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Video: Hip Hop Putin

In what are sure to be the most bizarre and cringe-worthy videos of the week, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin showed up as the featured guest on a popular hip hop TV show in Russia.  According to the AFP, Putin commented “And breakdance is something peculiar. (…) This really is propaganda for a healthy lifestyle because it is hard to imagine breakdancing having anything to do with drinking and dope.

Julia Ioffe at RUSSIA! has a good post on the story, and even points to the nice, smooth transition Putin makes from talking about healthy lifestyles to his more familiar tones of nationalism.  However most people aren’t going to be able to get beyond the mysteriously compelling sight of Putin nodding his head to the music, with some obvious discomfort, while all the youth around throw their hands in the air (to a musical tradition innovated by African Americans, I might add).  Let’s remember that these are the same folks who came up with the controversial name for the Nigeria-Gazprom joint venture not too long ago…

Do we think that Putin is preparing his popular image for another presidential term?  Isn’t that the most boring question in the MSM on Russia?