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The era of Putin and The era of Yeltsin He has had personal access to all the primary stakeholders

in the process including Clinton, Yeltsin and later with Vladimir Putin. The book, written in the form of a memoir clearly states that the era of Putin would not have occurred without the era of Yeltsin. This would create an impression that the transition was a smooth one planned by Yeltsin, but it is far from the truth. The relationship between President Clinton and his Russian counterpart was unprecedented in the history of the United States. It is said that the number of meeting between the US President and Yeltsin outnumbered the total meetings by all the US and USSR premiers in the past. President Clinton was of the view that the cold war attitude of former presidents including Eisenhower and Truman is no longer relevant in the changed circumstances (Talbott 133). It required a closer approach devoid of suspicion and intrigue that had been characteristic of the attitude between the two superpowers of the time. Yeltsin who had continued the reforms of Gorbachev was in an unenviable position. The country was opening up to reforms which included to a large extent, private business and ownershipYeltsin was in a sense forced to accept the friendship and assistance of the United States in order to keep the economy of his country alive. The two heads of state also began to address themselves by their first names, something that is unprecedented between a capitalistic and socialistic nation. The domestic scenario in Russia had deteriorated to the extent that crime and corruption became a norm. Talbott observes that this could have come about due to the unexpected freedom experiences in a society that had been traditionally been repressed and subject to extensive and powerful state control. Mafia like gangs began to take control along with support from traditional power centers which included government agencies and powerful political figures.

The time, according to Talbott, was ripe for Vladimir Putin to take charge. It should be stated that Yeltsin himself felt that the situation was getting out of hand. Both Yeltsin and Putin were brought up and grew in a strict communist ideology and environment. Russia is not in a great hurry to become part of the EU indicating a sense of mistrust of Western capitalistic ideologies. Talbott adds that Putin might be following a policy of modified capitalism as followed by China. Only time and visionary statesmanship will bring about a satisfactory situation that is beneficial to its citizens, economy, and the government.