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The retro world of Vladimir Putin

So much for the hope that a new, democratic, non-confrontational Russia would emerge in the 21st century -- hopes that began on Nov. 9, 1989, when Soviet Union leader Mikhail Gorbachev took up President Ronald Reagan’s challenge and tore down that 30-year-old Berlin wall.
Increasingly, some pundits, analysts and policy makers face a tough choice. Should they say Russian President Vladimir Putin, cloaked in a fig leaf of “plausible deniability” during transparently aggressive military actions and as vigilantes abduct and brutalize gays, is starting to remind them of the Nazis or Josef Stalin?
If Gorbachev and the hapless Boris Yeltsin ...


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