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How to deal with fake feminism? Pour cold water into its lap | Zoe Williams 10 Oct 12:44pm How to deal with fake feminism? Pour cold water into its lap | Zoe Williams
It was obvious from the start that a Russian video of a woman on the metro pouring ‘bleach’ on men was a hoax A woman boards the St Petersburg subway, carrying a bottle. She is beautifully groomed, in an anti-feminist manner, and yet she is about to commit an act of feminism. She approaches a classic manspreader, a guy casually occupying a seat and a half in homage to his gigantic tackle, and pours what we discover is diluted bleach all over his crotch. When a video of the incident inevitably went viral, media outlets asked: “Has she gone too far?” And broadly speaking, most people thought she had, who knows what Russian bleach is like,: it might be like our modern bleach, not terrifically dangerous, only there to make things smell as if someone’s been cleaning. Wherever his punishment fell on the spectrum from getting wet to permanent injury, it was disproportionate.
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Vladimir Putin’s plan to divide Europe is backfiring | Natalie Nougayrède 9 Oct 2:06pm Vladimir Putin’s plan to divide Europe is backfiring | Natalie Nougayrède
As the truth of the Skripal poisoning unravels, Russia finds itself creating some unlikely allies across EuropeThe former Russian prime minister Viktor Chernomyrdin once famously quipped: “We wanted the best, but it turned out as always.” When Dutch, British and US officials last week issued coordinated denunciations of Russia’s cyber-operations – whose targets ranged from sports anti-doping bodies to the international chemical weapon watchdog – it felt like Chernomyrdin’s saying had been given new meaning. For all the efforts the Kremlin put into staging the World Cup earlier this year as a demonstration of Russia’s openness, news seems to keep pouring in about the blunders of its not-so-secret services. In the latest instalment yesterday, Bellingcat, an investigative website,
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Russian interference goes beyond spying to the very heart of Britain | Nick Cohen 7 Oct 4:00am Russian interference goes beyond spying to the very heart of Britain | Nick Cohen
Agents have been named. Now it’s time to expose financial and political misdeedsWar always forces change. If the war against Russia’s mafia state is to be won, or even fought, then the network of tax havens, trusts and shell companies that has made London a global money-laundering centre will have to be busted open. Senior Conservatives talk as if they understand after Salisbury that the Russian police, secret services, propaganda stations, sporting federations and ministries are not separate institutions but parts of a complete merger of the political and criminal classes. Maybe I am naive, but I believe them when they say they are willing to take on Putin. I just doubt that they understand how much of Britain’s plutocrat-enabling culture must change.
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The Observer view on how Putin’s spooks reveal what a dangerous foe he has become | Observer editorial 7 Oct 1:00am The Observer view on how Putin’s spooks reveal what a dangerous foe he has become | Observer editorial
The Russian president is playing a weak hand, but international collaboration is vital to push back against his threatsThe extent of the challenge posed by Russia to Britain and its allies should not be exaggerated. Although it is boastful of its armed strength, Russia’s
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Forget the pledges to act – London is still a haven for dirty Russian money | Oliver Bullough 30 Sep 1:00am Forget the pledges to act – London is still a haven for dirty Russian money | Oliver Bullough
After Salisbury, the Tories said we would get tough on rich Russians. But billionaires are still coming and sanctions are nowhere to be seen Britain, we’re told, has a new policy on
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Why was contaminated blood allowed to devastate haemophiliacs’ lives? | Su Gorman 27 Sep 7:12am Why was contaminated blood allowed to devastate haemophiliacs’ lives? | Su Gorman
Finally, an inquiry. I have to believe this can deliver the justice my husband and I have spent decades campaigning forI met my future husband, Steve Dymond, at a university freshers’ reception in 1974. He is a mild haemophiliac who needs treatment with blood products to boost his clotting levels in case of accident or medical procedures. As students of Russian, we had both grown up on stories of
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A remainer who is picture perfect | Brief letters 25 Sep 1:30pm A remainer who is picture perfect | Brief letters
Steve Bray | Gender-stereotyping | Russian irony | Loneliness | Seeing doubleIt’s great you can name the Dolce and Gabbana models (G1, page 9, 24 September), but why not the “demonstrator” on your front page? After all, he’s been in your photos before. His name is
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If ending Syria’s war means accepting Assad and Russia have won, so be it | Jonathan Steele 21 Sep 5:06am If ending Syria’s war means accepting Assad and Russia have won, so be it | Jonathan Steele
Western governments bear partial responsibility for prolonging this savage conflict. They must now push for peaceJust when it seems the Syrian war cannot get more complex, it does. In the skies above the Mediterranean, Syrian missiles shoot down an allied Russian surveillance plane after mistaking it for an Israeli bomber. In the Black Sea resort of Sochi, the
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When Russian Democracy Died 20 Sep 6:03pm When Russian Democracy Died
Boris Yeltsin abolished the Parliament 25 years ago. That helped pave the way for Putin’s dictatorship.
