Playing chess with Putin


‘Established in 2014, the Daniel Morgan Academy is a new, independent, non-profit graduate school in downtown Washington, DC that specializes in tailoring its graduate degree and certificate programs to the specific needs of students who are serving or seeking a career in the US national security community.’ READ MORE HERE.


‘Leon Aron is a resident scholar and the director of Russian studies at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), where he studies Russian domestic and foreign policy, US-Russia relations, and the economic, social, and cultural aspects of Russia’s post-Soviet evolution.

Since 2015, Aron has been serving on the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which oversees the operations of several international broadcasting outlets, including Voice of America and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. From 1990 to 2004, Aron had been a permanent discussant on Voice of America’s radio and television show “Looking from America” (Gliadya iz Ameriki), which was broadcast to Russia every week. Aron has also taught at Georgetown University and was the recipient of the US Institute of Peace’s Peace Fellowship.’  READ MORE HERE.


Clearly, there is no shortage of Putin-bashers out there, but Leon Aron’s calm, almost professorial demeanor as well as his reasoned insights make a pleasant change from Gary Kasparov’s school-girlish/bar brawling emotional rants. He comes across as an academic intellectual. And for this reason I present the following excellently argued presentation on January 16 this year by Aron, called ‘Playing chess with Putin’. In particular, I am impressed with Aron’s use of chess-analogies through out the presentation when discussing Putin.

That being said, most of what Aron says is just rhetoric, ocassionally accompanied by some statistic that is taken as fact or a misrepresentation of some historical debate. (Noam Chomsky would eat Aron alive!)  I fondly remember my Aunt Rose telling me how she just loved to listen to some Evangelist radio preacher back in the ’70s–not because she bought for even one moment what he was saying–but because she found so fascinating the preacher’s utter shamelessness in shovelling so much stuff that he knew was pure bullshit!  But I digress…





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