21 March 2014

Vladimir Putin: an opportunist or a clever strategist?

Strangely (or rather not), the question doesn't come from me, but from Tom Lister, the author of that CNN article. The full text of the sentence where the question is asked:

Is Russian President Vladimir Putin an opportunist, grabbing at chances to poke the West in the eye, or a clever strategist with the longer-term goal of restoring a greater Russia?
I am stumped trying to understand Mr Lister. Really.

Is there any contradiction between being a "clever strategist" and poking the West where it hurts? Did the venerable Sun Tzu ever object to a bit of poking one's enemy in the eye?

Unless, of course, that kind of poking is considered politically incorrect nowadays. But I wouldn't know. Or care, for that matter.


SnoopyTheGoon said...

That must be definitely in his mind. But I am not sure he really wants to go for the whole enchilada. A few small to medium gains (like Crimea, Pridnestrovie etc.) during his term will be enough to raise his (already sky high) popularity with the ultra-nationalist rabble.

Dick Stanley said...

Seems to me "his term" is likely to be life long.

SnoopyTheGoon said...

So far it looks so, yes.