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may have been independent Ukraine’s last calm summer for a while. There will
soon be a reckoning with what succeeded and what did not after the revolution
of 2013-2014, during which the eyes of the world were on Kiev. Ukrainians will
elect a president early next year, with parliamentary elections to follow in
the fall. There are plentiful indications that their verdict on the post-Maidan
political elites will be harsh.
Dr. Pawel Kowal
the surface, the overthrow of Armenia’s longtime ruler Serzh Sargsyan poses no
threat to Russia’s geopolitical position in the South Caucasus. Opposition
leader Nikol Pashinyan, elevated to the premiership by popular revolt, keeps
stressing his exclusively domestic agenda and desire for close ties with
Russia. But the long run, reforms that tackle corruption among the local
political and business elites work against Moscow’s interests.
Professor Stefan Hedlund
President Aleksander Lukashenko is still coming to terms with what Russia’s
intervention in Ukraine means for his own autocratic rule. Recent events in
Armenia show that his overthrow might not occur on the back of Russian tanks,
but via a hybridized “color” revolution capitalizing on social discontent.
Lukashenko has responded by cozying up to the EU and easing pressure on the
opposition at home, but it may not be enough to save him.
In a surprise move, clearly aimed at bolstering his own personal power and security, President Vladimir Putin has announced the formation of a Russian National Guard. The new entity is to be created within the Ministry of the Interior (MVD) and its mandate will be to fight terrorism and organized crime. This, however, is a mere facade. ...
On New Year’s Eve, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed off on an updated national security strategy. Its tone matches the deterioration in Russia’s relations with the West. Compared with the 2014 version, two features stand out. NATO is now presented as an adversary rather than a rival, and the instigation of so-called “color revolutions” has been elevated to t...