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  • London Mayor Decries Posthumous Trial of Russian Whistleblower

    London mayor Boris Johnson published an op-ed Monday in which he decried the posthumous trial of whistleblower Sergei Magnitsky. Johnson called Magnitsky “a martyr trampled by a corrupt system” and called on the United Kingdom and the European Union to pass a Magnitsky Act—which levies financial sanctions and visa restrictions … More

    60 Years After His Death, Stalin Haunts Russia

    March 5 marks the 60th anniversary of Joseph Stalin’s death. One of the most infamous leaders of the 20thcentury, Stalin remains a controversial figure among Russians as they refuse to settle a debate about his role and impact. And the recent attempts by the state to remember him may be … More

    Mr. Xi Goes to Moscow: For China’s Leader, It’s Russia First

    China’s new president, Xi Jinping, will make his first official foreign visit to Russia this month. Xi’s decision to make his first visit abroad to Russia suggests an effort to improve relations and cement their strategic partnership. Washington should pay attention to the growing ties between Moscow and Beijing. Since … More

    Russia: Putin Loyalist Going Down in Flames

    Vladimir Pekhtin, chairman of the Duma Ethics Committee, hid undisclosed luxury properties in Florida valued at nearly $2 million while proclaiming his anti-American credentials, according to Russian anti-corruption crusader Alexei Navalny. As early as 2007, Pekhtin and his son bought an oceanfront luxury apartment in Miami. Navalny’s staff searched Miami-Dade … More

    Russian “Grandma of Human Rights” Nominated for Nobel Prize

    This week, Senator Benjamin Cardin (D–MD) nominated the “grandma” of the Russian human rights movement, Lyudmila Alekseeva, for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize. Cardin’s nomination of the veteran of the dissident movement affirms the United States’ support for human rights activists in Russia and gives this “peacemaker” the recognition she … More

    Dead Man on Trial: Russian Whistleblower Tried After Death

    The Russian government is set to posthumously try the brutally murdered whistleblower Sergei Magnitsky for tax fraud. While working for Hermitage Capital, formerly one of Russia’s largest foreign investment firms, Magnitsky uncovered a massive fraud and accused Russian police and tax officials of embezzling $230 million from the Russian treasury. … More

    Russia’s Throwback Anti-Americanism

    Russian President Vladimir Putin’s approval rating is at 62 percent, its “lowest in more than 12 years,” according to Russian survey group Levada. While 62 percent may sound high, the number represents the drop from Putin’s tremendous popularity 12 years ago—75 percent. Faced with mounting opposition to his rule, Putin … More

    Russian Orphan Adoption Ban Protests May Be Harbingers of Instability

    On Sunday, the Russian New Year’s Eve (in the old-style Julian calendar), tens of thousands of Muscovites poured into the city center to protest the new law banning adoption of Russian children by Americans, known as the “Dima Yakovlev law.” Despite the nasty January weather, people of conscience did not … More

    By Banning U.S. Adoption of Russian Orphans, Russia Shot Itself in the Foot

    Last week, the U.S. Senate unanimously condemned Russia’s new draconian law—whose victims are Russian orphans and Russian democracy. Around Christmas last year, the Russian Duma hastily passed, and President Vladimir Putin signed, The Dima Yakovlev Law, named after an adopted child from Russia who died in 2008 after being abandoned … More

    A Rare Showing of Bipartisanship

    Yesterday, in a rare showing of bipartisanship, the lame-duck Senate passed the Russia and Moldova Jackson–Vanik Repeal Act of 2012 by a vote of 92–4. The Senate took up the version of the bill that passed by an overwhelming majority in the U.S. House of Representatives last month, which grants … More