Russia and chess go together like blintzes and eggs, as the new biopic on Bobby Fischer highlights, so no wonder so many commentators are calling Vladimir Putin a grandmaster against President Obama in the game of geopolitical chess. But it may be truer to say that the game Putin is outwitting Obama at is actually poker.
Like a spineless bluffer, Putin might very well have backed down had U.S. forces confronted Russian forces in Syria last week. As Bret Stephens pointed out in the Wall Street Journal, Putin has made "a relatively trivial investment of some jet fighters and a brigade-sized support force. ... If things don't work out, he can pull up stakes within a week without much loss of money, lives or prestige. It's a perfect play."Read the rest of the op-ed HERE.
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