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Ralph Peters: A Czar Is Born...
The New York Post ^ | August 14, 2008 | Ralph Peters

Posted on 08/14/2008 1:38:04 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

THE Russians are alcohol-sodden barbarians, but now and then they vomit up a genius.

Prime Minister - and now generalissimo - Vladimir Putin is Mother Russia's latest world-class wonder.

Let's be honest: Putin's the most effective leader in the world today.

That doesn't mean he's good news for anybody - not even for the Russians, in the long run. His ruthless ambition and gambler's audacity may end terribly.

But, for now, give the devil his due: After a long string of successes, from his personal mastery of Russia's government and media to his coldblooded energy brinkmanship, Putin has capped his performance with a stunning success in Georgia.

Not a single free-world leader currently in office can measure up to Czar Vladimir the Great.

Following his turnaround of Russia from bankrupt kleptocracy to flush-with-cash autocracy, he's now openly determined to restore Moscow's old empire.

And he's getting away with it.

As a former intelligence officer, I'm awestruck by the genius with which Putin assessed the strategic environment on the eve of his carefully scripted invasion of Georgia.

With his old KGB skills showing (he must've been a formidable operative), Putin not only sized up President Bush humiliatingly well, but precisely anticipated Europe's nonreaction - while taking a perfect-fit measure of Georgia's mercurial president.

Putin not only knew what he was doing - he knew exactly what others would do.

This is intelligence work at the hall-of-fame level. (For our part, we had all the intelligence pieces in our hands and failed to assemble the puzzle.)

On the military side, the months of meticulous planning and extensive preparations for this invasion were covered by military exercises, disingenuous explanations - and maskirovka, the art of deception the Red Army had mastered. The Russians convinced us to see what we wanted to see.

(Excerpt) Read more at nypost.com ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Politics/Elections; Russia
KEYWORDS: bush; coldwar2; communism; energy; geopolitics; georgia; oil; premierputin; putin; ralphpeters; russia; southossetia; sovietunion; ussr; war
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Ouch!
1 posted on 08/14/2008 1:38:04 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Putin wouldn’t have the Obamalon for lunch.... heck, he’d not even consider it a snack.


2 posted on 08/14/2008 1:40:13 PM PDT by Da Coyote
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

What is it about the Bushes that makes them naive about their enemies, foreign and domestic?


3 posted on 08/14/2008 1:41:11 PM PDT by Daveinyork
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Some of those lines are word-for-word identical to those in Michael Reagan’s article discussing Putin.


4 posted on 08/14/2008 1:41:55 PM PDT by LoneStarGI
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Peters is right. Putin’s ruthlessness and grand strategy have been first-class.


5 posted on 08/14/2008 1:42:16 PM PDT by Virginia Ridgerunner ("We must not forget that there is a war on and our troops are in the thick of it!"--Duncan Hunter)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Peters is correct.

Putin ran circles around the west, including the USA.

If he decides to confront the US over the long term, it'll be a dangerous time for all of us.

"Evil Genius" is apt.

6 posted on 08/14/2008 1:45:50 PM PDT by Mariner
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I like Ralph Peters in general but ...

This piece is a bit like Chris Matthews saying Obama makes his leg tingle in its gushing admiration for Pootie-pute.

We weren’t going to fight a land war in Asia over a place whose name most Americans associate with peaches and a baseball team.

And sizing up the Georgian leader? Just what the hell was HE going to do when faced with the Russian tank columns?

Putin is ruthless and all the rest, but do we have to call him an “evil genius”? Can’t we just say he’s an opportunist and ruthless and leave it at that?


7 posted on 08/14/2008 1:46:13 PM PDT by 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten
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To: LoneStarGI
Reagan was following Peters' article.

As the always-perceptive Ralph Peters wrote in the New York Post, Putin’s latest venture “not only sized up President Bush humiliatingly well, but precisely anticipated Europe's nonreaction -- while taking a perfect-fit measure of Georgia's mercurial president.”

8 posted on 08/14/2008 1:46:54 PM PDT by Virginia Ridgerunner ("We must not forget that there is a war on and our troops are in the thick of it!"--Duncan Hunter)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Watched him last night, among highly qualified others, on C-Span. I was mesmerized I listened. You can find the broadcast on cspan.org and scroll down to the show hosted by the American Enterprise Institute. It's worth a viewing for those of us who have lived in blissful hope that the world had changed. Boy! Was I a dope and, once again, my mother was right. Wish I could let her know that for all the joshing she took at our hands, she was a better analyst than 95% of those making a living at it.

