As a child in a tenement in Soviet Leningrad, Putin and his gang used to chase mice with sticks. One day he followed a giant to the end of the corridor. “Suddenly he turned and jumped at me,” the Kremlin chief wrote in his autobiography 22 years ago.”Now a mouse was chasing me.” closed the door on Russia’s president is now a cornered middle-aged manUnder pressure from nationalist hawks, recent battlefield defeats and declining international confidence in him, Putin has opted for escalation.like his childhood cartoons attempt to reverse roles in Ukraine warHe used the old trick of tortured perpetrators presenting themselves as victims of a self-made spiral. I’m trying to change

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In a fiery speech Wednesday, the second since the war began, he accused the West of using nuclear blackmail while being prepared to deploy all of its (atomic) weapons if needed. “It’s not a bluff.” Putin walks around, reluctant but ready for a final showdown. But above all, in his message to the nation, he laid bare his despair. With the announcement of the partial mobilization of reservists and the sponsorship of a farcical referendum on the territory of Donbass, which even its army could not control, publicly admits his failureThe Kremlin chief has been successful in every war since 2014 Chechnya, Georgia, Syria or Ukraine. His popularity grows with each of his military adventures. But not this time.

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Ukrainians amazed Moscow with their heroic ability to resist. The Russian soldiers launched in “special operations” without a clear enemy (Ukrainians and Russians are fraternal peoples) and had scattershot goals (overthrow Zelensky? Conquer Donbass?), Ukrainians are waging an existential warKyiv has demonstrated great skill in handling advanced Western military technology and adapting it to the changing battlefield. The Russian army is poorly trained and poorly equipped. It is clear that Putin is risking his future with this campaign. The attitude of aggressively deploying hard power is a leader who is respected both domestically and internationally.yesTo the credit of its power, the head of the Kremlin is, at best, a replaceable president For external and internal partners.

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Their foreign aid from Turkey, India or China is withdrawing as if it smelled of disasterPresident Erdogan asked him to leave the occupied territories, PM Modi pleaded with him to end the conflict, and President Xi Jinping to start dialogue. Will 300,000 soldiers reluctantly enlist, or will artillery purchased from North Korea turn the tide of the war? Will he be tempted to use tactical nukes to bring brave Ukrainians to their knees? No one knows what goes on in Putin’s head, but such a radical move could change the nature of the conflict and The West could not just sit on the sidelines.