Both Russian President Vladimir Putin and American President Donald Trump are on vacation, but only Putin’s been photographed shirtless. For whatever that’s worth.
Putin has mastered the art of the “shirtless while on vacation look how macho I am” pics to such a degree that shirtless Putin pics have been a bit of a joke. No matter. He’s at it again.
In the recent batch, Russia’s strongman, who is 64, posed for a series of photographs that showed him catching large fish in the remote Tuva region of southern Sibera. Putin doesn’t just fish, of course; he fishes underwater. He spearfishes.
Meanwhile, Trump headed for an extended working vacation to his New Jersey golf club.
Putin was accompanied by an equally shirtless Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu. Well, they weren’t shirtless in every pic. Just a lot of them.
Russia’s president has posed for shirtless pics before, and it’s all part of his propaganda efforts to cast a tough image in the minds of the world, especially as tensions between the U.S. and Russia deteriorate.
According to CNN, Putin was photographed while wearing Army gear and he also swam, hiked, kayaked and engaged in other athletic pursuits in the wild. Putin also paused to pick wild mushrooms, CNN reported.
The pics come as a sanctions bill in the U.S. Congress has worsened tensions with Russia, after the presidential election hacking concerns.
Meanwhile, Trump was photographed on August 4 arriving in New Jersey with his small granddaughter and daughter, Ivanka. The Putin photos were taken between August 1 and August 3, according to USA Today.
Whether they Putin shirtless photos were designed to “out tough” the soon-to-be-hitting-the-links American president is up for interpretation.
USA Today noted that Putin showcased his “bare, hairless chest” in the series of photographs that, in every instance, showed the Russian president braving the outdoors while engaged in some kind of physical activity.
Putin is almost 65-years-old. He was born on October 7, 1952. One wonders how long he will be able to keep the shirtless photo gimmick up, but he doesn’t show any signs of stopping soon.
The contrast between Putin’s and Trump’s vacations had some memes and imaginations flying. Some Twitter users said they hope Trump doesn’t turn up in shirtless photos next. Some critics got conspiratorial about the fact both men were on vacation at the same time.