Rebuttal: Ukraine Is Emerging as Critical Node for White-Supremacy Extremists

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Mollie Saltskog, Colin P. Clarke – Sept. 24, 2020) Mollie Saltskog is a senior intelligence analyst at The Soufan Group, a strategic consultancy based in New York City. Colin P. Clarke is a senior research fellow at The Soufan Center and an assistant teaching professor at the Institute for Politics and Strategy at Carnegie Mellon […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Trump puts Hunter Biden, Ukraine in center of U.S. election” – Kyiv Post/ Oleksiy Sorokin

File Photo of Joe Biden at Podium with U.S. Seal, With Ukrainian and U.S. Flags in Background

“… Hunter Biden joined the supervisory board of [Ukraine-based] oil and gas company] Burisma, while his father Joe Biden … [was] U.S. vice president. … Trump once again hinted … Joe Biden was using his position to shield Burisma, the company that employed his son[,] from investigation in Ukraine. … Trump has been actively commenting on Hunter’s activity in Ukraine […]

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Pandemic has Pushed 6.1 Percent of Middle-Class Russians into Poverty, HSE Experts Say

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, Sept. 26, 2020) The coronavirus pandemic has cut the incomes of 24 percent of the members of the Russian middle class and driven 6.1 percent of them into the ranks of the country’s poor, according to an analysis of Rosstat data by scholars at Moscow’s Higher School of Economics. Before the pandemic, […]

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Russia Calls For A Global Response To The Oil Demand Crisis

Oil Wells file photo, adapted from image at usda.gov

(Oilprice.com – Irina Slav – Sept. 28, 2020) All players on the global energy market need to act together to tackle the effects of the pandemic on oil demand, Russia’s Energy Minister Alexander Novak said at a virtual meeting of G20 energy ministers this weekend. “Our task, as the leaders of the energy industry, is to show stamina and solidarity […]

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Coronavirus Numbers Rising Rapidly in Moscow, Major Russian Cities

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, September 27, 2020) Coronavirus infections are rising rapidly in Moscow and other major Russian cities, with the number of cases in the capital jumping from 1050 three days ago to more than 2,000 today, the result, experts say, of the start of flu season and declining caution among Russians (svpressa.ru/economy/article/276981/, kp.ru/daily/217187.5/4293934/, regnum.ru/news/3074643.html, […]

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RUSSIALINK: “What Is Russia’s Role in the Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict?” – Moscow Times

Map of Azerbaijan and South Caucasus Environs Including Portions of Armenia, Georgia, Russia, Iran, Caspian Sea

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Sept. 28, 2020) At least 39 troops and civilians have been killed over the past two days in the worst clashes between foes Armenia and Azerbaijan since 2016. Fighting between the ex-Soviet republics over a decades-long territorial dispute threatens to embroil regional players Russia and Turkey. The United States, Europe, Russian President Vladimir Putin and […]

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RUSSIALINK: “How Will a Second Wave Affect Russia’s Economy? The damage won’t be as devastating, but the long-term impacts will linger.” – Moscow Times

Cash, Calculator, Pen

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Jake Cordell – Sept. 29, 2020) Russia’s economy should be able to weather the ravages of a second wave of the coronavirus better than the first, economists say, but uncertainty and volatility will remain for the foreseeable future. As Russia records a sharp spike in new infections and Moscow starts to roll out new restrictions […]

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RUSSIA NEWS & INFORMATION – Johnson’s Russia List contents & links :: JRL 2020-#177 :: Tuesday, 29 September 2020

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net Support the JRL: russialist.org/funding.php Donate Online: click here for direct link at GWU [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2020-#177 :: Tuesday, 29 September 2020 A project sponsored through […]

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Belarus Crisis Highlights Europe’s Energy Problem

Map of Belarus and Environs, adapted from images at cia.gov

(Oilprice.com – Vanand Meliksetian – Sept. 24, 2020) The ongoing demonstrations in Belarus and the looming instability are a threat to both Russia and the EU. Moscow prefers the continuation of Lukashenko’s regime due to political reasons. Europe, on the other hand, faces an energy crisis if the situation escalates which could lead to a disruption of supplies. Belarus’ geographic […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “‘Nobody wants to kill business’; Moscow is experiencing a spike in coronavirus cases, but there’s no lockdown in sight” – Meduza

