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  Why Russia Harasses U.S. Aircraft

2016 04 30

Stratfor

Summary

Since Russia annexed Crimea in 2014, tension with the West has been high, affecting eastern Ukraine, Syria and hot spots across the former Soviet sphere. Less overtly, Moscow has been working to protect areas vital to Russian interests by raising the stakes of U.S. operations there. This has manifested in numerous aggressive interceptions of U.S. military aircraft in flight, especially over the Black and Baltic seas. The interceptions, which are reportedly occurring more frequently, aim to dissuade Washington from operating in that airspace.

 
 
 
  Private Soldiers: How Moscow Masks Its Participation in the Ukrainian and Syrian conflicts

Viktor Denisenko
2016 04 25

In the span of just several years, strategic camouflage became the main tactic of Russia's geopolitical games. For the first time in modern history, it was used during the annexation of Crimea. Today there is no secret that the Russian forces were acting on the Ukrainian territory disguised as self-defense groups” (this fact was acknowledged by Vladimir Putin himself in the propaganda film The Crimea: Way Back Home). Today such games are continued to be played not only in the post-Soviet sphere but in Syria as well.

 
 
 
  How to Fill Ukraine’s Security Vacuum

Andreas Umland
2016 04 15

Ukraine faces a mounting challenge from the East while suffering from a fundamental security vacuum. The country is not embedded in international organizations able to help Kyiv secure the Ukrainian state’s territorial integrity and political sovereignty. What other options than the distant prospect of NATO membership does Ukraine have to fill this vacuum today? The only feasible solution with at least some chance of being realized is to revive an old Polish plan known as Intermarium—a union of the lands between the seas.

 
 
 
  Solving Ukraine’s Security Dilemma

Andreas Umland
2016 04 14

A main reason for the recent escalation of tensions in Eastern Europe is the absence of an effective security structure encompassing such militarily weak countries as Moldova, Georgia, and Ukraine. While Ukrainian public opinion has recently made a U-turn from a rejection to an embrace of NATO, the Alliance will not be ready to extend its commitments farther east anytime soon. Although future enlargement of the Alliance is possible, Ukraine’s confrontation with Russia as well as Moscow’s anti-Western stance would have to decrease significantly for that to happen. Recently, the opposite tendency was on display: The more aggression the Kremlin has shown, the less likely it is that the North Atlantic Council will open its doors to new members in conflict with Moscow.

 
 
 
  Gratitude for Mass Murder

Andreas Umland
2016 04 01

The Kremlin will be the main winner of a Dutch popular rejection of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement

On 6 April 2016, the Netherlands will be holding a national referendum where the Dutch people will be asked speak out for or against the EU’s Association Agreement with Ukraine – a large treaty between Brussels and Kyiv, signed in 2014 and ratified in 2015. For everybody who knows a bit about the EU, the upcoming Dutch plebiscite on this EU-Ukraine contract looks odd...

 
 
 
  Is it time to imagine a Russia without Putin?

Viktor Denisenko
2016 03 29

No dictator rules forever. A poster that someone ordered to put up in one of Moscow's public transport stations serves as a reminder of this truth to Russians. It features Joseph Stalin and the text: “That one died, this one will die as well”. The poster was put up on the 5th of March, the date being no coincidence as it is the anniversary of Stalin's death. It is no secret who “this one” mentioned in the poster is. It is indubitably the current head of Kremlin.

 
 
 
  If not Putin, then who? Maybe... Kadyrov?

Vaiva Sapetkaitë, Institute of International Relations and Political Science Vilnius University
2016 03 14

In January the Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov who is supported by the Kremlin has again showed what he is up to. He declared that members of Russia’s protest opposition should be treated as traitors of the country; he called them jackals and enemies of the people (the most insulting words for Russians; during Stalin‘s times „enemies of the people" were despised and condemned). According to Ramzan Kadyrov, liberal opposition tries to use Russia‘s economic difficulties in order to destabilise the state and they should be prosecuted for sabotage.

 
 
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The European Commission adopted a decision on visa-free regime with Ukraine - the EC President

2016 04 22

Political decision on liberalizing visa regime with Ukraine and Georgia is taken, as the countries adhere to the necessary criteria.



The US and Israel have imposed a complete ban on the supply of UAVs to Russia

2016 04 20

The US and Israel have imposed a ban on the supply of UAVs to Russia. As it became known, the administration of the White House reacted very negatively to the possible deal between Russia and Israel on the supply of UAVs of military purpose, leading to the repeal of the deal, writes https://www.flightglobal.com/.



The initiated by the RF meeting of OPEC Ministers in China ended in failure

2016 04 19

To no avail ended in Doha, Qatar, a meeting of oil-producing countries of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, initiated at the ministerial level by Russia and Saudi Arabia.



Ukraine and Slovakia are starting gas deliveries to both sides after the departure of "Gazprom" from the Slovak pipe

2016 04 12

The ghost of "Gazprom" as a virtual operator on the Slovak-Ukrainian GTS will no longer interfere with the reasonable transit of gas to one and the other side.



US voiced four main demands to Poroshenko for the future prime minister of Ukraine

2016 04 07

US are not interested in the change of names, but in the change of the system as such.



Azerbaijan expelled Russian propagandists

2016 04 06

Employees of the Russian TV channel LifeNews were deported from Azerbaijan.



The armed forces of Latvia claim they detected a Russian submarine near the border

2016 04 05

National Armed Forces (NAF) of Latvia spotted a Russian submarine near the border of the country, reports TASS with reference to the NAF.


 

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