With Mikhail Fradkov’s carefully prepared resignation speech, we are reminded that Russia is desperate to at least “go through the motions” of appearing like a functional democracy. It is astonishing that we are being asked to believe that this is a normal, voluntary, and legitimate resignation speech, rather than a docile employee following orders from his owners. More commentary on these developments to come. From Kremlin.ru:
PRIME MINISTER MIKHAIL FRADKOV: Vladimir Vladimirovich, the country is on the eve of important political events. First the State Duma election and then the presidential election lie ahead. The Government is playing a well coordinated part in this process and working hard in my view. I understand the political processes taking place at the moment and I would like to see you have as free a hand as possible in making decisions, including human resource decisions. I think that the right course of action would be for me to take the initiative and ask to step down from the office of prime minister in order to give you full freedom in your decisions on the shape and organisation of the power structure in connection with the upcoming political events. I would like to thank you for the confidence and full support you have given me in my work as prime minister over more than three-and-a-half years, and I ask you to please accept my resignation. … MIKHAIL FRADKOV: Thank you, Vladimir Vladimirovich, for your high assessment of the Government’s work and for the support and trust you have shown me personally. I think that this is the right decision. It is an objective decision and it will help to ensure continuation of the current policies and maintain stability in our country.