Posts by Pavel Baev

Pavel Baev 01-06-2021
(Eurasia Daily Monitor) Russia’s post-Soviet counter-transition arrived at its logical conclusion in 2020: Starting from a fledgling democracy in the 1990s, the country shifted to an “enlightened authoritarianism” in the 2000s, evolving into a barely disguised autocracy during the 2010s, now having finally settled into a quasi-dictatorship. That trajectory was in no way predetermined 20 years ago; but a crucially important inflection point was passed in...
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Pavel Baev 12-08-2020
(Eurasia Daily Monitor) As the global economy—animated by the arrival of multiple COVID-19 vaccines—hopes for the first signs of recovery, expectations also rise in Russia for an accompanying surge in demand for oil and natural gas and renewed prominence of energy geopolitics in foreign policy-making. President Vladimir Putin is a firm believer in hydrocarbons as the world’s main energy source and a sceptic of “green agendas,” even if Chinese President Xi...
Pavel Baev 11-10-2020
(Eurasia Daily Monitor) As the outcome of the 2020 presidential election in the United States became clear, many Russians began to reflect on what the result might mean for Russia’s position in global affairs. While most Russians did not have a preference for the winner, the fierce political contestation in the US attracted massive attention, and not merely because of the entertainment value (Rossiiskaya Gazeta, November 4). Official Kremlin propaganda...
Pavel Baev 11-03-2020
(Eurasia Daily Monitor) The series of terrorist attacks in France, in late October, attracted much attention in Russia, sharply dividing public opinion and leaving President Vladimir Putin in an awkward limbo. The Kremlin leader excels at positioning himself as a counter-terrorist champion when the issue is clear and solvable by military means—such as when it came to obliterating the so-called Islamic State. In the current crisis, however, his readiness...
Pavel Baev 10-21-2020
(Eurasia Daily Monitor) The virtual meeting of the Russian Security Council last Friday (October 16) started with a surprise meant to signify a major foreign policy initiative. Namely, President Vladimir Putin instructed Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to present to the leadership of the United States with the suggestion to extend the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START) for one year without any conditions or revisions (Kremlin.ru, October 16). The...
Pavel Baev 10-07-2020
(Eurasia Daily Monitor) The sharp rise of COVID-19 infections in Russia in the last couple of weeks was predictable given the relatively high “plateau” of new cases over the summer after the sharp peak in early May. Yet the escalation of the pandemic has apparently caught the authorities by surprise as the government focused on Moscow. Cases of the novel coronavirus in the Russian capital grew to a maximum of about 6,000 infection a day in May, before...
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Pavel Baev 09-30-2020
(Brookings) full-blown war erupted in the South Caucasus last Sunday, September 27, and as the two belligerents — Armenia and Azerbaijan — mobilize their forces under martial law, no international authority is trying in earnest to stop the hostilities. The conflict over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region ignited 30 years ago as the Soviet Union was collapsing and has never effectively “frozen.” The cease-fire Russia negotiated in May 1994 was not backed...
Pavel Baev 09-22-2020
(Eurasia Daily Monitor) With its latest double breach of norms of international behavior—poisoning the opposition leader Alexei Navalny and embracing the discredited Belarusian autocrat, President Alyaksandr Lukashenka—Russia has managed to unite Europe in outrage. Last week (September 17), the European Parliament approved, by a large majority, a harsh resolution not only demanding a strong response to the Navalny case but also calling for a new strategy...
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Pavel Baev 09-15-2020
(Eurasia Daily Monitor) Five weeks of peaceful mass protests in Belarus after the falsified elections on August 9, have profoundly changed this formerly rather stable and conservative country, impressed its European neighbors, and set a sharp challenge for Russia, which is tied to this partner in a peculiar “Union State” arrangement undergirded by strong historical, cultural and economic ties. Belarus’s embattled head of state, Alyaksandr Lukashenka, has...
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Pavel Baev 09-09-2020
(Euasia Daily Monitor) Russia traditionally returns to normal work, after a summer break, on September 1. This year, however, although schools reopened as usual, broader public and political life persisted on its earlier course of disarray and downturn. In his televised address to schoolchildren, President Vladimir Putin spoke at length about the memory of the great Soviet triumph over Nazi Germany but only obliquely referred to the ongoing COVID-19...
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Research Professor
Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO)