Posts by PONARS Eurasia

PONARS Eurasia 10-11-2019
(USA Today) VODIANE, Ukraine – In a muddy field 5,000 miles from Washington, D.C., are a set of gas wells that extend several thousand feet underground. The wells are owned by Burisma, a Ukrainian company registered in Cyprus – a company no one outside the energy industry would have known a month ago. Now this place is ground zero for a central claim – one with no credible evidence – in a scandal that has engulfed the Trump administration in an...
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PONARS Eurasia 10-10-2019
(Factcheck.org) With its candidate the subject of an impeachment inquiry, President Donald Trump’s reelection campaign has gone on the offensive with a TV ad that claims to present the “facts” about Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden and Ukraine. In fact, the ad relies on speculation and unsupported accusations to mislead viewers. [...] “Ukraine has had a long line of prosecutors whose function has not been to enforce the law, but to perform the...
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PONARS Eurasia 10-07-2019
(Point & Counterpoint) In the summer of 1996, President Boris Yeltsin, who had just been reelected for a second term, commissioned a group of Russian intellectuals to design a new national idea for the country. It was a virtually impossible task: putting together a set of ideals and values and conceptions of a common past and future that can bring a society together and help set national goals. However, this can only take shape over the course of long...
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PONARS Eurasia 10-07-2019
(CSIS/PONARS Eurasia) China’s rise in the Indo-Pacific is discussed often but what about its growing influence in Eurasia? What political and economic roles does China play in the region and what are the implications? CSIS and George Washington University’s Program on New Approaches to Research and Security in Eurasia (PONARS Eurasia) held a two-panel event on September 12 focused on China’s expanding role in Eurasia. See the CSIS panel sessions, which...
PONARS Eurasia 10-04-2019
(Russia Matters) This fall, Central Asia’s richest country was shaken yet again, on at least two separate occasions, by anti-government protests with decidedly anti-Chinese sentiments. Local unease with Beijing’s intentions and investments—which have ballooned to tens of billions of dollars throughout the region—has become easy to exploit for “the mischievous and hot-headed,” as a veteran Central Asia reporter wrote after the protests. It’s no wonder then...
PONARS Eurasia 10-04-2019
(EDM) Moscow’s vaunted “pivot to the East” did not begin when Vladimir Putin returned to the presidency in 2012. Instead, it dates back to late 2006, when he ordered the development of the Russian Far East and Siberia. Others may prefer to believe it began with then-president Dmitry Medvedev’s inaugural tour to Kazakhstan and China in 2008. Regardless, this ostensible shift has since become a cornerstone of Russian policy; and the Eastern Economic Forum,...
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PONARS Eurasia 09-26-2019
(PRIO) In the late 1980s, when I took part in drafting speeches for Mikhail Gorbachev underpinning his concept of an All-European House, one part of my work was to strive towards the elimination of tactical nuclear weapons in Europe. Nothing came out of it at the time. Now, after more than 25 years at PRIO and having become a Norwegian citizen, the same question has taken on a new complexity with the worsening of East-West relations. I want to return to...
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PONARS Eurasia 09-26-2019
(ECFR) Volodymyrska Hill, Kyiv, on a June evening in 2019. Kyivans and tourists stroll along the riverside park’s newly relaid paths, many wending their way to the brand new footbridge and across to the People’s Friendship Arch monument; stunning views of the Dnipro abound. Suddenly, a young passer-by answers his phone: “Hello! Presidential Office here.” Was this a joke – or was he serious? Following Volodymyr Zelensky’s election as president in April, it...
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PONARS Eurasia 09-24-2019
(Politifact) President Donald Trump for months has tried to draw attention to the connection between former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter over the younger Biden's ties to a Ukrainian energy company when he was vice president. But a complaint from an intelligence community whistleblower has made Trump a new focal point of the story, and news reports have zeroed in on interactions between Trump and Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky...
PONARS Eurasia 09-24-2019
(The Print) Russian voters are looking beyond President Putin and Putinism for solutions to everyday problems. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s ruling party, United Russia, eked out a majority in the Moscow municipal legislature in elections on Sept. 8. While Putin’s regime touted the outcome as a victory, the election posed a significant challenge to what is called Putinism, a system that emerged in Putin’s second term to reassert Kremlin control over...
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