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[WATCH] Rachel Maddow Returns From Hiatus and Explains Putin’s ‘Failure As a Leader’

[WATCH] Rachel Maddow Returns From Hiatus and Explains Putin’s ‘Failure As a Leader’

In a surprise for MSNBC viewers dealing with the (literal) shell-shock of learning Vladimir Putin had invaded Ukraine even though the whole world told him not to, Rachel Maddow came back early from her six-week hiatus to give her audience the breakdown of the situation that they needed in the way that only she could provide.

Maddow lit into the Russian dictator, and if you weren’t fully paying attention, you might mistake her comments for another failed leader currently hiding out in Florida who has aligned himself with Putin instead of Ukraine. Maddow showcased how Putin is exerting his power over America’s ally because, despite the economic progress Ukraine has made over the last two decades, he refuses to allow the country to thrive on its own.

MOSCOW, RUSSIA – DECEMBER 17: (RUSSIA OUT) Russian Presidential Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov looks on Vladimir Putin speaking on the screen during his annual press conference, on December 17, 2020, in Moscow, Russia.  (Photo by Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images)

Maddow began by painting Putin as past his peak, losing his power that he had built by ruling with fear and intimidation. “If you are the kleptocratic dictator sitting on top of a country that you were keeping poor and backward with no plans to do more than that for another few decades, how would you feel about a vague and culturally similar neighboring country where your population and your country had lots of family ties, lots of reason to identify with one another,” Maddow mused, adding, “And in that large, culturally similar neighboring country, they recently threw out the pro-Russia puppet later that you had installed there.”

Maddow went on to explain that Putin just didn’t like that Ukraine was fine without him. “They took economic steps to ally themselves with Europe more than with you. They then elected, by a huge margin, a popular, Russian-speaking guy who wants ties with the West and Europe and the United States,” Maddow said. “A new, young, charismatic leader who has said that the night that he was elected, that everyone in the former Soviet states should look at his election and know that anything is possible, that anything is possible. Even in the former Soviet world, thanks to democracy.”

Putin is living in a world that only makes sense to him, Maddow went on, because he’s the one who created it. Sound like anyone else we know who’s super supportive of Daddy Vlad?

“And yes, it is true, Russia — Russian President Vladimir Putin has delusions about being a new czar and remaking the Russian empire and reconstituting the USSR,” Maddow said. “Fine. But also, outside of the fairytale books, he also just cannot let any country near him work. Work in a way that may indicate to the Russian people that they too ought to expect their country and their government to work for them. He needs his neighboring countries to be dependent on him, to be corrupt, and to be fundamentally disappointing to their people.”

Watch Rachel Maddow’s full Putin breakdown/takedown, below.


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