JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s Ukraine gambit seen as part of play for new Biden summit” – Reuters

File Photo of Joe Biden at Podium in Front of U.S. and State Department Flags, adapted from image at usembassy.gov

“… U.S., NATO and Ukrainian officials have raised the alarm in recent weeks over what they say are unusual Russian troop movements closer to Ukraine, suggesting that Moscow may be poised to launch a new attack on its neighbour, accusations Russia has rejected as fear-mongering. … Putin already got the attention of Biden’s White House once this year by massing […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia, China sign roadmap for closer military cooperation” – AP

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

“Russia’s defense chief [Sergei Shoigu] … signed a roadmap for closer military ties with China …. Russia has sought to expand ties with China as … relations with the U.S. and its allies sank to post-Cold War lows over … [Russia’s] annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea[], accusations of Russian hacking attacks, interference in elections and other disputes. … Russia and China […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Glasgow Deals Prompt Russia Rethink on Coal Plans, Carbon Tax” – Bloomberg/ Evgenia Pismennaya, Yuliya Fedorinova

Graphics Depicting Carbon Compounds and Water Molecules, adapted from image at nasa.gov

“Russia will look to cut its ambitious goals for boosting coal production … and consider imposing a carbon tax or other regulation in the wake of … the COP26 summit … according to two officials familiar with the plans. But Russia won’t join the global agreement to reduce methane emissions, [they] said, speaking on condition of anonymity …. [Russia] is […]

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Russian Analyst Involved In Salacious Trump Dossier Pleads Innocent To Lying To FBI

FBI Headquarters File Photo

A U.S.-based Russian analyst who gathered information for the so-called Steele Dossier alleging ties between Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and Russia pleaded innocent to charges of lying to FBI agents […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russia, U.S. conducting cybersecurity dialogue – Peskov” – Interfax

Dmitry Peskov file photo adapted from image at kremlin.ru/wikimedia commons

MOSCOW. Nov 9 (Interfax) – Moscow and Washington are conducting cybersecurity dialogue, but the details of this dialogue cannot be relayed to the public, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said. “A mechanism of cybersecurity consultations has been launched between the relevant agencies of the two sides in furtherance of the agreements reached at the Geneva summit. This dialogue is continuing,” Peskov […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Putin discussed bilateral relations, diplomatic crisis, regional conflicts on the phone with CIA’s Burns – Peskov” – Interfax

William Burns file photo, adapted from image at cia.gov

MOSCOW. Nov 8 (Interfax) – Russian President Vladimir Putin spoke over the phone with United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director William Burns during the latter’s recent visit to Moscow, Russian presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov said. “That’s right, such a conversation did take place over the phone,” Peskov told journalists on Monday when asked whether Putin spoke with Burns […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Analyst who aided Trump-Russia dossier charged with lying” – AP

FBI Headquarters File Photo

“… Russian analyst [Igor Danchenko,] who contributed to … Democratic-funded research into ties between Russia and Donald Trump[,] was arrested … on charges of lying to the FBI about his sources … among them a longtime supporter of Hillary Clinton. … [P]art of … [an] ongoing [special counsel] investigation[,] …. the indictment … endorse[s] a longstanding concern … that opposition […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “CIA director brings up Russian hackers at talks in Moscow – sources” – Reuters

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

Burns’ trip coincided with developments in both countries that highlighted their tensions over cybersecurity, where no progress has been reported […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Kremlin Pushes Back on Biden’s Climate Criticism” – Moscow Times

Siberian River, Forest, Mountain

Russia, as well as fellow major polluters China and India, did not sign the U.S. and EU-led Global Methane Pledge to cut methane emissions 30% by 2030 …. [but] the world’s fourth-largest greenhouse gas emitter[] did join over 100 countries … promising to end deforestation by 2030 […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin: Russia must build up defenses in view of NATO moves” – AP/ Vladimir Isachenkov

File Photo of U.S. Navy warships in Black Sea exercise, adapted from image at defense.gov with photo credit to MC1 Justin Stumberg

