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Strength and Courage

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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Former Moscow correspondent for the BBC Angus Roxburgh discusses the recent challenges to Vladimir Putin’s rule of Russia. Ed Sanders revisits the Peace Eye Bookstore and other fixtures of the Lower East Side counterculture. Today’s installment of A History of the World in 100 Object is about a silver Roman cup decorated with two male lovers. Jackie Collins tells us about her latest novel. And a U.S. Army Captain tells us about his platoons’ dramatic stand against an ambush in Afghanistan.

Vladimir Putin and the Struggles for Russia

Former BBC Moscow correspondent Angus Roxburgh charts the fight for Russia’s future under Vladimir Putin. His book The Strongman: Vladimir Putin and the Struggles for Russia examines how the former KGB man changed from reformer to autocrat, how he sought the West’s respect but earned its fear, and how he cracked down on his rivals at home and developed a personality cult.

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Ed Sanders on the Fugs and Counterculture in the Lower East Side

Ed Sanders describes New York's downtown Bohemia in the 1960s and traces the career of the postmodern, innovative anarcho-folk-rock band the Fugs—formed in 1964 by Sanders and his neighbor, the legendary Tuli Kupferberg. He tells the story in his memoir Fug You: An Informal History of the Peace Eye Bookstore, the F**k You Press, the Fugs, and Counterculture in the Lower East Side.

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Jackie Collins on Goddess of Vengeance

Jackie Collins discusses her newest novel, Goddess of Vengeance, which brings back her heroine Lucky Santangelo, who runs a high-profile casino and hotel in Las Vegas. She has a movie star husband, two children, and believes she has it all, but billionaire businessman Armand Jordan is determined to take it all away.

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Outlaw Platoon

Captain Sean Parnell was a 24-year-old U.S. Army Ranger when he was named commander of a 40-man elite infantry platoon—a unit that came to be known as the Outlaws—and was tasked with rooting out Pakistan-based insurgents from a mountain valley along Afghanistan's eastern frontier. In Outlaw Platoon, he gives an account of the U.S. Army's 10th Mountain Division's extremely difficult, dangerous fight.

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