Coronavirus File Photo adapted from image at cdc.gov

“Moscow is experiencing a sharp increase in new coronavirus cases[,] [a]s of Friday, September 25, …record[ing] 1,560 new cases in the last day – 510 more than the day before … nearly twice as many as last week. … the highest daily increase … since June 12. … Also on September 25, Russia recorded more than 7,000 new coronavirus cases […]

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Russian Fertility Rate Falls to Lowest Level Since 2008

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, Sept. 25, 2020) The fertility rate in Russia fell last year to 1.504 children per woman per lifetime, far below the replacement level of 2.1, below the figure of 1.579 of a year earlier, and below the Kremlin’s projected goal for last year of 1.63. In fact, the 2019 figure was the […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Gorbachev Backs Belarus Opposition Protesters” – Moscow Times

Alyaksandr Lukeshenko file photo, adapted from image at usembassy.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Sept. 25, 2020) Mikhail Gorbachev, the last leader of the Soviet Union, voiced his support for the Belarusian opposition Thursday as the country continues to see mass protests against long-serving strongman Alexander Lukashenko. His statement came the day after Lukashenko was sworn into office in a secret ceremony following more than a month of unprecedented […]

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RUSSIA NEWS & INFORMATION – Johnson’s Russia List contents & links :: JRL 2020-#176 :: Monday, 28 September 2020

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net Support the JRL: russialist.org/funding.php Donate Online: click here for direct link at GWU [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2020-#176 :: Monday, 28 September 2020 A project sponsored through […]

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RUSSIA NEWS & INFORMATION – Johnson’s Russia List contents & links :: JRL 2020-#175 :: Sunday, 27 September 2020

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net Support the JRL: russialist.org/funding.php Donate Online: click here for direct link at GWU [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2020-#175 :: Sunday, 25 September 2020 A project sponsored through […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Tricky data; ‘Sputnik V’ developers respond to Western critics, but the debate might overlook the vaccine’s biggest problem” – Meduza

File Photo of Blue-Gloved Hand Holding Syringe and Injecting Arm, adapted from image at nih.gov

“… [In response to concerns about their Lancet-published data, Russian vaccine] developers say … the methods … give only rough values …. [a] problem [that] would not have arisen … if their sample size had been larger. … [But they] do not explain … why they limited their trials to so few people. … [S]pecialists say … Gamaleya Center[] research […]

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Levada Poll: 1/2 of Russians Support Idea of ‘Russia for Russians,’ About 1/5 Would Not Let in Chinese, Ukrainians

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

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – RM Staff – Sept. 23, 2020) Slightly more than half (51%) of Russians either support implementing the idea of “Russia for [ethnic] Russians” or think it would be good to implement “within reasonable limits,” according to a Levada Center poll of 1,600 people in 137 localities across 50 of Russia’s 80-plus regions conducted Aug. 20-26, […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Alexei Navalny Supporters Probe How the Russian Opposition Leader Was Poisoned” – Wall Street Journal/ Thomas Grove, Ann M. Simmons

File Photo of Alexei Navalny Marching on Street with Others in Background; adapted from image at commons.wikimedia.org with credit to Evgeny Feldman, subject to Creative Commons license; original image at commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:FEV_1795_(cropped1).jpg, with license information at creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.en and creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/legalcode

“Team scoured his hotel room and found a water bottle they say has traces of Novichok, a nerve agent” “… [A]fter … Navalny collapsed … on a plane over Siberia with signs of poisoning, his supporters rushed to [his] hotel room ….. bagg[ing] everything they could find … in the hopes of solving the mystery …. Days later, German doctors […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “A dozen countries refuse to recognise Lukashenko’s inauguration; Spontaneous protests broke out in the evening following Alexander Lukashenko’s secret inauguration for a sixth term” – bne Intellinews/ Ben Aris

Alyaksandr Lukeshenko file photo, adapted from image at usembassy.gov

“A dozen countries refused to recognise … Lukashenko as … legitimate president of Belarus after he secretly inaugurated himself … September 23. Tensions were high in Minsk after the news broke, with protesters in Minsk flooding the streets and clashing with police trying to disperse them. The only leader that sent a message to congratulate Lukashenko was Turkmen President Gurbanguly […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Four Myths about Russian Grand Strategy” – Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)/ Robert Person

