JRL NEWSWATCH: “More than 600 Russian scholars worldwide demand end to ‘rioting’ case against Moscow protesters” – Meduza

File Photos of Law Books and Gavel, adapted from image at fjc.gov

“Russian scholars … in a range of countries … Russia included, have published a statement demanding that charges of mass rioting against Moscow election protesters be dropped. … ‘We demand that those who currently direct [Russia’s] governing apparatus cease their abuses of power, stop their political repressions, and begin adhering rigorously to the Constitution of the Russian Federation.’ … signatories […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Trump Says Russia Should Be Readmitted to G7” – New York Times/ Michael Crowley

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

“… Trump said on Tuesday that Russia should be readmitted to the Group of 7 industrialized nations, a call for ending Moscow’s pariah status …. Speaking a few days before his planned departure for the summit, … Trump said … Moscow’s exclusion since 2014 from the group of leading economic powers should be reversed and, ignoring Russia’s aggression in Ukraine, […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia Says No Plans to Install New Missiles Unless U.S. Deploys Them” – Reuters

Iskander Missile with Launch file photo

“Russia will not deploy new missiles as long as the United States shows similar restraint in Europe and Asia, Russian defense minister Sergei Shoigu said …. The United States formally left the … INF[] treaty with Russia … after accusing Moscow of violating the treaty and deploying one banned type of missile, allegations the Kremlin denies. Russia has also pulled […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Unbowed; Protests in Moscow show that Putin’s critics are getting stronger; Repression isn’t working like it used to” – The Economist

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

“It is 20 years this month since then-President Boris Yeltsin appointed a shadowy security chief called Vladimir Putin as Russia’s prime minister. The next New Year’s Eve, the ailing … Yeltsin would install the ex-KGB man as his successor. On the anniversary of his ascent to power … Putin has little reason to celebrate. [In one of a series of […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Moscow’s East-German scenario; Oppositionist Leonid Volkov explains how a daring new voting strategy is supposed to destroy Russia’s political monopoly” – Meduza

Arm and Torso of Person in Brown Sweater Placing Paper Ballot into Ballot Box

“Moscow’s political crisis continues, as demonstrators gear up for more protests against election officials’ refusal to register dozens of independent candidates for September 8’s City Duma race. … [S]upporters of … Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK) proposed a voting strategy for the opposition, coordinated through the organization’s ‘Smart Vote’ project. If the city’s independent candidates are not allowed onto the ballot, […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “For Russia’s detained protesters, rights group is first on scene [Re: OVD-Indo]” – AFP

File Photos of Law Books and Gavel, adapted from image at fjc.gov

“What started as a Facebook post during a wave of mass protests in Russia eight years ago has turned into a rights group that helps arrested demonstrators … in increasing demand as police crack down hard on opposition rallies. OVD-Info, which has around 27 staff, more than 300 volunteers and a small office in Moscow, is the first port of […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “U.S. Sanctions Against Nord Stream 2 Pipeline: Strategic Hit Or Miss?” – Forbes/ Anna Mikulska

Gas Flame file photo

“… the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee advanced a bill that would impose sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 (NS2) pipeline … currently under construction … [that] could bring up to 55 billion cubic meters of Russian natural gas directly to Germany. … [T]he House of Representatives’ Foreign Affairs Committee approved a companion bill. The rationale for the sanctions (beyond […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “New technique shows Putin lying about MH17” – Kyiv Post/ Askold Krushelnycky

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

“A scientific technique … to spot deception … studying minute changes in facial expressions has been used to demonstrate that Kremlin dictator … Putin was lying when denying Russian responsibility for shooting down the Malaysian airliner over Ukraine … July 17, 2014, killing all 298 … aboard. The technique and analysis of Putin’s speech were described at a public meeting […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin’s Iconoclastic Economics Guru to Lose Kremlin Post [re: Sergei Glazyev]” – Bloomberg/ Evgenia Pismennaya and Stepan Kravchenko

