How The Ruble Crash Could Strengthen Putin

The ruble is crashing, but the Russian government isn’t going to any time soon. Ironically, Russia's economic distress might even make Vladimir Putin stronger. 

The reasons for the ruble’s rapid decline – it’s dropped by nearly 13 percent against the dollar in November alone, and this week has seen more of the same—are neither obscure or surprising.

Read More

The Upside of a 'De-Americanized' World

This current bout of Washington absurdity has reached its denouement, for now. Though resolved for the next few weeks, these debates seem certain to continue, especially with the debt compromise only good until February. Overall, the result has been to accelerate a trend that has been gathering steam for at least the last five years: the move away from a Washington-centric world and towards a new, undefined, but decidedly less American global system.

Read More

The Winds Are Still Blowing East

While Washington is glued to the drama over health care, over the past few days, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has been in Beijing meeting with Chinese leaders including Premier Wen Jiabao and President Hu Jintao. In a series of communiqués, they celebrated the “strategic partnership” between the two countries and charted a course of future close relations.

Read More