Tag Archives: Russia

Russia raises stakes in eastern Ukraine war

Russia’s firing on and then seizing three Ukrainian navy vessels attempting to pass through the Kerch Straits has raised fears of direct confrontation between Ukraine and Russia, following Russia’s intervention in the separation of Crimea and support for separatists in eastern Ukraine. The blocking of Ukrainian naval access to the Sea of Azov has sparked […]

Turkey moves further away from the West

The election of Recep Tayyip Erdogan as Turkey’s new executive president marks a significant step towards Turkey becoming an autocracy, and further separates Turkey from the West as a strategic partner. Turkey has been an important member of NATO, but it is increasingly doubtful whether it would now act in concert with its alliance partners […]

The noose tightens for Trump

After early nay-sayers tipping that he would not see out his first term as president, Donald Trump now looks to be entering genuinely dangerous territory following the FBI raid on the office of his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen. Cohen has admitted paying US$130,000 (AUD$168,000) to ‘porn star’ Stormy Daniels following her alleged affair with Trump […]

Syrian government backs separatist Kurds

In what might be seen to be an odd move, Syrian government forces appear to be moving to push Turkish soldiers out of the north-western Afrin canton in a bid to assist the separatist Kurdish forces. The Turkish army invaded northern Syria last month to extinguish the creation of a 30,000 strong, Kurdish-dominated “border security […]

Asymetric diplomacy and regime change in Syria

Within 24 hours of the US air strike on an air base in Syria last week, the US claimed it was not pursuing regime change. That was a ‘kiss of death’. Four days later, as he landed on Russian soil, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that Syria’s President Bashar al Assad must go. […]

An unwilling Ukraine being taught its role in a Slavic tragedy

As eastern Ukraine spirals out of control, the interim government in Kiev is desperately seeking to renegotiate the Geneva agreement, aimed at restoring a semblance of unity in the now deeply divided state. Russian President Vladimir Putin, meanwhile, appears happy adjusting levers of strategic power to apply pressure, in turn in Donetsk, Sloviansk and now […]

Russia won't invade Ukraine — as long as everyone does what Putin wants

Russia’s political leaders appear to be taking a particular pleasure in the planned and co-ordinated dismemberment of Ukraine. As with any unprincipled thug, Russia’s only constraint is ensuring it remains internationally unaccountable while continuing to dismantle its vulnerable neighbour. Russia is now breaking off pieces of the country at will and ignoring international protestations while […]

The new tri-polar world: why Russia can do whatever it likes

United States political leaders bluster, but Russia continues to be unmoved by their protestations over its annexation of Crimea and the massing of troops along Ukraine’s border. Long having believed itself the world’s only superpower, the US is now being delivered a lesson in real politik, if not humility. Estonia, which has a large Russian […]