Analytical memos

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Crimean independence vote and Russian annexation: A primer

15 march 2014 | 22:26

The Russian reaction depends on the reaction of the United States and the European Union. At his press conference Putin said annexation is not an option for Russia. I think he is waiting to see what happens. If you want Russia to be more aggressive, please, behave more aggressively to Russia. 

Russia, Turkey weigh options in Crimea

5 march 2014 | 23:00

Certainly, the two are not on the same page in Syria and some other Middle Eastern matters; they have historically adversarial relations in the South Caucasus; and they have a conflicting modern record of Turkish support for Islamist and nationalist movements in the North Caucasus. But be it bilateral trade relations or pipeline geopolitics, instead of keeping in line with its NATO allies Turkey is more savvy in following its own national interests than many Western diplomats and analysts would like to think.

What does Russia want in Ukraine?

4 march 2014 | 23:00

Meanwhile, Western politicians have interpreted the authorization vote and the action in Crimea somewhat differently than Russian experts. So far, however, Russian authorities have been unmoved by threats of sanctions and visa bans, possibly because the stakes of backing down on Ukraine at the request of Western governments are higher than staying the course, as long as a full-scale war can be avoided.

Ukraine after the revolution

25 february 2014 | 23:00

A more realistic view is that there were some agreements between the opposition and the West, for example, not to cross certain red lines. Moscow’s position was clear from the very beginning. Russia strictly relied on the principles of international law, reminding everyone that in democratic countries people’s attitude toward authority should be expressed not with Molotov cocktails but through the ballot box.

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How to avoid the Iraqi scenario in Afghanistan

It is most likely that, after 2014, the situation in Afghanistan will develop according to the “Iraqi Scenario,” repeating the series of events after the U.S. troops withdrew from that country. This means the continuation of terrorist activity against a background of a relatively stable central government that protects the state system without the help of foreign troops.

 
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