Highlights from Vladmir Putin book ‘The Life of A Galley Slave’
VLADIMIR Putin might be more than just a torso. Opposition leader Boris Nemtsov’s has given his name to a report entitled “The Life of A Galley Slave” about the wealth of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Nemstov and co-author Solidarity activist Leonid Martynyuk claim that President Vladimir Putin is using billions of taxpayers’ rubles on 20 luxurious residences, dozens of jets, four yachts and a collection of exquisite wristwatches.
“One of the most serious reasons prompting V. Putin to hold on to power is the atmosphere of wealth and luxury to which he has become accustomed. In a country where more than 20 million people barely make ends meet, the luxurious life of the president is a blatant and cynical challenge to society. We absolutely cannot put up with this….We did not publish data on the cost of the clothes and things that Putin regularly uses: the suits, shoes and ties worth tens of thousands of dollars – mere trifles when compared to the villas, aeroplanes watches and cars…In a country where more than 20 million people can hardly make ends meet, the luxurious life of the president is a blatant and cynical challenge to society by a limitless ruler”
How was it printed?
None of the printing houses we previously used have agreed to produce our new project, no matter how much we offered to pay them, because they don’t want trouble with the authorities,” Nemtsov told the daily Moskovsky Komsomolets, Tuesday.
“Even people I am friendly with, who have their own print shops, have refused to help. This is a measure of how fast this country is changing, and what a different level of fear there is of the authorities,” even compared to the recent past, he added.
The New York Times notes:
In response to a written query, the Kremlin’s press office said Mr. Putin’s spokesman, Dmitri S. Peskov, was on vacation and unable to respond to the substance of the report. In a response reported by Kommersant, however, Mr. Peskov said the residences, aircraft and cars were government property used lawfully by the president.
In fairness, Mr. Putin’s delight in the watches has not been entirely selfish: twice in moments caught on video, he has removed a wristwatch and given it to a bystander. The recipients, a boy and a laborer, received Blancpain watches that Mr. Nemtsov estimated to cost more than $9,000 apiece.
Putin has at his disposal:
58 planes (43) and helicopters (15)
20 homes with opulent fittings
11 watches worth $700,000
$75,000 toilet on a presidential jet
Putin declares annual income of $115,00
It’s the kind of stuff you might find in a Russian oligarch’s sock drawer.