Russia

Belarus: An Unexpected Opportunity

25 May 2021 Poland’s Prime Minister Mateus Morawiecki condemned the “hijacking” of the Ryanair jet on the orders of Belarus’s President Alexander Lukashenko on Sunday, accusing him of a “reprehensible act of state terrorism.” Dominic Raab, the British foreign secretary, agreed, warning that “this outlandish act by Lukashenko will have serious implications.” And US Secretary …

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The ‘Defence’ Follies

25 March 2021 In the early decades of the Cold War, this was the season when NATO defence chiefs would announce their spending plans for the next year, and they would almost always ‘discover’ some new threat from the Soviet Union to justify the money. In the United States, for example, the intelligence services traditionally …

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Lenin Comes to Town (Again)

20 January 2021 When Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny returned to Moscow on Sunday after convalescing in Germany from an attempted poisoning by the FSB domestic spy agency, the regime-friendly media loyally failed to mention his arrival. With one striking exception: Vremya, the flagship news show of Russian state television. Presumably somebody there was hoping …

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Armenia Ceasefire

11 November 2020 This time, the truce will last. The 2,000 Russian troops flying into Armenia this week and fanning out to police the ceasefire lines in Nagorno-Karabakh are being sent there for five years renewable, and neither Armenia nor Azerbaijan will challenge them. Armenia is in shock, but what remains of the Armenian enclave …

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Azerbaijan Wins

28 October 2020 The month-old war between Azerbaijan and Armenia is so low on everybody else’s list of concerns that when Azerbaijan won the war last Monday morning, hardly anybody in the media elsewhere even noticed. Shortly after 8am local time on Monday, Azeri troops gained control of the road through the Lachin Pass. That …

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