Only two more sleeps until Christmas! Once upon a time I would have been super excited about that. Now, well, the kids aren’t kids anymore, and I’m an old man! But there’s wine and whisky and cakes and cookies, and mince pies, so there’s still a big smile on my face.
Sometimes I forget how important history is, which is odd, considering I majored in History!
Those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it. - George Santayana
As I read through the chapter on Russia, the penny dropped. That’s why President Putin and the Russian government have done such seemingly crazy things in the last few years
, particularly in the Ukraine.
In order to feel secure, Russia has always deemed it necessary to have a buffer zone between Western Europe and Moscow. Add on top of that, their desire to have access to a warm water port, and you begin to understand why Putin put the screws to President Viktor Yanukovych of Ukraine when he started playing both sides - courting the EU and NATO while pretending to keep Putin sweet.
As Putin put it:
Russia found itself in a position it could not retreat from. If you compress the springs all the way to its limit, it will snap back hard. You must always remember this.
I know I’m oversimplifying things here so go read the book
. I promise you won’t be disappointed and your world view will be expanded.