Tag "Edward Lucas"

Edward Lucas: Irony amid the menace. Echos of a captive past

By Edward Lucas, for CEPA Vladimir Putin is often criticized for his nostalgia for the USSR (he memorably called its collapse a “geopolitical catastrophe”). But many thousands of Russians in the “Soviet Citizens” movement take that view a step further. A majority of those taking part in the March 1991 referendum on the Soviet Union’s future, they argue, voted in favor of its continuation. It therefore follows that the Soviet

On pandemics and alliances

By Edward Lucas, for CEPA Truth and cooperation on one side; lies and selfishness on the other. Which side will beat the coronavirus? Put that way, it is easy to place your bets. Pathogens do not listen to propaganda. They have no conception of national borders. The only way to beat them is with science and through social organization. That means officials telling the truth to the public, thus encouraging

Reflections from Munich: The West is not defenseless in protecting democracy

By Edward Lucas, for CEPA The Munich Security Conference is an intimidating venue to launch a new idea. The participants are among the most important and expert people in the world. Getting their attention is hard. Getting their agreement is even harder. On the other hand, if you want to make a difference, it is a good place to start. After 35 years in journalism, I have realized that our

Edward Lucas: The Kremlin’s way

By Edward Lucas, for CEPA In Russia, All Power Leads to Putin Switzerland and Russia have few similarities. But one of them is that that the name of the head of the government matters little.  The top job in the Swiss system is held by Simonetta Sommaruga. Except that it is not really the top job: the head of state is the collective Federal Council—in effect, the government. Sommaruga, a pianist

Moscow’s man in Belgrade

By Edward Lucas, for CEPA Will a recent spy bust cause Serbia to reconsider its relationship with Russia? Imagine you are the leader of a country that has caught a Russian spy. Here are a few things you should say to the Russian ambassador. First, show your displeasure. Cancel an upcoming visit, freeze trade talks, postpone other events. Also, discuss expulsions. At least one, and perhaps several officials based at

The world according to Macron

By Edward Lucas, for CEPA Is Global France Compatible With the Atlantic World? Atlanticists have complained for decades that the European end of the Alliance is timid in its actions and parochial in its outlook. After Emanuel Macron’s explosive interview with the Economist, those complaints need rethinking. The French president’s ambition and vision cannot be gainsaid. He spoke in sweeping terms of the “brain death” of NATO, called for a

The specter of 1939: The unlearned lessons of WWII linger in, for some

By Edward Lucas, for CEPA Every Pole knows why September 17th, 1939 matters. So do many Ukrainians, especially in the country’s west–which was then part of Poland.But almost nobody else does. The 80th anniversary of the Soviet invasion of eastern Poland will go unmarked in the West. In Russia, it will prompt yet more lies and propaganda obscuring the Soviet Union’s cozy ties with Nazi Germany. This has been in

Edward Lucas: Tension in Tbilisi

By Edward Lucas, for CEPA In September 2014 I was invited to the House of Commons Foreign Affairs committee. I gave its members not only my evidence, but Polish apples and Lithuanian cheese. Russia had just imposed sanctions on European food imports. Polish apple farmers, who exported around half their produce to Russia, were particularly hard hit. So too was the Lithuanian dairy industry A social media campaign was encouraging

Russia’s influence arcenal: Watch out, this is what China is learning from Russia 

By Edward Lucas, for CEPA Last week’s column looked at six political warfare tactics common to Russia and China, and three that are used (so far) only by the regime in Beijing. That leaves eleven Kremlin-only ones. For convenience, they are in (English) alphabetical order. First is the exploitation of economic, ethnic, linguistic, regional, religious, social, and other divisions. This is a hallmark Russian approach. Chinese divide-and-rule tactics focus on

A decade of the Eastern Partnership: A cause for reflection, not for joy

By Esward Lucas, for CEPA After 10 years of the “Eastern Partnership” what do we have to celebrate? There is modest, homegrown progress in Armenia; Azerbaijan and Belarus are still autocracies; Georgia is going backwards; Moldova is still a basket case. Ukraine, compared with its plight in 2009, is doing well but has paid a terrible price in blood and suffering. The anniversary should be a time for somber reflection,

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