Can anyone truly understand Russia? Let one of the world's leading experts show you how, using the fascinating history of a nation to illuminate its future.
Russia is a country with no natural borders, no single ethnos, no true central identity. At the crossroads of Europe and Asia, it is everyone's 'other'. And yet it is one of the most powerful nations on earth, a master game-player on the global stage with a rich history of war and peace, poets and revolutionaries.
In this essential whistle-stop tour of the world's most misunderstood nation, Mark Galeotti takes us behind the myths to the heart of the Russian story: from the formation of a nation to its early legends - including Ivan the Terrible and Catherine the Great - to the rise and fall of the Romanovs, the Russian Revolution, the Cold War, Chernobyl and the end of the Soviet Union - plus the arrival of an obscure politician named Vladimir Putin.
Meet the world's most dangerous man.
Who is the real Vladimir Putin? What does he want? And what will he do next?
Despite the millions of words written on Putin's Russia, the West still fails to truly understand one of the world's most powerful politicians, whose influence spans the globe and whose networks of power reach into the very heart of our daily lives.
In this essential primer, Professor Mark Galeotti uncovers the man behind the myth, addressing the key misperceptions of Putin and explaining how we can decipher his motivations and next moves. From Putin's early life in the KGB and his real relationship with the USA to his vision for the future of Russia - and the world - Galeotti draws on new Russian sources and explosive unpublished accounts to give unparalleled insight into the man at the heart of global politics.
When the shadowy, notorious Spetsnaz were first formed, they drew on a long Soviet tradition of elite, behind-the-lines commando forces from World War II and even earlier. Throughout the 1960s-70s they were instrumental both in projecting Soviet power in the Third World and in suppressing resistance within the Warsaw pact. As a powerful, but mysterious tool of a world superpower, the Spetsnaz have inevitably become the focus of many 'tall tales' in the West. In this book, a peerless authority on Russia's military Special Forces debunks several of these myths, uncovering truths that are often even more remarkable. Now, since the chaotic dissolution of the USSR and the two Chechen Wars, Russian forces have seen increasing modernization, involving them ever more in power-projection, counter-insurgency and anti-terrorism and the Spetsnaz have been deployed as a spearhead in virtually all of these operations. This book offers a unique, absorbing guide to the secrets of the Spetsnaz, their most noteworthy missions and personalities, but is also packed with details such as orders-of-battle, equipment and operational doctrine.
While the size of Russia's regular forces has shrunk recently, its security and paramilitary elements have become increasingly powerful. Under the Putin regime they have proliferated and importantly seem set to remain Russia's most active armed agencies for the immediate future. In parallel, within the murky world where government and private interests intersect, a number of paramilitary 'private armies' operate almost as vigilantes, with government toleration or approval.This book offers a succinct overview of the official, semi-official and unofficial agencies that pursue Russian government and quasi-government objectives by armed means, from the 200,000-strong Interior Troops, through Police and other independent departmental forces, down to private security firms. Featuring rare photographs, and detailed colour plates of uniforms, insignia and equipment, this study by a renowned authority explores the Putin regime's shadowy special-forces apparatus, active in an array of counter-terrorist and counter-mafia wars since 1991.
In this fully illustrated book an expert on the conflicts traces the progress of the wars in Chechnya, from the initial Russian advance through to urban battles such as Grozny, and the prolonged guerrilla warfare in the mountainous regions. He assesses how the wars have torn apart the fabric of Chechen society and their impact on Russia itself. Featuring specially drawn full-colour mapping and drawing upon a wide range of sources, this succinct account explains the origins, history and consequences of Russia's wars in Chechnya, shedding new light on the history ? and prospects ? of the troubled region.
Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Russia's army has undergone a turbulent transformation, from the scattered left-overs of the old Soviet military, through a period of shocking decay and demoralization, to the disciplined force and sophisticated 'hybrid war' doctrine that enabled Vladimir Putin to seize Crimea virtually overnight in 2014. Using rare photographs and full colour images of the army in action, profiles of army leaders and defence ministers, as well as orders of battle and details of their equipment and dress, this is a vivid account of the army's troubled history and of its current character, capabilities and status. Written by an internationally respected author with remarkable access to Russian-language sources and veterans, this study is essential reading for anyone wishing to understand the growing power of Russia's military.
De quelle Russie Poutine est-il le maître ? Pour unifier ce peuple pluriel conquis tour à tour par les Vikings et les Mongols, sans véritable frontière naturelle, aussi européen qu'asiatique, la Russie a fait de ses multiples influences son identité propre, quitte à en forger les légendes.
Mais, en jouant de ce passé, elle s'est enfermée et contrainte dans ses rapports au monde extérieur. Telle est la thèse de Mark Galeotti qui, tout en relatant avec brio son histoire en quelques chapitres enlevés, nous donne les clés pour comprendre ce pays-continent. Une réflexion passionnante et jamais coupée de l'actuelle Russie.