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Winter Is Coming: Why Vladimir Putin and the Enemies of the Free World Must Be Stopped Hardcover – October 27, 2015
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"Brave, trenchant and convincing... The book gallops through the collapse of the Soviet Union and the chaotic 1990s and then charges full tilt at Vladimir Putin: a former KGB man who is a far more dangerous adversary than most outsiders realise. His rise to power in 1999 should have been a deafening alarm call to the West: as shocking as an ex-Gestapo officer coming to power in Germany... Western politicians who offer grand visions and bold leadership, such as Senator John McCain, don't get elected. Voters in democratic countries tend to prefer low key leaders and a quiet life to blood, sweat, toil and tears. How does one defend a free world that does not want to defend itself? Let us hope that Kasparov's book becomes a bestseller." --The Sunday Times (UK)
"His prose, like his chess, is fast, ferocious and unforgiving... vividly describes the growing authoritarianism of Mr. Putin's regime, culminating in the February murder of Boris Nemtsov, the opposition leader... The real power of Kasparov's book lies in his argument that the west must pursue a more assertive and moral foreign policy, something that has faded out of fashion." --Financial Times
"It's always important to read Garry Kasparov, who warned the dangers of Putinism long before so many others. He is that rare thing: A Russian democrat who is realistic about his country, but remains hopeful for the future." --Anne Applebaum, author of Gulag and Iron Curtain, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Nonfiction
"Garry Kasparov has the information-processing capacity of a supercomputer and the eloquence of an extraordinary orator. It takes a mind and a heart like his to analyze the last 25 years of the history of Russia in the world and emerge with not only an indictment of Western complicity but a clear call for Western action. Required reading for anyone planning to run in, work on, or vote in the 2016 presidential campaign." --Masha Gessen, author of The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin and Words Will Break Cement: The Passion of Pussy Riot
"Garry Kasparov has written a passionate indictment both of Russia's kleptocracy and the complacency of Western democracies in the face of Putin. This threat has become our central foreign policy challenge, and Kasparov's arguments are essential in understanding how to face it." --Francis Fukuyama, Stanford University
"Lively and readable...Throughout Winter Is Coming, Kasparov keeps the narration brisk and generously includes flashes of humor...If you know nothing about post-Soviet Russia, this is a good place to start. And if you're a longtime Russia watcher like me, you should read this book and steel yourself for the inevitable sadness and sense of loss as Kasparov details how quickly Russia's chance for democracy after the Cold War ended was snuffed out. Kasparov is a witty and engaging companion throughout the book. But make no mistake-he is walking with you through a cold, fading dusk that, in the end, promises only a long night of a Russian winter." --The Federalist
"If you're looking for a way to understand what Putin is about, this book may be for you... Kasparov has written a passionate, detailed warning to wake up the West." --St. Louis Post-Dispatch
"An emotionally charged look at Russia since the fall of Communism centred on the rise and rule of Vladimir Putin...A fascinating and thought-provoking book." --Irish Independent
About the Author
- Item Weight : 1.2 pounds
- Hardcover : 320 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1610396200
- ISBN-13 : 978-1610396202
- Dimensions : 6.5 x 1.13 x 9.63 inches
- Publisher : PublicAffairs; First Edition (stated), First Printing (October 27, 2015)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #954,757 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Whether or not he knew that to be foreshadowing for his later life remains to be questioned, but as Kasparov transitioned from chess grandmaster to political activist, one topic slowly formed at the forefront of his mind: the danger that Vladimir Putin poses to the world.
In WINTER IS COMING, Kasparov makes it clear that he has no political biases towards American partisans, letting loose with both barrels on both Republican and Democratic politicians, as well as offering sparing praise to both. The crux of his argument is that the United States and Europe should have pushed the pace, held the Soviet Communist Party accountable for the atrocities it committed, and integrated morality and human rights into their foreign policy platform.
In that regard, he is particularly scathing of President Barack Obama's treatment of Putin, attempting to work kindly with Putin up until the 2014 invasion of Crimea and Donbass, and even after that invasion, not going far enough to punish Putin for his actions.
But again, Kasparov is apolitical in those criticisms: George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Condoleeza Rice all receive criticism from Kasparov for treating Putin with kid gloves and not realizing the threat that Putin poses to the world.
Kasparov also gives the reader a Russian's perspective as to what drives Putin. The best way I can describe Kasparov's take is that in some regards, Putin is a modern-day Hitler in that the lack of condemnation from Western democracies further emboldens him and drives him to expand his power, both domestically and abroad. In other regards, Putin is a Russian Don Corleone, using the powers of his office to benefit his oil oligarch friends and further increase all of their net worths.
In the end, Kasparov warns that until the Western democracies draw a line in the sand and hold Putin accountable through harsh sanctions and a willingness to intervene in areas such as Crimea, Donbass, and South Ossetia, Putin will continue to expand his sphere of influence, to the detriment of said Western democracies.
Witty, intellectual, and insightful, Kasparov's take on Putin is a solid read for anybody studying the Russian threat.
Mr. Kasparov makes the ardent point that the USA represents ideals as well as a particular group of people.
He believes that the USA betrayed its own moral high ground in dealing with and failing to deal with the threats from Russia.
The book is well written and contains equal measures of compelling logic and heartfelt rhetoric.
Mr. Kasparov is not just a master of chess, he is a convincing political analyst.
If you are interested in better understanding current day Russia and its political elites then this is a must read book.
Top reviews from other countries
Very important book that should be required reading for all Western politicians and diplomats.