current year, inflation in russia was supposed to approach the target level of 4%. However, even according to official data, inflation already exceeded this level in the first half of the year, and as a result, it may be extremely higher than the forecasts announced by the russian president. Accordingly, even the promised increase in the minimum wage in 2023 by 6.3% is in no way ahead of the real rise in prices.

❗️putin’s promises in February 2023 turned out to be deliberately unrealistic because assessments of the current situation and the capabilities of the russian economy and budget do not provide any grounds for this. It is worth noting that most of putin’s 2023 promises are “repeats” of unfulfilled promises from previous years, when preferential mortgages, salary growth above the inflation rate, gasification, and housing reconstruction were also guaranteed. Against the background of the consequences of military aggression in Ukraine, the chances that they will be fulfilled at least one day are finally disappearing. The government and officials on the ground are only trying to create the appearance of working on the implementation of putin’s promises and producing reports with the “necessary” figures. However, the effect of “powdering the brains of the russian population” decreases year by year, as evidenced by the radical growth of anti-putin sentiments in russian society.

  • 11 August, 2023

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