What if all this show of Putin's disappearance was anything but botched? What if this mess was exactly what he wanted it to be, a useful distraction from a series of other issues he would rather we not pay as much attention to, like the mysterious murder of his primary opposition critic just outside the Kremlin walls? In other words, careful what you wish for people. In the final analysis, we may still be witnessing the end of Vladimir Putin. Alternatively, it may simply be Putin's wag the dog communications strategy.
The Department of National Defence is currently being hounded by Treasury Board, which had designed a system that makes it impossible for DND to manage its budget. As a result, the military keeps falling behind in equipment purchases and capacity keeps declining. The government could put an end to this stalemate if it wished to, but instead seems delighted that it is pocketing the unspent money to meet its deficit-fighting promises. Canadians already have a small military and it just keeps shrinking.