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Myanmar Junta’s Media Lavish Praise on Putin to Mark Anniversary of Ties

Amid international condemnation of Russian President Vladimir Putin for his invasion of Ukraine, the Myanmar military regime has hailed him as a superman who has rejuvenated and revitalized Russia.

In a servile gesture of flattery toward Moscow for supporting the regime while the rest of the world shuns it for seizing power in a coup in 2021 and cracking down on anti-regime forces, the junta-controlled newspapers have been featuring articles praising Russia to mark the 75th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries. An article in the newspapers’ Jan. 30 issues uses almost every affirmative modifier in the book to describe how wise and strong the Russian leader is.

The article praises Putin as a pious man, and the most popular statesman in the world. His appearance and style make him a popular brand not only in Russia but around the world, the article says, buttering him up. “The Russian leader is imbued with a strong mentality and personal power so that he can bravely assume responsibility in risky situations and make prudent decisions,” it gushes.

The article calls him “far-sighted”, “sagacious”, “pragmatic”, “detail-oriented”, “well-versed in all things”, and more. The fact that he has won 14 Russian civilian awards, eight honors and three religious and peace awards reflects his exceptional ability, argues the article, which describes Putin as a “key player in world peace”.

The article also glorifies Putin for his physical strength, referring to the president’s penchant for publicity stunts showing him engaging in strenuous outdoor activities. “His attributes such as fearlessness and high self-confidence, which are a result of his physical and mental strength, make him an enviable role model for Russian youth,” the author writes. The article also argues that Russia is an enviable world power today despite Putin being criticized as autocratic. His policies and strategies are in fact based on the culture, values, and opinions of the Russian people, it says in his defense.

While groveling before Putin, the article accuses the US and many European countries of trying to spread liberalism disguised as democracy. The Western bloc tends to assess its opponents based on false information, and the Ukrainian people have suffered a lot because of the West’s miscalculation of Russian leaders, argues the article.

The regime has expressed support for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and has promoted ties in the diplomatic, economic, trade and other sectors with its major arms supplier, following the first meeting between junta chief Min Aung Hlaing and Putin in September.

At the meeting, Min Aung Hlaing praised Putin as a world leader and Putin called Myanmar a reliable long-term friend of Russia.

The two countries have exchanged frequent high-level visits since the coup. Min Aung Hlaing himself has made three visits to Russia during the period. A Russian trade delegation from Fund RC-Investments, an investment platform of the Roscongress Foundation, sent by Putin on a special mission to promote commercial ties with Myanmar, visited Naypyitaw in November. Russian foreign affairs, economic and education delegations have also visited the country.