Putin’s Latest Surprise

The Russian president’s annual address to the Federal Assembly is normally the most important official event of the year. This year, President Putin upheld that tradition. He also upheld a second Russian (and Soviet) tradition: concealing his purpose until the end. Then he turned the tables – twice.

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The Russian Orthodox Church: Faith, Power and Conquest

Until recently, the Russian Orthodox Church was a subject that interested few outside expert circles. That dramatically changed in late 2018 when the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople granted autocephaly (independence) to the Orthodox Church of Ukraine. The reverberations of this decision — religious, political and geopolitcal — underscore the importance that the Church once again plays in Russian policy.

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Trump and Ukraine: A Shabby and Damaging Affair

In the United States, and in most other countries, the border between internal and external affairs has never been water-tight. But there has been a settled expectation that national leaders would not endanger national interests for private advantage.

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