Tsar Putin to Marry a Gym Champion

By —— Bio and Archives--April 16, 2008

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Alina KabayevaThe career of Vladimir V. Putin, 56, is not one from rags to riches but rather from obscure secrecy of the former KGB officer in a dull East Germany to the trumpets and glory of the Kremlin. At the end of his second term as President of the Russian Federation, and perhaps before his new ascent to the highest officer four years later, Putin has become a national idol and a true Tsar of Russia. He is also reported to be fabulously rich, within a range of $40 billion.

What can a man do when he’s gone up so high from so low? A real macho would look around and find the woman of his dreams. No matter he was married to Liudmila for so many years and has two daughters, one of whom is already married and living in Munchen, Germany. Relieved of the burden of the presidency and having been invited to head the most powerful party United Russia and to assume the office of the Prime Minister of the Russian Government under new President Dmitry Medvedev (who owes everything to him), Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin quietly divorced his first wife about two months ago and set himself to marry Alina Kabaeva, 25, a former champion of artistic gymnastics and now a Deputy to the Russian Parliament, the Duma.

The Uzbek beauty

Alina Kabayeva was born on May 12, 1983 in Tashkent, then the capital of the Soviet Uzbekistan. Her father was a professional soccer player and her mother must have been a local pro. Born two years prior to Gorbachev’s perestroyka, Alina grew up in a Soviet privileged class family of a provincial Asian capital. Her biography notes that she began to train artistic gymnastics not at a very early age but soon she advanced to the top due to her unusual body flexibility: “Alina Kabaeva, the rhythmic gymnast, is known for her extreme natural flexibility, with an emphasis on extreme”, wrote a Russian paper.

Her relatively short-lived career developed very fast. Although she started late as a gymnast her success only came when she went to Moscow and lived with the lady who became her coach, Dr Irina Wiener a.k.a. Mrs. Alisher Usmanov. She went on to become a famous artistic gymnast and has won three European Championships 1998/ 1999/2000, and became World Champion in 1999 and 2001 (which was taken from her as at the Brisbane Goodwill games she won the gold for the Ball, Clubs and Rope, and the silver in the Individual All-Around and Hoop. Alina and her teammate Irina Tchacina both tested positive to a banned diuretic (furosemide) and were stripped of their medals.) “Uzbekistan-born Alina represented Russia in a couple of major sporting events and took the gold medal at the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens as well as bronze in 2000 in Sydney. In Russia, she is considered to be one of the most beautiful women in the country and, as of 2007, she entered politics siding with the pro-Kremlin United Russia party.”

Alina Kabaeva also became a film star, and played in the Japanese kung-fu / ninja film Red Shadow. “It’s hardly an action role, but a surprise treat is the presence of Russian rhythmic gymnastics champion Alina Kabayeva as a Russian ninja. She was originally meant to double Kumiko Aso, but due to scheduling conflicts ended up in her own small role instead. She performs some ridiculously insane feats of dexterity and physical grace, but it is clear Nakano was simply tacking her onto the movie with little regard for the story. She’s there one minute to pose as an entertainer for a samurai warlord, shows up again to sneak around his castle and then disappears.”

A Wedding in June?

Putin is 56 years old at the moment and Alina is only 25 but when Cupid’s arrow strikes true, there’s no messing about, is there? The Russian newspaper Moskovski Korrespondent says that things are already set, like the date and the location. They think the fortunate event is going to happen on June 15 in Sankt Petersburg, the birth place of the president. These rumors were started by the fact that, on a recent visit to Sochi where he met with George and Laura Bush, Putin wasn’t accompanied by his wife. The fact that Putin, a former KGB agent, keeps his private life private is known among media outlets. But there will be always some lucky journalist or photographer who will discover the truth. A popular gossip in Russia tells that Vladimir Putin and Alina Kabaeva will hold their wedding party at Tsarskoe Selo, a magnificent Summer Palace of the late Russian Tsars, known for its gardens and fountains.

Why not? French president Nicolas Sarkozy seems to have started a trend among heads of state around the world. After he divorced his wife of 11 years and married a younger model, Carla Bruni, now Russian president Vladimir Putin seems set to make a similar move.

The late President Ronald Reagan, when he met Mikhail Gorbachev and his wife Raisa, joked that “for the first time a wife of a Soviet leader weighs less than her husband.” True, the Soviet leaders seemed to have no taste in beautiful wives and – for the most times – they were too old to engage in love affairs. Vladimir Putin could be the first Russian post-Soviet leader who can start a new trend: “New wife for new life”. His life looks like an American Dream of the shoe-shiner who become a millionaire. It’s a miracle: how a drab KGB formation could produce a macho-type like Putin? Unless Vladimir Vladimirovich is a side-grandchild of some Russian aristocrat, like – as they say – Josef Stalin, who was one.

David M. Dastych -- Bio and Archives | Comments

David Dastych passed away Sept.11, 2010.

See:David Dastych Dead at 69

David was a former Polish intelligence operative, who served in the 1960s-1980s and was a double agent for the CIA from 1973 until his arrest in 1987 by then-communist Poland on charges of espionage. Dastych was released from prison in 1990 after the fall of communism and in the years since has voluntarily helped Western intelligence services with tracking the nuclear proliferation black market in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. After a serious injury in 1994 confined him to a wheelchair, Dastych began a second career as an investigative journalist covering terrorism, intelligence and organized crime.

Other articles by David Dastych


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