Putin has pulled his troops out of Syria before, only to put them back.
Russia is pursuing influence in Central Asia and competing with the US. Afghanistan offers it a chance to do both.
By sending troops from the North Caucasus to Syria, Russia is returning to its old habits.
As far as Moscow's concerned, the stakes in Libya are low and the potential returns very high.
After abstaining on a key Security Council vote in 2011, Moscow lost billions of dollars in Libyan contracts as well as its say in international security governance. It wants both back.
The future of the relationship between the US and Russia depends on whether the Kremlin can find a way to interpret Trump's motives.
The individual most directly responsible for a colossal humanitarian crisis is still in power – and might be for some time.
History is littered with the debris of the all too often abusive relationship between the intelligence community and those in power.
Great powers have always meddled in each other's business and struggled to reconcile their interests. Why are we convinced Russia is different?
For all the chatter about the Kremlin's supposed preference for Trump over Clinton, its strategy is far from clear.
As his nominee for secretary of state awaits confirmation, Donald Trump is under pressure to explain what his views on Russia actually are.
The new triumvirate leading the way on Syria has deep roots.
World powers including Russia, the US and Turkey all have a stake in the Syrian conflict – but the networks they rely on for influence are constantly in flux.
As a new cessation of hostilities comes into force, Russia's influence over the Syrian conflict is deepening.
Two of East Asia's biggest powers are still technically at war and deadlocked over contested territories. Now one of them wants to be friends.
The past year hasn't worked out so well for Russia – and the Kremlin's ability to weather the storms ahead is looking shaky.
Why there's a slender -- a very slender -- chance for working out a settlement at upcoming talks in New York.
To his home audience, Vladimir Putin's strategy in Syria appears to be sound.