20 years under Putin: a timeline

Photo: © Julia Kuznetsova | Dreamstime.com


Russia Is Not Strong. And Putin Is Even Weaker

Pavel K. Baev, Brookings

Russia’s annexation of Crimea and invasion of eastern Ukraine make the country seem like a military giant, but how long can this image last? The government’s defense spending is out of control and Putin’s grip on power is becoming unstable, Baev argues. As Putin scrambles to maintain popular support and keep competing ethnic groups under control, time is slowly running out on the regime.


Nemtsova: ’I Am Fighting Against Dictatorship in Russia’

Nikita Jolkver, Deutsche Welle

In an interview with Deutsche Welle, Boris Nemtsov’s daughter Zhanna Nemtsova expresses her opinions on Putin, her father, and the future of Russia. Nemtsova says she hopes to offer a vision for Russia that challenges the Putin-centric picture portrayed by state media.


Prepare for Serious Turbulence in Russia

Sergei Guriev, The Washington Post

The Kremlin makes a lot of noise about what the West and Ukraine are doing wrong, and it also does a lot of preserving (and altering) of historical memory. What we don’t hear a lot about are the Kremlin’s future plans for improving the economic, social, or political situation in Russia. Without a flight plan, how long will it take before Putin’s system crashes?


Inside Skolkovo, Moscow’s Self-Styled Silicon Valley

Mark Rice-Oxley, The Guardian

Using California’s Silicon Valley as a model, Russia is trying to create its own technology hub in the Moscow suburb of Skolkovo. Russian innovators are eager to see if the project will thrive, but questions have arisen about its future due to the Kremlin’s increasingly vehement anti-Western views.


Putin’s Warlords Slip Out of Control

Adrian Karatnycky, The New York Times

The separatist army of warlords, mercenaries and criminals in Ukraine’s Donbas region has replaced the law and order that existed in the area since the country’s independence in 1991. If the Donbas were to pledge allegiance to Putin as Ramzan Kadyrov has, Russia would inherit a host of problems.


Russian-backed Rebels Are Restarting the War in Ukraine

James Miller, Foreign Policy

In the months since the Minsk II ceasefire went into effect, analysts and governments alike have issued warnings about the shakiness of the agreement, and the West has promised tougher action if the ceasefire is violated. Our own James Miller of The Interpreter argues that Russian-backed separatists have already started their summer offensive, effectively killing the ceasefire. The question now is how the West will respond.


This week's roundup was compiled by Liza Layer and Alexandra Moon.