Europe's East

Putin's Evolving Strategy in Europe

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By George Friedman

Putin's return to the presidency was not unexpected; he was never really unseated as Russia's leader, even during Dmitri Medvedev's presidency. But it comes as an anti-incumbent trend is developing in Europe, most recently demonstrated when socialist challenger Francois Hollande defeated Nicolas Sarkozy in France's presidential elections. In response to these changes, Putin will have to adjust Russia's approach in Europe.

Russia Stays Home

By Javier Solana

Just three days before his return to the Kremlin as Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin met behind closed doors at his residence in Novo-Ogaryovo, outside Moscow, with US National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, who was there to transmit President Barack Obama’s renewed determination to strengthen cooperation with Russia. But Donilon returned home empty-handed: Putin will attend neither the G-8 summit on May 18-19 at Camp David, nor the NATO summit in Chicago on May 20-21, despite Obama’s effort to accommodate Russia by moving the G-8 summit from Chicago.

Islam’s European Hope

Mohamed Merah’s killing spree in and around Toulouse in March, like the 2004 Madrid train bombings and the 2005 suicide attacks in London’s Underground, has highlighted once again the dilemmas that Europe faces with regard to its growing Muslim minority. No social-integration model has proven to be free of flaws. But is the picture really so bleak as those who despair of an emerging “Eurabia” would have us believe?

Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry: EU needs political courage to condemn Armenian aggression

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The European Union (EU) must evaluate the facts and the fact that we have - it's aggression, and it should be judged just as aggression, Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry spokesman Elman Abdullayev told reporters on Saturday, commenting on statements by EU Special Representative for South Caucasus Philippe Lefort in Yerevan.

The Secretary's Daunting Agenda

By Ariel Cohen

Late last week, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton began her tour of Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Turkey. In Scandinavia, she was to address several forums on climate change and green energy. While in Sweden, she also planned to discuss Internet freedom, Afghanistan and the Middle East. But it is in the mountains of the Caucasus and Turkey where Hillary will face the red meat of geopolitics: bloody ethnic conflicts over turf; religiously motivated massacres; and threshold nuclear states with global reach.