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McMafia makes chilling TV. But the reality is even worse | Luke Harding 3 Jan 1:00am McMafia makes chilling TV. But the reality is even worse | Luke Harding
The BBC’s caviar knives and hired killers reflect a less glamorous truth: Russian organised crime is all too at home in the UKThere are many gripping moments in
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What TV taught us in 2017: from David Bowie to The Crown 18 Dec 2017, 12:54pm What TV taught us in 2017: from David Bowie to The Crown
This year, we learned there was no such thing as too long, complicated, dark or difficult; that every Doctor is the ultimate until the next one – and that the future is stalking us like prey It was the best of years, it was the … no, wait, it was just the best of years: 2017 for television was like 1867 in Russian literature: alive with creativity, unexpectedness and creative works of incredible length. In the olden days, we would periodically ask why only Americans could make good TV (because they have bigger writing teams), and then the pendulum would swing and we’d ask why only the British could (because we have a tradition of public service broadcasting, and also a better sense of humour), and those conversations have vanished, because everybody is so brilliant at it that the idea of trying to locate the vibe ethnographically has become preposterous. There’s been a reversal over time of the old norm, that films were for grownups because they had more money, and TV was for kids who couldn’t go out. Now, films are for kids trying to escape their parents, and are largely nonsense, and TV is for adults who are too tired to leave their sofas, but apparently not so tired that they can’t watch 50 hours straight of intricate character analysis in a foreign language. Broadly, it’s not so much facts we’ve learned – I don’t have brilliant recall for things I absorb outside office hours; I’m sure you’re the same – as how much we’ve developed as people. I’ve never thought so hard about the effects of plastic on the oceans, or totalitarianism on the self (Blue Planet II,
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The Guardian view on Putin in Syria: victory and desolation | Editorial 12 Dec 2017, 2:50pm The Guardian view on Putin in Syria: victory and desolation | Editorial
The Russian president has been on a victory lap to Syria and the Middle East, intent on showing that he has outplayed the US in the regionVladimir Putin
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The Guardian view on Finland’s centenary: a social democratic triumph | Editorial 5 Dec 2017, 2:15pm The Guardian view on Finland’s centenary: a social democratic triumph | Editorial
From universal suffrage to the universal basic income, Finland is a European country that pioneered egalitarian policies and technological innovation alikeFinland celebrates its 100th anniversary as an independent country on Wednesday. From the chaos of the unfolding Russian revolution this small nation state emerged, already the first in Europe to give equal voting rights to men and women, to allow female candidates to stand and, in 1917, to elect a social democratic prime minister. Famously resilient in the face of historical and geographical odds, memories of the winter war after Soviet forces
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Mueller investigation takes a big step closer to Donald Trump 2 Dec 2017, 7:05pm Mueller investigation takes a big step closer to Donald Trump
Michael Flynn, the former national security adviser, is co-operating with the investigation into Russian influence in the White HouseFirst came the lie. Then came the cover-up. It’s a classic Washington two-step. And the news that Michael Flynn, a former White House national security adviser, has
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Fifa’s new broom Gianni Infantino exhibiting signs of limited shelf life 29 Nov 2017, 6:11am Fifa’s new broom Gianni Infantino exhibiting signs of limited shelf life
World game’s president has already wrecked his flagship event and with the World Cup draw due on Friday still has only one of 20 local sponsors in place and has yet to agree terms for the TV rights with Russian broadcastersGood news and bad news once more for Fifa’s president, Gianni Infantino, who refuses to abandon his delusions of adequacy. The good news is that Gianni has pre-announced that there will be no racist incidents at the Russia World Cup next summer. “This is a very high priority,” he explained, “and we will make sure that no incidents will happen.” The bad news is that there may be no local sponsors at the Russia World Cup next summer. I say “no local sponsors” – in fact, there is currently just one of a possible 20 places in Fifa’s regional sponsorship tier taken up, with that spot filled 16 months ago by Russia’s Alfa Bank. Since then, nothing.
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Here’s what Russians think: Brexit is your creature – don’t blame it on us | Alexey Kovalev 17 Nov 2017, 7:57am Here’s what Russians think: Brexit is your creature – don’t blame it on us | Alexey Kovalev
Russian trolling had little effect on the referendum outcome – it was like pouring a bucket of water into the oceanIt’s become a staple of “
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How Facebook and Google threaten public health – and democracy | Roger McNamee 11 Nov 2017, 4:00am How Facebook and Google threaten public health – and democracy | Roger McNamee
The sad truth is that Facebook and Google have behaved irresponsibly in the pursuit of massive profits. And this has come at a cost to our health In an interview this week with Axios, Facebook’s original president, Sean Parker, admitted that the company intentionally sought to addict users and expressed regret at the damage being inflicted on children. This admission, by one of the architects of Facebook, comes on the heels of last week’s hearings by Congressional committees about Russian interference in the 2016 election, where the general counsels of Facebook, Alphabet (parent of Google and YouTube), and Twitter attempted to deflect responsibility for manipulation of their platforms.
