Putin's Yearning for Empire
A talk by Igor Lukes, Boston University
On Saturday, APRIL 2 at 4 PM EST
presentation stresses the geopolitical centrality of Ukraine for the
overall balance of power. It places the present war in a historical
context that includes Swedish Vikings, Mongols, the Polish Commonwealth,
Tsarist Russia, the Bolsheviks, the Third Reich, and the Soviet Union.
The concluding argument is that, in the past, the West sought to contain
and isolate crises. This is what led to the Munich Conference of 1938
and characterized western behavior throughout the Cold War.
Putin expected the West to respond to his aggression with
containment. Instead, he found himself baffled with the consequence of a new doctrine: defend forward.
His books include On the Edge of the Cold War: American Diplomats and Spies in Postwar Prague (New York: Oxford, 2012), Rudolf Slansky: His Trials and Trial (Washington: Woodrow Wilson Center, the working papers series, 2006), Czechoslovakia Between Stalin and Hitler: The Diplomacy of Edvard Benes in the 1930′s (New York: Oxford, 1996). Lukes is also a co-author and co-editor of The Munich Conference, 1938: Prelude to World War II (London: Frank Cass, 1999), Inside the Apparat: Perspectives on the Soviet Union (1990), and Gorbachev’s USSR: A System in Crisis (1990).
Lukes is the recipient of the Central Intelligence Agency 2012 Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Literature on Intelligence. He was the 2012 W. Glenn Campbell and Rita Ricardo-Campbell National Fellow and the Bitton National Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. His work has won the support of various other institutions, including Fulbright, Fulbright-Hays, the Woodrow Wilson Center, IREX, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.