Foreign trips are now rare occasions for Russian President Vladimir Putin. As such, it was highly important to him to hold a position above that of the other participants at the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing on October 17 and 18. Chinese Communist Party General Secretary Xi Jinping obliged by making Putin the guest… Read more »
Last week, the annual gathering of the Valdai International Discussion Club was held in Sochi, Russia. Today, this conference does not deserve the attention such events used to have a decade ago, when many Western experts saw it as a unique opportunity to gain access to Russian policy-makers, particularly President Vladimir Putin. The only topic… Read more »
The decision to withdraw from the international arrangement guaranteeing the safety of grain exports from Ukrainian ports, announced in Moscow on July 17, signifies a significant effort to escalate non-kinetic hostilities to break the pattern of slow-moving defeat in this war of attrition. Russian President Vladimir Putin repeatedly expressed dissatisfaction with the benefits that Ukraine… Read more »
The resonance from the June 24 mutiny attempted by Yevgeny Prigozhin, the boss of the notorious Wagner group, remains strong, despite the attempts by President Vladimir Putin to demonstrate a swift restoration of stability in Russia.
Questions about the drivers, participants and consequences of the Wagner Group mutiny on June 23 and 24 are set to remain unanswered as the Russian leadership finds it necessary to close that shocking page.
The weekend mutiny of the Wagner Group, pathetic as it may look in hindsight, is certain to affect Russia’s ability to sustain its aggression against Ukraine and to repel the ongoing Ukrainian counteroffensive. But it will also resonate in a much wider sense.
The summer economic forum in St. Petersburg used to be a vanity fair of Russian opulence and corruption. But last week’s modest, if not frugal, event was rather an exercise in self-reassurance of sustainable stagnation.
The noise of jingoist propaganda and anti-Western hysteria emanating from Moscow is not as monotonous as it often seems, and the variations expose significant differences between and within Russian elite groups. Recent military setbacks, such as the destruction of a mixed air group over the Bryansk region on May 13 and the incursion of a… Read more »
President Joe Biden’s long-awaited announcement of decision to run for the second presidential term has brought into a sharper focus the new quality of US leadership in global affairs, which he has delivered, perhaps without any grand strategic design. The 2024 US elections will be run and determined primarily by competing domestic agendas, as is… Read more »
Decision-making in the Kremlin had been so erratic — even before the re-invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022 — that the proposition of President Vladimir Putin inhabiting a bubble of servile courtiers and carefully doctored information appeared perfectly plausible. Early April 2023 has brought even more evidence supporting this assumption of detachment from reality… Read more »