Russia is the largest country in the world, with the largest arsenal of nuclear weapons. Over a thousand years this multifaceted nation of shifting borders has been known as Rus, Muscovy, the Russian Empire, and the Soviet Union. Thirty years ago it was reinvented as the Russian Federation.
Russia is not an enigma, but its past is violent, tragic, sometimes glorious, and certainly complicated. Like the rest of us, the Russians constantly rewrite their history. They too omit episodes of national disgrace in favour of patriotic anecdotes, sometimes more rooted in myth than reality.
Expert and former ambassador Rodric Braithwaite unpicks fact from fiction to discover what lies at the root of the Russian story.
Rodric Braithwaite's Russia is a scholarly yet highly readable gallop through the last 1000 years of Russian history. As befits a distinguished former diplomat, Braithwaite is judiciously opinionated. To understand this tormented nation better - and thereby how Putin came to launch his catastrophic invasion of Ukraine - you can do no better than read this illuminating portrait -- Jonathan Dimbleby
Praise for Moscow 1941:
'A remarkable epic, vividly portrayed
- Sunday Telegraph
A heartbreaking and thrilling story of peerless heroism and misery on a barely imaginable scale -- Simon Sebag MontefiorePraise for Afgantsy: '
This is the book every politician, every general, every diplomat contemplating getting into, or out of, Afghanistan should be made to read. [A] masterpiece -- Sherard Cowper-Coles - Guardian
A short and pithy introduction to the history of Russia as we know it today
About the Author
Sir Rodric Braithwaite is a former British diplomat and author whose long Foreign Office career took him to Indonesia, Poland, Italy, America and Russia. He was British Ambassador in Moscow during the fall of the Soviet Union, which he described in Across the Moscow River(2002, Yale). Rodric Braithwaite was subsequently foreign policy adviser to the Prime Minister, John Major, and Chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee. He is author of Afgantsy: The Russians in Afghanistan (Profile Books), Moscow 1941 (Profile Books), a bestseller translated into nineteen languages and Armageddon & Paranoia: The Nuclear Confrontation (2017).