Kremlin and River

“A[ Kremlin] economist [and top Putin advisor] known for challenging Russia’s tight-money policies … is leaving the Kremlin after seven years. Sergei Glazyev will switch to the Eurasian Economic Commission that oversees relations between … Eurasian Economic Union [member states] … Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan … Glazyev alarmed investors … with calls for massive state spending, abandoning the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin the Great; Russia’s Imperial Impostor” – Foreign Affairs/ Susan B. Glasser

File Photo of Vladimir Putin Sitting at Desk

“… Putin did not want to be compared with … Brezhnev … [who] ruled the Soviet Union … 1964 to 1982 … leader of Putin’s gritty youth … the long stagnation that preceded the empire’s collapse. By the end … butt of a million jokes … doddering grandfather of a doddering state ….  ‘Stalin proved that just one person could […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Relentless rise of consumer debt in Russia fuels bubble fears for some” – Reuters/ Darya Korsunskaya, Elena Fabrichnaya, Tatiana Voronova

Hands Opening Envelope Containing Cash

“… After five years of shrinking real incomes, many Russians are borrowing to make ends meet or even just to pay off their creditors – and the issue is climbing up the political agenda. … Some 2.5 million people earning up to 20,000 roubles ($303.09) a month … less than half the average wage, spend more than half of that […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Moscow sees biggest protest rally since 2011 as Kremlin’s brutal police tactics backfire” – bne Intellinews/ Ben Aris

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

“An estimated 60,000 people turned out for the fourth in a series of weekend protests in central Moscow on August 10, a number too large for the Kremlin to ignore that also suggests that the tactic of increased police brutality at recent protests to put off would-be protestors has backfired. … the largest [demonstration] since … 2011-2012 rallies … [after] […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Are We Headed for Another Expensive Nuclear Arms Race? Could Be.” – New York Times/ Steven Erlanger

Iskander Missile with Launch file photo

“After the … death of the [INF Treaty], a new arms race appears to be taking shape … [with] more players … money and … weapons …. [N]ational security adviser … Bolton[] has talked about letting the last strategic-arms control treaty, New START, die in February 2021, without extending it another five years, as foreseen in the accord …. With […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russians feel the pain of Vladimir Putin’s regime; The police’s violent response to protesters’ demands in Moscow has intensified anger over a flatlining economy” – Financial Times/ Henry Foy, Max Seddon

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

“… Not since 2012, when thousands of Muscovites took to the streets to protest against … Putin’s return to the presidency, has Russia’s capital seen such a brutal crackdown on demonstrations …. Police trucks packed with young Russians and rows of baton-wielding troops have shown the brute force available to …Putin and his willingness to use it. But the continued […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The Best Way to Deal With Russia: Wait for It to Implode” – Politico/ Peter Eltsov

Russia Regions Map

“… Putin has moved to annex former Soviet territories, orchestrated cyberattacks on foreign infrastructure and rolled back domestic democratic protections …. [I]n reality, Russia today is much weaker than either the Romanov Empire, which lasted from 1613 to 1917, or the Soviet Union. Russia’s biggest problem is internal: … fail[ing] to produce a national identity … encompass[ing] its entire population. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian Media Muffle Protest Images, Broadcast Beef Kebabs; President Putin is trying to stop demonstrations without stoking further discontent over a poor economy, a pension revamp and endemic corruption” – Wall Street Journal/ Thomas Grove

Satellite Dishes

“As Russian riot police violently suppressed pro-democracy demonstrations across Moscow, detaining around 1,000 people … pro-Kremlin state news channels featured a different top news item: a city-sponsored barbecue festival on the leafy banks of the Moscow River. Russian state media’s studious dismissal of the nascent protest movement has helped the Kremlin keep its attempts to quash the protests off-screen, avoiding […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “What we know so far about Moscow’s custody challenge against two parents who were seen with their toddler at an election protest” – Meduza

