Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center

  • Putin Is a Prisoner of His Own Hybrid War

    April will mark the third anniversary of Russia’s hybrid war in eastern Ukraine, with no end in sight to a tragedy that has already claimed over 10,000 Ukrainian lives. The conflict has devastated and transformed Ukraine in ways that will not be fully apparent for decades. Crucially, it has also brought little of value to the Russian Federation, while leaving a trail of self-inflicted wounds. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s secret war has mauled the Russian economy, isolated Russia internationally, reinvigorated the NATO alliance, and plunged the Kremlin into an escalating confrontation with the West that it cannot realistically expect to win.

    Nevertheless, there is little sign of Moscow seeking a face-saving exit. On the contrary, the Kremlin recently signaled its refusal to back down by announcing its decision to recognize passports issued by its separatist proxies. Why is the Russian leader so ready to accept the spiraling costs of his disastrous Ukraine policy?

    Read More
  • Why Sunday’s Massive Protests Will Change Russia

    The poem and song, “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised,” became a rallying cry for social injustice in America in the 1970s. It weaved its way through many cultural eras around the world and found its way to the streets of Russia on Sunday, March 26.

    Nearly 100,000 people went to the streets in more than ninety cities, from Vladivostok to Kaliningrad. Sunday’s protests were the largest anti-government protests since the demonstrations for fair elections in 2011-2012. They touched not only big cities, but took place in smaller places like Saratov and Tyumen that were previously “sleepy” and apolitical.

    A huge number of young people, including schoolchildren, participated, and this was the most striking difference between Sunday’s protests and the 2011-2012 ones.

    Read More
  • What the Manafort-Yanukovych Axis of Corruption Means for Trump and Ukraine

    For several months American journalists have been competing to expose agents of Russian influence inside the new White House. This is a result of the conflict that began during the US presidential election campaign when a majority of the mainstream media rallied against Trump while he, without any evidence, criticized them for being biased.

    One of the main players in this conflict is well-known in Ukraine: Paul Manafort. He is a man who ran Viktor Yanukovych’s election campaigns in 2006, 2007, 2010, and 2012; a man who employed cynical techniques for exploiting the divide between Ukrainian and Russian speakers in order to help Yanukovych make his mark on the political map; a man against whom twenty-two entries of payments totaling $12.7 million have been recorded in the “black ledger” of the Party of Regions; and a man whose ties to dirty money of the members of the Party of Regions even made Russian President Vladimir Putin take notice.

    Read More
  • US Lawmakers Remain Firm on Russia Sanctions

    US sanctions on Russia, imposed in response to the annexation of Crimea in 2014, must not only be maintained, “they should be tightened,” according to Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH).

    As recently as March 20, Russia has performed military drills practicing “offensive and defensive operations,” in Crimea, Chabot said, adding: “The fact that Russia has successfully claimed another country’s sovereign territory as its own and then carries out unprecedented offensive military drills there [is] absolutely unacceptable.”

    Chabot suggested that “in the last number of years America’s traditional leadership role around the world has often times been lacking.” He went on to describe a “power vacuum around various parts of the globe” that Russian President “Vladimir Putin and other bad actors have taken advantage of.” He called Russia’s annexation of Crimea in March 2014 an “egregious example of that power vacuum.”

    The West cannot afford to stand idly by, said...

    Read More
  • How Vulnerable Is Putin? The Answer Rests on Oil

    The Kremlin’s dirty tricks are dominating the headlines and have plunged the United States into political disarray. Behind these attacks, however, is a Russia that is increasingly weak and vulnerable. What this means for the stability of Vladimir Putin’s regime, however, is anyone’s guess.

    Russia’s future depends on the price of oil and gas. This sector provides 52 percent of Russia’s federal budget and 70 percent of its exports. These prices make or break Russia, as is the case with other petro-states where economic development is nonexistent. Put bluntly, as Senator John McCain has said, “Russia is a gas station masquerading as a country.”

    Read More
  • Ten Reasons Why Ukraine’s Economy May Surprise You

    Grain, steel, and sunflower oil are probably Ukraine’s most famous exports, but they’re not the only ones. Ukraine’s growing reputation for excellence in IT and fashion are well known, but other areas of the economy are also dynamic, including aviation, architecture, and design.

    The technological capacity of the economy is huge and promising with the country’s strong scientific and engineering traditions. The production of these goods and services are already fueling the middle class. Here’s ten reasons why Ukraine’s economy deserves a second look.

    Read More
  • Wanted: Leader of the Free World

    Two months into Donald Trump’s presidency, it is clear that Trump cannot control himself or his own administration. Sadly, this observation applies across the board in foreign policy. Trump first warmly greeted Taiwan, threatened a trade war with China, and then abruptly announced that he recognized the one China principle and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson essentially subscribed to China’s interpretation of the bilateral relationship while threatening war with North Korea. These episodes predictably led some to suggest that Beijing would regard him as a paper tiger or that, perhaps more accurately, Trump and his team have no idea what constitutes sound policy. When it comes to Mexico, his immigration policies, which are distinguished by a lack of policy coordination and respect for US laws, have provoked a furor in Mexico even though Trump’s own son-in law unsuccessfully tried to mediate the issue. On Israel, the White House excluded the State Department from discussions with...
    Read More
  • Fishman in the Wall Street Journal: We Built the Russia Sanctions to Last

    Read More
  • Polyakova Quoted by Express on the Rise of Anti-EU Groups in Europe

    Read More
  • Ukraine's Parliamentary Internship Program May Be in Jeopardy

    Over the past twenty-two years, the Ukrainian Parliamentary Internship program has introduced more than 1,500 university-age men and women to the legislative process by employing them in committees and departments of the Verkhovna Rada. The program gives young professionals practical experience with the parliament’s institutions and procedures by allowing them to participate in legislative work.

    But the program may be in jeopardy. Funded since its inception by USAID as part of a larger Rada initiative run by the East Europe Foundation (EEF), the internship program may lose its support next year if the Rada doesn’t include it in the budget. If EEF and the Interns’ League, the NGO that directly administers it, cannot find replacement funding, the program may not continue.

    That would be unfortunate.

    “The Rada intern program is one of the most...

    Read More