When Does Vladimir Putin’s Russia Send In Troops?

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Simon Saradzhyan – August 7, 2018) Simon Saradzhyan is the founding director of the Russia Matters Project at Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. [Text with links and chart russiamatters.org/analysis/when-does-vladimir-putins-russia-send-troops] This month marks the tenth anniversary of Vladimir Putin’s first military intervention abroad, in Georgia. Since then there have been two […]

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RUSSLIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin] News conference following BRICS summit” – KremlinRu

File Photo of Flags of BRICS Nations and BRICS Logo from Past Summit

(Kremlin.ru – July 27, 2018 – en.kremlin.ru/events/president/transcripts/58119) Vladimir Putin made a statement for the press and answered questions from Russian media following a two-day BRICS summit in Johannesburg, South Africa. President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon. I would like to brief you on what we did during these two days and on the results of our work. First of […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin] Remarks at an expanded BRICS Summit meeting” – KremlinRu

File Photo of Flags of BRICS Nations and BRICS Logo from Past Summit

(Kremlin.ru – July 26, 2018) President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr President Ramaphosa, Friends, President Xi Jinping, President Temer, Prime Minister Modi, Colleagues, Meeting in a narrow format, we have just noted – and I would like to recall this now again at the beginning – that during these days we are jointly marking the 100th birth anniversary of South […]

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RUSSIALINK: “BRICS leaders to discuss expansion at summit in S. Africa – Kremlin aide” – Interfax

File Photo of Flags of BRICS Nations and BRICS Logo from Past Summit

MOSCOW. July 24 (Interfax) – The leaders of the BRICS member states will discuss the prospects of this association’s expansion but will not make a decision on the matter at the upcoming summit in South Africa, Kremlin aide Yury Ushakov said. “The BRICS leaders will meet on July 27 to consider the association’s development and address strategic partnership priorities,” Ushakov […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s Achilles heel: Putin still falling short on master plan for aging oil economy” CNBC/Ashleigh Garrison, Kelly Song

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

Russian President Vladimir Putin has displayed geopolitical intelligence and military strength, but he falls short when it comes to mastering the Russian economy. The Russian market is still largely dependent on rising oil prices and the lack of innovation is a major economic weakness. GDP is growing, but slowly, and critical foreign investment remains low due to Putin’s provocations and […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “Meeting of ambassadors and permanent representatives of Russia” – KremlinRu

foreign-ministry-200

(Kremlin.ru – July 19, 2018) Vladimir Putin took part in a meeting of ambassadors and permanent representatives of Russia at international organisations and associations, where he outlined the main goals of Russian diplomacy. Meetings of ambassadors and permanent representatives of Russia are held biannually. Invitations are issued to the leaders of the Government and both houses of the Federal Assembly, […]

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NEWSLINK: “This Is How Vladimir Putin Manufactures Conflict Between Nations” – Observer/John R. Schindler

Stylized Artist's Depiction of Shadowy Figures in Dark Coats and Dark Hats, One Carrying a Briefcase

“… The casual manner with which Kremlin spies ruthlessly exploit others for their own ends is not a nice story, given that their methods embrace violence and life-ruining measures as nonchalantly as Westerners order a cup of coffee. The cornerstone of the Chekist worldview is provocation, what the Russians call provokatsiya. It’s not new, indeed it was honed into a […]

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NEWSLINK: “Semi-state Security Actors and Russian Aggression” – Lawfareblog/Kimberly Marten

Ukraine Air Crash Scene with Uniformed Security Personnel, Flames, Smoke

“… missing from much of the discussion is the fact that a variety of semi-state security groups, with a hazy relationship to Moscow’s central authorities, are playing an increasing role in Russian actions both at home and abroad. The United States and other Western states must develop a better understanding of the complex motives and economic interests held by these […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin Says World Cup Has Broken Stereotypes About Russia” – Reuters

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

“… Russia’s host nation status had been met with resistance by some in the West … suggest[ing] the tournament could be unsafe and play into the hands of Putin … accused by Washington of conducting ‘malign activities’ around the world. … the month-long tournament … has so far been without major security incidents. Concerns about racism and hooligan violence … […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The real World Cup losers: The Russian people” – Washington Post/Frank A. Guridy, Tinatin Japaridze

Men Sitting Around Long Oval Boardroom Table, File Photo of FIFA Officials Meeting with Vladmir Putin

