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Mutual Assured Deterrence

[:en]   By Sergei Karaganov MOSCOW – The degradation of governance within the international system is a hot topic nowadays – and for good reason. The underpinnings of the rules-based world order are crumbling, and basic norms of international behavior and decency are in decay. By almost any definition, we Read more…

Oil prices plummeted

How Russia Stays Afloat

By Anders Åslund WASHINGTON, DC – The long-term sustainability of Russia’s economy is an open question. Cronyism is rife, and Russia’s heavy dependence on oil revenues means that it will suffer whenever oil prices are low. But if the Soviet Union taught us anything, it is that unsustainable systems can Read more…

The Kremlin’s War on Liberalism

By Nadezda Azhgikhina MOSCOW – In the wake of the September 11, 2001, terror attacks in the United States, the so-called “War on Terror” was launched. But the US-led military invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq were not the whole of it; many countries also ramped up monitoring and policing of Read more…

All the President’s Little Men

By Andrei Kolesnikov MOSCOW – Russian President Vladimir Putin has been methodically purging his closest and longest-serving advisers. The latest – but surely not the last – victim is Sergei Ivanov, a former KGB operative (like Putin himself) and defense minister who has just been forced out as Kremlin chief Read more…

Russia’s Flirtation With Fascism

By Vladislav Inozemtsev MOSCOW – Western policymakers in recent years have struggled to categorize the Russian political system, often resorting to vague phrases such as “illiberal democracy” or “authoritarianism.” If anything, the Russian system should be characterized as proto-fascist – tamer than European fascist states during the 1920s and 1930s, Read more…

Oil prices plummeted

Russia and the Post­-Oil Economy

[:en]By Vitaly Kazakov MOSCOW – It is difficult to overstate the importance of the oil industry to the Russian economy. Globally, Russia is competitive in defense products, space launches, nuclear power, mineral resources, and information technology. But none of these industries compares to oil and gas exports. To the average Read more…

The Secret of Putin’s Survival

By Andrei Kolesnikov MOSCOW – Two years ago, a long process of growing authoritarianism and isolationism under President Vladimir Putin culminated in Russia’s annexation of Crimea. But even as much of the international community condemned the move, Russians seemed to welcome it. Indeed, the peninsula’s “return” to Russian control had Read more…

Putin’s Government in Donbas

In March, the German tabloid Bild published an article based on a secret document that reveals how breakaway areas of eastern Ukraine are “being treated as parts of Russia’s sovereign territory.” The revelations cast the ongoing Minsk 2 peace negotiations in a new light, one that illuminates the frustration being expressed by Read more…

Putin’s New Prudence

[:en] By Anders Åslund WASHINGTON, DC – This year, the Russian economy is the G-20’s worst performer, contracting by 3.8%, according to the International Monetary Fund’s latest forecast. And things could easily have been worse. President Vladimir Putin claims that his economic policies remain consistent; in fact, he has wisely changed Read more…

Putin’s Syrian Roulette

By Omar Ashour LONDON – Two recent tragedies – the downing of a Russian civilian airliner over the Sinai Peninsula and the terrorist massacre in Paris two weeks later – seemed to give Russia and the West something to agree upon: the Islamic State (ISIS) must go. But a closer Read more…