The Christian Science Monitor

For Putin, an election win will be easy. The next six years, a lot harder.

After nearly two turbulent decades in power, Vladimir Putin on Sunday will be overwhelmingly handed another six-year term by Russian voters, one that may prove his most challenging yet and which – under Russia's current constitution – should be his last.

Few Russian leaders have lasted as long or more radically changed the face of this gargantuan and unwieldy country than Mr. Putin. He has defied regular predictions of his political demise, and re-invented himself more than once. As he steps into what will be effectively his fifth term in office, he will need to do so again.

Today's Russia, with all of its strengths and flaws, is very much the product of Putin's priorities. It has proven far more resilient than critics at home and abroad ever expected, while forecasts of doom have become a greatly devalued currency. It will now fall

Putin's popularityRussia's geopolitical woesPotential flashpoints at homePost-Putin Russia

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