File Photos of Law Books and Gavel, adapted from image at fjc.gov

“Moscow prosecutors are pursuing a custody challenge against a couple who brought their one-year-old child to a … protest for fair elections. … [T]he city’s Prosecutorial Office claimed that ‘during the course of the protest, the parents gave their young child to a third party, which put the boy’s health and life in danger and caused him physical and emotional […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Jon Huntsman to Resign as Trump’s Ambassador to Russia; Former governor of Utah will return home after a tenure marked by deteriorating relations” – Wall Street Journal/ Alex Leary, Michael R. Gordon, Georgi Kantchev, Natalie Andrews

File Photo of John Huntsman, Men in Military Uniforms and Others, adapted from image at army.mil

“Jon Huntsman, … U.S. ambassador to Russia, will resign … in early October … ahead of what is widely seen as a bid to again seek election as Utah’s governor. The 59-year-old Republican was ambassador to China under … Obama, resigned that post to run for president in 2012, then was selected by … Trump to be ambassador to Russia […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Violent Crackdowns on Russian Opposition Reveal Dangerous Policy Shift” – Moscow Times/ Sam Greene

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

“The level of confrontation between the Kremlin and the Russian opposition has increased, and along with it the scale and severity of the law-enforcement response to protests.” “There has been a significant and sustained shift in the Kremlin’s relationship with the Russian opposition[] and … the Russian public [generally] …. Authorities across the country have issued ever fewer permits for […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Trump Adds to Sanctions on Russia Over Skripals” – New York Times/ Michael Crowley, Julian E. Barnes

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“… Trump … signed an executive order imposing new sanctions on Russia, responding to growing pressure from Congress to further punish Moscow after a nerve agent attack …. the second round of sanctions by the administration after a botched attempt in March 2018 to fatally poison a former Russian military intelligence officer, Sergei Skripal, in …  Salisbury [in the UK]. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia’s rubbish mountain piles pressure on Putin; Waste recycling reforms spark protests from provincial residents” – Financial Times/ Max Seddon

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

“… in woodland near … Likino-Dulyovo … [demonstrators] stare down riot police and bulldozers. … want[ing] to stop … construction of a garbage processing plant in wet peatland forest that they say feeds local rivers and hosts endangered species. … fac[ing] violent crackdowns, with reports of police beating and arresting protesters … dragging an elderly man away by the arm […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Are regular Russians ready to face the police baton to get what they want?” – bne Intellinews/ Ben Aris

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

“Has the brutal beating of protestors in Moscow … and the arresting of over 1,300 people – some simply innocent passersby – radicalised Muscovites? … It’s clear that … Putin’s tight grip on popular politics is slipping. Several high-profile celebrities came out publicly in support of the protestors, which in ‘Putin’s Russia’ is unusual, as it is bad for your […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Cold War in Cyberspace; Western military hackers have penetrated Russian targets, from tech giants to the nationwide power grid, reports say” – Transitions Online/ Ky Krauthamer

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

“… a U.S. Senate report on Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election … relayed intelligence assessments that Russian government hackers scanned electoral systems in all 50 states, looking for weaknesses …. Russian meddling reportedly continued as the 2018 midterm elections neared … [DHS indicated that there were] ‘numerous actors … regularly targeting election infrastructure, likely for different purposes, including […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Some thoughts on the security side of Saturday’s Moscow crackdown” – In Moscow’s Shadows/ Mark Galeotti

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

“… 1. There seems to have been something of a split between the police and the National Guard. …  2. … gas and guns were absent. … an entirely old school shield-and-baton operation …. [without] even … armed snatch squads … behind the lines as backup, suggesting [authorities] knew … they weren’t going to face serious trouble …. 3. Who […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “When BoJo Meets Vova; A piece of advice for Britain’s new prime minister on how to deal with Putin’s Russia” – Moscow Times/ Mark Galeotti

File Photo of British Parliament Building, Big Ben, Thames, adapted from image at loc.gov

“Boris Johnson … in the past called … Putin a ‘ruthless and manipulative tyrant’ (… presumably a criticism in today’s political world?) … his Russian counterpart congratulated him on his election and suggested that ‘it would be in the interests of our countries and peoples to develop relations in various spheres.’ How, though, could any improvement in relations be accomplished […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin Is Running Out of Options to Extend His Power; None of the relatively legitimate scenarios for keeping the Russian leader in power past 2024 look comfortable for him.” – Bloomberg/ Leonid Bershidsky

