Sun Jul 24th, 2016 at 12:32:56 AM EST
The McKinsey Global Institute calls for essays on economic revitalization of Europe. Anyone interested?
Thu Apr 3rd, 2014 at 11:04:17 AM EST
The phone call between Putin and Obama two days ago, and assurances from Russia's Foreign Minister Lavrov that "...we have absolutely no intentions of crossing Ukrainian borders", made in yesterday's interview with Rossiya 24 TV channel, likely indicate that all parties involved in this conflict are prepared to make certain concessions, and common ground has started to emerge. Understanding of the simple truth that further escalation of the tensions is a "loss-loss" proposition seems to gradually take hold in European capitals, Kiev, Moscow, and even Washington. Let's take a look what is at stake here.
front-paged by afew
Fri Mar 14th, 2014 at 03:03:55 AM EST
The secession referendum in Crimea on the 16th of March, the outcome of which is easy to predict even if vote rigging doesn't happen, will give President Putin yet another pretext to append the peninsula to the map of Russia. For many Russians on both sides of the Kerch Strait, this will correct the mistake initially made by Nikita Khrushchev in 1954, and repeated by Boris Yeltsin 40 years later. Even the Russian intelligentsia seems to largely support Putin on this. The new government in Kiev is going to reject the results of the referendum and accuse Russia of violating international law by using its military might to redraw Europe's borders. The Kremlin insists that these Ukrainian authorities came to power as a result of a coup by pro-Western and anti-Russian extremists, inspired by the US and EU, and that ethnic Russians in Ukraine are now facing discrimination to say the least. NATO will likely to organize military exercises in close proximity to Russia and/or Ukraine, and may even undust the plans to install U.S. missile defense systems in Central Europe, which, by the way, as we were told initially, would protect NATO allies against rogue states like Iran. Then there will be a whole slew of sanctions, including economic, against, and visa restrictions for, Russian officials, which is, perhaps, the most efficient way to get the message through. Russia, of course, threatens to retaliate... Apparently, both sides are currently digging in preparing for return of cold war.
front-paged by afew
Sat Jan 3rd, 2009 at 04:50:00 PM EST
IDF troops are moving into Gaza, supported by artillery and air strikes. Unless Hamas quickly collapses, which seems unlikely, this stage of the operation by the Israeli military will inevitably bring more casualties among Palestinian civilians, radicalize public opinion in the Arab world, and make prospects of peace in the Middle East even more problematic. There is definitely a legitimate reason for Israel to make sure its southern cities and towns are protected from missiles. The question is if that will be the case in the long run. Diplomacy clearly failed in its efforts to work out a common set of goals that would bring all the parties together, and most recently to even renew the cease fire agreement between Israel and Hamas, which triggered the current conflict. Perhaps, the world was too busy trying to figure out its way out of the economic crisis, to pay much attention to that perennial hotspot?
Wed Dec 28th, 2005 at 03:52:57 PM EST
It is in the nature of human beings that parents care about their children. Soviet communist leaders were not an exception. Having no wealth to pass on to the offspring, they found a different way to protect their future.
Sat Dec 24th, 2005 at 04:54:28 AM EST
From the front page (with title edit) ~ whataboutbob
"All Quiet on the Western Front, or Political Weather Forecast for Ukraine and Belarus"
The euphoria is over. The Orange revolution in Ukraine flushed away some unpopular figures from the political scene, but was unable to deliver on expectations. Everyday life has not changed much for most of the people. The economy is still in a poor shape, and is suffering from structural issues, obsolete technology, low energy efficiency, etc, inherited from the Soviet era. In an attempt to boost its approval rate, the government raised minimum pensions and paid off deferred salaries. That move further strained the budget. As usual, the choices are limited: to raise taxes, increase national debt, or money supply. Most governments opt for the second solution. But how much more debt the market can absorb? In March 2006, the administration will face parliamentary elections, and may need another populist move in support of its program.