Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 108

Vladimir Zhirinovsky claimed yesterday that he was trying to persuade President Boris Yeltsin to form a coalition government which would include all the other presidential candidates. He said he discussed the idea with Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin when the two men met on June 3 and that Chernomyrdin promised to arrange a meeting between Zhirinovsky and Yeltsin. Zhirinovsky said he had proposed that Yeltsin and Chernomyrdin would remain in their present jobs while all the other presidential candidates would be given government posts. Zhirinovsky fancies himself as minister of justice or propaganda minister. (Interfax, June 4) Observers have noted that the old fire seems to have gone out of Zhirinovsky’s campaigning of late; he appears to have resigned himself to losing this election and to be fishing to secure some kind of post in a new government. His apparent willingness to make a deal with the powers-that-be will lose him votes since many of those who vote for him (often young males, either unemployed or in jobs threatened by unemployment) do so to protest against the establishment. Zhirinovsky said that if Yeltsin turns down his proposals, he will take them to Zyuganov, with whom, he said, he is already scheduled to hold a second meeting on June 18.

More Problems Ahead for Jewish Agency?