The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
A Collection of Interesting, Important, and Controversial Perspectives Largely Excluded from the American Mainstream Media
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 Entire ArchiveVladimir Putin Items

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“Russiagate” and the Skirpal affair have escalated dangers inherent in the new Cold War beyond those of the preceding one
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and Politics at NYU and Princeton, continue their weekly discussion of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) Cohen begins by expressing to the Russian people and government profound sympathy and sorrow for the death of scores of Russians,... Read More
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The Man Who Made Russia Great Again
In the discussion of the results of the Presidential elections in Russia, Sen. John McCain claimed the result was an insult to all Russians. Israel Shamir on the pages of The Unz Review claimed they were rigged just a little. Some pro-Western Russian critics argued that that the very fact that Putin received over 75... Read More
Some reflections on the Russian presidential election and on the Sergei Skripal case
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and Politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) Cohen thinks that the proximity—in time and politics—of the Russian presidential election on March 18 and the... Read More
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The Russian presidential elections are blissfully over, for they were extremely nasty and embarrassing. Mr Putin could have won more modestly and plausibly. The election results would make Turkmenistan proud, if not North Korea. The turnout was quite high, 68%. The incumbent President received almost 77% of the vote, while his main contender Mr Grudinin’s... Read More
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One Russian’s musings on the upcoming vote
As the title of this article suggests, I think Russia’s President (and Prime Minister) has done – under the circumstances – a decent job over the last 18 years. Such rhetoric frequently elicits gasps and winces from many of my American friends (and several Russian ones) - especially as I lived in the States for... Read More
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Vladimir Putin’s announcement of new weapons systems to achieve nuclear parity was the result of the erosion of arms...
Russian President Vladimir Putin’s State-of-the-Nation speech Thursday represents a liminal event in the East-West strategic balance — and an ominous one. That the strategic equation is precarious today comes through clearly in Putin’s words. The U.S. and Russia have walked backwards over the threshold of sanity first crossed in the right direction by their predecessors... Read More
Putin has given a remarkable address to the Federal Assembly, the Russian People, and the peoples of the world. In his speech Putin revealed the existence of new Russian nuclear weapons that make it undisputably clear that Russia has vast nuclear superiority over the United States and its pathic NATO vassal states. In view of... Read More
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Putin wants to end poverty? Putin wants to stimulate economic growth in developing countries? Putin wants to change the system that divides the world into "permanent winners and losers"? But, how can that be, after all, Putin is bad, Putin is a "KGB thug", Putin is the "new Hitler"? American liberals would be surprised to... Read More
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As the Presidential elections in Russia are drawing near I am amazed to see how much interest this event is generating in spite of the fact that it sure seems to me that this will be an incredibly boring and, frankly, totally useless event. But first, full disclosure: I don't have much faith in the... Read More
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Do you remember the terrible onslaught of the mainstream media on presidential candidate Donald Trump in 2016? Dozens of revelations about his fake hair, pussy grabbing, tax avoidance and what not; dozens of public polls proving that the nation wanted Hillary and hated Trump, opinion pieces convincing you that only racist white trash could think... Read More
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I have recently had the pleasure of watching a short presentation by Professor Stephen F. Cohen entitled “Rethinking Putin” which he delivered on the annual Nation cruise on December 2, 2017 (see here for the original Nation Article and original YouTube video). In his short presentation, Professor Cohen does a superb job explaining what Putin... Read More
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So, finally, the suspense is over. Kind of. The US Treasury has finally released the list of Russian entities and individuals which could (conditionally!) be sanctioned by the US Treasury in compliance with the H.R.3364 - Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act. These two short excerpt from the report show why I say "could": and... Read More
The Russian government, media, and public don’t know what to make of the US Treasury’s “Kremlim list.” The Treasury list contains the names of the top echelon of Russian government and business leadership. The Russians understand that the list is unfriendly and furthers Washington’s policy of worsening the relationship between the two major nuclear powers,... Read More
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While you have probably already forgotten the feast, Russia is only now slowly coming back to life after its overlong Christmas break completed on January 14 by the quaintly named Old New Year, or even perhaps by the Epiphany on January 19. Everybody went somewhere, even candidates for the presidential race coming in on March... Read More
Masha Gessen.  Credit: Bengt Oberger/Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0
Masha Gessen and Her Questionable Views
“I have spent a good third of my professional life working to convince the readers—and often editors—of both Russian and American publications that Vladimir Putin is a threat to the world as we know it.” Thus spake Russian-born journalist and author Masha Gessen, a current heroine of the more intellectual part of the PC hive.... Read More
Delivered on the annual Nation cruise, December 2, 2017
Stephen F. Cohen speaks aboard the Nation cruise, December 2, 2017, introduced by Nation Editor and Publisher Katrina vanden Heuvel.
