Putin's emotional state is alarming, and not for the reasons we thought

Putin’s emotional state is alarming, and not for the reasons we thought

Nirit Pisano, Ph.D.

Leading up to Russia’s launch of a military operation against Ukraine, Russian President
Vladimir Putin addressed the nation twice within days, first on February 21, then on February
24, 2022. Knowing today of the events that followed, and given Putin’s remarks in a
videoconference meeting with cabinet members on March 10, 2022, an emotional
evaluation of his speech trajectory will be offered. I explore Putin’s emotional progression
from one communication to the next: 1) days prior to Russia’s invasion; 2) moments before
launching the assault; and 3) two weeks following the start of Russia’s military attack. As
many attempt to predict what Putin will or won’t do next, a look at his communications
reveals much about his emotional evolution and how this translates into his next actions