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Beware: this Russian cyber warfare threatens every democracy | Natalie Nougayrède 4 Nov 2017, 2:00am Beware: this Russian cyber warfare threatens every democracy | Natalie Nougayrède
Kremlin-inspired interference is about much more than skewed elections. It’s the world of mind control imagined by George Orwell Anyone in Europe and Britain worried about the state of US democracy should take time to
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Putin’s Russia can’t celebrate its revolutionary past. It has to smother it | Catherine Merridale 3 Nov 2017, 2:00am Putin’s Russia can’t celebrate its revolutionary past. It has to smother it | Catherine Merridale
The Russian Revolution was a fight against the excesses of the rich. No wonder Vladimir Putin wants to ignore the centenaryNovember always brings a welcome holiday for Russians. The day off work is about some great historical event, but most use it to catch up with their families. On 7 November 2017, it will be exactly 100 years since
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How Putin could yet save Britain from Brexit | Mark Galeotti 2 Nov 2017, 10:06am How Putin could yet save Britain from Brexit | Mark Galeotti
Word of Russian ‘black cash’ financing leave campaigns is fast becoming a torrent. As the inquiries pile up, hard evidence could delegitimise the EU referendumThe presidential administration is the most
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We can’t assume Britain is immune from Trump’s toxic politics | Rafael Behr 1 Nov 2017, 2:00am We can’t assume Britain is immune from Trump’s toxic politics | Rafael Behr
Given the president’s attack on liberal democracy, with Kremlin interference his cult of personal power could spread across the AtlanticThe friendliest polling station I have visited was in Grozny, Chechnya. Separatist rebellion had been crushed by the Russian army, and a referendum was being held to confirm the republic’s loyalty to Moscow. Journalists were bussed in to witness democracy reborn amid the ruins of war. Officials were cheerful, as were our military minders. The
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How will Donald Trump respond to the Russia investigation? | Lawrence Douglas 31 Oct 2017, 6:00am How will Donald Trump respond to the Russia investigation? | Lawrence Douglas
We know how Trump behaves when cornered. His only defense is to attack – recklessly, mendaciously and unrelentingly Of the twelve counts enumerated in the indictment, the first stands out: “Conspiracy Against the United States.” Let us just take that in: The president’s former campaign manager, Paul Manafort, as well as the manager’s close associate, have been charged with serving as “unregistered agents of the Government of Ukraine” and its pro-Russian leader, Victor Yanukovych.
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Those who lived through the Russian Revolution understood history – unlike us | Paul Mason 30 Oct 2017, 9:28am Those who lived through the Russian Revolution understood history – unlike us | Paul Mason
As the events of 1917 unfolded, many working-class people would have been able to understand the parallels with the French Revolution. A century later, our ignorance may be our downfall Things were going badly for Lenin this time 100 years ago. We are eight days away from the centenary of the Bolsheviks’ seizure of power, but, as he prepared to strike, Lenin fell victim to one of the great scoops of the 20th century. After a scratchy committee meeting had set the date of the revolution for 2 November (western calendar), two leading Bolsheviks, Zinoviev and Kamenev, who thought the whole idea crazy, leaked the plan to a pro-government newspaper.
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Why the Soviet attempt to stamp out religion failed | Giles Fraser: Loose canon 26 Oct 2017, 11:54am Why the Soviet attempt to stamp out religion failed | Giles Fraser: Loose canon
The British Museum’s Living with Gods exhibition describes some of the myriad ways in which faith expresses itselfThe Russian revolution had started earlier in February. The tsar had already abdicated. And a provisional bourgeois government had begun to establish itself. But it was the occupation of government buildings in Petrograd, on 25 October 1917, by the Red Guards of the Bolsheviks that marks the beginning of the Communist era proper. And it was from this date that an experiment wholly unprecedented in world history began: the systematic, state-sponsored attempt to eliminate religion. “Militant atheism is not merely incidental or marginal to Communist policy. It is not a side effect, but the central pivot,” wrote Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. Lenin compared religion to venereal disease. Within just weeks of the October revolution, the People’s Commissariat for Enlightenment was established to remove all references to religion from school curriculums. In the years that followed, churches and monasteries were destroyed or turned into public toilets. Their land and property was appropriated. Thousands of bishops, monks and clergy were systematically murdered by the security services. Specialist propaganda units were formed, like the League of the Godless. Christian intellectuals were rounded up and send to camps.
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It’s the Russian Revolution’s centenary, but don’t expect Ukrainians to celebrate | Serhii Plokhy 19 Oct 2017, 12:19pm It’s the Russian Revolution’s centenary, but don’t expect Ukrainians to celebrate | Serhii Plokhy
Ukraine’s under-reported conflict continues to rage while Vladimir Putin still looks to expand his federation’s borders
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The Guardian view on Stanislav Petrov: an unsung hero | Editorial 18 Sep 2017, 2:26pm The Guardian view on Stanislav Petrov: an unsung hero | Editorial
At the height of the cold war, one man did his bit to save the world, and no one knewIt takes about half an hour for a nuclear missile to travel between the population centres of Russia and the US, its warheads freighted with the end of the civilised world. At the height of the cold war, when detection systems were less sophisticated than today, there would have been as little as 15 minutes for the other side to react in. On a couple of occasions the world brushed past such a catastrophe – once in 1962 at the height of the Cuban missile crisis, when a captured Russian double agent, Oleg Penkovsky, gave
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Britain doesn’t need a Fox News. The regulators must block the Murdochs’ bid | Ed Miliband 1 Sep 2017, 12:12pm Britain doesn’t need a Fox News. The regulators must block the Murdochs’ bid | Ed Miliband