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Book Excerpt
Today, with the kind permission of Phil Butler, I am posting the full text of my contribution to his book “Putin’s Praetorians: Confessions of the Top Kremlin Trolls“. There are a couple of reasons for that. The main one is that I strongly believe that this book deserves a much bigger visibility than it has... Read More
A memorial monument to Stalin’s millions of victims—the subject of intense political struggle for more than 50...
Nation contributing editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) In November 1961, at the end of a Community Party Congress that publicly condemned Stalin’s crimes, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev unexpectedly called for the building of... Read More
Just as there is no forensic evidence of a Kremlin “attack on our democracy” in 2016, there is no political logic...
Nation Contributing Editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussion of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) For more than a decade, Cohen has been arguing that US policy was leading to a new Cold War with Russia and that if it ensued,... Read More
Cooperation with Russia is imperative, but never has the US political-media elite’s opposition to it been so virulent.
Nation Contributing Editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) Cohen argues that a new détente—cooperation in place of conflict—with Russia is imperative due to the unprecedented dangers of the new Cold War, with conflicts from... Read More
With a ceasefire in southwestern Syria in the works, meeting proves diplomacy beats demonization
From the start, the “positive chemistry” in the Mother of All Sit-Downs was a given. The format – with only the four principals, Vladimir Putin, Donald Trump, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, and two translators – prevented any leaks. What was originally scheduled for 35 minutes went on for 2 hours... Read More
Russia’s leader may be the most vilified foreign leader in recent US history, but until now Americans have never had...
Nation Contributing Editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussions, now in their fourth year, of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments are at TheNation.com.) This installment is, however, different. Batchelor and Cohen are joined by renowned filmmaker Oliver Stone, and their discussion focuses on Stone’s four hours of interviews with... Read More
“Kremlingate” is said to have killed any prospect for Trump administration cooperation with Putin’s Kremlin, but...
Nation contributing editor Stephen F. Cohen and radio-show host John Batchelor continue their weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, can be found here.) Cohen reiterates a general theme he has developed in recent years: The exceedingly dangerous nature of the new Cold War makes détente—that is,... Read More
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"If we were to use traditional measures for understanding leaders, which involve the defense of borders and national flourishing, Putin would count as the preeminent statesman of our time. "On the world stage, who could vie with him?" So asks Chris Caldwell of the Weekly Standard in a remarkable essay in Hillsdale College's March issue... Read More
Washington and Moscow observers are saying American allegations that President Trump is a Kremlin puppet have killed the...
Nation Contributing Editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussions about the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) As Cohen explained to Batchelor last week—and as he further explains in a Nation article this week—there are no actual facts to support the six different... Read More
Events this past week make clear that Trump was serious about changing US policy toward Russia, and the enemies of...
Nation Contributing Editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussions, now in their fourth year, about the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments are at TheNation.com.) Cohen begins by noting that he has discussed the 20th-century history of détente, its lessons, and the imperative of détente in today’s exceedingly dangerous new Cold... Read More
Hysteria over Russia’s alleged hacking of the 2016 presidential election may make this US-Russian crisis more...
Nation Contributing Editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments are at TheNation.com.) Worrying that the current confrontations between Washington and Moscow—now extending from the Baltic region, Ukraine, and Syria to the American political system itself—is becoming more dangerous than was the nuclear confrontation... Read More
You’re witnessing a fantastic fit of pique from Barack Hussein Obama. This American president is watching a legacy of statism, Islamism, globalism, elitism, blackism, post-Americanism, post-Christianity slip away, and he’s fighting tooth-and-nail for the ideological sludge in which he has mired America. Obama is having a terrific tantrum, the effects of which President-elect Donald Trump... Read More
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While the word was focused in rapt attention on the outcome of the US Presidential election, Vladimir Putin did something quite amazing – he arrested Alexei Uliukaev, Minister of the Economy in the Medvedev government, on charges of extortion and corruption. Uliukaev, whose telephone had been tapped by the Russian Security Services since this summer,... Read More
The personal vilification of Russia’s president is propelling the new Cold War toward hot war, poisoning American...
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Relevant or a waste of time and money?
Judging by the reactions in the western corporate media, the 2016 elections to the Russian Duma are basically a non-event: evil Putin kept his “grip on power,” all the parties in the Duma are basically under his control and no real opposition was allowed to emerge. Even in Russia, there are some who agree, but... Read More
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When friends of friends are enemies
A friend recently observed to me that it is ironic that the neoconservatives, whose bottom line foreign policy issue is the uncritical support of Israel, should be obsessed with constantly confronting and goading Russia even though Tel Aviv and Moscow get along just fine. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has traveled to Russia three times... Read More
Unwilling to confront its own responsibility, the US political-media elite is again demonizing Putin and denigrating...
