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  • Volgograd Terror Wave Threatens Sochi Olympics, Russian Civic Peace

    Russia’s holiday cheer was shattered by brutal suicide bombings on December 29 and 30 in the city of Volgograd that killed at least 31 people. Many experts believe that the bombings, which come just weeks before the opening of the Winter Olympics in Sochi, are an attempt by North Caucasus … More

    Vladimir Putin Disbands RIA Novosti, Tightens His Grip on Russian Media

    This week, Russian President Vladimir Putin disbanded the state-owned RIA Novosti news agency. A new agency—Russia Segodnya (Russia Today)—will be taking over its assets with the mission of improving the image of Russia internationally. It will be headed by a hard-line propagandist, TV anchor Dmitri Kiselev, leaving no doubt about … More

    Q&A on the Crisis in Ukraine

    The brutal dispersal of demonstrators in Ukraine last week led to dozens wounded—and a public protest movement which now surpasses the Orange Revolution of 2004. Demonstrators want Ukraine in Europe—and President Victor Yanukovich out of power. Ariel Cohen, Heritage’s Senior Research Fellow for Russian and Eurasian Studies, gives some perspective … More

    Russia Should Drop “You Are with Us or Against Us” Mantra

    Recently, several of Russia’s “younger siblings,” such as Ukraine and Moldova, finally got a chance to partially break from the Russian bear hug and opt for a closer integration with the West. They are members of the Eastern Partnership with the European Union, a close cooperation program with the EU, … More

    Syrian Geopolitical Chess: Putin’s One-Two Punch

    Vladimir Putin’s op-ed in The New York Times is an attempt to talk to the American people over the heads of its elected representatives. For a Russian foreign policy practitioner, it is also an act of information warfare. After all, Russia views the United States as a strategic competitor, if … More

    Snowden Asylum Is Burying Obama’s Russian "Reset"

    The Kremlin delivered a diplomatic blow to U.S.–Russian relations when Moscow granted former NSA analyst Edward Snowden a temporary political asylum. Now, the White House may cancel a U.S.–Russia summit that was scheduled for early September, and Obama’s Russian reset policy will require significant re-examination. This will be the first … More

    Snowden “on a Leash”: The High-Stakes Game in Russia

    President Obama is considering cancellation of his summit with Russian president Vladimir Putin at the September G-20 confab over Russia’s harboring of the American fugitive Edward Snowden. This would be the first time since the end of the Cold War that the U.S. cancels a previously scheduled summit. Snowden gave … More

    Lithuania LNG Terminal a Big Step in the Right Direction

    Lithuania is building a liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal at the port of Klaipeda. The project, which is expected to be operational by 2014, will give the Baltic nation access to the world’s LNG market. Today, the nation’s existing natural gas infrastructure consists of a single pipeline owned by the … More

    Snowden Asylum Request: Another Blow to Obama's Russia "Reset" Policy

    Last Sunday, a Russian consular official confirmed that former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden asked for political asylum in Russia. Snowden’s defection, announced after a week in Moscow, may be not an impulsive act but a thoroughly pre-planned operation. The Interfax news agency cited Kim Shevchenko, duty officer … More

    “Russian Reset”: Time to Listen to the Critics

    In a well-reasoned broadside, The Washington Post’s editorial board blasted President Obama’s Russian policy and his Berlin speech this past Thursday. The editorial justly criticized the naiveté with which Obama reached out to Russian president Vladimir Putin with a badly thought out proposal to cut a third of the U.S. … More