The idea that Vladimir Putin is actually being represented by body doubles in Russia has been renewed by UKRAINE, who cites the change in Putin’s ears as evidence.
The 69-year-old Russian president’s deteriorating health has been the subject of months-long rumors, with close associate Nicolai Patrushev allegedly filling in for Vlad during his routine doctor’s appointments.
Major General Kyrylo Budanov, the recently appointed head of Ukraine’s military intelligence, said on Ukrainian TV this week that Putin’s height and even ears appear to have altered in recent appearances.
TSN, a Ukrainian news station, also reported Budanov as stating that he thinks the Russian president is very ill and uses body duplicates to avoid public appearances.
He asserted that although looking quite identical, the Putin body duplicates have unique habits, mannerisms, gaits, and even even different heights if you paid careful attention.
Earlier, Budanov said that on a recent trip to Iran, Putin had a body double in place of him.
He said that when the president arrived for meetings with his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan, he seemed more animated than normal.
It’s not the first time that Putin’s seemingly shifting ears have been cited as proof that he’s working with body doubles.
IB Times published an article in 2018 on a conspiracy theory claiming that Putin was actually three separate people.
Three images of the Russian president with slightly different ears were posted by the English Russia account on Twitter.
In fact, it appears that this aspect of Putin’s face has changed between the two photos, which were shot years apart.
His ears are smaller and more pointed in the early pictures, and the tragus and antitragus, two pieces of cartilage that sit above the ear lobe, are closely spaced.
His tragus and antitragus are more visible in later photos, and his ear lobe is also much larger.
Of course, a more plausible explanation exists for Putin’s seemingly shifting ears.
As we age, the cartilage in our ears and noses continues to sag and break down, extending our features and giving us a droopier appearance.
A potential explanation for the Russian president’s somewhat changed ear shape and puffier look is that he may have undergone cosmetic surgery or received botox injections.