Is Putin Winning? (Ross Douthat) from the New York Times
"To be clear: Putin is a Russian nationalist, not the leader of Spectre or the League of Shadows. He doesn’t want chaos for its own sake, and he no doubt believes that a weakened NATO, a divided E.U. and a crumbling Pax Americana are necessary preconditions for his own empire’s return to greatness. But that return seems far out of his reach, and what’s closer to his grasp is something more destructive — a wrecker’s legacy, not Peter the Great’s, in which his own people gain little from his efforts, but the world grows more unstable with every move he makes."
A pretty fair assessment from this right-wing pundit.