These owners are neither fit nor proper, and must not be given yet more power over the UK’s media landscapeImagine a media organisation where a slew of senior employees at its biggest selling Sunday newspaper were convicted of criminal acts, including phone-hacking and perverting the course of justice. Then imagine that same media organisation, having claimed a few years later to have cleaned up its act, is revealed to have its most high-profile TV station rife with sexual harassment by its former chief executive and onscreen star, as well as allegations of widespread racial harassment, both now the subject of legal action and US federal investigation. Imagine also that the TV station was a byword for bias and slanted coverage and that as recently as May this year it falsely besmirched the name of a murdered Democratic staff member by claiming he, not the Russian government, had leaked thousands of emails from the Democratic party during the presidential campaign. Imagine that it had then withdrawn the story, but three months on taken no action against those responsible nor apologised to the dead man’s parents, who had publicly explained how the claims their son was a traitor had
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I voted Labour for a softer Brexit. Now, I might get one | Isaac Qureishi 29 Aug 2017, 9:23am I voted Labour for a softer Brexit. Now, I might get one | Isaac Qureishi
The party had struggled to differentiate itself from the Tories on Brexit, so I’m delighted with Keir Starmer’s announcementWalking to the polling station on 23 June this year, I knew there was only one party I could vote for. I was brought up in Bradford, a city famous for its industrial heritage and a history of immigration. As a third-generation half-Pakistani, my life has been undeniably shaped by my ethnic makeup, and having moved to London in 2011 to read Russian and Spanish at University College, I suppose I would be considered quintessentially European. In my mind, a vote for Labour was a vote for a softer Brexit. I am not naive enough to believe that a reversal of the referendum result is attainable, however much I yearn for that. Labour’s manifesto made it clear: retaining the benefits of the
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Russia and the US are jittery about spies. But facts are hard to come by | Robert Service 8 Aug 2017, 5:00am Russia and the US are jittery about spies. But facts are hard to come by | Robert Service
Amid the allegations swirling around Washington sits a private company called the Kaspersky Lab. But beyond that, nothing is clearDoes the west have reason to worry that the Russian authorities have penetrated its communications networks and used the information for malign purposes? Declarations by US intelligence agencies in 2016 suggested that the case is clearcut. Russia stands charged with systematic malpractice, including the
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Donald Trump, look behind you – cartoon 5 Aug 2017, 7:05pm Donald Trump, look behind you – cartoon
Chris Riddell on the US president and the Russian bear that just won’t go away
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There will be no justice for Flight MH17 until we contain Russian financial power | David Patrikarakos 17 Jul 2017, 8:08am There will be no justice for Flight MH17 until we contain Russian financial power | David Patrikarakos
No one has been arrested for the deaths of 298 civilians three years ago, a state of affairs in which London, the money-laundering capital, is complicit
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Learn a Language, but Not a Human One 16 Jul 2017, 4:05pm Learn a Language, but Not a Human One
Fluency in coding is a more useful skill than French, Spanish or Russian.
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Keystone Kops Collusion 12 Jul 2017, 2:17pm Updated Keystone Kops Collusion
Did Don Jr., a Russian pop star and a lawyer steal the 2016 election?
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Theresa May’s biggest mistake? Tying herself to a sinking Donald Trump | Jonathan Freedland 12 Jul 2017, 7:02am Theresa May’s biggest mistake? Tying herself to a sinking Donald Trump | Jonathan Freedland
The rush to lash Britain’s fortunes to the US president was always humiliating. Now, after Donald Trump Jr’s Russian revelations, it looks even worse
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10 Jul 2017, 6:56pm Updated What Did Hillary Know about Russian Interference?
A congressional committee examines the Kremlin’s campaign to influence U.S. energy policy.
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Trump Must Stand Strong Against Putin 6 Jul 2017, 6:57pm Trump Must Stand Strong Against Putin
The president needs to show that the U.S. is prepared to deter Russian aggression.
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The Guardian view on Trump and Putin: mind games and the risk of a misstep | Editorial 6 Jul 2017, 3:02pm The Guardian view on Trump and Putin: mind games and the risk of a misstep | Editorial
The US and Russian presidents are expected to hold their first meeting as leaders on Friday. Vladimir Putin is a master of detail and adept in manoeuvres. Donald Trump had better read his briefing notesDonald Trump is expected to hold
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I thought nothing in Russia could shock me. Then I went to a television broadcast | Angus Roxburgh 30 Jun 2017, 2:00am I thought nothing in Russia could shock me. Then I went to a television broadcast | Angus Roxburgh
I was interrogated for seven hours and saw random people arrested. But the orchestrated hate and xenophobia I witnessed at Channel One was truly chillingIt takes a lot to shock me in Russia, after 45 years of studying it. But this month my blood ran cold. Not because I watched innocent kids being hauled off the street by thuggish riot forces, and not because I was myself arrested and questioned by police for seven hours – though those incidents played a part – but because of what I witnessed in a Russian state television studio. But let’s start at the beginning … On “Russia day”, 12 June,
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Obama stayed quiet on Russian interference. History will judge him for it | Walter Shapiro 28 Jun 2017, 6:00am Obama stayed quiet on Russian interference. History will judge him for it | Walter Shapiro
Obama, confident in Clinton’s electoral prospects, chose stealth instead of openness during the US elections. That was a mistake
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27 Jun 2017, 3:21am Tweeting, Not Leading, the Response to Russian Hacking
The Obama administration didn’t do enough to punish Russia for its election interference. But what is President Trump doing?...
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Labour’s win in Kensington reflects the area’s huge disparities of wealth | Rachel Obordo 12 Jun 2017, 11:56am Labour’s win in Kensington reflects the area’s huge disparities of wealth | Rachel Obordo
The constituency in which I live is home to Russian oligarchs, and some of the poorest people in London. The latter, daring to hope, have delivered this resultThe last result of the election
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10 Jun 2017, 2:30pm Updated The Power of the Russian State vs. a Librarian
Vladimir Putin’s Russia has fallen prey to the old Soviet notion that any deviation from the position of the state is liable to be prosecuted....
