My latest column in The Cresset discusses the threat Putin poses to peace in Europe.
“The utter failure of the Minsk Agreement, not to mention the ineffectiveness of economic sanctions and the impotence of diplomatic measures to influence Russian behavior, have reopened questions about the relation between peace and power, questions which Western leaders have wanted to avoid. Soft power so far has proved singularly ineffective in stopping Russian aggression. That unpleasant truth raises the possibility that soft power alone may not be enough to secure peace in Europe. The question of peace in Europe has again begin become question about how to handle Russia. To handle Russia one must also understand it, and, unfortunately, that is not an easy task. The country’s intentions are opaquely intertwined with the machinations of its mafioso kingpin leader, Vladimir Putin, whose own motivations appear largely personal. Western analysts are thus left to guess what Russia is up to. Their interpretations conflict, but in fact every interpretation points unwittingly to the return of a smaller, but still quite dangerous Cold War, and hence the need to employ hard power in defense of peace.”