How to Read Vladimir Putin, South China Morning Post

Daniel Wagner, political risk expert, and I co-wrote the following article that appeared on April 10, 2014 in the South China Morning Post entitled “How to Read Vladimir Putin.”

The article also appears in:


Finally, my take on why Putin invaded Crimea! And it’s not what you’ve read before. Hint: It involves the Kursk submarine tragedy. ~ Jennifer

Happy 60th Birthday Vladimir Putin!

To Vladimir Putin on his 60th birthday,

My birthday wish for you is to stir up controversy and drama wherever you go this year. Why? Because it’s good for my book. I understand you have many things on your plate…Syria, Iran, China and that pesky United States…but what I’d love to see you capitalize on is your eccentricity, bizarre and offhanded comments and spreading that overall feeling of terror all over the world. Keep on doing whatever you’re doing to maintain the international spotlight. I’m supporting you from afar. Happy 60th birthday!

Best wishes, Jennifer Ciotta (author of I, Putin – Vladimir Putin novel)

Jennifer Ciotta to Speak at Bernard’s restaurant in Ridgefield, CT

Meet with Jennifer Ciotta this week at Bernard’s in Ridgefield, CT!

Award-winning author Jennifer Ciotta will be speaking at Bernard’s restaurant in Ridgefield, CT on Thursday, September 13, 2012 at noon. She is the featured author for September for the Author Luncheon Series at Bernard’s. Jennifer will discuss her novel “I, Putin” (Vladimir Putin novel),which has won Honorable Mentions at the New York Book Festival and Hollywood Book Festival as well as received stellar reviews from International Policy Digest, Alternate History Weekly, Review Harbor, etc.

The luncheon starts at noon and will last for approximately an hour. The cost of $25 per person includes a delicious lunch from the upscale Bernard’s restaurant, which the New York Times called: “Excellent! Beguiling menu.” During lunch, Jennifer will speak about her challenges and successes of writing “I, Putin,” why she was drawn to writing a book about the current Russian president and what she foresees for Russian politics, especially in regard to American foreign relations.

For more information, please visit: (Scroll more than halfway down the page to view the announcement.)

Please call 203-438-8282 to reserve your spot or email Sarah at:

              20 West Lane/ RTE  35
              Ridgefield, CT 06877

When: Thursday, Sept 13th at noon

Why Pussy Riot is Wrong

Pussy Riot, the all-female punk band, storms a cathedral in Moscow and starts jumping up and down and screaming lyrics on the altar, and apparently, that’s totally okay?! Here, in American, the supposed “land of the free,” we have a problem with it too. It’s rude, disrespectful and not the venue at all. Imagine if someone came into your church, synagogue or mosque and did the same thing? It’s plain wrong.

For any of you who think I’m wrong, watch this video of Pussy Riot storming the cathedral.

And, of course, like clockwork, Putin gets the rap for the band’s terrible decision. And to add to that, stars like Madonna, Green Day, Bjork and Red Hot Chili Peppers are supporting Pussy Riot. What the f**k do they know about Russian politics? I bet Billie Joe didn’t even know who Putin was until this song. I have to say, I’m disgusted and disappointed. I really like Green Day. I listen to their music, but now I think of them in a totally different light.

I’m even more disgusted by MTV supporting Pussy Riot. Let’s see, MTV #1) doesn’t play music anymore #2) has no effing clue about Russian politics. The closest they’ve come to anything Russian was that Russian lesbian duo singing “All The Things She Said” at the MTV Music Awards.

This is the typical Western media approach. And it’s sad. Haven’t we moved past the Soviet era? I know I have. And now MTV is showing young people to fear and hate Russia again? They should stick to what they know best: airing reruns of “Teen Mom.”

Okay, now that I’ve taken a deep breath. I do want to say, YES, a two-year sentence to a Russian penal colony a.k.a Siberian hell is wrong. By my standards, they should’ve gotten a couple weeks in jail. But that doesn’t erase Pussy Riot’s classless and terrible decision.

I rest my case.