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The Guardian view on Macron and Putin: pressing, not pushing away | Editorial 30 May 2017, 3:12pm The Guardian view on Macron and Putin: pressing, not pushing away | Editorial
The French president did not mute his views in addressing his Russian counterpart – but nor did he shut the door to improving the relationshipWhen Peter the Great travelled to France in 1717, Louis XV was only seven years old. On meeting him, the tsar grasped the child king in his arms and lifted him up from the floor to kiss him heartily, shocking onlookers with his disregard of court formalities.
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Impeachment seemed impossible a few days ago. Not anymore | Lawrence Douglas 18 May 2017, 2:35am Impeachment seemed impossible a few days ago. Not anymore | Lawrence Douglas
The announcement that Robert Mueller III, the former FBI director, will oversee the Russian probe strengthens the spreading sense that Donald Trump is finished The “presumption of regularity.” It is a term largely unfamiliar to those outside legal or governmental circles but one that all Americans should now learn. Born of centuries-old common law, the presumption stands for the idea that government officials are presumed to act lawfully and in proper discharge their office – absent evidence to the contrary. Every elected and appointed official enjoys this presumption. It is not easily squandered. It is meant to withstand errors in judgment and lapses in leadership. What it does not indulge is a clear pattern of abuse. Once the presumption collapses, the official is no longer fit for office.
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Loose Lips Sink Presidencies 17 May 2017, 10:54am Updated Loose Lips Sink Presidencies
The Russian intel story shows the price of Trump’s lost credibility.
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9 May 2017, 9:22pm Donald Trump’s Firing of James Comey
Despite claims to the contrary, the F.B.I. director was clearly ousted for leading an investigation into Russian ties that could threaten the president....
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Why does the Russian revolution matter? 6 May 2017, 5:59am Why does the Russian revolution matter?
One hundred years ago, Lenin’s Bolshevik uprising overturned centuries of feudalism in Russia. But what does it mean for the world today?Besides anything else, the socialist uprising in Russia in October 1917 is an extraordinary story. The culmination of the transformative months of that year, beginning with February and the abrupt popular overthrow of tsar Nicholas II and his regime, it’s all intrigue and violence and loyalty and treachery and courage. But what of that prevailing sense that these giant events occurred worlds away and eras ago? Since 1989 and the downfall of Stalinism, mainstream culture has consigned the revolution to the tomb and celebrated its interment – thereby concurring with the spurious claim of those sclerotic, despotic regimes draping themselves in its mantle that they represent something other than the revolution’s defeat. Are these giant events now just baleful warnings? Something else? Does the revolution even matter?
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1 May 2017, 7:32pm Meddling in the French Election
The best defense against Russian interference may be to expose it....
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Overhaul Britain’s rotten tax system or we won’t be able to sustain a healthy state | Will Hutton 22 Apr 2017, 7:07pm Overhaul Britain’s rotten tax system or we won’t be able to sustain a healthy state | Will Hutton
Arguing over whether a £70,000 salary makes you rich diverts us from a proper discussion of public financesAcommon feature of all countries in long-term decline has been an inability to overcome the grip of malign sectional interests on their affairs. Eighteenth-century Spain, 19th-century China or the 20th-century Soviet Union were all pulled into self-destructive vortices. For different reasons, none could address fundamental economic and political dysfunctions. The Spanish nobility, the Chinese mandarinate and the Russian communist kleptocracy might have benefited from the way their respective societies were rigged but they were too powerful to be challenged. The question is whether 21st-century Britain can escape from the way its society is rigged to avoid the same fate. A classic example is the British tax system. The country has become incapable of thinking or talking straight about tax. It may be, as Theresa May said in her shortlived campaign to win the Conservative leadership, that “tax is the price we pay for living in a civilised society”. Equally, the chancellor, Philip
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Why Trump’s missiles are shaking Putin’s home front | Mary Dejevsky 10 Apr 2017, 4:00am Why Trump’s missiles are shaking Putin’s home front | Mary Dejevsky
He may be the hero of Crimea, but for the Russian leader the US strike on Syria could hardly have come at a worse momentMany reasons were advanced for Donald Trump’s decision to order last week’s strike on a Syrian airfield. In addition to the justifications he gave – the US national interest, the need to demonstrate that the
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Defend Gibraltar? Better condemn it as a dodgy tax haven | Oliver Bullough 8 Apr 2017, 7:05pm Defend Gibraltar? Better condemn it as a dodgy tax haven | Oliver Bullough
It sets its own taxes, makes its own rules and undermines Britain as much as the rest of the EUIn 1999, Vladimir Putin was angling to become president, a complex task considering the amount of money and violence in Russian politics at the time. He needed to talk to all the players and needed to do so somewhere unobtrusive, so he convened a meeting at an oligarch’s Mediterranean villa. This, however, caused a problem: how could he travel to southern Spain without alerting the Spanish, who might monitor the conversations and learn what was going on? Fortunately, there was a solution: Gibraltar. The then-FSB chief flew into the British territory, hopped on a boat and entered Spain illegally, on perhaps as many as five occasions. Russian spooks are not the only thing Gibraltar has smuggled across the border. According to media reports quoting a confidential EU investigation,
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27 Mar 2017, 8:31pm President Putin Under Pressure
As Sunday proved, Putin has failed to crush the spirit and courage of Russian citizens....
