May 14, 2019
Angela Stent, a foreign policy expert, Professor of Government and Foreign Service at Georgetown University, and director of its Center for Eurasian, Russian, and East European Studies pinpoints specific successes in Russia’s foreign relations including rapprochement with China and the return to the Middle East as a legitimate power. Stent addresses why the West was so wrong in the 1990s in assuming that a post-Communist Russia would want to become like the West regarding institutions, democracy, and integration into global affairs. Stent explains that “for Putin, the collapse of the Soviet Union wasn’t only a geopolitical catastrophe, but a personal catastrophe.” Putin’s plan was to restore a strong Russian state. He is very good at sensing the weakness in the West and finding the right time and position to manipulate people.