The tome, entitled "The Words that are changing the World," is the
latest expression of admiration from fans who cast the president as
the savior of modern Russia and will join an array of Putin-themed
merchandise from perfume to vodka.
"We had begun to notice that everything which Putin says comes to
pass to one degree or another," Anton Volodin, author of the
400-page book, which was published by a pro-Kremlin group called
Network, said in a statement.
"In this book we traced his words and confirmed that idea."
Among memorable quotes selected are Putin's threat to "rub out"
Chechen militants in the "out house", his contested assertion that
Crimea was always and remains an "inseparable" part of Russia, and a
bizarre brush-off of Latvia in which he told Riga it could only
expect to receive "the ears of a dead donkey" from Moscow, a Russian
expression for nothing.
Blunt, barrack-room language is part of Putin's stock in trade and
helps him send signals to the state security elite which he, as a
former intelligence agent, springs from.
Putin, in a quote too new to be included in the book, used that
trademark vernacular this month to suggest Turkey's political
leadership may have "decided to lick the Americans in a particular
place" by shooting down a Russian warplane.
Other quotes that are included center on Putin's patriotism.
"For me Russia is my whole life," reads one, while others disparage
Western-style democracy and same sex marriage.
Nikolai Svanidze, a historian, said the new book reminded him of the
Little Red Book and its quotes from Chinese Communist leader Mao
Zedong published in the 1960s.
"It's an Asian tradition," he told the RBK daily. "Countries with
authoritarian regimes always try to publish their leader's most
sparkling expressions even if those expressions are not that
The pro-Putin group which published the book has in the past been
awarded generous grants by the Kremlin. The tome should hit Russian
bookstores in January priced at 800 rubles ($11.12).
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The group, Network, said on Monday it had given 1,000 limited
edition copies to the Kremlin, which in turn had handed them out to
officials and politicians as a present ahead of Russia's main New
RBK cited named officials as saying they had received the present
and had been told by a top Putin aide that it should sit on their
desks. The tome would help them understand the decisions
underpinning Russia's domestic and foreign policy, the aide was
quoted as saying.
Putin's personal rating remains above 80 percent despite a serious
economic crisis thanks, say independent pollsters, to his decision
to annex Crimea and launch air strikes in Syria.
With state TV devoting saturation coverage to the 63-year-old
leader, he is rarely off the screen.
Aides say Putin, whose third term as president lasts until 2018,
takes a dim view of the idea of a Soviet-style cult of personality
around him even though his likeness is used to sell everything from
fridge magnets to mobile phone covers.
Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, distanced the Kremlin from the new
book. He said he had not seen it and that it was unlikely to have
been a centralized Kremlin initiative but might have been prepared
by another part of Putin's executive office.
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