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Russia is the house that Vladimir Putin built – and he’ll never abandon it | Dmitri Trenin 27 Mar 2017, 2:00am Russia is the house that Vladimir Putin built – and he’ll never abandon it | Dmitri Trenin
By co-opting the masses against the elite, the president has shaped a country to echo his values and grievances. And now he’s working to secure his legacyWhen Vladimir Putin was asked about his job, two years after becoming master of the Kremlin on New Year’s Eve, 1999, he said something about being a hired manager elected by the Russian people for a term of office. When he is asked about his job now, he calls it “fate”. Yesterday saw thousands joined the biggest since anti-government demonstrations in many years to protest against Putin and his prime minister/protégé Dmitry Medvedev. Even so the Russian people, Putin is above all a symbol of stability after a decade and a half of turmoil that included the misguided and botched reform of the Soviet communist system; its abrupt end and the sudden advent of freedom that often looked like a free-for-all; the painful dissolution of the Soviet Union; market reforms, often dubbed “shock without therapy”; virtually instant crass inequality; the end of ideology and the collapse of morals.
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How to close down the Laundromat | Letters 22 Mar 2017, 2:16pm How to close down the Laundromat | Letters
Because I once worked as an English-speaking money transfer operator in Russian banks, I know perfectly well what Luke Harding, Nick Hopkins and Caelainn Barr are writing about (
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What is James Comey’s game? The media must expose the truth together | Jill Abramson 21 Mar 2017, 2:26pm Updated What is James Comey’s game? The media must expose the truth together | Jill Abramson
Why did Hillary Clinton’s emails supposedly warrant an FBI intervention in the election campaign, yet Donald Trump’s Russian connections didn’t?FBI director James Comey had a very busy July. He
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A thousand miles from Moscow: how Putin forged his Russian heartland | Anne Garrels 21 Mar 2017, 2:30am A thousand miles from Moscow: how Putin forged his Russian heartland | Anne Garrels
He may be reviled in the west but the president was a godsend in the desperate, dying old rustbelt townsAny number of journalists are now scouring the American heartland to find out what they missed in the run-up to the US presidential election. For more than 20 years I’ve done the same in Russia to try to understand the political aftershocks of the Soviet Union’s collapse. I was convinced, as a reporter there on and off from the 1970s, that Moscow was not Russia.
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16 Mar 2017, 3:21am The Russian Revolution: Then and Now
The overthrow of the Orthodox czar and Lenin’s victory don’t fit Putin’s preferred narrative of continuous Russian greatness....
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CIA hacking tools raise huge concerns | Letters 13 Mar 2017, 3:13pm CIA hacking tools raise huge concerns | Letters
The articles by your diplomatic editor on possible Russian cyber-attacks on British political parties during an election (
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This is not what Putin planned as he cosied up to Trump | Oliver Bullough 4 Mar 2017, 7:05pm This is not what Putin planned as he cosied up to Trump | Oliver Bullough
Russia’s president never wanted to dethrone America, but use it to further his kleptocracy. He’ll have to think again Anyone who tells you that they know what’s going on behind the Kremlin’s red battlements is lying. Those who speak don’t know, while those who know don’t speak. Moscow insiders with actual insight into what the Russian president thinks about the mess in America are keeping their counsel, thus leaving the uninformed and the hysterical to fill in the (very large) gaps. This is unfortunate, because it would be really useful to know what Putin thinks right now. I arrived in Washington on Wednesday, a couple of hours before the news broke that Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump’s attorney general,
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The picturebook world of Donald Trump and Jeff Sessions 4 Mar 2017, 7:05pm The picturebook world of Donald Trump and Jeff Sessions
Chris Riddell on the US president’s continuing Russian woes
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3 Mar 2017, 3:21am Vladimir Putin Comes Half Clean on Olympic Doping
he Russian president’s continuing denial of government involvement in athlete doping casts disgrace and doubt on the fairness of the Olympic Games.
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So Jeff Sessions met the Russians. Should the UK do the same? | Crispin Blunt 2 Mar 2017, 11:58am So Jeff Sessions met the Russians. Should the UK do the same? | Crispin Blunt
The US attorney general is under fire, and it’s true: the US should tread very carefully. But Britain urgently needs to get closer to its former cold war enemyTheresa May’s triumph at being the first foreign leader to visit Donald Trump, when she addressed the Republican caucus and advised that it is sensible to engage with Russia but to beware, appears to have come a bit late for Jeff Sessions. The details of any meetings he had with the Russian ambassador, and whether the parameters of his confirmation testimony to Congress give him adequate wriggle room, are yet to be determined. But Trump’s latest crisis shows the necessity of the UK engaging with the new administration and the priority that must be placed on aligning western policy on Russia.
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22 Feb 2017, 3:21am Ukraine and the Shadowy Freelancers
The stories of Russian ties were strange enough. Then came a plan to lease Crimea to Moscow.
