Sympathy for Putin

My latest column in Spears argues that we need to abandon the widespread myth that Russian President Vladimir Putin is any sort of strategic genius. He’s a prisoner, and the only way he’s leaving the Kremlin is feet first.

Announcing the Launch of Our New Podcast, Departures with Robert Amsterdam

Unscripted and off-the-cuff, the Departures podcast invites you to join Robert Amsterdam and other members of the Amsterdam & Partners LLP team for frank and personal conversations on the pressing issues of the day.

Russia as a Legalistic Country

Just one excerpt from a thoroughly excellent piece by Kadri Liik at the European Council on Foreign Relations: It was actually surprising to see the jubilation in Moscow when Donald Trump was elected US president. The Kremlin assumed that Trump would deprioritise the American-led global order, which would inevitably open the door to a Russian […]

A Love Song from Lavrov

There’s been a lot of good analysis published on Secretary of State Rex Tillerson’s first visit to Russia this week, but it was down at the bottom of this piece by Amie Ferris-Rotman in Foreign Policy which stands out: Despite the high stakes and heightened scrutiny, there were some aspects of Wednesday’s visit that seemed […]

A Salute to Russia’s Courageous, Woken Youth

Mikhail Fishman has a great oped in the Moscow Times which highlights the role of youth in the anti-corruption protest movement which shocked Russia and the world this past weekend. The next generation of Russians doesn’t bear the trauma and exhaustion of the beleaguered opposition – they don’t remember a past without Putin, but they […]

Top 3 Things Putin is Loving about the United States

Given the deepening controversies surrounding the House Intelligence Committee’s investigation into Russia’s election meddling, it has become fashionable to conclude that it is already game over for Vladimir Putin. Indeed, it seems like ages ago when Donald Trump’s victory was greeted with champagne toasts in Moscow. Putin even told state media to cut back on […]

The Expediency of Russian Oligarchs

In light of the rapidly developing news stories surrounding President Donald Trump, his former advisor Paul Manafort, and the alleged connection through his previous work on behalf of Russian businessman Oleg Deripaska, I spoke briefly with Damien Sharkov at Newsweek about how Vladimir Putin and most Russian oligarchs align their interests. Excerpt below: Robert Amsterdam, […]

What’s Behind the FBI Case against Russian Hackers?

Two and half years ago, Yahoo! suffered one of the worst attacks in history, as hackers gained access to some 500 million accounts. In a disclosure last September,  the company indicated that data including names, email addresses, telephone numbers, birth dates, encrypted passwords and, in some cases, security questions — was compromisedby what it believed […]

Overreacting to Russia

For weeks now I’ve been arguing, perhaps in vain, that the lurid conspiracy theories lying beneath the surface of much of the Trump-Flynn-Sessions-Kislyak story did not necessarily add up to a coherent whole, and that while I do agree an independent investigation is important, I am not confident that we are suddenly going to discover […]

Here’s What Putin Thought of the United States 10 Years Ago

Today the annual Munich Security Conference is kicking off, bringing together some of the world’s most influential voices on security and defense at the Bayerischer Hof hotel. While most people will be analyzing and over-analyzing the meeting between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Team Trump, I think it is much more interesting to cast a […]