Leonid Bershidsky, Washington Post

Leonid Bershidsky

Washington Post


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Recent articles by Leonid:

Russia’s Strategic Bombing Campaign Is Ill-Conceived

What worked against increasingly isolated belligerents in World War II won’t beat a victimized nation that enjoys strong outside support. → Read More

As Ukraine War Drags On, Expect More Cruelty to POWs

For both sets of combatants, the growing mixture of nervous exhaustion, emotional hardening and hatred for the enemy will likely lead to more atrocities. → Read More

How the Russia-Ukraine War Can and Cannot End

Brewing talk of a diplomatic solution to the conflict demands an honest look at the possible end games. → Read More

The Wishful Theory of ‘Strategic Russian Defeat’

Advocates of the strategy want to transform Russia the way Germany and Japan were after they lost World War II. But there’s one big hitch. → Read More

Putin Has Never Cared About Red Lines

Russia’s leader doesn’t really operate according to the logic of provocation and response. Instead, he is constantly searching for opportunities to gain an advantage. → Read More

Putin’s War Has Come Home to Russia

The “partial mobilization” of reservists may have sowed unrest, but by deepening the engagement of ordinary Russians, it will sharpen the conflict for both Russia and Ukraine. → Read More

Why Putin Can’t Tap Fascism’s Greatest Resource

Neither he nor Russia’s hard-core nationalists have come up with convincing arguments to persuade ordinary post-Soviet Russians to die in a discretionary conflict. → Read More

Leonid Bershidsky: A weakened Putin is no use to Russia

None of this means that Putin is about to be toppled. → Read More

A Weakened Putin Is No Use to Russia

As military reversals erode his domestic legitimacy, Russia’s president faces an ever-darker road, and more drastic choices, in order to retain power. → Read More

Putin and the Possibility of Defeat in Ukraine

Russia’s hubris will deepen the psychological effects of its battlefield setbacks → Read More

Ukraine’s Counteroffensive Shows Time Isn’t on Putin’s Side

Russia’s president is overestimating the weakness of Europe’s democracies and underestimating Ukraine’s willingness to fight. → Read More

Putin Is Now Russia’s Deluder-in-Chief

Six months into the war, Russia's president is clearly the deceiver, not the deceived, about the conflict’s stalemate. → Read More

Mikhail Gorbachev’s Failures Did Not Go Deep Enough

The evil empire he inherited crumbled but a new one has been allowed to rise in its place. → Read More

Foreign Firms’ Russian Assets Are Lousy Deals for Locals

Most are essentially caretaker arrangements that represent, for both sides, bets on normalization, with Russian buyers bearing much of the risk. → Read More

Putin Prepares to Declare Himself a Conqueror

The Kremlin’s emerging plans for occupied Ukraine could amount to a declaration of permanent, open-ended war against other parts of Europe. → Read More

Hard Lessons From the War in Ukraine

Compromise seems impossible, neither side is sure to win and, no matter what happens, Ukraine will need lasting help from its Western supporters. → Read More

Is Breaking Up Russia the Only Way to End Its Imperialism?

Overcentralization hasn’t worked to make the country peaceful and prosperous. → Read More

Why So Few Big Rats Have Fled Putin’s Ship

It’s unclear what top bureaucrats, officers and business leaders would gain from denouncing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine — but they know what they would lose. → Read More

Ukraine Has High Hopes as a Victorious Nation

Ukrainian intellectuals are beginning to look beyond the country’s mere survival as an independent state to chart a new path for it in Europe. → Read More

Ukraine Has High Hopes as a Victorious Nation

Ukrainian intellectuals are beginning to look beyond the country’s mere survival as an independent state to chart a new path for it in Europe. → Read More