Vladimir_Putin_-_2006On this date in 2000 Vladimir Putin was inaugurated as president of Russia. Putin, formerly a Lieutenant Colonel in the Soviet KGB, became acting president in 1999 when Boris Yeltsin unexpectedly resigned. He was able to reach an accord with the Russian oligarchs, in which they were able to retain their power in exchange for supporting Putin. He severed two terms as President, when he was term limited. He there upon engineered the election of  Dmitry Medvedev as President and himself as Prime Minister. He was elected President again in 2012 having changed the Constitution. Putin is widely regarded as having put an end to democracy in Russia in favor of a Soviet-style authoritarianism. Under his leadership Russia has invaded Georgia and Ukraine in an apparent attempt to extend and reinforce Russia’s sphere of influence. President Putin appears to have an aversion to wearing shirts.

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