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Michael Flynn is gone. But his ties with Russia expose a threat to Europe | Owen Jones 14 Feb 2017, 6:27am Michael Flynn is gone. But his ties with Russia expose a threat to Europe | Owen Jones
Trump’s US national security adviser resigned over his relationship with Putin, but the Russian leader remains a hero to those on the hard right across EuropeThere’s blood in the water, and the anti-Trump opposition should be in a hunting mood. Michael Flynn, the US national security adviser, is the
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This image of terror should not be photo of the year – I voted against it | Stuart Franklin 13 Feb 2017, 6:01am This image of terror should not be photo of the year – I voted against it | Stuart Franklin
Its impact is undeniable, but the winner of the World Press Photo of the Year furthers the compact between martyrdom and publicity On 19 December last year, the Turkish photographer Burhan Özbilici went to a press conference in an Ankara art gallery. He had been on his way home from the office and only attended by chance. As it happened, the event turned into a murderous spectacle when the Russian ambassador to Turkey, who was delivering a speech, was assassinated. Özbilici had the composure, bravery and skill to take the photograph that is today named World Press Photo of the Year, the judging of which I chaired. It’s the third time that coverage of an assassination has won this prize, the most famous being the killing of a Vietcong suspect, photographed by
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Will Donald Trump’s boastful bluster drown out the Obama legacy? | Joy-Ann Reid 22 Jan 2017, 10:29am Will Donald Trump’s boastful bluster drown out the Obama legacy? | Joy-Ann Reid
While Obama spoke to the whole country, including those who refused to hear him, Trump’s rhetoric is focused on himself, and those lined up behind himAmerica is about to experience a profound sense of whiplash as power is transferred from a president whose eloquence brought him to the public stage to one whose modes of communication are largely limited to political pep rallies (including the occasional pep rally disguised as a press conference) and “mean tweets”. We can argue until the end of time about how we got here: a Russian kompromat operation; a grandstanding, partisan FBI director; or a failure to plan campaign stops for the Democratic candidate in Milwaukee, Detroit and Philadelphia due to hubris or bad data or both. But what belies argument is the fact that we are witnessing a sea change in the way the president of the United States communicates – from “hope over fear” to “American carnage”.
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Russian foreign policy and the Nato narrative | Letters 19 Jan 2017, 2:22pm Russian foreign policy and the Nato narrative | Letters
I hold no brief for Putin or Trump, and, unlike many on the left, I never had any illusions about the Soviet Union. But the conventional narrative on Nato still needs to be challenged (
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The Guardian view on Putin’s Europe: the new fellow travellers | Editorial 18 Jan 2017, 3:03pm The Guardian view on Putin’s Europe: the new fellow travellers | Editorial
Moscow may relish a role as a disrupter of liberal democracy as much as it would like to see the EU unravel, but that does little to hide the contradictions among pro-Russian political groups in EuropeWith all the speculation surrounding Russia’s influence over European politics, seeking clarity and finding a sense of balance is a challenge. To say that Mr Putin’s regime engineered the rise of populist forces on the continent is an exaggeration if not a fallacy. France’s far-right Front National was created in 1972, years before Mr Putin got anywhere close to power. Austria’s nationalist Freedom party registered its first electoral success in 2000, at a time when Russia’s foreign policy was still geared towards finding a modus vivendi with the EU – not seeking to undermine it. Nor are all of Europe’s populists pro-Putin: Poland’s ruling nationalist PiS party is a staunch critic of the man. But that’s not to say Mr Putin’s regime hasn’t cultivated radical fringe groups in Europe, nor that some haven’t applauded him in return. Russia’s interactions with Europe have in fact become hard to analyse without taking into account the many political threads the Kremlin has built up within the EU, along with the ideological impact this has on the continent’s elections. With key European votes this year, Russia’s sway must be scrutinised, but in a cool-headed way. The double trap is to either deny or overstate Moscow’s hand. It’s not as if the Kremlin today ran a network of “comrade” parties in Europe as it did during the cold war. These days, it’s not communist revolution that’s on Moscow’s agenda, nor are its levers quite the same. If Mr Putin’s Russia finds a degree of sympathy in parts of European politics, it’s on a more complex basis altogether and in a much transformed global environment. In recent years, his swerve towards hardline nationalism and ultraconservative slogans have put him in tune with far-right European groups who share similar views. But it is also clear he has a constituency among parts of Europe’s far left, for reasons that have little to do with cultural affinities but point to the rise of anti-western sentiment.
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Watch out, Europe. Germany is top of Russian hackers’ list | Natalie Nougayrède 13 Jan 2017, 2:19pm Watch out, Europe. Germany is top of Russian hackers’ list | Natalie Nougayrède
The Bundestag was hacked in 2015. Angela Merkel should expect this year’s election to be targeted tooOne year ago in Berlin, Lisa F, a 13-year-old German-Russian girl, disappeared for 30 hours. When she returned to her parents, she claimed she had been kidnapped and raped by “Arab” men.
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Bonfire of the Intelligence Vanities 8 Jan 2017, 10:20pm Bonfire of the Intelligence Vanities
Putin is the winner as Washington melts down over Russian hacking.
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Chaos at the Etihad and all that jazz | Brief letters 6 Jan 2017, 2:07pm Chaos at the Etihad and all that jazz | Brief letters
UN aid target | Jazz and football | Passport applications | Consumer debt | Russian hacking | An audientYou fail to mention (
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What Does Trump Know About Russia? 2 Jan 2017, 6:12pm What Does Trump Know About Russia?
The president-elect has his doubts about Russian hacking. What are his motives?
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It is now May’s task to tell Trump the truth about Putin | Matthew d’Ancona 2 Jan 2017, 1:00am It is now May’s task to tell Trump the truth about Putin | Matthew d’Ancona
The PM has talked tough on Russian aggression. Convincing Washington will be a greater challengeThe American eagle swoops a little closer to the growling Russian bear. Tensions mount between Washington and Moscow.
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The Fable of Edward Snowden 30 Dec 2016, 10:21pm The Fable of Edward Snowden
As he seeks a pardon, the NSA thief has told multiple lies about what he stole and his dealings with Russian intelligence.
