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Tag: Russia

Latvia’s Kuš comics turns ten

Kuš, a Riga-based comic publishing house, singlehandedly created the comic arts scene in Latvia, and has since fostered the talents of new generations of young illustrators and artists making surreal, sweet, deeply foreboding, or sometimes just plain confusing collections of images using a wide range of mediums.

December 12, 2017 - Aliide Naylor

The “Eastern Partnership Plus” is the EU’s failure

The concept of the “Eastern Partnership Plus” seems like an attempt at masking the fact that the entire Eastern Partnership programme has not achieved its goals because it could not do so. The problem of the Eastern Partnership is that its goals are in fact impossible to achieve without eventually granting its members the prospect of EU membership.

December 7, 2017 - Bartek Tesławski

The EU and the Polish national interest: The results of the Euronest sessions

Although the Eastern Partnership project has lost its momentum, there are still a few smaller initiatives being carried out, which, if there is new political will, may turn into an efficient tool for active Eastern policy. This, in turn, may prove beneficial for Polish interests.

December 6, 2017 - Wojciech Jakóbik

Abkhazia: Looking forward to Syrian recognition

The possible recognition of the de-facto republic of Abkhazia by Syrian authorities runs the risk of compromising their state integrity. However, it is likely that the parties will continue maintaining and improving bilateral relations at an informal level.

December 4, 2017 - Shota Tkhelidze

Russia is taking Armenia for granted

Interview with Richard Giragosian, the director of the Regional Studies Center (RSC) think tank in Yerevan, Armenia. Interviewer: Małgosia Krakowska.

December 1, 2017 - Małgosia Krakowska

The 2008 Russian aggression is not the dim and distant past

Interview with Victor Dolidze, the former State Minister of Georgia on European and Euro-Atlantic integration. Interviewer: Małgosia Krakowska.

November 29, 2017 - Małgosia Krakowska

Pursuing cooperation despite divisions: The outcomes of Eastern Partnership Summit 2017

The Summit’s results have been less ambitious than some of the participants might have expected. The EU confirmed its commitment to the initiative, cautiously putting on the plate a set of limited reforms. Any more consistent steps forward seem to be unfeasible, as there are still numerous points of disagreement among the EU members and their eastern partners.

November 27, 2017 - Giovanni Pigni

Eight years of Eastern Partnership: Hidden in the trenches

The European Union’s commitment to the Eastern Partnership region has been cemented by Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, but for internal reasons, the EU is trying to avoid the costs linked to the countries’ integration. For Russia, the region is vitally important but Moscow cannot muster the resources or an attractive alternative to keep the countries close.

November 23, 2017 - Balázs Jarábik and Dovilė Šukytė

The ins and outs of the Czech disinformation community

The disinformation scene in the Czech Republic is relatively developed and intertwined with some of the country’s leading politicians, including president Miloš Zeman. Nevertheless, both the government and the civil society have recognised the threat and efforts have been made to address the problem.

November 8, 2017 - Markéta Krejčí

FIFA World Cup 2018: A geopolitical event for Europe

The next FIFA World Cup will have a particular signification: the time (June 14th – July 15th) and the place (Russia) will give the Russian Federation a global audience. It will also place the country and the Putin regime under the scrutiny of the world during several weeks.

November 3, 2017 - Cyrille Bret

The new Great Game that is not

The idea that Central Asia is the nexus of a Great Game between the world’s superpowers is, in the 21st century, largely exaggerated. Undoubtedly, the Central Asian republics are actively engaging with the great powers by relying on their sovereign prerogatives and pursuing their own strategic goals. But this should be seen rather as a strategy of the local players than a competitive game orchestrated from Washington, Moscow or Beijing.

It is not uncommon to hear from academics and pundits alike that Central Asia is now at the centre of a new Great Game between the great powers (namely, the United States, Russia and China), as it was two centuries ago. The term, popularised by Rudyard Kipling’s 1901 novel Kim and first used by Captain Arthur Conolly of the East India Company’s Bengal Army in 1840, directly refers to the 19th-century competition between the Russian and British empires for control over Central Asia. An example of the pre-eminence of the metaphor in today’s intellectual circles is one of the latest books published on international politics in Eurasia, edited by Mehran Kamrava, titled The Great Game in West Asia, which claims that there indeed is a new great game afoot in the region.

Though vigorously denied by those policy-makers actually involved in the politics of the region, and often criticised by more nuanced and context-aware regional observers, the Great Game is still a widely adopted and popular metaphor, rooted in geopolitical thinking and aimed at simplifying the reality. It refers to the competition between the abovementioned states to vie for influence over and in the region, as well as to the conflicts that their different strategies may elicit in the near future. In the Great Game narrative, the five Central Asian republics of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are the board on which the game is played.

October 31, 2017 - Filippo Costa Buranelli

The Kremlin sets its eyes on YouTube

In Russia YouTube is becoming the main platform for political conflict and a battleground for young voters. While the opposition is able to attract followers with content, the authorities are experimenting with ways to establish control over the video portal.

The year 2017 has definitely become the year of YouTube. Already in 2016, the video sharing social network became the second most visited website in the world after Google.com. In June 2017 YouTube claimed that its monthly audience of registered users passed 1.5 billion people. In Russia, 87 per cent of internet users watch videos on YouTube and the number of monthly active viewers is more than 62 million unique users. Some research indicates the figure could be even more than 80 million. In addition to a growing audience, it is important to emphasise the main advantage that YouTube has: younger generations of Russians now prefer YouTube over traditional media as their main source of news and information. Those within the 25-34 year-old age group are the most active users of YouTube in the country.

Despite its rapidly growing popularity, the Russian authorities at first did not pay much attention to YouTube. This changed in March this year, however, when a single film brought tens of thousands of people to the streets in 82 Russian cities. The majority of the protesters were young.

October 31, 2017 - Svitlana Ovcharova

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