When the Berlin wall came down and we had a new openness, she said “Don't buy it for a minute. This is the beginning of a new era of misery. They just let the dogs loose.”

9 posted on 08/14/2008 1:47:39 PM PDT by Constitutions Grandchild
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To: Da Coyote

Putin would use Obama as a toothpick!


10 posted on 08/14/2008 1:48:23 PM PDT by balls
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de·ni·al Listen to the pronunciation of denial Pronunciation: \di-ˈnī(-ə)l, dē-\ 1: refusal to admit the truth or reality 6: a psychological defense mechanism in which confrontation with a personal problem or with reality is avoided by denying the existence of the problem or reality Been to a psychologist lately Obama? It's all fun and games, until the shit hits the fan. Yeah, we can give up our nukes, and maybe it will seem like it worked for a while...if we're lucky, but someday, history will come back around as it always does, and the gentle people of North America will be speaking Russian or Chinese for the next few hundred years.
11 posted on 08/14/2008 1:48:28 PM PDT by villagerjoel (Unfortunately, Mr Worsley's crab will not be displayed in any museum. A friend has eaten it.)
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To: Constitutions Grandchild

Very perceptive - others said this at the time, but not very many!


12 posted on 08/14/2008 1:50:00 PM PDT by 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten
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To: Mariner
We can economically cripple pootie and his thugs... all we need is the will to do so... therein lies the problem.

LLS

13 posted on 08/14/2008 1:50:36 PM PDT by LibLieSlayer ( REAGANISM not communism)
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To: Daveinyork

I’ve often wondered this myself. Especially after Bush senior was betrayed so malignantly by his own domestic enemies.


14 posted on 08/14/2008 1:53:23 PM PDT by jim35 ("...when the lion and the lamb lie down together, ...we'd better damn sure be the lion")
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To: LibLieSlayer
You'll find that addressed in the broadcast I mentioned above. It was a panel of four men, one of whom was the Commander in charge of training the Georgian troops for their assistance in Iraq. He left a week before this broke out. Additionally, the strategists said Russia still can't hit the broad side of a barn with a cannon, but make up for it with overwhelming numbers. It really is worth a watch.
15 posted on 08/14/2008 1:54:24 PM PDT by Constitutions Grandchild
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

This is painful, but true.


16 posted on 08/14/2008 1:57:58 PM PDT by autumnraine
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To: jim35

Bush junior never seem to get it that his enemies would go to any length to destroy him. He actually thought they would work with him.


17 posted on 08/14/2008 1:59:47 PM PDT by Daveinyork
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To: eyespysomething

Putin ping, if you ever look here any more.


18 posted on 08/14/2008 2:01:15 PM PDT by SittinYonder (Ic þæt gehate, þæt ic heonon nelle fleon fotes trym, ac wille furðor gan)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Citing sources inside the president's administration, Belkovsky claims that after eight years in power Putin has secretly accumulated more than $40bn (£20bn). The sum would make him Russia's - and Europe's - richest man.

In an interview with the Guardian, Belkovsky repeated his claims that Putin owns vast holdings in three Russian oil and gas companies, concealed behind a “non-transparent network of offshore trusts”.

Putin “effectively” controls 37% of the shares of Surgutneftegaz, an oil exploration company and Russia's third biggest oil producer, worth $20bn, he says. He also owns 4.5% of Gazprom, and “at least 75%” of Gunvor, a mysterious Swiss-based oil trader, founded by Gennady Timchenko, a friend of the president's, Belkovsky alleges.

Asked how much Putin was worth, Belkovsky said: “At least $40bn. Maximum we cannot know. I suspect there are some businesses I know nothing about.” He added: “It may be more. It may be much more.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2007/dec/21/russia.topstories3

Even if he has 10 %, or 1 %, of the above it is serious money.

