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The Power Vertical

The Power Vertical is a blog and podcast for Russia wonks and Kremlin watchers by Brian Whitmore. It covers emerging and developing trends in Russian politics, shining a spotlight on the high-stakes power struggles, machinations, and clashing interests that shape Kremlin policy today.

Host and Eurasia Center Senior Fellow Brian Whitmore invites guest experts to deliver their insights and analysis in this weekly podcast. The Atlantic Council and the Charles T. McDowell Center for Global Studies at the University of Texas at Arlington co-sponsor this production.

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The Eurasia Center’s mission is to enhance transatlantic cooperation in promoting stability, democratic values and prosperity in Eurasia, from Eastern Europe and Turkey in the West to the Caucasus, Russia and Central Asia in the East.



Apr 11, 2024

Ukraine’s veterans can transform the country’s postwar political landscape

By Kateryna Odarchenko

While the Russian invasion of Ukraine is still far from over, it already looks likely that Ukrainian military veterans will play a key role in their country's postwar politics, writes Kateryna Odarchenko.

Civil Society Conflict


Apr 9, 2024

Russian Orthodox Church declares “Holy War” against Ukraine and West

By Brian Mefford

The Russian Orthodox Church has approved a remarkable new document that declares a holy war against Ukraine and the wider Western world, writes Brian Mefford.

Civil Society Conflict


Apr 9, 2024

Georgia launches new push to adopt Russian-style foreign agent law

By Mercedes Sapuppo

Georgia’s ruling party has revived plans to pass legislation tightening restrictions on civil society, despite the fact that the same draft law sparked mass protests just one year ago, writes Mercedes Sapuppo.

Civil Society Conflict

Inflection Points Today

Apr 8, 2024

The Biden administration is sounding the alarm about Chinese support for Russia

By Frederick Kempe

US officials hope publicly pushing back on China’s support for Russia’s invasion will cause Beijing to reconsider its aid to Moscow.

China Economic Sanctions


Apr 7, 2024

Western weakness in Ukraine could provoke a far bigger war with Russia

By Oleksiy Goncharenko

Western leaders must decide whether they would rather arm Ukraine for victory today or fight a resurgent and emboldened Russia tomorrow, writes Oleksiy Goncharenko.

Conflict Defense Policy
Bulk carrier ship in river port. Dry cargo grain elevator trade. Agrarian maritime facility. Cargo ship in the sea. Sunset view. factory on the water.


Apr 5, 2024

Ukraine’s grain exports are crucial to Africa’s food security

By Yulia Bychkovska

Moscow is trying to increase Africa’s dependence on its imports by blocking the exports of Ukrainian grain. By helping Ukraine sell its grain, the West can offer the African continent an alternative to Russia’s grain and decrease Russia’s profits.

Africa Economic Sanctions


Apr 3, 2024

Ukraine’s Belarusian volunteers create headaches for Putin ally Lukashenka

By Alesia Rudnik

Thousands of Belarusians are currently fighting for Ukraine and make no secret of their ambitions to eventually topple pro-Kremlin Belarus dictator Alyaksandr Lukashenka, writes Alesia Rudnik.

Belarus Civil Society


Apr 3, 2024

Ukraine’s allies divided over drone campaign targeting Russian refineries

By Giorgi Revishvili

Ukraine's expanding campaign of drone strikes on Russian refineries has inflicted significant damage on Putin’s oil and gas industry while also revealing divisions among Ukraine’s allies, writes Giorgi Revishvili.

Conflict Drones


Apr 3, 2024

Central and Eastern Europe needs to rethink its approach to energy security

By Pawel Czyzak and Nolan Theisen

The upcoming Three Seas Initiative Summit is an opportune time for Central and Eastern European leaders to pivot toward clean, affordable, and local renewables to build energy security.

Central Asia Central Europe

New Atlanticist

Apr 3, 2024

NATO at 75: The Alliance’s future lies in Ukraine’s victory against Russia

By Ian Brzezinski

As NATO turns seventy-five, the Alliance’s future as a credible deterrent hinges on whether it is successful in helping Ukraine defeat Russia.

Conflict Crisis Management