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Baiting Russia is not good policy
Last week I attended a foreign policy conference in Washington that featured a number of prominent academics and former government officials who have been highly critical of the way the Bush and Obama Administrations have interacted with the rest of the world. Professor John Mearsheimer of the University of Chicago was on a panel and... Read More
The demonization of Putin seems to answer the question, but is it balanced and factual?
American officials and pundits expressed “surprise” over Putin’s announcement while missing its primary significance.
The most corrupt government on earth, a government so utterly corrupt that it allows former executives of a handful of corrupt mega-banks to run the economic policy of the US solely in the interest of their banks, denying tens of millions of American retirees any interest income on their savings for 7 years and denying... Read More
The Russian 5th column: Chubais, Iudaeva, Dvorkovich, Shuvalov, Nabiullina, Kudrin,  Uliukaev, Siluanov, Medvedev
Whatever happens in the future, Putin has already secured his place in history as one of the greatest Russian leaders ever. Not only did he succeed in literally resurrecting Russia as a country, but in a little over a decade he brought her back as a world power capable of successfully challenging the AngloZionist Empire.... Read More
Did Russia’s president Vladimir Putin approve the murder in London of Alexander Litvinenko? The renegade Russian FSB agent died an agonizing death after being poisoned in late 2006 with the deadly radioactive isotope, Polonium 210. So charged an official British inquiry chaired by Sir Robert Owen after years of investigation. Owen also accused former FSB... Read More
Here are the four US policies that have most offended Russia.
Editor’s Note: The following are adapted from remarks by Stephen F. Cohen, Professor Emeritus of Princeton University and New York University, delivered at San Francisco’s Commonwealth Club on November 24, 2015. I am delighted to be here in San Francisco with you. The farther you go from Washington and the mainstream media, the better introductions... Read More
Russia’s president is a refreshing contrast to the liars who inhabit Western governments and Western media. The agenda of the Russian government is peace and international cooperation under the rule of law. Washington’s agenda is hegemony. President Putin endeavors to lead the world to peace, while the neoconservatives who control Washington’s foreign policy try to... Read More
President Putin Explains Reality to Dumbshit American Journalists (there are no other kind) Americans have not seen leadership in so long that they no longer know what it is. Here is Putin with a leadership lesson.
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Introduction: The major influential western print media are engaged in a prolonged, large-scale effort to demonize Russian President Putin, his politics and persona. There is an article (or several articles) every day in which he is personally stigmatized as a dictator, authoritarian, czar, ‘former KGB operative’ and Soviet-style ruler; anything but the repeatedly elected President... Read More
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Who needs diplomacy when you have 300 battleships?
When I was growing up in New Jersey there were a lot of colorful expressions that one managed to pick up. The flyover America public can get a glimpse of what that means by listening to Chris Christie speak, though he offers only a mild version of the local vernacular as he is simultaneously trying... Read More
“We can no longer tolerate the state of affairs in the world.” President Vladimir Putin Last Wednesday (28 Sept 2015) the world saw the difference between Russia and Washington. Putin’s approach is truth-based; Obama’s is vain boasts and lies, and Obama is running out of lies. By telling the truth at a time of universal... Read More
Russian leader asks, will the US rethink its destructive, “revolutionary” role in the world?
Nation contributing editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussions of the new Cold War. This installment focuses on the speeches given at the UN by Presidents Obama and Putin on September 28 and on their private meeting. Cohen points out that the two speeches spelled out with considerable candor and clarity... Read More
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Who shot down MH-17? Somebody knows
Once upon a time CIA Stations overseas received what was referred to as an “Operating Directive” which prioritized intelligence targets for the upcoming year based on their importance vis-à-vis national security. Prior to the collapse of the Soviet Union, penetrating Moscow and preventing the KGB’s repaying the favor in kind loomed large as Russia and... Read More
What the ongoing policy conflicts in Moscow mean for US–Russian relations.
Nation contributing editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussion of the worst US/NATO–Russian confrontation in many decades, perhaps since the Cuban missile crisis of 1962. In this installment, Cohen argues that since the current crisis began in November 2013, at each turning point Putin has been primarily reacting—wisely or unwisely—to perceived... Read More
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Hail, fire and brimstone, new sanctions or the US tanks on its borders, Russia takes things in stride. President Putin could adopt the motto of William of Orange: saevis tranquillus in undis, calm amidst the tempest. The tempest is all around. American tanks moved into the Baltic states. American warships sail up the Black sea.... Read More
The danger of a US-Russian hot war.
Nation contributing editor Stephen F. Cohen continues his weekly ABC radio discussions with John Batchelor about the new US-Russian Cold War and confrontation over Ukraine. Featured subjects include the ongoing struggle over the Minsk Accords for a negotiated settlement, with Secretary of State John Kerry’s progress with Russian President Vladimir Putin undermined by the Obama... Read More
PastClassics
The unspoken statistical reality of urban crime over the last quarter century.
Our Reigning Political Puppets, Dancing to Invisible Strings