Commentary | Комментарии

Pavel Baev 12 Jan 2018
(EDM) Premature announcements of political triumphs often result in negative blowback, but Russian President Vladimir Putin’s declaration of victory in the Syrian war was debunked particularly swiftly (see EDM, January 11, 2018). Putin’s definition of victory included three key points: asserting the legitimacy of Bashar al-Assad’s regime and its control over most of Syria’s territory; strengthening the partnership with Turkey and Iran as the...
Tags: Baev, Russia, Syria
Marlene Laruelle 12 Jan 2018
(Carnegie Council) The French-Russian relationship is based on a long-standing tradition of cultural exchanges. In the 19th century, France was already one of the preferred destinations for Russian political exiles, and subsequently received several of the major waves of Russian emigration in the interwar period. Under the presidency of de Gaulle, it positioned itself as a European power relatively favorable to the Soviet Union. France's strong...
Kimberly Marten 12 Jan 2018
(EJIS) Abstract: This article re-examines the history of NATO’s original post-Cold War enlargement to include the Visegrad states of Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic. It uses both published materials and the author’s new interviews with key US and Russian policymakers, and employs robust qualitative counterfactual methods to ask two questions: whether there were any realistic alternatives to NATO enlargement, and whether NATO...
Tomila Lankina 12 Jan 2018
(BBC) On the last day of 1999, Boris Yeltsin went on national television to apologize for his failures and to announce his resignation, taking the world by surprise. Tomila Lankina reflects on Yeltsin's legacy, along with Yeltsin’s wife Naina Yeltsina, and compares it to the Putin period. Listen © BBC World Service (The History Hour) The interview with Tomila Lankina begins at timestamp 9:35.
Pavel Baev 09 Jan 2018
(EDM) In practical terms, Russia has not yet begun 2018—the country awakes from its traditional holiday vacation only on Tuesday (January 9). That said, Russians’ common reflection on the year past can easily be summed up with “Good riddance!” By almost any measure, 2017 was not particularly successful for Russia, but at least the country muddled through it without any major disasters. In fact, Moscow’s...
Tags: Baev, Russia
Graeme Robertson 08 Jan 2018
(WP) (Co-authored by Grigore Pop-Eleches) For the last three years, Ukrainian activists have been trying to beat back systemic government corruption — but now that “Revolution of Dignity” is hanging by a thread. In mid-December 2017, anti-reform forces in President Petro Poroshenko’s government moved to suppress anti-corruption forces, including efforts to sideline the most prominent anti-corruption member of parliament...
Samuel Greene 19 Dec 2017
(Moscow-on-Thames blog) There’s a phrase in Russian – which I’m sure I’ve written about before – that warns against paying too much attention to “the average temperature in the hospital” (средняя температура по больнице, an indicator of patients’ aggregate health that is easily measured but generally meaningless). It’s a phrase that comes increasingly to mind every time I read or hear that Russia...
Tags: Greene, Russia
Marlene Laruelle 19 Dec 2017
(RAD) Russia’s relationship with France should be seen as a two-way street since both sides have interests in the other. Russia’s operates in France through numerous cultural, political, economic, and media layers with some success. Russia’s main influence comes from the French firms working in Russia and some conservative factions among Les Républicains. The Franco-Russian Bilateral Relationship  France occupies a ...

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