Winter Is Coming: Why Vladimir Putin and the Enemies of the Free World Must Be Stopped

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The stunning story of Russia's slide back into a dictatorship-and how the West is now paying the price for allowing it to happen.

The ascension of Vladimir Putin-a former lieutenant colonel of the KGB-to the presidency of Russia in 1999 was a strong signal that the country was headed away from democracy. Yet in the intervening years-as America and the world's other leading powers have continued to appease him-Putin has grown not only into a dictator but an internationalthreat. With his vast resources and nuclear arsenal, Putin is at the center of a worldwide assault on political liberty and the modern world order.

For Garry Kasparov, none of this is news. He has been a vocal critic of Putin for over a decade, even leading the pro-democracy opposition to him in the farcical 2008 presidential election. Yet years of seeing his Cassandra-like prophecies about Putin's intentions fulfilled have left Kasparov with a darker truth: Putin's Russia, like ISIS or Al Qaeda, defines itself in opposition to the free countries of the world.

As Putin has grown ever more powerful, the threat he poses has grown from local to regional and finally to global. In this urgent book, Kasparov shows that the collapse of the Soviet Union was not an endpoint-only a change of seasons, as the Cold War melted into a new spring. But now, after years of complacency and poor judgment, winter is once again upon us.

Argued with the force of Kasparov's world-class intelligence, conviction, and hopes for his home country, Winter Is Coming reveals Putin for what he is: an existential danger hiding in plain sight.
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About the author

Garry Kasparov is a business speaker, global human rights activist, author, and former world chess champion. His keynote lectures and seminars on strategic thinking, achieving peak performance, and tech innovation have been acclaimed in dozens of countries. A frequent contributor to the Wall Street Journal, he is the author of How Life Imitates Chess and Deep Thinking. He is a Senior Visiting Fellow at the Oxford Martin School, working in cooperation with the Future of Humanity Institute. He lives in New York.
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Additional Information

Publisher
PublicAffairs
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Published on
Oct 27, 2015
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Pages
320
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ISBN
9781610396219
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Russia & the Former Soviet Union
Political Science / Political Freedom
Political Science / Political Ideologies / Fascism & Totalitarianism
Political Science / World / Russian & Former Soviet Union
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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“A beautifully written and very lively study of Russia that argues that the political order created by Vladimir Putin is stagnating” (Financial Times).
 
From Kaliningrad on the Baltic to the Russian Far East, journalist Ben Judah has traveled throughout Russia and the former Soviet republics, conducting extensive interviews with President Vladimir Putin’s friends, foes, and colleagues, government officials, business tycoons, mobsters, and ordinary Russian citizens. Fragile Empire is the fruit of Judah’s thorough research: A probing assessment of Putin’s rise to power and what it has meant for Russia and her people.
 
Despite a propaganda program intent on maintaining the cliché of stability, Putin’s regime was suddenly confronted in December 2011 by a highly public protest movement that told a different side of the story. Judah argues that Putinism has brought economic growth to Russia but also weaker institutions, and this contradiction leads to instability. The author explores both Putin’s successes and his failed promises, taking into account the impact of a new middle class and a new generation, the Internet, social activism, and globalization on the president’s impending leadership crisis. Can Russia avoid the crisis of Putinism? Judah offers original and up-to-the-minute answers.
 
“[A] dynamic account of the rise (and fall-in-progress) of Russian President Vladimir Putin.” —Publishers Weekly
 
“[Judah] shuttles to and fro across Russia’s vast terrain, finding criminals, liars, fascists and crooked politicians, as well as the occasional saintly figure.” —The Economist
 
“His lively account of his remote adventures forms the most enjoyable part of Fragile Empire, and puts me in mind of Chekhov’s famous 1890 journey to Sakhalin Island.” —The Guardian
National Book Award winner Masha Gessen's biography of a ruthless man's ascent to near-absolute power.

“In a country where journalists critical of the government have a way of meeting untimely deaths, Ms. Gessen has shown remarkable courage in researching and writing this unflinching indictment of the most powerful man in Russia.” —The Wall Street Journal

The Man Without a Face is the chilling account of how a low- level, small-minded KGB operative ascended to the Russian presidency and, in an astonishingly short time, destroyed years of progress and made his country once more a threat to her own people and to the world.

Handpicked as a successor by the "family" surrounding an ailing and increasingly unpopular Boris Yeltsin, Vladimir Putin seemed like a perfect choice for the oligarchy to shape according to its own designs. Suddenly the boy who had stood in the shadows, dreaming of ruling the world, was a public figure, and his popularity soared. Russia and an infatuated West were determined to see the progressive leader of their dreams, even as he seized control of media, sent political rivals and critics into exile or to the grave, and smashed the country's fragile electoral system, concentrating power in the hands of his cronies.

As a journalist living in Moscow, Masha Gessen experienced this history firsthand, and for The Man Without a Face she has drawn on information and sources no other writer has tapped. Her account of how a "faceless" man maneuvered his way into absolute—and absolutely corrupt—power is the definitive biography of Vladimir Putin.

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