File Photo of Dmitry Medvedev and Vladimir Putin with Heads Bowed Over Microphone

“… The Kremlin controls the Russian parliament … makin[g] it possible to change the constitution at any moment, making Putin president for life. … [a] ‘nuclear option’ … anathema to Putin … despite persistent election rigging in his favor. …  That makes it difficult to follow the path laid out by Kazakhstan[‘s] … Nazarbayev. … [who] … resigned as president […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “NSA Forms Cybersecurity Directorate Under More Assertive U.S. Effort; Anne Neuberger, tapped as head, warns against ‘not engaging in the fight'” – Wall Street Journal/ Dustin Volz

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

“[NSA] will create a cybersecurity directorate later this year as part of a wider effort to more closely align the agency’s offensive and defensive operations, U.S. officials said. Anne Neuberger has been tapped to lead the new directorate, slated to become operational Oct. 1. The creation of the directorate and selection of … Neuberger coincide with a broader fusion of […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia and China; Partnership is much better for China than it is for Russia; Just how much better might not become clear for a few years yet” – The Economist

Asia Map

“[Compared to Russia,] … China[‘s] economy is six times larger (at purchasing-power parity) … its power is growing … as Russia’s fades. … Russia is evolving into a Chinese tributary. … Russia is still a nuclear-weapons state with a permanent seat on the [UNSC]…. It has modernised its armed forces and, as in Syria, is not afraid to use them. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia Cuts Interest Rate Again Amid Global Push for Looser Policy” – Wall Street Journal/ Georgi Kantchev

Diverse Paper Currency, Coins, Line Graph

“Russia’s central bank lowers its main rate to 7.25%” “… With signs mounting that the world economy is slowing, the [Federal Reserve] is widely expected to lower interest rates for the first time in over a decade …. The European Central Bank signaled … it is preparing to cut short-term interest rates for the first time since early 2016 …. […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “‘Accountability’? The Mueller Hearing Is How Trump Escapes” – The New Yorker/ Susan B. Glasser

“After so much waiting – a hundred and twenty-four days, to be precise, since Robert Mueller’s report was delivered – perhaps it was bound to be a disappointment. Still, three hours after the former special counsel took the witness stand on Wednesday to testify about his investigation of President Trump and Russian interference in the 2016 election … MSNBC anchor […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Putin Allies’ Oil Feud Spills Into Public View” – Reuters

Oil Well file photo

“The blame game over a [Russian oil industry] contamination scandal … has breached … Putin’s inner circle. Igor Sechin, head of Rosneft, the world’s biggest publicly-traded oil company, and Nikolai Tokarev, the boss of Transneft, the world’s largest pipeline network, are embroiled in an unusually public and rancorous dispute over their companies’ responses to the contamination of Russia’s Druzhba (“Friendship”) […]

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AUDIO JRL NEWSWATCH: “‘The Rot Starts From The Top’: Russians Protest Over Problems Big And Small” – NPR/ Lucian Kim

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

“… [As] Putin approaches his 20th year in power, anger over bread-and-butter issues is sparking protests across the country. Even in sleepy Pereslavl-Zalessky, population 40,000, [perched on a lake, with onion-domed churches, historic and picturesque qualities giving it an untapped tourist potential,] locals no longer hide their frustration with the powers that be. … [A] recent rally in … unkempt […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russian Stocks Seen Rising 25% by Mid-2020” – Reuters

File Photo of Outdoor Electronic Sign with Russian Exchange Data

“… [impacted by] the price of oil, Russia’s key export, and fading fears of more Western sanctions …. Russian stock indexes achieved their biggest gains year-to-date in mid-July. The dollar-based RTS had risen nearly 33% back then and its rouble-based peer MOEX was up 21%. Russia’s largest gas producer Gazprom gained nearly 68% year-to-date earlier in July, while the country’s […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Mueller gave a warning on Russian meddling. Congress – and America – should listen” – Washington Post

