Since 1999, Vladimir Putin has successfully switched between the role of the President and the Prime Minister of Russia and though Putin is one of the most influential people in the world, the Russian President likes to keep his personal life private. It is, thus, not very surprising that the average American does not know a lot about Vladimir Putin. For instance, not many know that the current Russian President comes from a very humble background and was an active member of KGB for many years before entering the field of Politics. Through this video, we aim to share with our viewers a few facts about Putin’s past and present.
Facts Verse Presents The Truth Behind Vladimir Putin’s Past. Before you hit the play button, please take a moment to like and subscribe to our channel and press the bell icon to stay updated about all our latest videos.
Putin Spent Most of His Childhood in a Communal Apartment
Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin was born to a family of workers on 7 October 1952 in Leningrad, Soviet Union, which is now Saint Petersburg. Before Putin, two of his brothers — Viktor and Albert — had died in infancy and his parents were already in their 40s. Therefore, they considered Putin a blessing. At the time of his birth, Putin’s father worked as a cook and his mother worked at a factory.
Putin spent his entire childhood in a communal apartment at No. 12 Baskov Lane. The apartment was constructed in the 1850s and therefore, it was in a dilapidated state. The Putins had moved into this apartment in 1944 and Putin was born there in 1952. In an interview, Putin said that the building did not have any elevators and he often spent time catching rats in the stairwell.
Putin’s Grandfather Was a Professional Cook Who Worked for Lenin
Spiridon Ivanovich Putin, Vladimir Putin’s grandfather, worked as a cook at Lenin’s country house. After Lenin’s death, Spiridon worked for several years for his wife Nadezhda Krupskaya. While working for Lenin, Spiridon also got several chances to cook for Stalin as the Soviet politician often visited Lenin’s farmhouse.
Though Putin came from a family of cooks, they had very normal meals. Putin said in an interview that on most days, the family had cabbage soup and normal pancakes. However, his mother made it a point to cook a special meal on Sundays. She made delicious stuffed buns, which Putin especially liked, and served meat and rice along with curd tarts.
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Putin Has a Black Belt in Judo
In 1960, when Putin was 8-years-old, he started going to the school at Baskov Lane. At the age of 12, he registered himself for judo and Sambo classes. He was influenced by Soviet cinema and his prime motive to join judo and sambo classes were to be able to replicate the intelligence officers showed in films. However, Putin confessed in an interview that his mother was against his judo practice and every time, he went for practice, she would get angry that he was going to fight again. This went on for a long time. However, one day when Putin’s coach visited his parents and informed them about how good Putin was, his family’s, especially his mother’s attitude towards his Judo practice changed. Putin has a black belt and he still practices the art to this day. Putin does not see Judo as a sport but as a philosophy and way of living life.
Putin and His First Wife Was Together for 31 Years
Lyudmila was working as a flight attendant when she met Putin. Their first meeting happened in Leningrad. However, since Putin tries to keep his personal life under wraps, not much is known about the meeting. Nevertheless, Putin and Lyudmila got married on28 July 1983. The couple’s first daughter, Mariya, was born on 28 April 1985 and their second daughter, Yekaterina, was born on 31 August 1986. Between 1990 and 1994, Lyudmila worked at the Department of Philosophy at the Leningrad State University.
In April of 2008, Moskovsky Korrespondent, a Russian newspaper that was printed in Moscow, reported that Putin had left his wife and was dating Alina Kabaeva, a Russian retired rhythmic gymnast. Putin denied the story and the couple continued to make public appearances as man and wife. However, only a few days after the story came out, the newspaper shut down. In 2013, Putin and Lyudmila filed for divorce and in 2014, their divorce was finalized. Though Putin has hinted that he may marry again someday, no formal announcements regarding his marriage have been made so far. However, in 2016, it was reported that Lyudmila has gotten married to a man named Artur Orcheretny in 2015.
He Joined KGB Right After College
Putin joined KGB or Komitet Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosti (which translated into English means Committee for State Security) right after college. He joined the institution in 1975 and trained in Okhta, Leningrad. After completing his training, Putin was transferred to the First Chief Directorate where his work primarily required him to monitor foreigners. Thereafter, in 1984, Putin underwent more training at Moscow and was subsequently transferred to Dresden, East Germany, under the cover of a translator. Some sources say that during this time, Putin worked to provide support to the Red Army Faction, a West German militant organization. In 1990, Putin returned to Leningrad and joined the International Affairs department and devoted his time to looking for more KGB recruits. It is said that throughout his association with KGB, Putin helped the Soviet Secret Police recruit spies to keep an eye on the West.
