Thursday, May 29, 2008

The Litivinenko Annexe

Ian Traynor, writing in the Guardian about the EU's new strategic partnership project:

Under what a European diplomat described as "the Litvinenko annexe", Moscow would come under pressure to extradite Andrei Lugovoi, the Russian MP and main suspect in the London murder by radiation poisoning.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

UN Supports Georgia Claim

Via BBC:
A Russian jet did shoot down an unmanned Georgian drone over the breakaway
Georgian region of Abkhazia last month, UN monitors say.

Friday, May 23, 2008


Prague Watchdog's Andrei Babitsky discusses the question of the Chechen returnees.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Thaw in a frozen conflict

The situation in the Kodori Gorge continues to be uneasy, with both sides in the "frozen" conflict warning of impending war. A lot of this appears to be rhetoric for foreign consumption. However, something is afoot, and a Times correspondent witnessed
a convoy of Russian military fuel tankers en route to Sukhumi from the border crossing on the Psoi river. At an Abkhaz base near the Kodori Gorge troops took delivery of two trucks loaded with shells.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Who's Who on Ethnic Cleansing

Joining with Russia to excuse ethnic cleansing was an unusual constellation of countries: Armenia, Belarus, North Korea, India, Iran, Myanmar, Serbia, Sudan, Syria, and Venezuela.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Given his track record of inflammatory remarks, Luzhkov had been met on arrival at Simferopol airport by Ukrainian State Security Service officials, who gave him a written warning against infringing Ukrainian law or undermining Ukraine’s territorial integrity. In front of television cameras, Luzhkov read out the warning derisively and, with his entourage, burst out laughing at the Ukrainian document (Russian Television, May 10).
-Vladimir Socor, in Eurasia Daily Monitor

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


I'm currently getting uaed to the new schedule at Prague Watchdog, where some changes in the way the site operates are underway. This is taking up some time, and it means I'll be posting a bit less here for a while. However, I'll hope to resume more frequent posting soon.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Breaking the Silence

As EU ministers prepare to visit Georgia next week, Jamestown's Eurasia Daily Monitor points to a hushed-up fact that needs to be borne in mind by the delegation:
The Russian military, not the Abkhaz (17 percent of the region’s pre-conflict population) evicted the Georgian population (45 percent of the pre-conflict population) from Abkhazia by force. Yet Moscow has tried to put an Abkhaz face on that act, thereby turning the Abkhaz from ad hoc allies into long-term hostages to Russian policy. Using a similar method, Russia is now attempting to put an Abkhaz face on the downing of one or more Georgian unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) in internationally recognized Georgian air space.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

The Timing of a War

In the Washington Post, Anne Applebaum considers the possibility that Abkhazia could become the starting point of a larger war, and reflects:
If you wanted to attack an American ally, or if you just wanted to destabilize and unnerve an American ally, wouldn't this be the perfect moment? Perhaps if the Russians don't take the opportunity, someone else will.


Sunday, May 04, 2008

Putin's Choice

In the Washington Quarterly, Zbigniew Brzezinski writes about Vladimir Putin, suggesting that "the turn toward political authoritarianism in Russia was a choice, not a necessity."

(Hat tip: Marius)