Stability was always the watchword of Vladimir Putin's presidency, and for more than a decade it rang true. Ever since he came to power in 2000, Putin presented himself as the antidote to what Russians call the "wild 90s," the decade of economic upheaval that culminated in the crash of 1998. The high price of oil, and the fortunes it brought the Russian petrostate, has since allowed Putin to keep his promise of prosperity and economic growth. But this week the myth of Putin the Stabilizer collapsed, along with the value of the national currency.
A dozen activists marched in wind as cold as the edge of a knife, demonstrating in support of Evgeniy Nishuk, the minister of culture known as "the voice of Maidan" who president Petro Poroshenko was planning to dismiss. The weather made it tough going. But among the demonstrators, keeping their spirits up, was Olga Kurnosova, one of Russia's greatest veterans of street protest. Over the last 15 years the 53-year-old firebrand has grown famous getting arrested by police during just about each and every un-sanctioned anti-Putin protest in Moscow.
Global Energy giant Chevron terminated its contract with Ukraine to extract shale gas in western Ukraine after trying for more than a year to get the government to simplify taxation for this type of business.
MOSCOW - Russia looks richer in the snow. Muscovites, as they always have, stroll the main boulevard, Tverskaya Street, in their fur coats and hats on snowy evenings, basking in the holiday lights and decorations, their capital transformed into an icy wonderland.
Ukraine - by its very name condemned to be on the border between a Europe now composed of a Central as well as a Western part - is and will remain through 2015 at or near the top of the European Union's main concerns. That's because it's an existential problem: it defines both what the European Union can do - and what it is.
In a blitzkrieg vote on Dec. 11, both chambers of the U.S. Congress passed a landmark bill known as the Ukraine Freedom Support Act 2014 that authorizes Kyiv defense weapons worth $350 million.
Russian President Vladimir Putin seems to have picked a bad time to try to restore the Russian empire. Collapsing energy prices are weakening the value of the ruble, causing inflation and depriving Mr. Putin of badly needed income. We might expect his troubles to curb his appetite for aggression. Alas, it has not.
If, a generation or so from now, Ukraine has become a full member state in the European Union with a thriving economy, entrenched democratic institutions, and a unique cultural-linguistic space, don’t expect to find a statue in honor of US President Barack Obama standing in Kyiv’s Independence Square in the manner of former President Bill Clinton’s statue in the small Balkan nation of Kosovo.
The video of the first brawl in the newly-elected Verkhovna Rada became a hit, collecting 500,000 views overnight.
LISICHANSK, Ukraine – Frustration with the Kyiv central government is getting almost palpable in some places in eastern Ukraine. Nowhere is this discontent felt more than in cities where a military campaign with no clear objectives, combined with lack of reforms and outreach by the central government, have brought on an eerie anxiety.
Ukraine's General Staff has intercepted reports by the commanders of Russian military units indicating that regular Russian troops sustained significant losses in the battle for the Donetsk airport, a representative of the Ukrainian General Staff and acting head of the personnel department of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Oleksandr Rozmaznin, has said.
In two prior posts we had demonstrated (1) that European security - based largely on trust and underwritten by the yet untested resolve and capability of NATO’s North American and European members – may be more self-delusion than reality
Lack of public service professionals on the Ukraine labor market has pushed the government to look abroad for qualified applicants who can take positions.
DZERZHINSK, Ukraine - Spoil tips rise as high as mountains above the horizon where, not far across the field, pro-Kremlin insurgents are amassing troops with more heavy weaponry and fighters coming from Russia.
Ukraine will cancel its non-aligned status and resume integration with NATO as part of measures to reform its national security and defense system, as is evident from a draft Ukrainian parliamentary coalition agreement initialed by its future members.
"The Shooter" is back. Colonel Igor Girkin, the career Russian intelligence officer who disappeared three months ago from his leading role in the Russian-sponsored war against Ukraine, has burst anew into Russia's news headlines. He has given a spate of interviews in which he presses Russia’s government to step up direct military support for the two "people's republics" it is backing in southeastern Ukraine.
I grew up hating America. I lived in the Soviet Union and was a child of the cold war. That hate went away in 1989, though, when the Berlin Wall fell and the cold war ended. By the time I left Russia in 1991, the year the Soviet Union collapsed, America was a country that Russians looked up to and wanted to emulate.
Russia's war against Ukraine further escalated on Nov. 10, with Kremlin-backed separatists in the eastern Donbas region getting massive amounts of Russian weapons and mercenaries and intensifying their shelling of Ukrainian forces.
BRUSSELS - Seeing its gold-spangled blue flag flown on the barricades of Kyiv thrilled the European Union, reviving its self-image as a beacon of democracy at a time of growing doubt and economic gloom.