Instaread Summary of Putin Country A Journey Into the Real Russia by Anne Garrels
Five out of five stars
Followers of western news media and their coverage of the actions of Russia under President Vladimir Putin often hear criticisms and puzzlement as to what Putin is doing. American and European politicians do the same thing, Republicans in the United States blame President Obama for not “standing up” to Putin, calling Obama weak.
Whether these people know better or not, they should read this summary so that they will understand why Putin remains popular, despite the serious problems in Russia. Only the real threat of war will deter Putin, so he is going to do what he wants independent of any criticism or sanctions emanating from the United States. Ant-Russian actions by the American government only serve to strengthen Putin’s grip on power. As is so often the case, it is a lack of knowledge of history that makes the critics dangerously wrong.
First and foremost, and this is the topic of key takeaway one, the Soviet Union, the immediate predecessor of the current Russian state, was a superpower. When it dissolved, there was a brief time of hope and joy for the future, but that quickly dissolved into a level of chaos not seen since the aftermath of the revolution that toppled the monarchy. People that experienced a hard but stable existence in the Soviet Union yearn for those more settled times.
Reading this summary will give you the Clift’s Notes version of the explanation as to why Putin remains a popular figure in Russia. He appeals to many of the traditional “enemies” that have been cited by Russian leaders for centuries as the reasons for problems in the nation. Having been invaded from the west by massive armies three times in the last two hundred years, the Russians fear alliances that are perceived to be in opposition to Russia.
Once I was done reading this summary, I was convinced that I really wanted to read the book and that all American policy makers and thought leaders should do so as well. In all the ways that count Putin is a traditional Russian despot.
This book was made available for free for review purposes.