19 posted on 08/14/2008 2:01:45 PM PDT by AdmSmith
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To: Daveinyork
I think they are like alot of people, they assume that people are generally good. Or since it isn't in their nature to con and lie, it's not the first thing they think of when meeting others. I get suckered alot, but mostly because I can't believe someone would have to nerve to lie outrageously in my face. But they do and I just have to hope there is a such thing as karma.
20 posted on 08/14/2008 2:04:38 PM PDT by autumnraine
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To: AdmSmith
Also covered in last night's program on C-span. It was a great synopsis of all the sources and they got it into about an hour — supposed to have questions and answers at the end, but the press was so depressed and stunned, they didn't get many.
21 posted on 08/14/2008 2:07:30 PM PDT by Constitutions Grandchild
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To: AdmSmith

I wonder if we (the world) assumes that Hitler was the last great evil dictator/world conqueror? Or Stalin?

Like Napoleon, Stalin and Hitler would just be it, no more. I know we seem to think we as a society have grown above such things, but we may come to realize that we are all just naive.

Could Putin really be the next Hitler? If he has the wealth, and obviously the world fears him. That is the thing that scares me the most, that no one is willing to fight him. That is obvious from this week. He got confirmation that the world won’t touch him.


22 posted on 08/14/2008 2:07:48 PM PDT by autumnraine
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To: jim35
GW didn't come off so well in the analysis last night. Some of the panel were outright incensed at his performance.
23 posted on 08/14/2008 2:08:46 PM PDT by Constitutions Grandchild
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To: 2 Kool 2 Be 4-Gotten

While the world may not see Georgia as “worth it”, the fact that they know they can just march in and land grab is frightening. It’s like letting a child get out of control. At what point does it become “worth it”?


24 posted on 08/14/2008 2:09:04 PM PDT by autumnraine
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Putin is smart, but calling him a genius is stretching things. Let's have a look at a couple of things:

Russia's economy: Yes, the Russians are currently awash with money (which is why it is interesting to read people on FR still referring to 'rusty ships.' However, that is because it is an energy exporter that also happens to have the world's largest natural gas reserves. With the current price regime for energy, all the 'brains' one needs is to not flush the money down the drain! That doesn't require genius ....just discipline. Furthermore, Russians who are in business are quite hardworking, thus they are responsible for their own success and hence it should not be attributed to Putin. What Putin did is actually let the economy function rather than expose it to 'experiments' (the Chinese have done the same thing, and their economy is also doing much better than anyone could have ever dreamed of 15 years ago)

The military victory in Georgia: What is so amazing about that? It was inevitable that the Russians would defeat the Georgians. After all, Russia had a significant quantitative and qualitative edge, and it appears like the Georgians rushed in without thinking too hard about things. There is nothing amazing about the success in Georgia, and nothing to make Putin into a genius. As a matter of fact, Putin acted in a stupid manner when he rolled past South Ossetia into Georgia proper. Had he merely stayed in SO there would have been no global condemnation, but the moment he started moving into the rest of Georgia it was inevitable that a reaction would arise that would not be to Russia's best interest. Thus, it was not genius but rather rashness.

Playing Georgia's president: Again, another even that doesn't make Putin a genius. Georgia's president is an emotionally volatile character, and the moment the S.Ossetians started shelling Georgian positions it was inevitable that he would overreact. That doesn't make Putin a genius ....all it means is that the Georgian president should lay off the coffee and think several steps ahead.

Europe's non-reaction: Also NOT genius. It was obvious that Western Europe would not do anything since they are too dependent on Russia's natural gas supplies. That just needs someone to be observant ...even Ahmadenijad is 'smart' enough to know that.

Bush's non-reaction: Well, it is obvious that Putin was VERY wrong here. Bush reacted, and did so in a very presidential manner.

Anyways, Putin is shrewd. However I have yet to see the 'genius' aspect of any of this. In my opinion the guy won the battle in Georgia, but in the process lost East and Central Europe.

That is not smart.

25 posted on 08/14/2008 2:10:40 PM PDT by spetznaz (Nuclear-tipped Ballistic Missiles: The Ultimate Phallic Symbol)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Great article except for one thing...

Czar Vladimir the Great.

Should be "Vlad The Impaler".

26 posted on 08/14/2008 2:14:24 PM PDT by PsyOp (Truth in itself is rarely sufficient to make men act. - Clauswitz, On War, 1832.)
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To: Constitutions Grandchild
Watched him last night, among highly qualified others, on C-Span.

