Sunday, May 19, 2019

To Be or Not to Be? Ukraine’s Minsk Process

A little over a year after the Minsk II accord was signed in February 2015, it is all too apparent that the agreement aimed at ending the war in eastern Ukraine is not working. Nevertheless, Western governments, the EU, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE)...

Vladimir Putin and the Shiite Axis

Russia’s new military alliance with Iran is all about keeping Assad in power and America on its back foot. But marriages of convenience usually don’t last. On Aug. 16, Russian bombers took off from Shahid Nojeh air base near the Iranian city of Hamadan reportedly to bomb Islamic State targets...

Russian Railways Logistics Sends First Container Train from China to Europe with CIM/SMGS Common...

“Introduction of CIM/SMGS Common Consignment Note is a result of the two-year work of the railway administrations of all transit countries,” - says Pavel Sokolov, the CEO of Russian Railways Logistics. – “Shippers save transit time due to container demurrage decrease at the border stations.” Multi-client train, which consists of...

Jordan agrees deal for Russia to build nuclear plant

The $10bn power plant in energy-poor Jordan is scheduled to be completed in 2023. Jordan said Tuesday it has signed a framework agreement with Russia for the construction of the first nuclear power plant in the kingdom at a cost of $10bn. The deal was signed by Khaled Tukan, head of the Jordan Atomic Enegry Commission,...

Do We Really Want A War With Russia?

Because we're in danger of getting exactly that. I wish I could say things were improving between the US and Russia but they aren't. They're rapidly worsening. There’s so much happening right now, I can only provide a summary of a few of the more interesting and worrying developments. This report builds...

Russia and China to sign declaration on higher role of international law

According to Russia's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, the document for the first time sets forth a common approach by both countries to a number of contemporary international problems. MOSCOW, The Russian and Chinese foreign ministers will sign a declaration on increasing the role of international law, Russia’s Foreign Ministry...

Russia Rebounds, Despite Sanctions

Sanctions meant to punish Russia for snatching Crimea from Ukraine one year ago were supposed to hurt Russian business. And they did. Russian stocks, bonds and commodities had the worst performance in 2014 of those in any emerging market. That was then. Now the picture is changing, with investors starting...

Western sanctions are hitting Russia harder than people realized

Sanctions linked to the Ukraine crisis could end up costing Russia 9% of its gross domestic product, the International Monetary Fund has said. Russia's economy is showing signs of stabilisation after slumping under pressure from Western financial sanctions and Russian counter-measures. Low international prices for its oil exports have added to...

The Eurasian Union: Undermining Economic Freedom and Prosperity in the South Caucasus

Abstract Russian President Vladimir Putin is seeking economic and political alliances to counterbalance the influence of the U.S., the European Union, China, and transnational Islamism. Putin is determined to strengthen Moscow’s hegemony in the “near abroad”—the post-Soviet space. One of the instruments he has created to achieve that strategic objective...

Cracking Down on Russia’s Caliphate

In Dagestan, authorities are trying to quash an Islamist insurgency that has sent hundreds of young Russians to Syria. They might be making it worse. DAGESTAN, Russia — The totemic Eastern Mosque rises from the outskirts of Khasavyurt, a formless market town located 1,000 miles south of Moscow, in the...

Russia’s Perpetual Geopolitics

Putin Returns to the Historical Pattern. For half a millennium, Russian foreign policy has been characterized by soaring ambitions that have exceeded the country’s capabilities. Beginning with the reign of Ivan the Terrible in the sixteenth century, Russia managed to expand at an average rate of 50 square miles per...

Lights Out for the Putin Regime – The Coming Russian Collapse

Russian President Vladimir Putin used to seem invincible. Today, he and his regime look enervated, confused, and desperate. Increasingly, both Russian and Western commentators suggest that Russia may be on the verge of deep instability, possibly even collapse. This perceptual shift is unsurprising. Last year, Russia was basking in the...

Sanctions bring Russian growth to standstill: IMF

Sanctions imposed on Russia over Ukraine have brought growth to a standstill, had a "chilling effect" on investment and could force Moscow into economic isolation, the International Monetary Fund said on Tuesday. The international lender's report chimed with words from Russia's central bank governor, Elvira Nabiullina, who told a banking...

Legendary Investor Jim Rogers: Buy Stocks from Russia Fast

Rock bottom oil prices, a resurgent ruble and a rebounding stock market make it a good time to invest in Russia, according to American investor Jim Rogers. "I'm very optimistic about the future of Russia," Rogers told the audience at a Moscow investment conference put on by investment firm BCS. "Certainly one of the most...

Are We Entering a New Cold War?

It’s not a strong Russia we should fear, but a weak one. Every year, the security glitterati of the world gather in Germany for the annual Munich Security Conference. The forum has been around for decades, but this year, over an unseasonably warm weekend, the most dramatic speech was about...

