A Leader is Chosen
Russia cannot be understood with the mind alone
After Boris Yeltsin became the President of Russia, he began to quietly look for his successor. He wanted a young, strong, wise, energetic Russian patriot, who would later be able to fully cope with a huge country in the new millennium, with different all of his powers. For this purpose he would invite young politicians from the regions of Russia, appointing and testing them with the highest ranking positions, from the deputy minister all the way up to Prime Minister. None of the politicians, however, met his expectations. Yeltsin was not finding the necessary qualities for the future leader of Russia.
Yeltsin himself was a real representative of the Russian man. When he nominated candidates for different positions he did not usually not ask for much, but he would check their Russian character by giving them one hundred grams of vodka and sending to the Russian bath three times. This is of course, not difficult for any forty year-old Russian, although once, according to Rumours, Yegor Gaidar, somehow stumbled and failed in this task and Yeltsin's daughter, Tatyana, asked her father to support Gaidar and Yeltsin listened to her, appointing him as a Minister.
Russians are a unique people, from simple peasants to heads of state, they are unable to hide their emotions, joy and sadness, good and evil. They speak only the truth and what is in their heart. In their mind, they cannot lie. On one occasion, they promised to protect us from the Japanese army at Khalkhin Gol during World War II and defeated the Kwantung Army for us. Today we see what is happening in Syria. Russia is helping Syrian President Assad and he protects the Syrian people from Islamic militants due to a promise that was once made.
In the 1990's, Russia experienced a very difficult socio-economic period following the collapse of communism. Over many years, the belief that it would preserve the Russian soul and bring the Russian spirit into a bright future, turned into emptiness. On the spiritual front, Orthodox leaders led by Alexei II and all the people prayed for the national salvation. On the intellectual front, Nobel Laureate writer Solzhenitsyn returned back from the political exile, and he conducted a nationwide campaign of spiritual revival of the nation, filling that intellectual void with the great Russian imperial spirit, faith and hope. With regards to labour, scientists, workers, doctors and nurses with miserable salaries that were not even paid continued their work conscientiously. They retained the main foundations of science, education, and medicine, Soldiers and officers served faithfully, preserving military strength, ensuring the security of the borders and territorial integrity.
At the very peak of this difficult period, in 1996, President Yeltsin heard about one former KGB Colonel who worked closely with Mr Sobchack, the mayor of Saint Petersburg. According to information Yeltsin received, this colonel was a very suitable candidate as a young and honest patriot. Consequently, he was promptly called to Moscow and appointed to the post of deputy to President`s administration. This man was Vladmir Putin. After a while, Putin became the Secretary of the Security Council, head of the Russian intelligence agency - the FSB, and then Prime Minister, having held each position for less than a year. Yeltsin noted that Putin was the very man whom he had been looking for over the past years and he was waiting for the right moment to hand over his presidential authority to him without any election and ceremony.
President Yeltsin was not interested in clinging to the Kremlin throne for the rest of his life because of his age, health and his appreciation of the Russian national drink. His main mission was to find and pave the way for the future leader of the country as he was very worried about the possibility that Berezovsky would emerge as and oligarch-president through democratic elections that were planned for the year 2000. He was well aware that such a powerful presidency could ruin the nation. Therefore, for Yeltsin, it was imperative that he find a strong leader for the world's biggest country.
Fearing internal and external opponents, Yeltsin did not tell anyone about his intention - not even his wife Naina. He kept this to himself until 31 December, 1999. That night, he was unable to fall asleep for a long time turning from side to side, obviously worried about something that his wife noticed in his behaviour. In the morning, he got up unusually early and told her that he will retire, and that she will be able to watch his pronouncement in the evening. He then left for work without giving her any additional details.
As soon as he arrived in the Kremlin, he summoned all the most senior military and political officials, including Prime Minister Putin, and the Minister of Emergency Situations General Shoigu, Secretary of the Security Council General Sergei Ivanov, and Chief of the General Staff, Army General Kvashnin. Yeltsin then announced his resignation from his post. He transferred all his powers to Putin, including the nuclear briefcase and a symbol of presidential power by the handle of Parker. In the evening he appeared as usual in a television broadcast with the New Year's greetings to the nation. In the middle of the speech being broadcast, he unexpectedly announced his early resignation and the transfer of presidential power to Putin.
Continuing the New Year's greeting, President Putin spoke for ten minutes. The Russian people saw and heard two presidents and two congratulatory messages from two heads of state, like a two-headed eagle, a unique event during a commemoration of two thousand years of history of mankind.
At the present time, there had not been a single Russian leader who had voluntarily renounced the presidential or royal throne, giving up their power prematurely. But such a decision was made by Yeltsin for the sake of his people's future, for the sake of reviving and restoring the powerful Russian statehood and empire. It was a very difficult, but correct political decision at the right time which can be made only by a strong wise leader and a real Russian patriot like Yeltsin. Such an action can happen only in Russia, as Russian poet Fyodor Tyutchev said: Russia cannot be understood with the mind alone.
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© 2018 Erdenetsogt Dorjpalam