I happened to see a portion of that program - Peters provided a good perspective of the conflict. He really blasted the media for accepting the Russian view of events. I sent an E-mail to Rush and suggested that he watch the program.

27 posted on 08/14/2008 2:17:14 PM PDT by Ben Hecks
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
THE Russians are alcohol-sodden barbarians, but now and then they vomit up a genius.

LOL. Is Ralph Peters part Polish? ;-)

28 posted on 08/14/2008 2:17:54 PM PDT by Clemenza (No Comment)
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To: spetznaz

Illarionov: Russia Lost the Georgian War
The war against Georgia was a brilliant provocation carefully planned and successfully carried out by the Russian leadership. The campaign was practically identical to the plan carried out in another theatre at another time [Chechen warlord Shamil] Basaev’s attack into Dagestan and the beginning of the second Chechen war in 1999.

The military losses of Georgia are greater than those of Russia. At the same time, however, the financial, foreign policy, and moral losses of Russia are much more significant than those of Georgia.

more here:

http://www.theotherrussia.org/2008/08/13/illarionov-russia-lost-the-georgian-war/


29 posted on 08/14/2008 2:18:43 PM PDT by AdmSmith
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
This isn't genius, this is audacious.
30 posted on 08/14/2008 2:22:44 PM PDT by Cyber Liberty (Who would McQueeg rather have mad at him: You or the liberals? FREE LAZAMATAZ!)
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To: Mariner
"Evil Genius" is apt.

If we want to blow smoke up Putins rear end, we should probably call him a Prince of Princes. IE - The Prime Minister of the Golden Horde.

31 posted on 08/14/2008 2:31:22 PM PDT by justa-hairyape
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To: Ben Hecks
Well, I thought it was very well done. They stuck to the facts, tried to keep emotion out of it and the analysis (especially the U.S. Commander) blew me away. He was great! I hope many others will turn their attention to this as we all need a wake-up call if these guys are even marginally right.

The first thing I did this morning was roll hubby out of bed to, “So, what's your analysis of the American Enterprise Institute?” He stumbled out of the bathroom with “Geez, Kathy! Can't a guy even get a cup of coffee before you start.” I poured him one and gave him an additional 10 seconds to answer. Okay, so I'm a little driven when I want answers, I'll grant you.

32 posted on 08/14/2008 2:33:32 PM PDT by Constitutions Grandchild
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To: spetznaz
It was obvious that Western Europe would not do anything since they are too dependent on Russia's natural gas supplies.

True. The only reason Russia feels secure to move south is that they can stop the West with just the flick of a switch.

33 posted on 08/14/2008 2:37:36 PM PDT by justa-hairyape
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To: PsyOp

Ha! I thought that same thing when I was reading it.


34 posted on 08/14/2008 2:41:29 PM PDT by autumnraine
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
"The empire of the czars hasn't produced such a frightening genius since Stalin."

The article's last sentence is a chiller. McCain is the only one who has read Putin correctly from the start. When it comes to people-judging skills, Bush is like the Obama-ites......he only sees what he wants to see..... thus we get "good soul" Putin, Freedom Medal winners Tenet & Bremer, AG Gonzales, Justice Myers, Spokesman Scott McClellan, and ol' "Good-Job" Brownie.

35 posted on 08/14/2008 2:56:42 PM PDT by Reo
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
As a former intelligence officer, I'm awestruck by the genius with which Putin assessed the strategic environment on the eve of his carefully scripted invasion of Georgia.

Why doesn't this surprise me (that being a former Intel officer finding himself awestruck).

I like Peters, regarding much, but he is spouting alot of hyperbole nonsense in this one.......(just as he was 2 years back saying Iraq was lost)....

36 posted on 08/14/2008 3:44:56 PM PDT by SevenMinusOne
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To: DevSix

Peters can really sound like an hysterical woman at times. And he’s a pathological Bush basher. I wonder what he said in the late 1970s when the Sovs invaded Afghanistan. Did he predict the death of the West then too?


37 posted on 08/14/2008 4:21:53 PM PDT by PaleoBob
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To: PaleoBob

Bush would have been called an economic hero if he had opened drilling in ANWR.


