The last few days have been emotional. On Wednesday Nadia Savchenko arrived in Kyiv to a hero’s welcome, and a plethora of speculation as to her impact on Ukraine’s political scene. Her speech at Boryspil airport was uncompromising; her body language in Poroshenko’s presence was defiant (respectful … [Read more...] about The Coming Autumn Heat
This week the world mourns the victims of the IS (“Islamic State”) attacks on Paris. Meanwhile, seemingly as proof of the degree to which Ukraine is peripheral to global public opinion, the resurgent conflict in Ukraine’s Donbas goes unnoticed (as do the recent bombings in Beirut). In Ukraine, news … [Read more...] about Thoughts from Kyiv – In the wake of Paris bombings, shelling in the Donbas resumes
According to the World Bank, Kazakhstan's GDP is expected to fall sharply from 4.1% in 2014 to 1.8% in 2015. Given Russia's economic downturn Kirghizstan and Tajikistan will also be affected. The percentage of remittances will fall in both countries, driving GDP growth down to 3.0% and 4.2% … [Read more...] about Central Asia: The Biggest Loser
The crisis in Ukraine has plunged US-Russian relations to their lowest point since the Cold War. Crimea is now Russian territory. Although prisoners of war have been exchanged and both sides have agreed to pull back heavy weapons, the accord signed on February 12 in Minsk has failed so far to stop … [Read more...] about The real winner of the Ukraine crisis could be China
Geopolitics is not chess, but the analogy works. Vladimir Putin has been playing this game with his closest neighbours (Georgia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan) for many years, but recently it seems, the West has finally engaged (much to the Russian President’s delight). In Minsk this morning, Putin … [Read more...] about Towards a proactive Russia policy: What constitutes checkmate?
Social networks and the global media are buzzing: what’s the plan? Are the Europeans about to decide Ukraine’s fate over the heads of the Ukrainians? And most importantly, why now? Yesterday and today Ukrainian public opinion is split between two emotions: distrust and hope. German Chancellor … [Read more...] about Is Europe about to decide Ukraine’s fate over the heads of the Ukrainians?