“… Putin’s bet that the World Cup will produce a win for his government is a big gamble. The global political climate of 2018 is very different than the environment that existed when Russia was awarded the World Cup eight years ago, or even four years ago when Russia invaded Ukraine and annexed the Crimean Peninsula after hosting the 2014 […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Moscow’s Bread and Circus” – Kennan Institute/Maxim Trudolyubov

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

“…. Increasing taxes, raising the retirement age, even starting another war because Russia is doing so well in soccer are the recurring jokes on Moscow’s streets. People compete in creativity in trying to imagine what else the government can do to them while everyone is distracted by the World Cup. One of the jokes is that Putin will now present […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “Foreign Minister S.Lavrov’s interview with Channel 4 (UK), Moscow, June 29, 2018” – Russia in Global Affairs

Sergei Lavrov file photo

“… Question: Foreign Minister, the summit is happening in Helsinki. Russian President V.Putin and US President D.Trump together. Is this the post-West world order that you have talked of in the past? Has it now arrived? …”

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The World Cup in Russia: A Boon for Public Diplomacy; As Richard Arnold explains, hosting the FIFA World Cup has been a PR coup for Russia, mostly living up to official expectations (though with some caveats), and, at least so far, a popular success.

File Image of Soccer Ball, Field, Stadium with Lights, adapted from image at fbi.gov

(PONARS Eurasia – ponarseurasia.org – Richard Arnold – June 26, 2018) Richard Arnold is Associate Professor of Political Science at Muskingum University, where he teaches courses in comparative politics and international relations, including courses on Russian politics and the politics of sport. He is the author of Russian Nationalism and Ethnic Violence: Symbolic Violence, Lynching, Pogrom, and Massacre (2016, Routledge) […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Is Vladimir Putin’s Russia in decline? We figured out how to measure ‘national power.'” – Washington Post/Simon Saradzhyan, Nabi Abdullaev

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

“… Overall, here’s what we found. The claims of Russia’s imminent demise seem unfounded – all but one model showed that Russia’s power vis-a-vis the world as a whole has grown in the 21st century. And all our models showed that Russia’s power has risen vis-a-vis Western nations.  In absolute terms, all four methods showed Russia’s power to be less […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “Vladimir Putin answered questions from journalists; After the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit, Vladimir Putin met with Russian journalists” – KremlinRu

File Photo of Putin Sitting at Desk, Looking Down, Writing, During Call-In Show, adapted from screenshot of video at kremlin.ru

(Kremlin.ru – June 10, 2018) President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, welcome everyone. I suggest we immediately get down to your questions without any statements from me because President of China, Mr Xi Jinping has just reported at the news conference on the progress and the results of our work today. So, please, if there are any specific questions […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Moscow prefers G20 to G8, has not asked to return – minister” – Interfax

File Photo of G7 Leaders and other Officials Around Round Table at the Hague, with Flags

(Interfax – June 9, 2018) Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said Russia has never asked to be readmitted to the G8, and considers the G20 group a more promising format for the future, Interfax news agency reported on 9 June. “We’ve never asked to come back,” Lavrov said on Russia’s state-owned Channel One TV, the report said, noting that […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s Success Masks Russian Weakness” – Wall Street Journal/Walter Russell Mead

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

“Despite … Putin’s successes, Russia remains weak, and its leverage over other nations is limited. China can woo its neighbors with multibillion-dollar projects like its ‘One Belt, One Road’ trade initiative. Russia has much less to offer: If China is a tiger, Russia is a pussycat on stilts. … Putin can obstruct Germany’s faltering European project, but he lacks the […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russian govt proposes barring foreign-agent NGOs from anti-corruption examinations – bill” – Interfax

Russian State Duma Building file photo

MOSCOW. May 29 (Interfax) – The Russian government has proposed a number of measures to bar foreign-agent NGOs and certain categories of Russian citizens from participating in anti-corruption examinations; a relevant bill was submitted to the State Duma on Tuesday. The bill, which has been published in the State Duma’s database, “would prohibit citizens with outstanding or unexpunged convictions or […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “St. Petersburg International Economic Forum plenary session; Vladimir Putin spoke at the plenary session of the 22nd St Petersburg International Economic Forum [Excerpts]” – KremlinRu

File Photo of St. Petersburg Economy Forum Outdoor Banners and Building Facade

(Kremlin.ru – May 25, 2018 – http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/57556) Foreign heads of state and government, heads of major Russian and international companies and banks, leading experts and politicians from around the world were invited to the forum. Honorary SPIEF guests include French President Emmanuel Macron and Prime Minister of Japan Shinzo Abe. The plenary session participants also include IMF Managing Director Christine […]

