A growing fixation with age has Russian President Vladimir Putin taking more dangerous risks, according to a top U.S. senator.
Sen. Marco Rubio, in a CNN appearance Wednesday, noted that the Putin of today, showing flashes of anger at a time when he is waging a war in Ukraine, is not the same cool and calculating leader he was in the past. Anxiety about cementing his place in history is a driving force behind Putin’s bellicose actions, the Florida Republican says.
“He is older now. His time is running out on this earth. He knows that,” Rubio said. “He’s about to turn 70 — he’s not going to be around 30 more years to deal with all this. He views himself as a great historic figure in Russia. Every great Russian figure in history has conquered territory. He views it as his historic legacy to restore Greater Russia, and you can’t do that unless Ukraine is something that you control and have at least a vassal state [there]. And so he’s deeply committed to this.”
Rubio, who is vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, has been sharing what he told Politico is “open-source intelligence” about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The senator has also driven speculation of Putin having a declining mental state, though he claims that’s beside the point. Read more…