Putinism: Russian and its Future with the West
There is no question
that tensions between Russia and America are on the rise. The forced
annexation of Crimea, the downing of Malaysia Airlines flight 17, and
the Russian government's treatment of homosexuals have created
diplomatic standoffs and led to a volley of economic sanctions. In
America, much of the blame for Russia's recent hostility has fallen on
steely-eyed President Vladimir Putin and many have begun to wonder if
they we are witnessing the rebirth of Cold War-style dictatorship.
Not so fast, argues veteran historian Walter Laqueur.
For two decades, Laqueur has been ahead of the curve, predicting events in post-Soviet Russia with uncanny accuracy. In Putinism,
he deftly demonstrates how three long-standing pillars of Russian
ideology-a strong belief in the Orthodox Church, a sense of Eurasian
"manifest destiny," and a fear of foreign enemies-continue to exert a
powerful influence on the Russian populous. In fact, today's Russians
have more in common with their counterparts from 1904 than 1954 and
Putin is much more a servant of his people than we might think.
Topical and provocative, Putinism
contains much more than historical analysis. Looking to the future,
Laqueur explains how America's tendency to see Russia as a Cold War
relic is dangerous and premature. Russia can and will challenge the West
and it is in our best interest to figure out exactly who we are
facing-and what they want-before it is too late.