I just wanted to give equal time, by summarizing every argument made here on Putin's behalf in the last 4+ months, in one meme.
The Usual Anonymous Suspects can froth in comments to the shredder. I'm off to buy some guns - plural - to celebrate Independence Day.
Xi is unashamedly standing behind Putin. Because they've both proven to be such lifelong friends of freedom and democracy, obviously, amirite?
Live by the guilt-by-association fallacy, die by the guilt-by-association fallacy. Maybe those of you on Team Knucklehead can cobble up some better talking points. Stranger and more amazing things have happened. The old ones are sheer lunacy, and you look exactly like the idiots you are. Wiping Putin's DNA off your chin wouldn't go amiss either.
That still doesn't make Emperor Stumblefuck Poopypants the Ist a good guy, nor ever did. Just a blind hog finding an acorn, after that wagging the dog experiment got out of the lab, like they will.
But it still makes him accidentally smarter - for a few brief seconds - than an awful lot of people (or a lot of awful people, take your pick).
And how embarrassing is that for those now taking the Second Place IQ Ribbon?!?
Pro Tip: Don't be That Guy.