Russian lawmaker Vladimir Zhirinovsky, a far-right political heavyweight who has been in the public eye for more than 30 years, has died at the age of 75.
“Vladimir Wolfovich Zhirinovsky passed away after a long and serious illness,” said Russian Parliament Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin. wrote by telegram on Wednesday.
“His personality is so great that it is difficult to imagine the history of the development of the political system of modern Russia without him.” Volodin wrote and added Zhirinovsky was “a man who deeply understood the workings of the world and foresaw many things”.
In fact, Zhirinovsky predicted the Russian invasion of Ukraine almost to the day, fight back in December that “on February 22 at 4 a.m. you’re going to feel like [a new Russian foreign policy].” The Russian invasion began on February 24.
“2022 will be a year without peace, it will be a year when Russia will be great again,” he said at the time.
Zhirinovsky was widely considered a jester-like figure in the Duma, Russia’s lower house of parliament, but at the same time he provided an outlet for the grievances of nationalist Russians through his bitter tirades, while at the same time remaining a loyal member of the opposition.
Zhirinovsky founded the far-right Liberal Democratic Party of Russia in 1989, and although he remained largely on the political fringes in elections, his party nonetheless finished second in the 1993 parliamentary election, while he came third in three separate presidential elections.
As an ultra-nationalist, Zhirinovsky spoke out in favor of Russia withdraw the former Soviet republics it lost with the dissolution of the USSR, threatened to “wipe out” Poland, and once argued the Baltics should be flooded with nuclear waste. But his views became increasingly mainstream as Vladimir Putin moved further to the right in his rhetoric and actions.
Putin personally paid tribute to Zhirinovsky after news of his death fight that he “always defended the patriotic position and interests of Russia.”
https://www.politico.eu/article/russian-far-right-firebrand-vladimir-zhirinovsky-dies-aged-75/?utm_source=RSS_Feed&utm_medium=RSS&utm_campaign=RSS_Syndication Russian far-right arsonist Vladimir Zhirinovsky dies aged 75 - POLITICO