Russia’s second President Vladimir Putin, whose presidency ends on May 7, was included on Time magazine’s list of 100 most influential people of the world. It is worthy of note that the magazine has already named Putin Person of the Year in 2007. In addition, Putin was put on the second place in the “Leaders and Revolutionaries” after the Dalai Lama.
Former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright wrote an article about Putin. After our first meetings, in 1999 and 2000, I described him in my journal as shrewd, confident, hard-working, patriotic, and ingratiating.' In the years since, he has become more confident and – to Westerners – decidedly less ingratiating,” Albright wrote. The illustration to the article shows a well-known portrait of Tsar Peter I with Putin’s head superimposed on the tsar's.
Albright believes that NATO’s expansion towards Russia's borders and the problems of Western countries’ dependence on Russia's crude shipments will remain the bone of contention between Russia and the West. According to Albright, Putin sees his nation as a superpower on the “old-fashioned European arena.”
The list of world's most influential political leaders include such persons as US President George W. Bush (7th place), Chinese leader Hu Jintao (6th), presidents of Bolivia and Chile – Evo Morales and Michelle Bachelet, as well as three US presidential candidates – Barack Obama (3rd), Hillary Clinton (4th) and John McCain (5th).
Editors of Time magazine intended to include Russia's President Elect Dmitry Medvedev on the top 100 list as well. However, they later decided that it was too early to nominate him.
It is worthy of note that USSR’s president Mikhail Gorbachev can also be found in the latest issue of Time. However, he can only be seen on the back cover of the magazine advertising Louis Vuitton bags.