June 2009

Russian Military Chief Accuses Georgia of Preparing Aggression

By Pavel Felgenhauer

The top Russian military commander, the Chief of the General Staff and First Deputy Defense Minister Army-General Nikolai Makarov during the Paris air show this week said: "Georgia is saber-rattling and preparing weapons to resolve its territorial problems by any means." Makarov accused NATO of supporting Georgian aggressive intentions and E.U. observers of ignoring Georgian rearmament and war preparations. Makarov stated that the Russian army and the FSB Border Guards in Abkhazia and South Ossetia are preparing together with local forces and forming new military infrastructure. He confirmed that the defense ministry will permanently station "somewhat less combat troops in Abkhazia and South Ossetia" than the previously announced 3,700 soldiers in each region.

Kazakhstan Poised to Step into the OSCE's Chairmanship

By Vladimir Socor

Kazakhstan is actively preparing to take over the OSCE's chairmanship next year. The challenges are daunting to any chairing country and the organization as such. According to multiple, though unofficial reports from the organization's Vienna headquarters, Kazakhstan has asked Finland to host an OSCE summit in 2010 in Helsinki, focusing on Russian President Dmitry Medvedev's initiative to create a "new European security architecture." The proposed event will be the OSCE's first summit at the level of heads of state since Istanbul in 1999.

Palestine to Punjab, Bosnia to Baku: A Tour of Security Challenges Facing Europe and America with Carl Bildt

By Thomas Carothers

Sweden’s top priorities for its European Union presidency include signing a global climate agreement at Copenhagen, managing the political ramifications of the once-in-a-generation economic crisis, and building the infrastructure needed to reflect the EU’s growing global clout. Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt outlined the EU’s plans to tackle urgent foreign policy challenges in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Iran while simultaneously ushering in an era of deeper European integration with the ratification of the Lisbon Treaty.

Armenia Presses Ahead with Nuclear Power Plant Construction

By Emil Danielyan

Armenia is pressing ahead with its ambitious plans to build a new nuclear power station to replace the aging Soviet-era facility at Metsamor slated for decommissioning by 2017. The Armenian government has commissioned an Australian engineering company to manage the project. However, the key question of who will provide the funding needed for the plant's construction remains unanswered.

Ukraine is a Serious Problem

By Muammar Kaddafi

As I influence international policy to some extent I strive to participate in the creation of free and secure world for all nations, including my people by all means. Grounding on these principles, I comment on serious international problems hoping for positive result. In this article I’d like to dwell on Ukrainian issue, which is a serious problem to my view.

Should Ukraine radicalise the famine issue?

By Taras Kuzio

This is more of a political than a legal issue to gain international support for Ukraine’s denunciation of the crimes of the USSR, particularly Stalinism. There are unlikely to be any legal repercussions. President Viktor Yushchenko has in effect radicalised the issue of the 1933 artificial famine first raised by President Leonid Kuchma. The raising of the famine issue domestically and internationally and the denunciation of Stalinism have been important in consolidating Ukraine as a democracy, in the same manner as post-war Germany in its denunciation of Nazism. In contrast, Russia under Vladimir Putin has sought to rehabilitate Stalin.