What a wonderful time to be alive.
A photo ID card issued to a young Vladimir Putin has been publicly released by Germany's BTSU, the Federal Commissioner for the Records of the State Security Service of the former East Germany, and subsequently published in the German news outlet Bild.
Here it is. Russia is denying that Putin was ever issued a KGB identification card, which naturally means it's legit.
From the New York Times:
The German tabloid Bild's publication of a photo ID card issued to a young Mr. Putin by the Stasi, East Germany's secret police, pulls back the veil on one part of his tenure in Dresden, causing a ripple of excitement on social media and raising questions about his presence in the former German Democratic Republic.
The Putin ID card was also released on Wednesday by the Federal Commissioner for the Records of the State Security Service of the former East Germany. Printed on green passport-style paper, the card bears a black-and-white photo of a young intelligence officer identified as Major Putin, who would have been 33 at the time.
It was issued on the last day of 1985, and has validation stamps for each quarter except one — the last quarter of 1986. The ID also bears what appears to be Mr. Putin's signature.
The Stasi building was a stone's throw away from the villa where the K.G.B. had its offices.
[IMAGE: The photo ID card issued to a young Vladimir V. Putin by the Stasi.]