Congress Demands War in Ukraine!

Just weeks after a European-brokered ceasefire greatly reduced the violence in Ukraine, the US House of Representatives today takes a big step toward re-igniting -- and expanding -- the bloody civil war. A Resolution, "Calling on the President to provide Ukraine with military assistance to defend its sovereignty and territorial...

Sanctions Having a Mixed Effect on Russia, Officials Say

WASHINGTON – U.S. and European sanctions imposed on Russia for its support of Ukrainian separatists and the annexation of Crimea are having a significant impact on Russia’s economy but have not curtailed Moscow’s continued intervention in the region, two senior Defense Department officials told Congress today. “We are hearing, for...

Prepare for serious turbulence in Russia

Last year, thanks to its aggression in Ukraine, Russia changed in many important ways. But one crucial transformation has gone largely unnoticed: Long-term thinking has completely disappeared, and the Russian regime no longer talks about the future. Russian leaders’ discourse centers on the standoff with Ukraine and the West...

Kiev in Denial

Ukraine's leaders think their country is too important to fail. They're wrong. Russia is at war with Ukraine — there is no concealing this basic fact. Yet despite the seriousness of the threat from the East, Moscow isn’t the worst enemy the Ukrainians face. Given the self-inflicted corruption that has...

EU Foreign Ministers Skirmish Over Russia Sanctions

On Monday, European Union foreign ministers discussed the bloc’s ties with Russia for the first time in more than a year, a moment some believed could pave the way to a re-think of the bloc’s approach. In fact, Monday’s discussion seems to have barely shifted the status quo, according to...

Ukraine tests new shipping route to Asia bypassing Russia

Ukrainian authorities on Jan. 15 launched an experiment that may allow the country to bypass Russia completely when shipping goods to Asia. A demo container train sent from the Illichivsk Port to Kazakhstan is now testing the new trade route. The train will arrive in Kazakhstan in 12 days. On...

Convoy Brings U.S. Paratroopers To Ukraine For Training

VICENZA, Italy: Paratroopers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade Support Battalion arrived in Yavoriv, Ukraine April 10 via a ground convoy from here to deliver the brigade’s training equipment for Operation Fearless Guardian. Fearless Guardian is the name for the training of Ukraine’s newly-formed National Guard under the Congress-approved Global Contingency...

From Energy War to Currency War: America’s Attack on the Russian Ruble

A multi-spectrum war is being waged against Moscow by Washington. If there are any doubts about this, they should be put to rest. Geopolitics, science and technology, speculation, financial markets, information streams, large business conglomerates, intelligentsia, mass communication, social media, the internet, popular culture, news networks, international institutions, sanctions,...

Russia to join China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank

Moscow (AFP) - Russia is to sign up to the Chinese-led development bank AIIB, first deputy prime minister Igor Shuvalov said Saturday at an international forum in China, cited by Russian news agencies. "I'd like to inform you that Russian President Vladimir Putin has taken the decision that Russia will...

Pushing Russia Toward War

NATO's military pressure on Russia and the West’s economic sanctions have empowered Moscow’s hardliners, setting the stage for an escalation of the new Cold War into possibly a hot one, ex-British intelligence officer Alastair Crooke warns. Something significant happened in the last few days of April, but it seems the only...

Russian military options in Syria and the Ukraine

The past two weeks have been rich in military developments directly affecting Russia: Syria: 1) Russia has announced that she will transform the Khmeimim airfield into a full-fledged military base with a permanently deployed task force. 2) Russia will deploy her heavy aircraft-carrying missile cruiser (often referred to in the West as...

Putin Praises ‘All-Embracing’ Partnership of Russia, China

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday emphasized economic ties with China and praised what he called Russia's "all-embracing and strategic partnership" with its neighbor, during a visit to Beijing that takes place against the background of a drop in trade and lingering mistrust. Putin told Chinese Premier Li Keqiang that...

Russia: We will respond to entry of U.S. naval vessel into Black Sea

The Russian Foreign ministry said Moscow would respond to a U.S. naval ship's entry into the Black Sea with unspecified measures, saying it and other deployments were designed to ratchet up tensions ahead of a NATO summit, the RIA news agency reported. Russian state media reported that the USS Porter,...

Russian ruble slides to record low in Moscow trading

MOSCOW (AP) — The Russian ruble slid to a record low against the dollar Wednesday under pressure from the low oil price. The ruble traded above 81.8 to the dollar in Moscow on Wednesday evening, down by around four percent. That beat the mark of 80.1 set when the currency...

U.S. imposes sanctions on Putin’s bridge to Crimea

Companies building a multi-billion dollar bridge to link the Russian mainland with annexed Crimea, a project close to the heart President Vladimir Putin, were targeted by the United States in an updated sanctions blacklist on Thursday. The U.S. Department of the Treasury added dozens of people and companies to the...

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