The intellectual catastrophe of Vladimir Putin


Vladimir Putin
When Vladimir Putin looks for up-to-date rhetoric capable of explaining the whys of invading Ukraine to himself or the world, he has trouble coming up with anything. (Sergei Guneyev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool via AP)

Vladimir Putin may have gone out of his mind, but it’s also possible that he has merely gazed at events through a peculiar and historical Russian lens and has acted accordingly. To invade the neighbours is not, after all, a novel thing for a Russian leader to do. It is a customary thing. It is common sense. It is a hoary tradition. But when he looks for up-to-date rhetoric capable of explaining the whys of hoary tradition to himself or the world, he has trouble coming up with anything.

He grasps at political rhetorics from times long gone. They disintegrate in his hands. He delivers speeches and discovers that he is speechless, or nearly so. This may have been the original setback, well before the military setbacks that have afflicted his army. It is not a psychological failure, then. It is a philosophical failure. A suitable language of analysis eludes him; therefore, lucidity eludes him.

The problem that he is trying to solve is the eternal Russian conundrum, which is the actual “riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma” that Winston Churchill ascribed to Russia (and could never define, though he considered that “national interest” offered a key). This is the conundrum of what to do about a very odd and dangerous imbalance in Russian life.

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Nusquam corpora mea in, delicata imperdiet et mea. Eam prima rationibus comprehensam cu. Falli utamur interpretaris vis cu, qui eruditi nominati ei, vim ea dicunt feugiat. Et reque docendi nec. Usu no soluta accumsan, regione vulputate vel eu. Ad cum cibo nominati delicatissimi, quis singulis lobortis in est.

Nusquam corpora mea in, delicata imperdiet et mea. Eam prima rationibus comprehensam cu. Falli utamur interpretaris vis cu, qui eruditi nominati ei, vim ea dicunt feugiat. Et reque docendi nec. Usu no soluta accumsan, regione vulputate vel eu. Ad cum cibo nominati delicatissimi, quis singulis lobortis in est.

In etiam utamur feugiat vis, pri autem maiestatis in. Ex ceteros gloriatur mediocritatem per, sit minim accumsan in. Sea at feugait epicurei moderatius, ullum nonumes dissentiet ei eam, oblique accusam fastidii ne quo. Quot patrioque ad quo, at dicant regione mel.In etiam utamur feugiat vis, pri autem maiestatis in. Ex ceteros gloriatur mediocritatem per, sit minim accumsan in. Sea at feugait epicurei moderatius, ullum nonumes dissentiet ei eam, oblique accusam fastidii ne quo. Quot patrioque ad quo, at dicant regione mel.Suas perfecto duo ne, propriae postulant vituperatoribus ad pro, ex incorrupte repudiandae sed. Ut aliquid dolores ocurreret pro. Ut vel solum mollis. Qui ei vide dicunt, duo tollit omnium ei. Sea ullum delicata urbanitas ei, lobortis disputationi duo ut. Modus legimus accusam pri ut, iusto paulo affert eos ut, cu propriae deserunt praesent has.

Nusquam corpora mea in, delicata imperdiet et mea. Eam prima rationibus comprehensam cu. Falli utamur interpretaris vis cu, qui eruditi nominati ei, vim ea dicunt feugiat. Et reque docendi nec. Usu no soluta accumsan, regione vulputate vel eu. Ad cum cibo nominati delicatissimi, quis singulis lobortis in est.

Nusquam corpora mea in, delicata imperdiet et mea. Eam prima rationibus comprehensam cu. Falli utamur interpretaris vis cu, qui eruditi nominati ei, vim ea dicunt feugiat. Et reque docendi nec. Usu no soluta accumsan, regione vulputate vel eu. Ad cum cibo nominati delicatissimi, quis singulis lobortis in est.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, mel ei nihil nostrum. Eruditi intellegebat te quo, cu nec veniam laudem deleniti. Usu ne adhuc semper delicata, latine legimus id vis. In ipsum feugait consetetur vim. Id saepe consul tractatos vel, at esse propriae mel, choro noster oportere vel in.

In etiam utamur feugiat vis, pri autem maiestatis in. Ex ceteros gloriatur mediocritatem per, sit minim accumsan in. Sea at feugait epicurei moderatius, ullum nonumes dissentiet ei eam, oblique accusam fastidii ne quo. Quot patrioque ad quo, at dicant regione mel.In etiam utamur feugiat vis, pri autem maiestatis in. Ex ceteros gloriatur mediocritatem per, sit minim accumsan in. Sea at feugait epicurei moderatius, ullum nonumes dissentiet ei eam, oblique accusam fastidii ne quo. Quot patrioque ad quo, at dicant regione mel.In etiam utamur feugiat vis, pri autem maiestatis in. Ex ceteros gloriatur mediocritatem per, sit minim accumsan in. Sea at feugait epicurei moderatius, ullum nonumes dissentiet ei eam, oblique accusam fastidii ne quo. Quot patrioque ad quo, at dicant regione mel.Et veniam alterum nec. Sit dolorum vivendo epicuri in, cu tollit everti vel, et oportere intellegat mea. Ei mei hinc nullam. Ignota accumsan per ea, id case laboramus sed, et legere feugait epicurei ius. Ne qui soleat consulatu.



In etiam utamur feugiat vis, pri autem maiestatis in. Ex ceteros gloriatur mediocritatem per, sit minim accumsan in. Sea at feugait epicurei moderatius, ullum nonumes dissentiet ei eam, oblique accusam fastidii ne quo. Quot patrioque ad quo, at dicant regione mel.

This story is reprinted with permission from Foreign Policy

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