Satellite

“Myth #1: Russia’s grand strategy is driven by ideology …. Myth #2: Russia seeks to reconstruct the Soviet Union or Russian Empire. … Instead of a formal territorial empire … Russia endeavors to establish a privileged and exclusive sphere of influence across former Soviet territory. … [with] a seat at the table in the capital of every post-Soviet country. … […]

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RUSSIA NEWS & INFORMATION – Johnson’s Russia List contents & links :: JRL 2020-#174 :: Thursday, 24 September 2020

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net Support the JRL: russialist.org/funding.php Donate Online: click here for direct link at GWU [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2020-#174 :: Thursday, 24 September 2020 A project sponsored through […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Lukashenko inaugurates himself in secret” – bne Intellinews/ Ben Aris

Alyaksandr Lukeshenko file photo, adapted from image at usembassy.gov

“Fearing mass protests, Belarus’ self-appointed President Alexander Lukashenko held an inauguration for himself in secret to complete the legal process of winning the disputed August 9 presidential election. … [T]he entire perimeter surrounding the presidential palace … was closed to traffic. Some companies told their employees not to come in, as … roads were closed. Police trucks and army vehicles […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Aeroflot’s Domestic Passengers Back to Pre-Coronavirus Levels” – Moscow Times

File Photo of Airplane Approaching Runway About to Land

With Russia’s borders shut, domestic flights carried almost as many passengers as last year in August. (Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Sept. 22, 2020) Aeroflot – Russia’s largest airline – carried almost as many passengers on domestic flights this August as it did in 2019, as Russia’s borders remained closed and millions took their summer vacations at home. Aeroflot Group […]

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RUSSIA NEWS & INFORMATION – Johnson’s Russia List contents & links :: JRL 2020-#173 :: Wednesday, 23 September 2020

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net Support the JRL: russialist.org/funding.php Donate Online: click here for direct link at GWU [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2020-#173 :: Wednesday, 23 September 2020 A project sponsored through […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Post about Love” – Alexey Navalny/ Instagram

File Photo of Alexei Navalny Marching on Street with Others in Background; adapted from image at commons.wikimedia.org with credit to Evgeny Feldman, subject to Creative Commons license; original image at commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:FEV_1795_(cropped1).jpg, with license information at creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.en and creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/legalcode

“Julia and I had our anniversary … 20 years of being wed … You, of course, have seen this a hundred times … one loving person lies in a coma … the other brings him back to life with her love and incessant care […]”

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The Quincy Institute seeks a Research Fellow on Europe and Russia

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

From: Trita Parsi <trita@quincyinst.org> Date: Tue, Sep 22, 2020 Subject: The Quincy Institute seeks a Research Fellow on Europe and Russia The Quincy Institute, a restraint-based think tank in DC, is seeking a Russia researcher (see posting here: jobs.lever.co/quincyinst/676f756e-d16f-480c-8ebe-1ab39777eb31). As you may know, we are very worried about the threat-inflated image of Russia in Washington and support a more constructive […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Why Russia’s alliance with China is improbable, but not impossible” – Fondation pour la recherche stratégique/ Simon Saradzhyan

File Photo of Beijing Temple, adapted from image at lbl.gov

“Abstract: [A]re Russia and China already in a de facto military alliance (against the U.S.), or may they soon enter one? … [This article] reviews … academic literature on alignments … and alliances … infers criteria … [and] sets out to … [assess that] relationship …. Introduction[:]  The [Russia-China] relationship … is getting stronger …. Xi Jinping[] and … Putin[] […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Warming shrinks Arctic Ocean ice to 2nd lowest on record” – AP

Cartoon Sun and Thermometer, adapted from cdc.gov

“… The extent of ice-covered ocean at the North Pole and extending further south to Alaska, Canada, Greenland and Russia reached its summertime low of 1.4 million square miles … last week before starting to grow again. Arctic sea ice reaches its low point in September and its high in March after the winter. This year’s melt is second only […]

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JRL NEWSLINK: “Stephen Cohen (1938-2020): Professor Emeritus, NYU Russian and Slavic Studies” – NYU Jordan Center/ Yanni Kotsonis