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RUSSIALINK: “About half of Russians confident Russia has status of great power – poll” – Interfax

Russian Soldiers Marching

MOSCOW. May 21 (Interfax) – About half of Russian citizens are confident that Russia maintains the status of a great power; about a quarter of those polled identified the army as one of the key factors of power, while 17% of respondents named the president’s activities, according to the Russian Public Opinion Research Center’s (VCIOM) poll, the results of which […]

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NEWSLINK: “Vladimir Putin starts new term with call to modernise Russia; President says Moscow will address domestic reforms while upholding global interests” – Financial Times/Kathrin Hille

Kremlin and River

“… Putin said that while Russia would continue to uphold its interests on the international stage, his priority now lay in internal development. …”

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“The World has Stopped Loving or Even Respecting Russia and Putin,” Shevtsova Says

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, May 3, 2018) Polls show that countries around the world not only have stopped loving or even respecting Russia and Putin but are increasingly ill-disposed to both, Liliya Shevtsova says, a trend that limits Russia’s options however much some in Moscow think they can ignore the attitudes of others or can compel them […]

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NEWSWATCH: “Putin launches another term as Russia’s president. It might even be his last.” – Washington Post/Anton Troianovski, Amie Ferris-Rotman

Putin Descending a Staircase

“… Putin, already the longest serving leader of Russia since Stalin, launched a fourth presidential term on Monday in which he has promised to improve Russian lives at home while showing no sign of backing down in his confrontation with the West ….” Click here for: “Putin launches another term as Russia’s president. It might even be his last.” – […]

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NEWSWATCH: “Measuring National Power: Is Vladimir Putin’s Russia in Decline?” – Russia Matters/Simon Saradzhyan, Nabi Abdullaev

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

“As Vladimir Putin embarks on another six-year term as Russia’s president, Western pundits and policymakers are left wondering whether his reelection means that Moscow’s muscular policies toward America and other Western powers will continue or even escalate. But what is the reality of Russian power in the Putin era? Is Russia a rising, declining or stagnating power? How does its […]

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Notion of a Special Russian Path ‘Irresponsible and Dangerous,’ Liberal Authors Warn in New Book

Kremlin and River

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, April 29, 2018) Four leading Russian liberals, Aleksandr Obolensky, Dmitry Travin, Gennady Aksyonov, and Viktor Sheynis, warn in a new book that the Kremlin’s promotion of an idea that Russia has “a special path” is an ‘irresponsible and dangerous” dead end that has no basis in reality. The new book, ‘A Special […]

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NEWSWATCH: “Countering a Kleptocratic Kremlin; We must remember that predatory authoritarianism is not stamped into the Russian DNA” – The American Interest/Larry Diamond

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

“With every passing week we have new evidence of the threat that Vladimir Putin’s kleptocracy poses to our democracy, our national security, and the entire liberal world order. Putin’s regime – something akin to an organized crime ring masquerading as a state – has looted the wealth of Russia, subjugated its people, attacked neighboring former republics of the USSR, annexed […]

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NEWSWATCH: “How Russia’s Economic Recession Benefits Moscow Politically in its ‘Near Abroad’ [Excerpt]” – PONARS Eurasia/Mariya Omelicheva

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

Mariya Y. Omelicheva is Professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Kansas. “Over the short run, Russia’s acrimonious relations with the West are serving the Kremlin’s broader effort of heightening its influence in its ‘near abroad.’ In 2014, Russia was hit by a triple whammy of low oil prices, Western sanctions, and Moscow’s counter-sanctions. During the […]

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NEWSWATCH: “What to Expect From Putin and a Resurgent Russia” – AP

File Photo of Kremlin Aerial View, adapted from .gov source

“… [Putin’s] domestic opponents are largely resigned to another six years in the shadows. …. Even widespread voting violations are unlikely to dent Putin’s armor. … accusations that he meddled in the U.S. election and sponsored a nerve agent attack in Britain have only bolstered his standing at home. Here’s a look at what to expect … NEW COLD WAR? … SYRIA […]

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NEWSLINK: “‘Russia is attempting something that nobody but America has tried in 30 years’ Why is Moscow’s foreign policy what it is? Meduza asks the experts” – Meduza

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

“In recent years – thanks to the annexation of Crimea, the intervention in eastern Ukraine, and the war in Syria – foreign policy has come to influence the everyday lives of ordinary Russians both directly and indirectly. At the same time, however, state officials have often failed to explain the full logic behind these momentous decisions. To learn more about […]

