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Nukes, Poker, and Putin

Nukes, Poker, and Putin
Rachel Moltz
Tue, 02/14/2023 – 06:31
The greatest poker player of our time never made it to Vegas. Russia’s graceless, grabbing czar never held a royal flush or even an inside straight, but he was the greatest master of the bluff since Adolf Hitler moved into the Rhineland. Again and again, Putin sat at the global big-spenders table and stared down presidents, prime ministers, and his early internal rivals, beating four aces with a pair of twos…until, inevitably, he became convinced he couldn’t lose and bet everything he had on raking in Ukraine.

To his shock and outrage, the players with the deeper pockets finally—even astonishingly—called his bluff. And he’s running out of chips.

His last bluff is the threat to use nuclear weapons. And he has a few. But were he to launch a single tactical/operational-level nuke, he would have played his last card and would find himself banned from the global casino for life. Still worse, the delivery of a nuclear weapon on any target in Ukraine would be an admission of defeat, a desperate attempt to freeze the conditions on the ground and prevent worse from becoming worst, to salvage something from this self-inflicted …read more

Source:: Hoover Institution


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