EU “diversified” aid to Ukraine

By Nina Bachkatov

The EU carries on with the preparation of its 20-21 October during which China will be the elephant in the room and all the complexity of the war in Ukraine the centre piece. After 8 months of violence and devastations, the EU is confronted with the full consequences of the sanctions it had imposed on Russian individuals and companies to undermine president Putin leadership and to starve Russia’s budgetary capacities to sustain a war.

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Putin’s new approach about Ukraine

By Nina Bachkatov

The successful Ukrainian counteroffensive, backed by Western new weapons and shared intelligence resources, obliged president Putin to come out. It took the form of a televised address to the nation, against a background of leakages and unusual stage crafting. It was first due to take place on the 20th evening, then it was postponed for the next day, at 8, then at 9 o’clock. That was enough to unleash new speculation concerning Putin’s physical and moral condition. The usual well-informed sources said that he had been so affected by fever and coughs that he was unable to face the cameras, despite the dispatch of a large medical staff; and that the program shown as a single tirade was in fact a re-mix of interrupted sessions.

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Another war in Donbass

By Nina Bachkatov

The Russian offensive in the Donbass on 19 April has been changing the face of the war in Ukraine. For the Kremlin, it was the opportunity to come back with its original narrative about a “special operation” forced upon itself as guarantor of its “brothers”’ security and freedom. Brothers, who supposedly, were threatened by Ukrainian “neo-nazis” who seized power in Kiev and Western Ukraine in 2014 and who trapped them in a pocket territory.  For president Zelensky, the Donbass offensive was the sign that the Kremlin, unable to seize Kiev, was coming back from the East, backed by separatist forces, with the intention to destroy Ukraine as a nation and a state.

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As the Ukrainian crisis is unfolding

By Nina Bachkatov

It is impossible to compete with the flow of information, reports on the spot and inside analysis covering the multilayered dimension of Ukraine’s invasion by Russian armed forces. But some elements are worth to mention at this stage.

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Kiev, EU and Washington confronting Moscow

By Nina Bachkatov

President Macron’s initiative has not been without Franco-French electoral calculation, and a gallic sense of grandeur. Nobody expected much more than keeping the dialogue ongoing and agreeing on further steps towards a settlement of the Russian-Ukrainian crisis. But his visit to the Kremlin has managed to put key questions back to the top of the agenda: Does the West want to solve the Russo-Ukrainian crisis for the sake of Ukrainians? Does it want to do so for reasserting the Transatlantic link after the Kabul unilateral abandon? Does it want to restate the central role of American presence to guarantee the European continent security? And finally, the vital question about the best way to manage that security – with, without, or against Russia?

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Playing with fire in the Donbass

By Nina Bachkatov

Since the end of July 2020, belligerents in Eastern Ukraine had respected the cease-fire, the longest period of seeming peace since the conflict started in 2014. Then, by early 2021, violence erupted again, with dozens killed or injured. By April, the situation had gone worst. Both Russia and Ukraine were accusing each other of provocations and preparing a military offensive. Ukraine has been sending soldiers and new equipment to the front line; Russia massing thousands of troops and heavy material along its 250 km border with Ukraine. Continue reading “Playing with fire in the Donbass”