38 posted on 08/14/2008 6:21:56 PM PDT by Cowgirl
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Given that this is Ralph Peters' analysis, it scares the shiite out of me.

Things are looking like the run up to WW-II, only things are happening faster, as most things do these days.

And we are going to be stuck with an old man with a reputation as a hothead, or a very useful idiot. Useful to Putin that is.

Along with a Congress full of leftover hippies and peaceniks.

Jolly.

39 posted on 08/14/2008 7:52:33 PM PDT by El Gato ("The Second Amendment is the RESET button of the United States Constitution." -- Doug McKay)
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To: LibLieSlayer
We can economically cripple pootie and his thugs... all we need is the will to do so.

We could, and we did, under Reagan. Now after 20 years of "moderates", Clinton and the Bushes, we may or may not be able to. Entitlements are eating up ever larger parts of the budget, and of the economy. No one seems to even *want* to do anything about the growth of the "untouchable" part of the budget. Not much is left over to spend on the military. We import most of our "black gold" and products made from it. The Russians export it.

It's they who could economically cripple the west, at least Western Europe.

And the speaker of the House is out to "Save the Planet", rather than "Save the US".

40 posted on 08/14/2008 7:58:48 PM PDT by El Gato ("The Second Amendment is the RESET button of the United States Constitution." -- Doug McKay)
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To: Constitutions Grandchild

Thanks!

LLS


41 posted on 08/15/2008 4:29:34 AM PDT by LibLieSlayer ( REAGANISM not communism)
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To: El Gato

Some of us are working to reverse that trend. I pray quite a bit.

LLS


42 posted on 08/15/2008 4:36:22 AM PDT by LibLieSlayer ( REAGANISM not communism)
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To: Cyber Liberty; 2ndDivisionVet
This isn't genius, this is audacious.

If it succeeds, then that's "a distinction without a difference".

One of Napoleon's favorite sayings was "L'audace, l'audace, toujours l'audace!" (Audacity, audacity, always audacity!)

As history shows, the death and destruction he wrought before he could be finally brought down was immense, and all with relatively primitive weaponry and technology by today's standards.

43 posted on 08/15/2008 5:11:06 AM PDT by tarheelswamprat
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To: Cowgirl

Bush would have been called an economic hero if he had opened drilling in ANWR.


Sure, Bush has weaknesses as a president, for that matter, Reagan was way too quick to back off his GREAT new federalism plan. But it’s been 7+ years of unrelenting Bush-bashing from the Left, the Right, the Center, and I’m sick of it. I am just SICK OF IT. I can’t be the only person who is.


44 posted on 08/15/2008 6:17:15 AM PDT by PaleoBob
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To: DevSix

Why doesn’t this surprise me (that being a former Intel officer finding himself awestruck).

I like Peters, regarding much, but he is spouting alot of hyperbole nonsense in this one.......(just as he was 2 years back saying Iraq was lost)....


Absolutely. Peters needed to spend his portion of the AEI session explaining what a complete moron he was about Iraq.


45 posted on 08/15/2008 6:20:27 AM PDT by PaleoBob
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To: PsyOp

His behavior makes me think of Vlad the Inhaler...


46 posted on 08/15/2008 6:33:15 AM PDT by sheik yerbouty ( Make America and the world a jihad free zone!)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Let's be honest: Putin's the most effective leader in the world today.

I smell a future Time Man of the Year issue coming on....

Takogo Kak Putin/Такого как Путин

47 posted on 08/15/2008 7:12:56 AM PDT by archy (Et Thybrim multo spumantem sanguine cerno. [from Virgil's *Aeneid*.])
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Ouch is right.

Will Obama have coffee with Putin? He will be squished like a bug and we will go down under him.


48 posted on 08/15/2008 7:16:43 AM PDT by The Mayor ( In Gods works we see His hand; in His Word we hear His heart)
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To: sheik yerbouty
Vlad the Inhaler...

I believe that was Bill Clinton's name for him when he took his college trip to Moscow.

49 posted on 08/15/2008 8:20:55 AM PDT by PsyOp (Put government in charge of tire pressure, and we'll soon have a shortage of air. - PsyOp.)
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To: PsyOp

Apparently they were long time fiends..


50 posted on 08/15/2008 9:51:28 AM PDT by sheik yerbouty ( Make America and the world a jihad free zone!)
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