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27 Mar, 2008 15:13

Medvedev's secrets revealed

He may have once been a mystery to even some Russians, but soon incoming President Dmitry Medvedev's life will be splashed all over a new book. Extracts of the book have been published on the web. The author, Russian TV journalist Nikolay Svanidze, spok

Medvedev says he’s now used to the role of public figure, but with such a meteoric rise he will try not to get drunk on publicity.
“I am not getting drunk on it, but I'm already beginning to feel the excitement, this work's drive. It is easier for me to tune in to this political genre,” Medvedev is quoted as saying.
Svanidze, famous Russian TV anchorman, interviewed Medvedev and recorded the memories of some of his friends.
The author says one of Medvedev’s friends described his as ‘funny’.
“Even if the topic was serious he always knew how to treat it with a good sense of humor,” Svanidze says.
In the interview, the incoming Russia’s president tells the story of his work with Putin – in the past and in the future.
“The heads of state, whoever they were, never took a secondary role, or a third or fifth. They either retired or lost favour,” he said.

When Putin was announced as a possible Prime Minister, some said he would be unwilling to relinquish the reins of power, but Medvedev sees it differently.
“In the end, this is the expression of a sincere desire to serve your country,” he said.
Medvedev is sure his personal relationship with Putin is a recipe for success.
“Russia, undoubtedly, is a great country. We are truly great in our history, and in our territory, but we cannot revel in this greatness,” he said.
In the West Putin is often criticised for his past in the Soviet security service, a fact he’s never made a secret of.  But Medvedev considers this a typical misconception.
“They are just regular people. There is no need to make angels or demons out of them,” he is quoted as saying.
It's common practice in other countries for former security officers to end up in government.
“Many politicians have experience heading up special services, and not one is aroused by that. The issue is most likely that our history has been very complicated, and the general attitude towards special services has varied. And of course, this makes people tense. But it’s already history,” the book quotes Medvedev.
As for democracy, Medvedev believes Russia is developing, but it is still effectively a young country.
“We will be able to evaluate the results only in 30-50 years,” he said.
While his political career has been in the news for a while, little is known about his personal life other than he is a real rock fan.
“There was always music as a background for our talks, hard rock, rock’n’roll or jazz. Whenever interviews were taking place, he put on music,” Svanidze says.
The work on the book is continuing and the date of release has not been announced yet.
Many predict it’s just the first attempt to delve into Medvedev’s life.

Although he might never surpass Putin, the number of books about the current president is already more than a hundred.