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About This QuizAs he's shown the world, Vladimir Putin has very little chest hair but piles of determination to lead Russia, no matter the price. He wrestles wild animals and political opponents. How much do you know about Putin?
Vladimir Putin was born in which decade?
Putin was born in 1952. His modest childhood belies his current superstar power.
Putin has a black belt in which martial art?
He's been active with martial arts since he was a boy. In 2014 he earned an 8th-degree black belt in judo.
That's not all! Putin also has the highest possible ranking in which other martial art?
Putin also has a 9th-dan ranking in taekwondo. In short, don't challenge him to a fight unless you want a black eye.
What is Vladimir Putin's middle name?
We have yet to hear he prefers Vladdy McVladimirovich.
Putin was the youngest of three children. What happened to his brothers in childhood?
they were kidnapped
they both died
Putin was the only one of three sons to survive to adulthood. One brother died in childbirth and the other perished during the Siege of Leningrad.
they were raised by relatives
Putin's father died in World War II.
Like all adult Russian men during World War II, Putin's father served in the armed forces. He was gravely wounded during the conflict but lived until 1999.
What did Putin study at Leningrad State University?
Putin put effort into excelling as an athlete and an academic, as well.
What did young Putin do after college?
joined the military
became a spy
You've seen those eyes, right? Putin fulfilled a childhood dream by joining the KGB, working in Russian intelligence.
went into politics
In 2016, Putin granted Russian citizenship to which American celebrity?
Steven Seagal wanted President Obama to be impeached ... but he is buddies with Putin. As a show of friendship, Putin bestowed him with Russian citizenship.
How did the Russian economy perform during Putin's first presidency?
Vladimir benefited from high oil prices and smart governing. The economy grew by leaps and bounds, helping to solidify his power.
it grew a little
Putin is the leader of Russia, but where was he born?
Putin was born and raised in Leningrad, a very Russian city.
He became prime minister in 1999. How did he ascend to this role in the government?
there was a revolt
the president resigned
Boris Yeltsin suddenly resigned his post. The abrupt vacancy meant that Putin ascended to prime minister in 1999.
he was elected
Putin is a member of the Communist Party.
He was brought up in the Communist Party. But he gave up his membership in the party in 1991, as the Soviet Union crumbled around him.
How did Boris Yeltsin feel about Putin becoming his successor?
he wanted Putin to be president
Yeltsin no longer felt up to the task of governing, but he hoped that Putin could succeed.
he despised Putin
he didn't trust Putin
In 2002, what did Putin do with regard to Russia's nuclear arsenal?
expanded the number of nuclear submarines
agreed to reduce nukes
In 2002, Putin signed an agreement with President George W. Bush to reduce the size of Russia's nuclear arsenal. The agreement stipulated that the reduction must occur before 2013.
created a super bomb
Putin stays active in which religion?
Vladimir identifies as an Orthodox Christian and regularly attends services.
Putin does not drink alcohol.
If he drinks, he doesn't do it in public. Putin cultivates a clean-living public persona that Russians admire, especially after the lush named Yeltsin.
When Putin was a spy for the KGB, where did he serve?
Putin speaks fluent German and was in Berlin when the Berlin Wall fell in 1989.
What was Putin photographed carrying out of the Black Sea after a diving expedition in 2011?
A lifeless shark he had punched to death
A harpoon gun and a giant squid
16th Century B.C. ceramic vases
In a media event that was later widely called a stunt outside of the country, Putin said of the vases, "my boys and I found them." This was true, in the sense that they had indeed just found them...supposedly in 6 feet of clear water, where archaeologists had recently deposited them to be found, presumably for the occasion.
How does Putin approach the concept of wildlife management?
he helps to preserve some wildlife
Putin enjoys wildlife, particularly rare species. He's worked to improve protection for animals such as polar bears, tigers, whales and other struggling animals.
he shoots big animals on many hunts each year
he sells wildlife refuges to oil companies
As a true career man, Putin never married.
He was married in 1983 to Lyudmila Putina and had two children with her. They announced their divorce in 2013.
In 2004, Putin was elected to his second term as president. What percentage of the vote did he allegedly capture?
about 52 percent
about 71 percent
Russian elections prompt skepticism from some observers. In 2004, Putin ran away with the election by capturing 71 percent of the vote.
about 85 percent
How has Putin changed spending with regard to the military?
he greatly increased spending
Russia has been ramping up its military capacity for years. It now spends a greater portion of its gross domestic product on the military than does the U.S.
spending didn't really change
he cut military spending
In 2002, Chechen rebels took hundreds of people hostage in a Moscow theater. Putin's armed response killed 130 of the hostages. How did Russians respond to the bloodletting?
the event was totally censored
eventually they revolted
eventually they adjusted to Putin's decision
Initially, citizens were alarmed at the carnage that Putin caused. But, possibly given the bloody nature of the rest of the conflict with Chechen rebels, the cultural perception shifted.
The constitution prevented Putin from running for president again in 2008. What did he do?
he joined the parliament
Putin traded the title of president for prime minister
Never let a few rules get in the way of autocracy. Putin simply gave up the presidency and became prime minister again...and further increased his influence.
he rewrote the constitution
When Putin was elected to his third presidential term in 2012, all Russians rejoiced.
Many Russians (and foreigners) felt that the election was rigged. Many protesters hit the streets and insisted that there be another election. They didn't get one.
In 2015, Putin authorized Russian military action in which country?
Putin allowed Russian forces to strike in Syria during that country's awful civil war. They fought in support of the established Syrian government in an effort to stamp out religious jihadists and rebels.
Putin has two daughters. What do they do with their lives?
no one knows
they both study abroad
one is a professional athlete; the other remains a mystery
Putin has made a lot of enemies, and he doesn't want his daughters to become targets. Their lives are mostly secret. They often go by assumed names. However, one was recently revealed to have a career as a competitive dance-gymnast.
What's Putin's attitude towards the media?
he works to control the media
He sees the media as a potential opponent that could undermine his power. He controls the media as much as possible and has agencies in place to keep tabs on internet outlets, too.
he mostly allows free speech
he could not care less about the media
Putin wanted Donald Trump to become president of the United States.
Putin felt that Trump was better than Hillary Clinton, at least for Russia's sake. He authorized a secret campaign that sought to boost Trump and hurt Clinton during the election cycle.
How has Putin's administration approached gay rights?
greatly expanded gay rights
they've taken no action on gay rights
rolled back some rights
Putin is no great supporter of the gay movement. In one instance, he abruptly banned certain gay symbols, such as the rainbow flag.
Given his nearly autocratic power and domineering personality, why are Putin's approval ratings so high?
quality of life has improved
Under Yeltsin, Russian struggled in the world economy. Putin's work has improved quality of life for many citizens, and as a result, a large portion of Russia supports its longstanding leader. It's also possible that some citizens are more likely to high approval ratings rather than risk being seen as a dissident.
he stamps out all opposition
Russians just don't care about politics