Vladimir Zhirinovsky’s Death Is A Major Setback For Putin
Vladimir Zhirinovsky, the leader of Russia’s Liberal Democratic Party, has died.
Since February, the 75-year-old politician had been hospitalized with coronavirus. Zhirinovsky died as a result of infection-related complications.
Zhirinovsky was in critical condition in a Moscow hospital, where he has been since early February following a positive COVID-19 test and the development of pneumonia.
He has been described as a fervent patriot and “a showman of Russian politics,” combining populist and nationalist rhetoric, anti-Western venom, and a brazen, aggressive attitude.
Zhirinovsky was born in Almaty, the capital of modern-day Kazakhstan’s Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic.
Volf Isaakovich Eidelshtein (or Wolf Andreyevich Eidelshtein) was a Ukrainian Jew from Kostopil in western Ukraine, and Alexandra Pavlovna was a Russian from the Mordovia region.
Zhirinovsky received his surname from Alexandra’s first husband, Andrei Vasilievich Zhirinovsky. His paternal grandpa was a prosperous industrialist in Kostopil who operated the largest sawmill in (what is now) Ukraine and was the community’s leader.
His grandfather’s mill now earns $32 million per year, and Zhirinovsky has repeatedly asked that successive Ukrainian governments restore it to him.