The Media Mirror - Read today's Russian press review

The Russian press on Friday gives prominence to President Putin’s annual “direct line” which attracted over 2.5 million questions. A bargaining piece of the century is: will Russia and the U.S. barter Iran’s nuclear programme for East European

Rossiyskaya Gazeta quotes Russian political scientists. Gleb Pavlovsky says, in spite of heading the party list of the United Russia, Vladimir Putin talked to the people like a non-partisan leader. He made it clear he is going to maintain this style of communication in the future. Putin also emphasised his role as the Commander-in-Chief of the Russian armed forces. In the current world situation it was appropriate, thinks Pavlovsky.
 
Valery Khomyakov says the questions to the President show that there is a strong demand for left-wing policies – active and social safety-oriented. That was an important signal for the authorities. The military tune was also played up. This is a signal to the world: patriotism is the second biggest sentiment in Russian society.
 
Izvestia continues the topic. Dmitry Oreshkin says Putin evidently does not see himself outside politics and power in the next few decades. Aleksandr Tsipko adds: the main question, asked in a thousand different ways, was never answered: why does the leader who is capable of solving the problems of the nation better than any, have to leave?
 
Vremya Novostei writes the President said in the foreseeable future the Russian economy will remain on manual control. Asked when it could be switched to automatic, the President answered: 15 – 20 years from now. The paper says, now we know. What we don’t know is whose hands will be on the steering wheel.
 
The same paper writes an interesting twist is happening in the U.S. – Russian dialogue on missile defence. Several U.S. officials simultaneously hinted at a possible deal: the termination of the Iranian nuclear programme against the shelving of the plans for missile defence in Eastern Europe.
 
Nezavisimaya Gazeta is running an editorial which says President Putin’s foreign policy is bearing fruit: the U.S. hints at a possible deal if Russia persuades Iran to terminate the uranium enrichment programme.
 
Nikolay Zlobin from the U.S.-based World Security Institute is quoted by Rossiyskaya Gazeta: the U.S. will never drop the plans for missile defence in Europe. The leak from the State Department about a possible deal is plain propaganda. They’re trying to put the responsibility for their own missile defence plans on Russia – in retaliation to Russia’s “improper” policy towards Iran.