Monthly Archives: January 2017

Frozen Conflicts: The Colder the Better

In 1991 the Soviet Union collapsed under the weight of its own economic and political incompetence.  The Soviet Union’s successor, the Russian Federation, was forced to confront the difficult fact that it had lost much of its influence among many of … Continue reading

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Russia: The Mediator and the Aggravator

The Astana peace talks began last week in Kazakhstan.  The talks include Russia, Turkey, Iran and delegates from the Syrian government as well as some of the opposition forces (not including ISIS or the Levant Conquest Front) fighting against al-Assad.  The … Continue reading

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Populism in Russia?

Is Putin susceptible to populism?

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Structural Problems

Ahead of the 2018 Presidential election in Russia, Vladimir Putin has ordered a review of the economic problems facing Russia today.  Among the leading names to present proposals at the international ‘Gaidar Forum, Russia and the World: The Choice of … Continue reading

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The Crimea Model and Conflict in the Balkans

Last week Kosovo and Serbia were nearly engaged in their first conflict since 1999 after provocative actions involving a train.  On January 14th Serbia halted a train leaving from Belgrade heading towards a town in Northern Kosovo, Mitrovic.  The train … Continue reading

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Insecurity for Others, or Security for Yourself?

Two weeks ago I wrote about US troops landing in Germany as they prepared for their deployment to the Baltic States and Poland as part of Operation Atlantic Resolve.  On Tuesday, the United States signed a defense cooperation agreement with … Continue reading

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Why the GRU?

After endless weeks of news stories dealing with ‘Russia’ and ‘hacking’ I was convinced that no other reporting could be done on the topic.  It wasn’t until I actually read the unclassified intel report released at the beginning of this month … Continue reading

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Keep an Eye on Belarus

In 2017, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko could be an important factor in upcoming Eurasian affairs.  Belarus’ geographical position and historically pro-Russian policies has made the country a reliable partner for Moscow.  President Lukashenko has actually been referred to as the ‘last … Continue reading

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Energy as a Weapon

Russia has utilized the same strategy for decades in order to keep its influence among neighboring countries.  Russia’s strategy uses subsidized oil to lure economically weak states into business with Moscow.  Once a country gets accustomed to the cheap energy prices provided … Continue reading

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Putin-it into perspective

After listening to President-elect Trump’s cabinet picks describe Russia as a ‘great power’ I thought I would briefly outline Russia’s greatness.

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