(CISAC Stanford) Abstract: What is Putin up to? In this lecture, Brian Taylor argues that Russian foreign policy is best understood as a product of both Russian power and purpose. Purpose is understood as the worldview and mentality of Team Putin, which Taylor has defined as “The Code of Putinism” (as elaborated in his 2018 book of that name). Power and purpose combined produce a foreign policy strategy driven by Russia’s consistent attempts to “punch above its weight.” The disjuncture between this Russian mentality and foreign policy strategy and traditional US approaches to world politics explain the current low point in US-Russian relations.
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