Bookcase file photo, adapted from image at nlm.nih.gov

“Steve was hired to NYU after … Princeton. He was a masterful lecturer who packed in 400 students each time he taught his survey of Soviet history, and he helped keep alive Soviet and Russian studies at a time when interest was falling […]”

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RUSSIALINK: “Russian prosecutors ask German counterparts to interview Navalny, find out who planned Tomsk trip” – Interfax

Map of Germany

MOSCOW. Sept 21 (Interfax) – The Russian Prosecutor General’s Office has asked the relevant German authorities to learn certain important details related to the incident involving Russian opposition activist Alexei Navalny. “In particular, [the Prosecutor General’s Office] is seeking to find out who planned Navalny’s trip to Novosibirsk and Tomsk and when, who bought the tickets, booked the hotels, and […]

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RUSSIA NEWS & INFORMATION – Johnson’s Russia List contents & links :: JRL 2020-#172 :: Tuesday, 22 September 2020

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net Support the JRL: russialist.org/funding.php Donate Online: click here for direct link at GWU [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2020-#172 :: Tuesday, 22 September 2020 A project sponsored through […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia to cut defence spending in bid to prop up ailing economy; Continued support for less well-off set to wipe out fiscal surplus of recent years” – Financial Times/ Henry Foy

File Photo of Close-Up of Line of Russian Soldiers in Dress Uniforms for Parade, adapted from image at georgewbush-whitehouse.archives.gov with credit to Eric Draper

“Russia will spend more on supporting its economy than funding its armed forces next year for the first time since 2014 … ahead of critical parliamentary elections. … [with economic] doldrums … amid low oil prices and western sanctions … [and with the economy] contract[ing] sharply … due to … coronavirus …. The Kremlin announced …  [higher] spending … to […]

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On Russia’s Far Eastern Frontier, Vast Stretches Of Free Land, But Little Interest

Siberian River, Forest, Mountain

… The Russian state has made 220 million hectares of land available under its program, double the total amount allotted under the Homestead Act. But only around 80,000 Russians have taken advantage. […]

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RUSSIALINK: “‘I Didn’t Recognize People’: Navalny Says Long Recovery Ahead in Latest Health Update; Opposition leader says he has trouble walking, can’t use his phone or pour a glass of water.” – Moscow Times

File Photo of Alexei Navalny Marching on Street with Others in Background; adapted from image at commons.wikimedia.org with credit to Evgeny Feldman, subject to Creative Commons license; original image at commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:FEV_1795_(cropped1).jpg, with license information at creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.en and creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/legalcode

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Sept. 19, 2020) Alexei Navalny has said he has difficulty performing everyday functions and that he faces a “long road” of recovery after his Novichok poisoning which left him in a coma. The opposition leader posted an update to his Instagram page Saturday from the Charite clinic in Berlin where he is being treated, outlining […]

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RUSSIA NEWS & INFORMATION – Johnson’s Russia List contents & links :: JRL 2020-#171 :: Monday, 21 September 2020

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net Support the JRL: russialist.org/funding.php Donate Online: click here for direct link at GWU [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2020-#171 :: Monday, 21 September 2020 A project sponsored through […]

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Because of Pandemic, Moscow This Year Spent More on Economy than on Defense

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

(Paul Goble – Window on Eurasia – Staunton, September 19, 2020) The pandemic has introduced major changes in Russian government policy but perhaps not one greater than this: for the first time in a very long time, the Russian government has spent more on promoting the economy than on maintaining and developing its military (sobkorr.org/news/5F6610F248362.html). The number of new cases […]

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RUSSIA NEWS & INFORMATION – Johnson’s Russia List contents & links :: JRL 2020-#170 :: Sunday, 20 September 2020

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net Support the JRL: russialist.org/funding.php Donate Online: click here for direct link at GWU [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2020-#170 :: Sunday, 20 September 2020 A project sponsored through […]

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Levada: Russians Continue to View U.S. as Most Hostile, Belarus and China as Friendliest Allies

Vladirmir Putin and Donald Trump Sitting in Chairs with Flags Behind, adapted from image at whitehouse.gov