“… Mueller said Russia’s interference is continuing and will be repeated in the 2020 presidential election. ‘Over the course of my career, I have seen a number of challenges to our democracy,’ … Mueller said. ‘The Russian government’s effort to interfere in our election is among the most serious.’ He added: ‘They’re doing it as we sit here, and they […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The Mueller Report and the Silence of the Experts; Those well-positioned to comment on the investigation too often ceded the debate to partisans.” – Moscow Times/ Timothy Frye

“The Mueller reports highlights many shortcomings in American democracy, but also reveals a deeper failure that informs our broader politics: the silence of the experts. Those well-positioned to comment on the investigation – academic Russia watchers, political science experts on elections, and non-partisan national security specialists – too often ceded the debate to partisans. … [T]he expert community should have […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “China Promises Further Military Cooperation With Russia; Beijing accuses U.S. of undermining regional stability and sharpens its warnings against Taiwan in new defense report” – Wall Street Journal/ Jeremy Page

Asia Map

“China vowed to step up military cooperation with Russia, a day after the two countries’ first joint air patrol triggered a rare confrontation over the Sea of Japan and stoked U.S. concern about the intensifying partnership …. Releasing a new defense ‘white paper’ … China accused the U.S. of undermining regional stability by strengthening its alliances, and sharpened a warning […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia in the Gray Zone” – Aspen Institute/ Kathleen Hicks

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

“… Russia is waging campaigns … [to influence world affairs with a] significant number of … tactics … [falling] between routine statecraft and direct and open warfare …. Americans … familiar with Russia’s disinformation efforts in the United States and its use of ‘little green men’ in Ukraine … may be less attuned to stepped-up Russian political and economic coercion […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Rebels without a Cause: Russia’s Proxies in Eastern Ukraine” – International Crisis Group

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

“Russia and the separatists it backs in Ukraine’s east are no longer quite on the same page, especially since the Kremlin abandoned ideas of annexing the breakaway republics or recognising their independence. The rift gives the new Ukrainian president an opportunity for outreach to the east’s embattled population, including by relaxing the trade embargo. … * * * Resolving the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Kremlin Opens Door to Changing Constitution as Succession Looms” – Bloomberg/ Henry Meyer

File Photo of Vladimir Putin at Podium with United Russia Logo, Gesturing

“The Kremlin raised the possibility of changing Russia’s Constitution after a top lawmaker proposed bolstering parliament’s powers, in a move that could help to extend … Putin’s rule. … constitutional amendments, including allowing parliament a say in forming the government, received ‘a widespread response’ and are ‘a matter for discussion,’ Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, told reporters …. Putin in 2024 […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia Denies Visas for Teachers at Anglo-American School in Moscow” – New York Times/ Andrew E. Kramer

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

“Russia’s Foreign Ministry has … denied visas for teachers at a [Moscow] school … run by Western embassies … American officials suggested [the action] was an effort to exert political pressure on the United States by curtailing schooling for the children of diplomats. It is not clear why the Russian government denied entry to 30 teachers, about one fifth of […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “The roots of Putin’s power over Russia; Four new books examine the leader’s hold over the vast nation through the lens of history” – Financial Times/ John Lloyd

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

“… Putin is a gambler. Russia’s population is shrinking, its real-terms wages and gross national income per head are tumbling, it has failed to create successful industries and services and is blighted by entrenched corruption – and yet its president behaves like a poker player with a royal flush. … form[ing] a close relationship with [China’s] President Xi Jinping … […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “It’s been more than a month since Ivan Golunov was framed, charged, and released. What’s happened to his story since?” – Meduza

FSB Building file photo

“… thirty leading Russian and international news outlets … published the report Ivan Golunov was working on … before his arrest. Journalists from seven Russian media sources had already begun working to complete the report …. Golunov’s exposé … shed light on corruption and FSB ties in the Moscow funeral industry. … [and] includes allegations of misconduct committed by intelligence […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Ukraine Election: President’s Party Leads, Majority Unclear” – AP

