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Between Two Fires: Ukraine Amidst Transdniestria and the Donbas

John R. Haines · ·

Ukraine finds itself sandwiched between a smoldering conflict to its west and a still-hot one in its east. The latter has remained mostly confined to its Donets'k and Luhansk regions or oblasts.  Together they comprise a geographic area known formally as the Donets Basin and colloquially as the Donbas. Among the many scenarios threatening Ukraine, a most serious one is a resurgent Donbas conflict...

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How to Prevail Against a Poisonous Ideology

Mansour Al-Nogaidan · ·

The following is the text of a speech by Mansour Al-Nogaidan, Director General of Al-Mesbar Center for Studies and Research. It was delivered on February 25 in Paris, at the headquarters of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), on the occasion of the signing of a cooperation agreement between Al-Mesbar and UNESCO in support of countering violent extremism...

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Russia’s Economy: Sanctions, Bailouts, and Austerity

Chris Miller · ·

The news about Russia’s economy keeps getting worse. The IMF predicts that the country’s GDP will shrink by 3 percent in 2015. Other forecasters fear the recession will be even worse. Meanwhile, Russia’s central bank has admitted that inflation might hit 15 percent this year. Unemployment is rising, too. The Kremlin has already spent $100 billion—roughly a fifth of its reserves—fighting the...

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Russian Roubles

Russia’s Quiet Annexation of South Ossetia

Maia Otarashvili · ·

Russia and South Ossetia have ironed out final details of a “Treaty of Alliance and Integration.” The treaty was drafted in December 2014 and on January 31, 2015 Georgian news agencies reported that the leader of South Ossetia, Leonid Tibilov, had sent the finalized document back to Moscow. On February 18th Russia and South Ossetia signed a precursor to this treaty, called the “treaty on the...

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Map of South Ossetia