Putin did not understand how Western institutions work

The war revealed another myth: the genius strategist Putin. This myth was not just local or regional – it became global.

The great state was worshiped in the West as well. Putin has been Time Magazine’s Man of the Year several times, with analysts attributing miraculous qualities to him, and even Americans sighing that Russia has such a president.

What is the reason for the loss “in translation” between the two worlds?

The easiest explanation is that a person thinks about others through his optics, through his experience, through his values, in short, that other people are like him.

Thus, Westerners did not understand that Putin was a “statesman” in a system where there was no separation of powers, in which he destroyed all opponents and resistance, and there was a power parallel only to that of his predecessor Stalin. And that it is easy to be an “authority” in such a system because you can act quickly on the edge and beyond the law and mobilize resources for any strategy with a speed unbearable for democracies.

Putin and dissimilar politicians from the East, including in our country, consider Westerners to be as corrupt and deceitful as they are. Because for them, everything is money; look for the money; money buys everything – judging by the sporadic experience of “acquisitions” of Western politicians – then the whole West is the hypocrisy of how to make some money. And that lying is the recipe for success.

In Eastern thinking, there is a lack of understanding of the state with separation of powers, the rule of law, with the primacy of institutions. It is important to “acquire” the right person and everything will be OK.

That is why Putin is now shocked by the united reaction of the West; therefore, he cannot believe that his European proxies – Germany, Bulgaria, and other countries – declare and work in support of Ukraine; so he wonders how to use gas as a weapon; therefore, he hopes that by activating all his agents he will prevent this mobilization.

The Chekists have always been kings of tactics, of playing situations, but never of brilliant strategists. To be a strategist, you must not just take advantage of your surprising moves from the weaknesses of the enemy, which tactics can – but anticipate a few moves ahead of the reactions of their opponents. But for that, you need to know their political system, not just the key people in it. Well, Putin managed to surprise the West but failed to anticipate his reaction.

The war came about for the same reason.

Through his agents of influence in Trump’s entourage, Putin did his best to legalize his acquisition in the Crimea and Donbas through the United States, and he was very close – if Trump had not lost the election. Do you remember the Russian flags of the Capitol; similar partners in Russia and the United States against Biden and his son; Trump’s frantic attempt to retain power? There may be many reasons for the Capitol – but Putin and his commitments are certainly among them. And there is intelligence and reports about that.

And can you imagine if Trump had succeeded in appointing subordinate supreme judges, as in the East? Well, the court would have decided that the election was rigged in favor of Trump! And Putin! Well, they failed and war remained the only option. Because Putin did not understand how Western institutions work.

This is how it is in our country: the Soviet mentality thinks of the West only as an Evil that seeks only profit and incites wars – which is an embraced and inflated myth of Putin’s propaganda. Both Radev, Borisov, and every Soviet politician in our country think about the West and about the Bulgarians coming from the West through the prism of the profits that the intermediaries they work with will accumulate. And they complain about the change of “their people”. There is no word or thought of common interests with other countries based on European values.

This is how the government is understood. This is what we have today as a heritage as a state.

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