NEWSWATCH: “Russia Celebrates an Uncomfortable Centennial” –

File photo of Czar Nicholas II in Military Uniform Outdoors with Soldiers in Background, adapted from image at

“The centennial anniversary of the launch of the Russian Revolution on Nov. 7 will serve as a haunting reminder for Russia’s current leaders that their power is finite. … a year after Russia observed the 25th anniversary of the collapse of the Soviet Union, a similarly unsettling marker for the [Putin] government … facing opposition from within its own ranks and on the ground. * * * For an astute student of history such as Putin, it’s clear that Russia today resembles Russia just before the Bolshevik Revolution. … Putin seems to be bracing for what is to come, entrenching loyalists within his government and boosting … security forces. … the world wonders if Putin will be able to pass on power as seamlessly as he took it. Even if he succeeds, such a leadership transition wouldn’t necessarily unite a divided and disaffected Russia, and an eventual bloody end to the Russian Federation — just like that came to the Russian monarchy and the Soviet Union — cannot be ruled out.”

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