Russia aims to resurrect its geopolitical dominance by amassing troops on the Ukrainian border. Conflict began in 2014 when street protests in Ukraine overthrew Russian-supported President Victor Yanukovych. In retaliation, Russia annexed Crimea sparking violence in eastern Ukraine. Since 2014 Russia has made substantial advances culminating with 175,000 troops on the Ukrainian border. Intelligence reports vary on the exact military capabilities of Russian forces, but unanimously agree that they are sufficient to overpower the Ukrainian military. Reports from intelligence sources indicate increased Russian propaganda in Ukraine, attempting to convince Ukrainians that Russia will benevolently liberate them from their western-controlled leaders. Intelligence officials urge Ukraine to strategically resist Russian aggression, abstaining from provocative actions that Russia could misinterpret for grounds of invasion.
Monthly Archives: August 2020
Russians went to the polls July 1st to vote on a referendum that will make sweeping changes to their constitution, most notably greatly expanding President Vladimir Putin’s federal power and extending his potential presidency to the year 2036.
Monthly Archives: September 2019
For the first time in five years and since his reelection back in 2018, Vladimir Putin’s approval rating has dropped below 65 percent. His approval rating has been continuously recorded by the Levada Analytical Center since Putin first took office, and looking at the patterns in the ratings data, we see that these low ratings should make us nervous.
Monthly Archives: August 2019
This is how The Wall Street Journal described Alexei Navalny back in 2012 near the beginning of his prominence in Russia as a political activist. Navalny has been an outspoken critic of political and governmental corruption as well as a critic of President Vladimir Putin himself, calling United Russia, Russia’s ruling party, a “party of crooks and thieves.” He has quickly become the prominent face of Russian opposition to Putin, and with this has led multiple nationwide protests. He has gained most of his followers through his social media presence, with over two million subscribers to his YouTube channel and even more than that following him on Twitter, not to mention his blog that has been translated into English. Along with all of this, he ran in the Moscow mayoral election supported by the People’s Freedom Party, coming in second with a large portion of the votes. With a presence like that, it makes sense that Putin would consider Navalny a threat.