“… Russia has bristled at … U.S. and other NATO ships … [T]ensions between Moscow and the West have sunk to post-Cold War lows after Russia’s 2014 annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula, … [the] insurgency in eastern Ukraine and other irritants. … Russia suspended its [NATO] mission … and ordered the closure of [NATO’s] office in Moscow after NATO … […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “U.S. Air Force Bombers Are Rehearsing Their New Main Mission — Sinking Russian Ships” – Forbes

File Photo of B1 Bomber in Flight, adapted from image at defense.gov, with photo credit: U.S. Air Force Photo/Bennie Davis III

A pair of B-1s could shoot 48 LRASMs at Russia’s Baltic Fleet, enough, perhaps, to sink the entire fleet in a single pass and eliminate the major threat to U.S. and allied ships in the region […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Archie Brown Is Awarded the Pushkin House Book Prize: ‘The Human Factor: Gorbachev, Reagan and Thatcher and the End of the Cold War'” – Moscow Times

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

The 9th Pushkin House Book Prize was awarded to Archie Brown, Emeritus Professor of Politics at the University of Oxford, for “The Human Factor: Gorbachev, Reagan and Thatcher and the End of the Cold War,” published by Oxford University Press.

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia, U.S. Release Latest Nuclear Weapons Counts as Moscow-NATO Ties Collapse” – Newsweek

Russian Mobile ICBM Parade File Photo

“… Russia counted 527 deployed … ICBMs[] … SLBMs[] and heavy bombers, 1,458 warheads on deployed ICBMs … SLBMs and … heavy bombers as well as 742 deployed and non-deployed launchers of ICBMs, deployed and non-deployed launchers of SLBMs and deployed and non-deployed heavy bombers. … with U.S. figures at 665 deployed ICBMs … SLBMs and heavy bombers; 1,389 warheads […]

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U.S. Official Tells Europe Not To Waive Nord Stream 2 Pipeline Approval Process

Gas Flame file photo

A senior U.S. state department official has warned Europe against bowing to Russian pressure and waiving the lengthy process needed to approve Nord Stream 2, a controversial Baltic Sea natural gas pipeline to Germany […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The U.S. Air Force Has A Base Right Next To Russia. It Just Sent F-16s To Visit.” – Forbes

File photo of F-16 with Arctic colors above runway, adapted from image at defense.gov with photo credit: U.S. Air Force Photo/Airman 1st Class Jonathan Snyder

“… The Air Force recently stepped up its Agile Combat Employment practice when it sent at least two F-16s from the 18th Aggressor Squadron, based at Eielson Air Force Base near Fairbanks, to Eareckson Air Station on Shemya Island [near the western end of the Aleutians]. The six-square-mile island lies just 200 miles from the Russian coast. …. ‘To the […]

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Putin’s Dominance Risks Destabilization: Fiona Hill’s Insights On Russia, the U.S., And Their ‘Unfortunate Parallels’

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

(Article text ©2021 RFE/RL, Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty – rferl.org – Mike Eckel – Oct. 18, 2021 – article text also appeared at rferl.org/a/31517780.html) A native of the United Kingdom who later became a U.S. citizen, Hill, who has described herself as “a nonpartisan foreign-policy expert,” is a scholar and historian who has written several books on Russia, including […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “U.S., Georgia sign military training pact amid Russian threat on the Black Sea” – Defense News

File Photo of Tbilisi, Georgia and Environs, adapted from image at state.gov

“U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and his Georgian counterpart on Monday signed an agreement to extend U.S.-led military training …. ahead of [Austin’s] visits to other Black Sea allies Ukraine and Romania to deliver a message of ‘unwavering’ support for their sovereignty and territorial integrity in the face of Russian threats. Since Russia’s war with Georgia, it has had a […]

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The Global War on Chechnya: What Does 9/11 Teach Us About Counterterrorism Cooperation With Russia?

