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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review March 27, 2014 / 25 Adar II, 5774

The Invader's Weakness

By Bob Tyrrell



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | In August of 2008 at the Beijing Summer Olympics President George W. Bush had a talk with President Vladimir Putin. Georgia's anti-Moscow president, Mikheil Saakashvili, had been uttering provocative sonorities about Russia, so Russian troops marched into Georgia much as they are doing today in Crimea. Bush reminded Putin, "I've been warning you Saakashvili is hot-blooded." To which Putin suavely responded, "I'm hot-blooded, too." Bush's rejoinder was "No, Vladimir. You're cold-blooded." Well, whether the president of Russia is hot-blooded or cold-blooded or bloodless, his troops are in Crimea now, and Russia still has the same problem it had at the end of the Cold War. Its economy is not quite modern. In fact it is sickly. Its growth rate last year was 1.3 percent, hardly capable of sustaining a modern military.

Back in the days when Moscow's generals and admirals commanded 4.3 million troops (now the figure is down to less than 1 million) they understood the weakness of their economy. In the late 1980s, after watching President Ronald Reagan's breathtaking military buildup, they prevailed on the Soviet Union's comrades to end the Cold War. They recognized that they could not keep up with the West. For one thing, they could not machine parts for a modern war machine.


There followed years of economic dislocation and uneven growth, but in the first part of this century Putin seemed to be minding the economy better than his predecessor Boris Yeltsin. He tamped down inflation and political turmoil. The budget became manageable. The world price of oil favored Russia. Per capita growth rose from $1,500 to $10,000 in the first decade of the 21st century. Putin and his protege, Dmitry Medvedev, were moving Russia towards an authoritarian system, which was worrisome, but the economy seemed healthier.

Yet it was heavily dependent on oil and gas, which should have fetched Putin's concern. In a vigorous economy such as Korea or the Czech Republic, manufacturing contributes at least 20 percent of GDP. In Russia that figure is 15 percent. According to the International Monetary Fund's figures, if you leave out oil and gas Russia's non-oil revenues are now in 11 percent deficit of GDP, and now Russia is taking on an economic basket case, Crimea. It will cost Moscow billions.

As for the Russian economy, it has slowed from an average growth rate of 7 percent throughout the last decade to the aforementioned 1.3 percent last year. Its expected growth rate in 2014 is zero. Ruchir Sharma of Morgan Stanley Investment Management, writing in the Wall Street Journal the other day, noted that "wealthy Russians have been moving money out of the country at one of the fastest rates in two decades." He notes that they have been moving their wealth out of Russia at $60 billion a year since 2012. Now foreign investors are pulling out. And Sharma adds that the value of the ruble has fallen 22 percent against the U.S. dollar since 2011. Ever since Putin began his kerfuffle in Crimea, the Central Bank of the Russian Federation has been in a panic to prevent the ruble's collapse.

Thinking back on Putin's conversation with Bush in Beijing in 2008, possibly Putin had it right. He is hot-blooded. His recent tirades to the press about how he has suffered at the hands of the West sound heartfelt. He did not have to invade Crimea. He could have worked out a very agreeable lease on his warm water naval base of Sebastopol. Yet he chose to invade out of genuine indignation, and no one knows where his invasions will end. With the klutz we now have in the White House, all we can count on is Russia's projected growth of zero this year, and if we are lucky even slower growth next year.

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JWR contributor Bob Tyrrell is editor in chief of The American Spectator.

© 2008, Creators Syndicate

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