Categories
Economy Coronavirus

Oil Price and Russia’s Economy

The coronavirus crisis has hit the Russian economy at one of the worst possible times. As this graphic illustrates, since 2014/15, it has been impacted by low oil prices and Western sanctions and has recorded only moderate growth rates over the past three years.

For more on how the coronavirus crisis is a strain on the Russian economy and constitutes a stress test for the popularity of the regime, read Jeronim Perović’s CSS Analysis in Security Policy here.

Categories
Trade CSS Blog

Eurasia’s Trade Partners

 

This graphic illustrates the total values of Eurasian countries’ trade with China, the EU, Russia and the rest of the world – including imports and exports – between October 2018 and September 2019.

For an insight into the impact of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) on Eurasia, read Benno Zogg’s chapter in Strategic Trends 2020, which can be found here.

Categories
Cyber

Bundestag Hack Redux: More Smoke Than Mirrors

This article was originally published by the Council on Foreign Relations on 8 June 2020.

In early May, it was reported that Germany’s federal prosecutor issued an arrest warrant for Dmitriy Badin, the Russian hacker behind the 2015 cyberattacks targeting the Bundestag. Despite this, it is unclear what steps the German government has taken to pursue Badin internationally and how Germany and the United States will manage their separate efforts to arrest him.

Categories
Politics

Keeping His Options Open: Why Putin Decided to Stay On

Image courtesy of Kremlin.ru. (CC BY 4.0) 

This article was originally published by the Carnegie Moscow Center on 13 March 2020.

Putin, a man torn by conflicting impulses, has opted for stability in moving to stay on as president after 2024. In doing so, he surprised the elite and even some in the presidential administration, deceiving those around him—though not the public—with his talk of changes in leadership and overhauling Russia’s political system. His real intentions are impossible to know, but his priority is clear: keeping his options open.

Categories
Conflict

After Nine Years, Syria’s Conflict Has Only Become More Complicated

Image courtesy of Jodi Eastham/DVIDS.

This article was originally published by the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) on 12 March 2020.

The engagement of external actors has protracted the conflict and Syrians civilians continue to bear the brunt.


In March 2011, as the Arab world was roiled by demonstrations, protests broke out in Syria to demand political reform after four decades of Assad rule. Nine years later, the Assad regime is on the offensive against the last rebel stronghold of Idlib, with Russia, Turkey and Iran all heavily invested in the conflict. The humanitarian consequences for Syrians cannot be overstated and a political solution to the conflict seems as distant as ever. USIP’s Mona Yacoubian discusses the dreadful toll on the Syrian population and what the battle for Idlib means for the trajectory of the conflict.