The merger of President Poroshenko’s party with the UDAR party of Kiev mayor Vitali Klitschko is another step in the consolidation of power by the Ukrainian leader. Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s People’s Front may be the next in line for absorption. But recent Ukrainian history shows that these big united parties have all ended in failure.
A Russian attack on NATO’s eastern member states was never likely. At the same time, the threat of escalation in eastern Ukraine and the potential for more direct Russian and NATO involvement in the fighting there is a clear and present danger.
Chaos in the Arab world has offered the Kremlin a convenient opportunity to shape public opinion at home on such issues as the legitimacy of the regime, its confrontation with the West, and the situation in Ukraine.
The MH-17 catastrophe has been a major factor in the current state of relations between Russia and the West for more than a year already. Paradoxically, the establishment of an international tribunal is unlikely to sour relations further, even though Moscow fears that protracted legal proceedings might stand in the way of a future détente with the West
Russia is a superpower in decline, and the challenge it poses to the United States is very different from that posed by the Soviet Union.
A theory of “hybrid war” based on the events in Crimea and eastern Ukraine ignores both the chronology and cause-and-effect links between events on the ground.
Putin’s announcement that Moscow plans to add more than 40 intercontinental ballistic missiles to its nuclear arsenal is troubling mainly because of its political and psychological impact on NATO allies. But it is no cause for alarm.
Rather than thinking about some grand architecture for the future, all sides of the current Russian-Western conflict should step away from the brink.
Dialogue between Russia and the United States is needed to defuse tension and tone down irresponsible statements on both sides about nuclear weapons.
The sensational appointment of Mikheil Saakashvili to run Odessa will shake up both Ukraine and Georgia.