The dramatic arrest of former prime minister Vlad Filat is probably the work of his fiercest political rival utilizing an unprecedented mistake. It will help expose Moldova’s culture of corruption but may put a halt to its integration with the EU.
Recently re-elected Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko is making maneuvers to get closer to the West and distance himself from Russia. But Moscow is not worried: it knows that his fundamental values differentiate him from Western countries.
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.
Issues such as the Iran deal, the rise of the self-styled Islamic State, and the spread of Russian military and economic influence continue to highlight the importance of the Caucasus region on the world stage.
Following an initially cool reception, many former USSR republics have been lured by the sheer size of China’s investment in the One Belt One Road project, eager to capitalize on the wider initiative in line with their own domestic interests.
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.
Ukraine’s five wealthiest people have lost a collective $9.75 billion in the last year. To put this number in perspective, the IMF’s bailout package is worth $17.5 billion.
Rather than thinking about some grand architecture for the future, all sides of the current Russian-Western conflict should step away from the brink.