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You say that (and fuck me I'm not defending Putin, now of all times) but people forget what was going on in the early 90's after the fall of the Soviet Union. It was a bit like this. Some rando who was "stronger" than you would just walk in to your business and declare it theirs and that was it. Didn't matter because tomorrow someone stronger than them would come in and do the same to them - shooting them in the process, then the day after, the mafia would do that to that guy.
Corruption was horrendous too. I cite a story from Wladimir Kaminer's book about life in the area in the 90's. The corner of their government-issue apartment was so badly made that it crumbled and you could see outside through a big hole. Cement was unobtainable however. His father took a large bottle of vodka to a local government housing building site and managed to trade it with the workmen (who promptly drank it on lunch) for a bag of cement with which to fix the wall. He asked the workmen how they'd hide it and they said they'd just mix in more sand for that batch...which in turn would leave the wall weak and likely to crumble in that area, leaving a big hole...
Putin managed to get that under control. Again, not standing up for him, but you recognise where he came from and what he achieved, and why people were so happy to have him there, you understand how we got here.
I found Russian Disco by Wladimir Kaminer while looking at these suggestions on Amazon too - looks good (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Russian-Disco-Wladimir-Kaminer/dp/0091886694)
Have you ever read "Russian Disco" by Wladimir Kaminer?