If any ordinary person predicted trouble ahead for the cocky and seemingly untouchable KGB-regime of Russian President Vladimir Putin, you might say he ought to have his head examined.
But if the head happened to contain one of the most formidable brains of our era, you might at least listen to the argument. Garry Kasparov, legendary world chess champion and now a leader of Russia's political dissidents, possesses such a brain. And having peered two or three or 10 moves into the future, Kasparov says that Putin's petro-Kremlin autocracy may be more brittle than it seems as it approaches a promised presidential succession next year.
More from Fred Hiatt, "Kasparov's Gambit".