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Joined: 26-07-11
Nov 17 2011 14:24

I've just been reading a book about the chaos that was Russia in the 90s, mafia and money mafia running wild, the remains of the USSR being sold off for a hundredth of it's price and then bought back at a loss and sold at a loss again etc

I'm still confused about Yeltsin.

Under Communism he was quite an incredible figure, the first man to argue against the leaders in the politburo since Trotsky, the CCCP tried to destroy him but he used his political skill and charm to somehow engineer himself as Gorbachev's successor (Gorbachev still hates him even though he's been dead for years....) He crushed the coup decisively and had massive approval ratings

He is also a rags to riches story but that isn't so incredible in Russia....

But as President/Premiere he did literally nothing, once he became leader he spent the entire time in hospital with heart operations and recovering from them or drunk. The book didn't explain this at all. Was it a case of him being given the job because he was useless?

What puzzles me is that usually it turns out that politicians like him are being 'useless' but they are actually buying their way into the industrial and financial elite, like it's a way for a citizen to become a part of the ruling class, but Yeltsin didn't

So what was his 'motivation'?