During the Cold War, Soviet influence and Leninist ideology were inseparable. But the collapse of both systems threw Russian influence into limbo. In this book, James Sherr draws on his in-depth study of the country over many years to explain and analyse the factors that have brought Russian influence back into play. Today, Tsarist, Soviet and contemporary approaches combine in creative and discordant ways. The result is a policy based on a mixture of strategy, improvisation and habit. The novelty of this policy and its apparent successes pose possible dangers for Russia’s neighbours, the West and Russia itself.