Russians resting in front of a vacant storefront, Moscow, June 2022
Evgenia Novozhenina / Reuters

Is Russia at war? To anyone visiting Moscow or even the provinces this summer, it can sometimes be hard to find much evidence. People are going about their usual lives, and the economy continues to function. There are no shortages of consumer goods; so far, so-called parallel imports—the system by which Russian importers circumvent Western sanctions by using third countries—have worked well. Only inflation has remained stubbornly intractable, with the annualized rate currently hovering above 16 percent. And, at least when they are asked, many citizens do not seem overly disturbed by what is happening on their western

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