Putin Has Two Daughters but There Are No Pictures of Them in the Public Domain
The Russian President works hard to keep his personal life under wraps. It is, therefore, not very surprising that not much is known about Putin’s children. However, we know for sure that Putin has two daughters — Maria and Katerina — with his first wife. While Maria was born in Leningrad, now St. Petersburg, Katerina was born in Germany when Putin was posted there as a KGB official. Putin named both of his daughters after their grandmothers.
It is believed that the girls attended a German-language school in Moscow during the early years of their life. However, after Putin became President, they were taken out of school and were homeschooled instead. While Maria studied Biology and pursued medical school later, Katerina decided to major in Asian studies. Both the girls attended college under false names and therefore, no one knew they were Putin’s daughters while they were in college. In 2017, in a rare admission of his personal life, Putin announced during an interview that he has become a grandfather. Surprisingly, there are no photos of Maria and Katerina in the public domain. More importantly, some sources also claim that Putin has another daughter with his alleged girlfriend Alina Kabaeva. However, not very surprisingly, no one knows for sure.
He Is a Huge Animal Lover
The Russian President is a private man. However, there is one thing that he does not hide, his love for animals. Putin currently has four dogs — Buffy, Yume, Verni, and Pasha. The four dogs live with Putin in his Moscow residence. Buffy is a white Bulgarian male Karakachan dog who was presented to Putin by Boyko Borisov, the Prime Minister of Bulgaria in 2010. The Russian President received Yume as a gift from Japan for the help provided to the country by Russia after the 2011 Tohoku tsunami and Verni was a gift from the President of Turkmenistan. In 2019, while on a trip to Serbia, the President of Serbia, Aleksandar Vucic, gifted Putin a Sarplaninac puppy who Putin decided to call Pasha. Other than being the owner of these four furries, Putin also owns a goat, a horse, and a Siberian tiger cub. He is also actively involved in the conservation of many indigenous and endangered Russian dog breeds.
He Is an Expert in German
Of course, Putin has excellent command over the Russian language. Other than Russian, Putin is also fluent in German. He learned German in High School and then gained complete command over the language during his KGB days when he was posted in Germany. In 2013, when German Chancellor Angela Merkel visited Russia, Putin served as her official translator. Though Putin is well-versed in German, he is not very confident in English. People who have met him or worked with him say that though he understands English and is quite comfortable with pleasantries in English, he gets A little uncomfortable about holding conversations in the language. Given that German is quite close to English, we are certain that making the transition wouldn’t be that difficult. Perhaps, the Russian President is just not interested.
He Identifies Himself as an Orthodox Christian
Though Putin was an atheist for a considerable part of his life, he now identifies himself as an orthodox Christian. According to Putin, two major events played a key role in changing his religious views — his wife’s car crash in 1993 and his house burning down in 1996. In a 2007 interview, Putin confessed that on one of the trips to Israel, his mother gave him a baptismal cross and asked him to get it blessed. Putin did as asked and tied the cross around his neck. According to Putin, he never takes the cross off now. However, Putin’s orthodox views often draw criticism from global media. For instance, he once said equated same-sex marriage with belief in Satan.
He Is a Sports Fanatic
The Russian President is known to maintain an active lifestyle. In his free time, he enjoys indulging in various activities, such as horse-riding, scuba diving, ice hockey, skiing, and whitewater rafting. Those who have worked with the President also says that he often visits an open-air gym where he indulges in intensive weight-lifting. That apart, Putin also regularly practices Judo. Since Putin enjoys an active lifestyle, he also promotes sports in his country. In 2010, he signed a deal with Bernie Ecclestone, the then-CEO of the Formula One Group, to bring F1 to Russia. As part of the deal, F1 would hold seven seasons between 2014 and 2020 in Sochi.
Over the last few decades, Vladimir Putin has stayed committed to making Russia an important world power and he has also been successful to a certain extent. A recent poll conducted across 25 countries revealed that the majority believes that Russia today plays a more important role in international politics and international affairs than it did 25 years ago and some of the credit for this goes to Vladimir Putin. However, the same poll also revealed that the majority thought negatively of Putin as a world leader. Have you followed the politics of Putin? Do you find the man impressive or are you in the majority? Did you know these lesser-known facts about the President of Russia? Do let us know in the comments section.
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