File Photo of Empire State Building and World Trade Center Burning in Background on 9/11, adapted from image at defense.gov

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Paul Kolbe – Oct. 13, 2021) Paul Kolbe is the director of the Intelligence Project at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. A colleague of mine who worked closely with Russian security services on sharing intelligence in the weeks and months after the 9/11 attacks was fond of pointing out a fundamental disconnect. […]

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RUSSIALINK: “No substantial progress made on operations of Russian, U.S. embassies at talks with Nuland – Deputy FM Ryabkov” – Interfax

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

MOSCOW. Oct 12 (Interfax) – Russia does not rule out a further escalation of tensions in bilateral relations with the United States, in particular, in the functioning of Russian and U.S. embassies, and this concern has been relayed to the U.S. side, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told Interfax on Tuesday. He held consultations with U.S. Under Secretary of […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Western Coronavirus Vaccines May Be Coming to Russia – Kommersant” – Moscow Times

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

The move to relax import rules could potentially allow Russians to have Western coronavirus jabs … as well as Chinese vaccines […]

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RUSSIALINK: “U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan: I hope we’ll see further progress at strategic stability talks in Geneva but I wouldn’t expect immediate breakthrough” – Interfax

John Sullivan file image, adapted from image featured at usembassy.gov

(Interfax – Sept. 30, 2021 – interfax.com/newsroom/exclusive-interviews/72748/) U.S. Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan has given an interview to Interfax. He speaks about prospects of U.S.-Russia dialogue on strategic stability, Nord Stream 2, possible new U.S. sanctions, U.S. citizens incarcerated in Russia, Iran, as well as ‘visa war’ with Russia. Question: A few months have passed since the Russian-U.S. summit in […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Russian MP calls potential U.S. decision to close door on foreigners vaccinated with Sputnik V discriminatory” – Interfax

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

MOSCOW. Sept 28 (Interfax) – Chairman of the seventh State Duma’s Foreign Affairs Committee Leonid Slutsky has described as discriminatory a decision which the U.S. media say is being prepared in the United States to deny entry for foreigners immunized with the Russian Covid-19 vaccine Sputnik V. “Thus, the U.S. will blatantly embark on a path of ‘vaccine discrimination.’ There […]

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Russian Attitudes Toward West Improve Despite Feelings of Isolation

Mercator Projection Satellite Image of Earth

(Russia Matters – russiamatters.org – Aleksandra Srdanovic – Sept. 21, 2021) Aleksandra Srdanovic is a graduate student at Harvard University and a student associate with Russia Matters. The Levada Center recently polled Russians on their attitudes toward Russia’s general standing in the international community, as well as their attitudes toward strategic competitors and countries within the post-Soviet neighborhood. Polling shows […]

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Next Generation of Russians Will Be More Anti-Western than Current One, Chesnokov Says

Kremlin and River

(Paul Goble – Window On Eurasia – Staunton, Sept. 20, 2021) “If present trends continue,” Edvard Chesnokov says, “the next generation of Russian rulers will be even more anti-Western than the present one,” the result of the West’s double standards when it comes to Russia and recognition by Russia’s rulers that they must stand up to such pressure. The Komsomolskaya […]

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British Researchers Say Pro-Russian Influence Operation Targets Western News Websites

File Image of Laptop Computer, Tables and Mobile Device, adapted from image at energy.gov

The websites of several prominent Western news outlets have been targeted by a pro-Russian influence operation that uses the websites’ comment sections to distort public opinion […]

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Europe Needs Nord Stream 2 More Than It Likes To Admit

EU Map adapted from cia.gov image

Europe resents Russian gas for the influence it gives a country that the EU considers unfriendly, …, but … is increasingly thirsty for gas because … [last year’s] winter… drained its reserves. … [and] summer … LNG cargoes [got] diverted from Europe to Asia […]

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Re: [SEELANGS] Question about recent history Russian Travel advisory

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

Subject: Re: [SEELANGS] Question about recent history Russian Travel advisory Date: Sun, 5 Sep 2021 From: Michele A Berdy <maberdy@GMAIL.COM> From: Justin Wilmes <upthera44@GMAIL.COM> Could anyone fill me in on the recent history of the U.S.’s travel advisories to Russia? Currently Russia has a rating of Level 4: Do Not Travel, but this it lists both Covid-19 and other reasons […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Ukraine feels the chill of Biden’s foreign policy” – Financial Times

File Photo of Joe Biden at Podium in Front of U.S. and State Department Flags, adapted from image at usembassy.gov

