David Satter has been writing about Russia for more than four decades. His most recent book is The Less You Know, the Better You Sleep: Russia’s Road to Terror and Dictatorship under Yeltsin and Putin which was published in 2016 by the Yale University Press. In it, he recounts the history of post-communist Russia and describes the role of provocations and terror under both Yeltsin and Putin in the creation of the present authoritarian regime. In his books, articles and interviews, he has argued that Russia’s future depends on a recognition of historical truth and a commitment to the dignity of the individual, capable of creating a basis for democracy and putting an end to the Russia’s people’s historic subservience to the state.
David Satter is one of the world’s leading commentators on Russia and the former Soviet Union. He is the author of four books on Russia and the creator of a documentary film on the fall of the U.S.S.R. In May, 2013, he became an adviser to the Russian Service of Radio Liberty and in September, 2013, he was accredited as a Radio Liberty correspondent in Moscow. Three months later, he was expelled from Russia becoming the first U.S. correspondent to be expelled since the Cold War.
David Satter is a fellow of the Foreign Policy Institute at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and a senior fellow of the Hudson Institute in Washington, D.C. He is also a senior fellow of the Foreign Policy Research Institute in Philadelphia and an associate of the Henry Jackson Society in London. He has been a research fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. He teaches a course on Russian politics and history at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced Academic Programs and has been a visiting professor at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign and a visiting fellow in journalism at Hillsdale College, Hillsdale, Michigan.
David Satter’s first book was Age of Delirium: the Decline and Fall of the Soviet Union, which was published in 1996. He later made a documentary film on the basis of this book which won the 2013 Van Gogh Grand Jury Prize at the Amsterdam Film Festival. In addition, David Satter has written three other books about Russia, Darkness at Dawn: the Rise of the Russian Criminal State (2003), It Was a Long Time Ago and It Never Happened Anyway: Russia and the Communist Past (2011), and The Less You Know, the Better You Sleep: Russia’s Road to Terror and Dictatorship under Yeltsin and Putin. His books have been translated into eight languages.
David Satter began his career in 1972 as a police reporter for the Chicago Tribune. In 1976, he became Moscow correspondent of the Financial Times. He worked in Moscow for six years. He then became a special correspondent on Soviet affairs for The Wall Street Journal, contributing frequently to the paper’s editorial page.
David Satter continues to write on Russia and the former Soviet Union for the editorial page of The Wall Street Journal. His articles and op-ed pieces have also appeared in the Los Angeles Times, The National Interest, National Review, CNN.com, The Daily Beast, National Review Online, The New Republic, The New York Sun, The New York Review of Books, Reader’s Digest and The Washington Times. He is frequently interviewed in both Russian and English by Radio Liberty, the Voice of America and the BBC and has appeared on CNN, Fox News, C-Span, the Charlie Rose Show and other television programs.
He also has testified on Russia before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, The Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, and the House Committee on Financial Services.
David Satter was born in Chicago in 1947 and graduated from the University of Chicago and Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar and earned an M.Litt degree in political philosophy.