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NEWSWATCH: “Life in Vladimir Putin’s Russia explained in 10 charts” – BBC/ Alex Murray, Tom Housden, Anastasia Napalkova, Sandra Rodriguez Chillida, Joy Roxas, Zoe Bartholomew

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

“1. Fewer people are poor … 2. But wage growth has stalled recently … 3. More people have a car, and there are more microwaves than households … 4. Russians fell in love with Ikea … 5. And champagne … There’s some dispute over how much Russians drink. … 6. … the internet took off … 7. But circuses are […]

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Interfax: Putin: import substitution in Russia is temporary phenomenon

File Photo of U.S. Dairy Cows

SAMARA. March 7 (Interfax) – Import substitution in Russia is a temporary phenomenon; a temporary tool to balance out the current situation, Russian President Vladimir Putin said. “The idea of import substitution is not, in and of itself, universal and is not what we should be aiming for in the long run; import substitution mustn’t disrupt competition. This is an […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview for the show Main Actors with Nailya Asker-Zade on Rossiya 1 Moscow, February 11, 2018” – Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Sergei Lavrov file photo

“… Question: Let us talk about Russian-US relations. You are No. 65 in the so-called Kremlin Report. You are the first foreign minister to be blacklisted. …”

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Putin at] Meeting of the Council for Science and Education” – KremlinRu

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Kremlin.ru – February 8, 2018) The President held a meeting of the Council for Science and Education in Novosibirsk. The agenda focused on the sector’s main tasks and prospects, as well as the key areas of international research and technical cooperation. Transcript of meeting of the Council for Science and Education President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Good afternoon, colleagues, I […]

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NEWSLINK: “Why Putin’s foreign policy adventures will backfire” – Aspen Institute (Italy)/Ivan Nechepurenko

Vladimir Putin file photo with VOA logo; screen shot from video still

“… Russia’s inflated presence on the world arena feeds the internal propaganda machine. … Putin is … now facing a dilemma: his bullish foreign policy coups made him even more popular among the Russians. However, these coups have created an appetite for more foreign adventures. This fixation on foreign policy will become increasingly difficult to afford ….”

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Can Russia Sustain Its Foreign Policy Power Plays in 2018?

File Photo of U.S. Embassy Moscow, with Russian Foreign Ministry Building in Distance

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Jonathan Brown, Editor, Moscow Times – January 31, 2018) When Vladimir Putin landed in Syria late last year, he was greeted by President Bashar Assad not as a foreign dignitary, but as the guardian of the embattled nation. “Syria has been preserved as a sovereign and independent state,” Putin told soldiers assembled at the Khmeimim […]

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Andrei Liakhov: Re: “Cohen on Putin”

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

Subject: Cohen on Putin Date: Wed, 17 Jan 2018 From: Andrei Liakhov <gaffriloff@yahoo.co.uk> [Andrei Liakhov has over 20 years of experience with leading international law firms, private companies and government institutions in the United Kingdom, the Russian Federation, Lithuania, Canada, and Ukraine.] Brilliant analysis, I can subscribe to every word. Pity the video is cut short and we do not […]

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Two-thirds of citizens believe Russia has enemies

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

MOSCOW. Jan 10 (Interfax) – The share of Russians who believe that their country has enemies has declined from 80% in September 2015 to 66%, the Levada Analytical Center told Interfax. Those enemies include the United States (68%), Ukraine (29%), EU countries (14%), former Soviet republics (10%), and Poland (8%), Levada said. Twenty-one percent of Russians polled said the country […]

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NEWSWATCH: “They’re back! Must-read paper on ‘The Return of Global Russia,’ a new Carnegie project, is avail online and explains the Kremlin’s increasingly expansive foreign policy paradigm …” – Andrew S. Weis/ Carnegie Endowment/ Twitter

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Andrew S. Weiss, Vice President for Studies, Carnegie Endowment Russia and Eurasia Program – Twitter – @andrewsweiss) “They’re back! Must-read paper on ‘The Return of Global Russia,’ a new Carnegie project, is avail online and explains the Kremlin’s increasingly expansive foreign policy paradigm http://ceip.org/2C5ksHh via @pstronski and Richard Sokolsky …” [embedded live feed of tweet should load below; tweet also […]

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NEWSWATCH VIDEO: “How Putin’s emotional reactions drive Russian strategy” – PBS Newshour

Putin at Desk

(PBS Newshour –  December 13, 2017) “What motivates President Vladimir Putin, the man accused of ordering Russian interference in the 2016 American election? Special correspondent Nick Schifrin talks with Julia Ioffe, who has written a new cover story for The Atlantic about what he really wants. …” [Click here for transcript and original posting of video: pbs.org/newshour/show/how-putins-emotional-reactions-drive-russian-strategy] 