“Afghanistan withdrawal heightens Zelensky’s fears of dwindling support from Washington” “… Ukraine has fought an eight-year war against Russia and Russian-backed militants …. Yet even before the chaotic pullout from Kabul, alarm was spreading … over fears … [that] Biden wanted to focus more on other foreign policy issues, especially … China. The first warning sign … came … when […]

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FSU Analysts Assess the Impact of Events in Afghanistan on Russia and U.S.-R.F. Relations

File Photo of Kabul, Afghanistan, Residential Area, adapted from image at defense.gov

The perspectives of Russia’s non-government Middle East experts on … the Taliban and its impact on Russia appear to be more varied than those of Russian diplomats and … other official counterparts. [This post] compiled a selection of such views, along … [those of some] Western FSU watchers […]

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Free Russia Foundation: “New Report on the Kremlin’s Malign Influence Inside the U.S.”

Multilingual Polling Place Sign from U.S. Election Polling Place

Subject: New Report on the Kremlin’s Malign Influence Inside the US Date: Fri, 13 Aug 2021 From: Natalya Lunde <natalyaa@4freerussia.org> Free Russia Foundation releases a new report The Kremlin’s Malign Influence Inside the United States edited by Michael Weiss. 4freerussia.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/TheKremlinsMalignInfluenceInsidetheUS.pdf The report’s chapters take a close look at: The Kremlin’s Interference in the US Energy Sector Investments in Critical Infrastructure […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Deputy Russian Foreign Minister Oleg Syromolotov: We can’t talk about eradicating terrorism in Afghanistan in near future” – Interfax

Afghanistan houses aerial view, adapted from image at state.gov

(Interfax – Aug. 12, 2021) Deputy Russian Foreign Minister Oleg Syromolotov, who is responsible for international anti-terrorist cooperation, has given an interview to Interfax in which he speaks about interaction with the United States on counterterrorism, the activity of ISIL, which is banned in Russia, and other terrorist organizations in Syria and Afghanistan. He also said that it is impossible […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Belarus Revokes U.S. Ambassador’s Appointment in Retaliatory Move to Sanctions” – Wall Street Journal

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

“Minsk also tells U.S. Embassy to cut staff after new sanctions against Alexander Lukashenko’s government.” “… the U.S. Embassy in Minsk blamed Belarus for souring relations … citing what it called the regime’s ‘inability to allow independent voices to emerge in Belarus as well as its unwillingness to meet its international commitments.’ Steps toward resolving the country’s internal crisis, the […]

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Local Staff At U.S. Embassy, Consulates In Russia Dismissed To Meet Kremlin Deadline

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

The United States says it has laid off nearly 200 local employees from its diplomatic missions in Russia ahead of an August 1 deadline set by the Kremlin … a move made by Moscow in response to U.S. sanctions and the expulsion of Russian diplomats […]

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In Blacklisting A U.S. College, Russia Shutters A Program That Bridged An International Divide

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

Three years after the Soviet collapse, Bard and SPSU joined forces to launch SPSU’s Arts and Humanities course, Russia’s first liberal arts curriculum …. But on June 21, … [t]he Russian Prosecutor-General’s Office declared Bard an “undesirable” organization […]

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RUSSIALINK: “Kremlin fears ‘instability’ after U.S. withdrawal from Iraq” – Interfax

Dmitry Peskov file photo adapted from image at kremlin.ru/wikimedia commons

(Interfax – July 27, 2021) Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman has said that the planned withdrawal of US troops from Iraq may lead to greater ‘instability’ in the region. “Now it is too early to second-guess events, but we would not like to see, in general, one more territory added to the regional potential for instability,” Dmitry Peskov told journalists […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “U.S. and Russia pledge to ‘move together’ against climate change” – Financial Times

File Photo of Polar Bear on Snow with Bare Ground in the Background, adapted from image at nasa.gov with photo credit to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Eric Regehr

“First positive sign of potential easing of tensions since last month’s summit” “Russia, … fourth-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, has signed up to the Paris climate agreement to limit emissions. Rapidly rising temperatures in Siberia … flooding and forest fires have made climate … increasingly important …. Putin, who four years ago blamed rising global temperatures on volcanoes and ‘cosmic […]

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