- By Thomas E. RicksThomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I think that President Obama is fundamentally correct in saying the obvious, that Putin’s Russia is no longer a superpower. He stood outside Putin‘s apartment house yesterday and yelled up, “Russia is a regional power that is threatening some of its immediate neighbors, not out of strength but out of weakness.”
That said, weak players can still punch strong players in the nose, if they are more willing to take the pain than the big guy is. For more on this, see LBJ, 1964-1968.