An exiled Russian novelist has claimed Putin’s dictatorship “will fall apart in hours”, handing hope to the Ukrainians as the bitter war rumbles on. In his new book My Russia: War or Peace, Mikhail Shishkin points towards Russia‘s history of sudden regime change and forecasts that Putin will suffer the same fate.

He notes how the Tsars of Russia collapsed in months while the Soviet Union broke up days after President Mikhail Gorbachev announced his resignation.

A day after Gorbachev’s resignation on December 25, 1991, the Soviet Union was formally dissolved and separated into 15 different nation-states.

Sharing the author’s argument on Twitter, the BBC‘s John Simpson said: “Dictatorships may seem impregnable but they rarely are.”

In response, Reza Afshar, a former UK diplomat wrote: “This is spot on. Putin [is] a liability on so many levels. Survival is unlikely.

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“And now he’s officially a wanted criminal, he’s even more of a liability – to his political partners, his very few international allies, his citizens and even his family.”

Alan Surtees added: “Empires collapse slowly, then suddenly, to borrow Hemingway’s description of bankruptcy. The British Empire went off a cliff in the mid-20th century, surprising everyone alive after WW2. Very few predicted it.”

Shishkin, who lives in exile in Zurich, is now regarded as Russia‘s finest novelists after winning the nation’s Booker Prize for The Taking of Ismail in 1999.

Throughout the war in Ukraine, there has been lots of speculation about the strength of Putin’s regime, with some analysts predicting Putin could be toppled by his inner circle.

US-based Olga Lautman previously said she “would not be surprised if his regime collapses in 2023”.

The Russian expert from the Center for European Policy Analysis said the destruction of the Putin regime would most likely come from within, rather than from an uprising.

She also claimed many conspiracies about Putin’s ill health could have been released by his potential successors in a bid to undermine his regime.

“Rumours about Putin’s health are being put out by security services,” she told The Sun in December.

My Russia: War or Peace? is out on March 30 and will be available on Amazon for £16.99.



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