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CIC Victoria: Will Russia ever be a normal country?

September 20, 2023 @ 11:30 am - 1:30 pm PDT

When: Wednesday, 20 September

Where: The Union Club, 805 Gordon Street

Time: 11:30-1:30 pm (doors open at 11:30 am)

For our upcoming lunch, CIC Distinguished Fellow Jeremy Kinsman reflects on our principal commitment to ensure that Ukraine prevails in its fight for security and justice but asks the question, will Russia ever be a normal county?  Indeed, in the aftermath of the surprising mutiny against Kremlin authority by the Wagner Group questions continue to swirl about the state of things in Russia, Putin’s survivability, and how all this will affect the war. Certainly, the eternal Russian question, “kuda idyot Russiya?” or translated “where is Russia heading?” has taken on a new uncertainty. Putin survived the scare of the recent pop-up mutiny, but his image of total command and control has been damaged. Moreover, and despite assurances from the Kremlin that all is well, the mutiny and its handling have rattled public confidence.  Indeed, countless Russians are uneasy. Recent events also land on a disconsoling background beyond the losing war and loss of democracy; the open secrets of Russia’s increasingly obvious shortcomings on public health, income disparity, population loss, ecological destruction, and frailty in science and education.  As a result, Russians, and many others around the world increasingly ask: How stable is Russia? How competent can its leader be if such a mutiny by a trusted asset was a surprise? Why did Prigozhin seemingly get off scot-free? How secure is Russia if drones can reach Moscow? And as mentioned above, when will Russia become a normal country?

To discuss these many questions we are delighted to have Jeremy Kinsman join us. Jeremy served as a Canadian Ambassador for 15 years, in Moscow from 1992-96, in Rome from 1996-2000, as High Commissioner in London from 2000-2002, and as Ambassador to the EU in Brussels from 2002-2006. After leaving government service, he transferred his energies to civil society, heading from 2007 an international project for the Community of Democracies while also holding university appointments at Princeton, Berkeley, and Ryerson.  Jeremy was also a Director of Dundee Precious Metals in Toronto. In 2021-22 he led a CIC and Konrad Adenauer Stiftung Canada joint project called Renewing Our Democratic Alliance. He has continued to write regularly on foreign affairs issues and for the last five years could be seen weekly on CTV. Jeremy is completing a book for Simon and Schuster on the aftermath of the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the end of the Cold War, with particular attention to the failure of democracy in Russia and the calamitous decision to invade Ukraine.

The cost to attend is $40 for CIC members, $45 for non-members, $30 for CIC young professional members and non-member students and $20 for CIC student members.

CIC Victoria members will recieve registration information.  All others please contact us at:



September 20, 2023
11:30 am - 1:30 pm PDT


The Union Club of BC
805 Gordon Street
Victoria, BC V8W 1Z6 Canada
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CIC Victoria Branch