Verkhovna Rada File Photo

“… Zelenskiy’s party has the most support in opinion polls ahead of Sunday’s snap parliamentary elections, but … a solid majority in the Verkhovna Rada is far from certain. Zelenskiy … took office in May, [yet] has been stymied by a parliament dominated by his opponents. He ordered the elections to be held three months earlier than scheduled in order […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “IMF Cuts Forecast for Russian 2019 GDP Growth to 1.2%, Calls for Reforms” – Reuters

File Photo of IMF Acronym on Wall Below Row of Circular Lights, adapted from image at state.gov by Steven C. Welsh :: www.stevencwelsh.com :: www.stevencwelsh.info

“The International Monetary Fund cut its forecast for Russian economic growth in 2019 to 1.2% from 1.4% after a weak first quarter, saying broader reforms would be needed for stronger growth. Without deeper structural reforms, long-term growth is projected to settle around 1.8%, the IMF said …. Priority should be given to creating a more vibrant private sector and reducing […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “India, Russia Seek to Skirt U.S. Sanctions Threat to Arms Deals” – Bloomberg/ Nc Bipindra, Evgenia Pismennaya

India map

“India and Russia have agreed on a new payment method through their national currencies for multi-billion-dollar defense deals … [seeking] to avoid risks created by the U.S. threat of sanctions and banking restrictions. … [and to] enable India to pay the first installment … for two warships … Russia is building for its navy …. Defense contracts will be settled […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Review: The Struggle of Russia’s crony capitalists” [re: Anders Aslund new book]” – Reuters/ Dasha Afanasieva

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

“… Anders Aslund … in ‘Russia’s Crony Capitalism: The Path from Market Economy to Kleptocracy‘ … [casts Putin] as a patriarchal overlord … handsomely reward[ing] those loyal …. creat[ing] a new elite of friends, former co-workers and relatives. What’s less clear is what, if anything [can be done about it]. … [A]naly[zing] the last 15 or so years of Putin’s […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “New Report: Mueller Lacks Substantiating Evidence Of Russian Election Interference” – The Federalist/ Madeline Osburn

File Photo of White House with South Lawn and Fountain

“New report reveals that Mueller’s investigation missed key evidence to support its central claim that Russia was 100% responsible for election interference.” “… Mueller’s [Special Counsel] report lacks substantiating evidence supporting the central claims of Kremlin interference in the 2016 election, according to … RealClearInvestigations. … discrepancies over the timeline, details, and conflicts of interest from key players in the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Despite ‘thug hugs,’ Trump is tougher on despots than Obama” – New York Post/ Marc Thiessen

White House

“During a single visit to Asia … Trump embraced not one, not two, but three dictators. He became the first American president to set foot in North Korea, where he praised his ‘great friendship’ with North Korea’s despotic leader, Kim Jong Un; he held another cringe-worthy press availability with … Putin, where Trump joked about Russia’s electoral interference; … he […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Forget Putin’s ‘liberalism’ jibe. This man runs a war machine; For too long, the west has turned a blind eye to Russian atrocities in a string of wars.” – The Guardian/ Natalie Nougayrède

File Photo of Country Flags Outside 2017 G20 Meeting in Hamburg, adapted from image at state.gov

“… Putin is on a high. Kicked out of the G8 in 2014 after the start of his military operations in Ukraine, he’s been making full use of the G20 summit in Osaka to bask in meetings with world grandees and soak up all the international media attention he possibly can, complete with a not very challenging interview with the […]

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JRL NEWSWATCH: “Ukraine President’s Party Leads Poll Ahead of July Election” – Reuters/New York Times/ Reporting: Natalia Zinets, Editing: William Maclean

Verkhovna Rada File Photo

“… ahead of a [July 21] snap parliamentary election …. [a] survey conducted by research group Reiting … showed Zelenskiy’s party, Servant of the People, … support[ed by] 37.3% of people who said they would vote. … The outgoing parliament … is dominated by loyalists of … Poroshenko. Servant of the People, campaigning on a pro-European, anti-corruption ticket, has no […]

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