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Russia may have bluffed its way out of a direct hit in Syria

Vladimir Putin gestures with his hand.
Vladimir Putin. Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

Joshua Yaffa argues in the New Yorker that Russia’s threats of retaliation in advance of U.S.-led strikes in Syria may have prevented direct confrontation with the U.S. “for now.”

What Russia was doing, per Yaffa: Delivering “a measured dose of faux insanity…to make up for a gaping disparity in conventional military and economic strength.”