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Kasyanov—not afraid of his own shadow

As the fuss around Fradkov's nomination grew bigger and bigger, everyone seemed to completely forget about Mikhail Kasyanov's dreadful destiny.

Nonetheless, the reasons for his dismissal remain unknown. Russian President has not been clear about the matter. Formally, economic growth was rising steadily under Kasyanov. He always demonstrated positive, from Kremlin's standpoint, indifference towards politics, and was loyal to the President. What is the matter then?

Perhaps, the main reason lies in the ex-Minister's team. Strange paradox—the newly appointed Minister of Finances and later head of the Russian government, Kasyanov has made people of the former first Vice Premier Yuri Maslyukov such as Mikhail Sinelin and Konstantin Merzlikin his closest allies. In summer of last year Sinelin has headed the minister's secretariat, while Merzlikin has been appointed as a chief of the government’s apparatus.

In addition, Kasyanov has returned a famous reformer critic Mikhail Delyagin back to the White House in 2002 as the minister’s assistant. In a year, however, Delyagin had to resign.

In the course of relatively long time, Kremlin has been bewildered by the unexplained tolerance towards the politics of human resources at the White House. In the beginning, however, Voloshin's people appointed Igor Shuvalov (according to another version, it was Kasyanov himself who introduced Shuvalov as the best to fit the position). Starting last year, Maslukov's people took everything in their own hands.

References to Maslukov's people professionalism appear to be nothing but comical to those who are familiar with intrigues of the highest authority. Aside from everything else, it is professionalism they cherish the most in people, and their loyalty of course. Kremlin simply could not accept Kasyanov's team. Even though the ex-Minister did not have vain intentions, his autonomy in the HR politics could not have moved on unsuspicious. Let's remember how Russian president(!) Yeltsin carefully observed the process of formation of the government's apparatus under Chernomirdin. And he in turn, while being the first man in the country, used to publicly excoriate Chernomirdin for a shady HR politics.

Yeltsin, however, with his animal instinct towards power, could always fell whom and what he should be careful about. In the end, he made Chernomirdin to fire Kvasov.

Power is always jealous and distrustful. Even the slightest unscripted body movement or someone's initiative makes one suspicious. In the course of many long years, Kremlin residents have been taught to trust no one and be fearful of their own shadows. Ex-PM Mikhail Kasyanov probably forgot the lesson and had to pay the price for trying to lean on those people who suited only him.

 

Maxim Artemyev

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