Although the Kremlin has constantly and consistently denied that its leader is even remotely ill, some of Putin’s recent media performances have been widely scrutinized, looking for any indication that the rumors are true. But why has the media become so focused on his health? One of the main reasons is something that has sadly permeated our media, a headline like ‘Is Vladimir Putin Dying?’ is likely to get people’s attention. Unfortunately, this sort of speculative and tabloid style reporting is unlikely to go away any time soon.
And while predicting the future is part of media speculation, the idea that this could be true has some terrifying implications as many feel Putin would have less incentive to avoid things like nuclear war and even more incentive to escalate the war in Ukraine to achieve his ultimate goal of bringing Ukraine back into the Russian fold and far away from NATO.