The Great Debate

Putin’s anti-Olympic creed

By Strobe Talbott
February 28, 2014

The Putin era in Russia, now in its 15th year, has given birth to the ongoing diplomatic challenge of reading what’s going on behind the Kremlin leader’s steely eyes.

from Stories I’d like to see:

CVS and the doctoring business, Sochi consequences, and getting Cohen’s side of the story

By Steven Brill
February 11, 2014

1. How far can CVS and other pharmacy chains get into the doctoring business?

In announcing Wednesday that CVS Caremark would stop selling tobacco, chief executive officer Larry Merlo said selling cigarettes would be, according to a company press release, “inconsistent with our purpose.” He explained, “As the delivery of health care evolves with an emphasis on better health outcomes, reducing chronic disease and controlling costs, CVS Caremark is playing an expanded role in providing care through our pharmacists and nurse practitioners.”

Putin’s Occupation Olympics

By Eugene Kontorovich
February 5, 2014

The upcoming Olympic Games in Sochi has naturally led to a critical look at the host country’s human rights record, with particular focus on issues such as the treatment of gays and journalists.

from Stories I’d like to see:

Is NBC soft on Sochi terror threats, political stalling, and the lawyer who could nail Christie

By Steven Brill
February 3, 2014

1. Is NBC soft on Sochi terror threats? Or are its rivals overdoing it?

I may be imagining it, but while the other network news organizations are giving full, even avid, coverage to the threat of terrorism at the coming Sochi Olympics, NBC -- which is televising the games -- seems to be playing it down. Or at least not playing it up.

Moscow fiddles, while Kiev burns

By William E. Pomeranz
January 31, 2014

Timing is everything in politics, and this adage could not be truer for the whirlwind now enveloping Russia and Ukraine. Both countries are in the headlines — Russia for the coming $50 billion Winter Olympics extravaganza, and Ukraine for an economic and political collapse that has left the country on the cusp of revolution.

Putin’s (un)happy new year

By William E. Pomeranz
December 31, 2013

Russian President Vladimir Putin has bid farewell to 2013 with his state of the nation address, followed closely by his annual 4-plus-hour marathon news conference. He even managed to appear magnanimous, notably in his decision to pardon the imprisoned oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovksy.

International pressure works on Putin

By Ben Judah and Gerald Knaus
December 19, 2013

Russian President Vladimir Putin had expected the grandest of guests for the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics in Sochi — presidents, billionaires, the global big players.