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – RM Staff – Sept. 17, 2020) The share of Russians with a good or very good attitude toward the U.S. remained steady at 42 percent from January to August 2020, as did the share of Russians who have a bad or very bad attitude toward the U.S. (46 percent), according to the Levada Center’s latest report […]

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RUSSIALINK: “‘Harsh Times Ahead’: Russia’s Emergency Loan to Belarus Changes Little for Embattled Lukashenko” – Moscow Times

Map of Belarus and Environs, adapted from images at cia.gov

The $1.5 billion will largely go towards refinancing debt owed to Russia, and is only a fraction of what Belarus needs to avoid a crash in living standards. (Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Jake Cordell – Sept. 17, 2020) Russia’s emergency $1.5 billion loan will do little to help Belarus’ embattled President Alexander Lukashenko prevent his economy from spiraling into […]

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Evolving Global Order Makes a P5 Summit Ineffective

File Photo of UN Building with Flags

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Paul Saunders – Sept. 17, 2020) Paul Saunders is a senior fellow in U.S. foreign policy at the Center for the National Interest. With military tension among great powers increasing in east Asia, central Europe and the Middle East, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and others have proposed a summit of the U.N. Security Council’s five […]

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RUSSIA NEWS & INFORMATION – Johnson’s Russia List contents & links :: JRL 2020-#169 :: Friday, 18 September 2020

St. Basil's Domes

To inquire about a subscription to the full Johnson’s Russia List e-mail newsletter, e-mail David Johnson at davidjohnson@starpower.net Support the JRL: russialist.org/funding.php Donate Online: click here for direct link at GWU [check back for updates, including more links; links also posted to facebook and twitter] Johnson’s Russia List :: JRL 2020-#169 :: Friday, 18 September 2020 A project sponsored through […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Navalny Says He is Breathing on His Own in a Message From His Hospital Bed; The poisoned Russian opposition leader plans to return to Russia, his spokeswoman says.” – New York Times/ Katrin Bennhold, Michael Schwirtz

File Photo of Alexei Navalny Marching on Street with Others in Background; adapted from image at commons.wikimedia.org with credit to Evgeny Feldman, subject to Creative Commons license; original image at commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:FEV_1795_(cropped1).jpg, with license information at creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.en and creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/legalcode

“… The message came hours after a senior German security official … [said] Navalny was awake, alert and had told German prosecutors that he was refusing to cooperate with a Russian inquiry into his case. He also vowed … to return to Russia as soon as possible to continue his work. … German officials now say they have almost no […]

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What Do The Regional Election Results Tell Us About Putin’s Russia?

Russia Regions Map

(Article text ©2020 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Mike Eckel – Sept. 14, 2020 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/what-do-the-regional-election-results-tell-us-about-putin-s-russia-/30838190.html) No surprise: Russia’s dominant party is claiming sweeping victories in regional and local elections. Surprise: Allies of poisoned anti-corruption crusader Aleksei Navalny may have won legislative seats in two Siberian cities, and the Kremlin-controlled United […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian excess deaths over summer outstrip COVID toll by more than 3 to 1” – Reuters/ Maria Tsvetkova

Covid-19 Coronavirus file photo, adapted from image at cdc.gov

“The number of excess deaths in Russia between May and July was more than three times higher than the official coronavirus toll, recent government data show, a discrepancy some experts say raises questions about the accuracy of Moscow’s counting.  … [D]ata released by … Rosstat … show … 57,800 excess deaths between May and July, … peak of the outbreak. […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia to Field 3 New Parties in 2021 State Duma Race” – Moscow Times

Russian State Duma Building file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Sept. 14, 2020) Three newly registered political parties will be able to take part in Russia’s State Duma elections next year without collecting the required voter signatures, Central Election Commission chief Ella Pamfilova said Monday. While the For Truth, New People and Green Alternative parties have varying ideological platforms, some analysts have linked their appearance […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “U.S. commander says evidence hasn’t corroborated intelligence of Russian bounties on U.S. troops” – The Hill/ John Bowden

Afghanistan Map of Ethnicities

“The top U.S. commander in Afghanistan says … he has not seen evidence to corroborate claims that Russian officials placed bounties on U.S. troops … in the Middle East. … Gen. Frank McKenzie said … reports in The New York Times and other media … indicating that U.S. intelligence officials were investigating reports that Russia was offering bounties to Taliban […]

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