Slobodan Milosevic
With Ukraine, Putin is courting the home crowd
With Ukraine, Putin is courting the home crowd

The downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 has finally spurred the United States and Europe to agree on imposing additional sanctions on Russia. But Vladimir Putin's tactics in Ukraine are likely to be far more influenced by his domestic political calculus than by international pressure. In fact, given how important winning — or at least not losing — the proxy war in Ukraine has become to the popularity and legitimacy of the Putin government, the sanctions are unlikely to have much effect in the short run. Instead, it seems probable they will lead to an even greater resolve on Putin's part to support the separatists in Ukraine. The war in Ukraine has been good for...