Combating terrorism, securing weapons of mass destruction, resolving regional conflicts, and stabilizing critical energy resources all hinge on cooperation from Russia and support from its leaders. With Vladimir Putin’s ascent to power, Russian leadership and Russia have changed dramatically.

Lilia Shevtsova, one of the most respected political analysts in Russia and the West, examines President Putin’s achievements as well as his failures. She explores the true nature of Putin’s leadership and how far he is willing to go and capable of going with further transformation.

This revised edition includes an examination of the recent presidential and parliamentary elections and their effects on Putin’s leadership and Russia.

About the Author

Lilia Shevtsova is one of Russia’s top political analysts, an award-winning journalist, and a regular commentator for major world television and radio networks. She is senior associate in the Russian and Eurasian Program at the Carnegie Endowment.

Reviews for this publication

Praise For The First Edition

"Out of [Shevstova's] blunt, often acerbic, account comes shrewd insights into Putin’s transformation from an implausible, contrived successor into a dominator unchallenged by oligarchs, legislators, or regional bosses, let alone a democratic opposition."
—Foreign Affairs

"Shevtsova is one of the most astute and independent-minded observers of the Russian political scene."
—Times Literary Supplement

"Offers many insights into Kremlin court politics, as well as Mr. Putin and his foes."
—The Economist

"An insightful account of how the Russian president is swaying on a pendulum between reform and stability."

"Provides an insightful analysis of the political maneuvering inside the Moscow beltway."

"This well-informed Russian observer offers a straightforward situation report. Shevtsova’s scorecard will interest serious Russia watchers."