Konstantin Kharchev: “…“when people say now that namely the Russian Orthodox Church conducted the celebration of the celebration of the 1000th anniversary of the Baptism of Rus, this is not so.  Everything, beginning with the elaboration of plans and ending with their practical realization, was conducted by the Council for Religious Affairs together with the KGB which supervised the Moscow Patriarchate from the moment of its founding in 1943, by the Central Committee of the CPSU, the ministry of culture, and other government agencies.”


Denys Volkov: “A large number of voters dislike the current regime, but remain fragmented, disorganized and unable to influence the political process. In the end, only the public can change their destiny by taking interest and demanding change, challenging results, supporting alternatives and making informed decisions. Alternatively, the next 22 years may bring more of the same.”

“It is time for Russians to stop deceiving themselves and acknowledge that ‘Russia lost both Chechen wars.’  Russia is paying tribute, not Chechnya, and Chechnya, not Russia, is determining policy in the region. And those are the two key measures of what constitutes victory and defeat.”


By strong support for Ukraine, President Obama could make a historical contribution to the security and economic interests of both Ukraine and the United States

“Unequal treatment of different countries by the EU’s old core—and above all by Germany—reflects some old prejudices and cultural preferences which will not go away. Of course, no German politician will ever admit that his or her judgment is impacted by the fact that the Croats were German allies in both world wars, while the Serbs or Ukrainians were not.”



The gap between optimistic statements by Ukrainian government officials and the realities as publicly expressed by the IMF seems far apart


Liliya Shevtsova: “Neither Ukraine nor Russia has it easy as a result of their Soviet pasts and the collapse of Western moral leadership, but nevertheless, Ukraine by virtue of its pluralism, regionalism and more honest dealing with the past offers far more reasons for optimism than does the Russian Federation.”


Celebrations this weekend marking the 1025th anniversary of the baptism of Kyiv-Rus has less to do with Christianity, or Christian ethics, and more with the deft, ongoing assault on Ukrainian spirituality and Ukraine’s national identity.  It’s a grand public relations gimmick orchestrated by the Russian government and Russian Orthodox Church.

The EUISS updates Ukraine’s natural gas situation in a new issue alert that points out: “It is now interesting to see how some of the same instruments that were once used to consolidate Russian influence have been turned against Gazprom: by the logic of the market, by some of Gazprom’s German partners, and by Ukraine itself.”


According to [Tamara] Guzenkova, Yanukovych’s Message is “an ideological and political victory of the pro-European lobby” with a conscious lowering of the importance of that country’s Eurasian ties to a matter of secondary importance.  That in turn means that Russian-Ukrainian relations are going to be “fraught with conflicts, alienation and mutual disappointment.”



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