George Will’s column recalls Stalin’s mass starvation, which killed many millions of Ukrainians, and reminds us of the system that fathered — or perhaps grandfathered — Putin. I’m not a student of Putinism, but these lines rang true to me, and I thought I’d pass them along:

[Putin] is a barbarian but not a monster, and hence no Stalin. But he has been coarsened, in ways difficult for civilized people to understand, by certain continuities, institutional and emotional, with an almost unimaginably vicious past.