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NEWSWATCH: “Beware the Russian Elephant” – The American Interest/ Peter Pomerantsev

Stylized Artist's Depiction of Shadowy Figures in Dark Coats and Dark Hats, One Carrying a Briefcase

“As the West considers how to respond to the Kremlin’s use of bots, trolls, fake news, and hacks as tools of foreign policy, the way we describe things will define whether we prevail. The most insidious element of Moscow’s information war could be the very idea of information war itself. In ‘Don’t Think of an Elephant’ the cognitive linguist George […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting wrapped up in Vietnam; [Putin meeting with Russian and foreign journalists]” – KremlinRu

Map of Asia-Pacific Highlighting APEC Member States

(kremlin.ru – Nov. 11, 2017) The 25th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting ended in Danang. On the second day of the Meeting, the APEC leaders reviewed the prospects for the global economy with Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund Christine Lagarde. During the business breakfast, a discussion was held on establishing an Asia-Pacific free trade zone and a possible expansion […]

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Russia increases military presence in strategic areas of globe – General Staff chief

File Photo of Deck of Russian Aircraft Carrier Admiral Kuznetsov

MOSCOW. Nov 7 (Interfax) – Russia’s military presence in strategic areas of the globe has markedly grown over the past five years, Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov said. “The growth of the Armed Forces’ combat capabilities over the past five years has resulted in a significant expansion of Russia’s military presence in strategic areas of the world,” Gerasimov […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANCRIPT: “Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks at a meeting with members of the Association of European Businesses in Russia Moscow, October 31, 2017” – Russian Foreign Ministry

Sergei Lavrov file photo » Read more

RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks at the global themed conference titled 100 Years of the Russian Revolution: Unity for the Future – Moscow, October 31, 2017” – Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

File Photo of Revolutionaries Marching in Moscow in 1917, adapted from image at state.gov » Read more

Putin approves of initiative on Foreign Ministry commission monitoring compatriots’ rights abroad

foreign-ministry-200

MOSCOW. Oct 30 (Interfax) – Russian President Vladimir Putin has supported human rights defenders’ proposal on setting up a special commission in the Russian Foreign Ministry in order to monitor the situation with Russians citizens’ rights abroad and provide them with legal assistance, if necessary. “I believe, it’s a good idea. It can be even more efficient than just the […]

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NEWSWATCH: “Russia Uses Its Oil Giant, Rosneft, as a Foreign Policy Tool” – New York Times/ Clifford Krauss

File Photo of Rosneft and Russian Flags Next to Rosneft Banner

“Russia is increasingly wielding oil as a geopolitical tool, spreading … influence … and challenging the interests of the United States. … Moscow risks running into trouble … lend[ing] money and mak[ing] deals in turbulent economies and shaky political climates. The strategy faces a crucial test this week in Venezuela, a Russian ally that must come up with a billion dollars to avert […]

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Republic: The Diagnosis after Three Years of Crisis, or Why the Russian Economy Survived

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Institute of Modern Russia – imrussia.org – Oct. 20, 2017 [from “Russian media roundup, October 13-20, 2017”]) At the turn of 2014-2015, it was uncertain as to whether the Russian economy would emerge standing. Yakov Mirkin, the head of International Capital Markets Department Institute of World Economy and International Relations, lists seven reasons to explain what saved the Russian economy […]

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RUSSIALINK TRANSCRIPT: “[Vladimir Putin and Fyodor Lukyanov at] Meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club” – KremlinRu (transcript concluded)

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Valdai Club 2013 Meeting, Adapted from Screenshot of Valdai Club Video at youtube.com

(Kremlin.ru – October 19, 2017) Vladimir Putin took part in the final plenary session of the 14th annual meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club titled The World of the Future: Moving Through Conflict to Cooperation…. Fyodor Lukyanov: Rein Muellerson. Rein Muellerson: Thank you. My question is to President Putin. In your speech, you mentioned Catalonia. My observations suggest that, […]

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NEWSWATCH: “No pomp as Russia revolution centenary nears” – AFP

Kremlin and River

“… Russia strives to strike an odd balance … remembering the uprising that brought about the Soviet Union … stopping short of romanticising regime change. … 1917 saw Tsar Nicholas II abdicate in March and the Bolsheviks … seize power in October. Civil war erupted … followed by the creation in 1922 of the USSR, built on the ruins of the Russian empire. … Russia still […]

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