Articles and Commentary

A reset was always fake news. New sanctions are not

putinOn August 2nd, US President Donald Trump reluctantly signed tough new sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea. He had little choice since they passed both houses of the US Congress unanimously; 419 to 3 in the House of Representatives and 98 to 2 in the Senate, enabling them to block any presidential veto if Trump had decided not to sign them into law.

Read more: A reset was always fake news. New sanctions are not

Kaliningrad oblast - Russia`s formidable A2/AD bubble

kaliningrad 2Kaliningrad Oblast – Russia`s westernmost region physically separated from the mainland – has reappeared in the forefront of international security-related discourse. Liberated from virtually complete isolation with the fall of the Soviet Union, this territory was hoped to soon turn into a prosperous “bridge of co-operation” between Russia and the West. The aura of optimism was boosted by such progressive initiatives as “Euro regions” and the Northern Dimension, that were to have facilitated Kaliningrad`s transition from a planned economy towards a free market one and encourage its integration into the Baltic Sea Rim. Alas, this was not meant to happen. Instead of becoming the “Baltic Hong Kong”, the oblast has turned into a heavily militarised “fortress” and a centre-dependent entity, reminiscent of its pre-1991 predecessor. The most recent events have unequivocally shown that Kaliningrad turning into Russia`s most advanced A2/AD “bubble” might be on its way to regaining the title of the most heavily militarised spot in Europe, which creates numerous challenges to the entire region.

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Who remembers the Warsaw Uprising?

Warsaw Uprising - Four on a barricadeThe 1944 Warsaw Uprising saw the destruction of one of Europe’s great cities. But it is a story not widely known outside of Poland, something the Polish government wants to put straight. We asked a random selection of Germans in Bonn what they know about the uprising as Poles commemorate its 73rd anniversary. 

Read more: Who remembers the Warsaw Uprising?

The Kyiv Uprising scenario

kyiv uprisisngOn August 1st at exactly 5pm, Warsaw will remain motionless. Sirens and horns will shriek, people will pause, and all traffic – cars, buses, and trams – will stop in its tracks. As every year, for a few minutes, it will feel as if time is standing still. This is done to pay homage to the Warsaw Uprising of 1944. The uprising that began on August 1st 1944 and lasted for 63 days has become Poland’s national symbol of martyrdom. But the commemorations and tributes to the veterans that are still living are always accompanied by a national debate: “Was it worth it?”

Read more: The Kyiv Uprising scenario

The problem with Georgia’s political brand

saakashvili n bushGeorgian security officers might have been complicit in the abduction of Afgan Muktarli, an exiled Azerbaijani journalist, which took place on May 29th in Tbilisi. Later on, Mukhtarli was found in a Baku detention facility. Local opposition and non-governmental organisations argue that the country is retreating from its democratic path and that the ruling Georgian Dream is supporting the regime in Baku.

Read more: The problem with Georgia’s political brand


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