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Notable & Quotable: Snowden and Russian Intelligence 30 Dec 2016, 7:09pm Notable & Quotable: Snowden and Russian Intelligence
‘He has had, and continues to have, contact with Russian intelligence services.’
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29 Dec 2016, 8:41pm President Obama Punishes Russia, at Last
No, Mr. Trump, Americans are not going to forget about Russian hacking.
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The Guardian view on 1917: the joy of 100 | Editorial 29 Dec 2016, 2:16pm The Guardian view on 1917: the joy of 100 | Editorial
Like the year that’s just ending, the year of the Russian Revolution was a moment of irreversible changeA century, a hundred years, a ton: whatever it is called, those two zeroes make it an irresistible measure, big enough to serve as a yardstick of human activity, not so great that the consequences of events beyond a human lifespan are fully comprehended. This year, 2016, feels unmistakably like a watershed, a point of departure to which future historians will return again and again in search of explanation and illumination. Brexit, Trump, these are events all the more shocking for their causes afterwards being so apparently plain to see. But moments in history often move swiftly from the astonishing to the blindingly obvious. The year that starts this Sunday, 2017, is the centenary of another year like 2016, a year that also marked an irreversible shift in the world order. The political world and, with it, the human imagination were reconfigured in ways that were sometimes instantly obvious – the two Russian revolutions in February and October, for example, or the dawn of total war marked by unrestrained U-boat attacks on allied shipping and the first bombing raids on civilian London.
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Ben Jennings on the doping scandal of Russian Olympic athletes – cartoon 28 Dec 2016, 4:52pm Ben Jennings on the doping scandal of Russian Olympic athletes – cartoon
a href="https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/picture/2016/dec/28/ben-jennings-russian-doping-scandal-olympic-athletes-cartoon">Continue reading...
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Satire won’t rid us of Trump, but it will make us feel better | Anne Karpf 26 Dec 2016, 5:59am Satire won’t rid us of Trump, but it will make us feel better | Anne Karpf
In times of bigotry and prejudice, we need humour not just for escapism, but also to poke fun at the powerfulThe world’s natural resources may be at risk of depletion, but there’s one that’s still plentiful and has never been more vital: humour. Not the laughter that provides a temporary escape from the nastiness of the present, welcome though that is. No, the kind I’m talking about is humour that skewers the lies, boasts and taunts of those who claim to have “won”. Beleaguered people have long understood the significant political role that humour can play. Earlier this month the New York Times posted a video of comedians living in repressive regimes around the world advising Americans – oh bittersweet reversal! – on how to survive the next four years. In eastern Europe before the fall of the Berlin Wall, satire was one of the few channels through which dissent could escape the censor, by using political propaganda to undermine itself. As in the joke about the Russian applying for an exit visa who is summoned to explain why. “Isn’t your salary good enough?” “No, I can’t complain.” “Isn’t your flat big enough?” “No, I can’t complain.” “So why do you want to leave?” “Because I can’t complain.”
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The Russian ambassador’s assassination was no work of art | Emma Brockes 22 Dec 2016, 10:01am The Russian ambassador’s assassination was no work of art | Emma Brockes
The killing of the Kremlin’s envoy to Turkey is the latest example of the infantile, tasteless, predictable aesthetics of atrocityTwo days after the
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22 Dec 2016, 3:21am Updated Investigate Russian Hacking the Right Way
A bipartisan congressional inquiry could avoid charges of partisanship and seek answers in a dispassionate manner.
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Why can’t we elect a Native American like Faith Spotted Eagle as president? | Julian Brave NoiseCat 21 Dec 2016, 9:31am Why can’t we elect a Native American like Faith Spotted Eagle as president? | Julian Brave NoiseCat
The indigenous leader is the first to receive a vote for president in the US electoral college. This historic act of defiance offers hope for our collective futureOn Monday, electoral college delegates convened in capitols across the 50 states and the District of Columbia to cast their votes for the 45th president and vice-president of the United States. Some said that the future of a global superpower, and liberalism itself, hung in the balance. Reeling from reports of Russian hackers and confounded by a president-elect viewed by many as a fascist-in-making, desperate voices from both the left and right called on the electors to vote their conscience.
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19 Dec 2016, 11:36am Russian Meddling and Europe’s Elections
To ensure that Moscow’s tactics fail, European leaders need to expose their use before voters head to the polls.
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15 Dec 2016, 3:21am Updated Donald Trump’s Denial About Russia
Mr. Trump’s rejection of the United States’ investigation into Russian hacking of the 2016 election leaves him isolated.
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Saving Europe From Itself---Again 14 Dec 2016, 11:40pm Saving Europe From Itself---Again
A Russian aggressor could drive through NATO’s weak center or bite off its edges piece by piece.
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13 Dec 2016, 10:59am The Russian Doping Scandal Keeps on Growing
A new report uncovers even more cheating by Moscow’s sports authorities.
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This isn’t the start of a new cold war – the first one never ended | Andras Schweitzer 13 Dec 2016, 8:00am This isn’t the start of a new cold war – the first one never ended | Andras Schweitzer
Suspicion and mistrust between the west and Russia are growing. In years to come, we may see the Yeltsin era as merely a détente in hostilitiesIf Russian secret services did meddle with
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How I Learned to Love Putin 12 Dec 2016, 7:52pm How I Learned to Love Putin
The Russian’s methods would make Macbeth blush and Richard III smile.
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Russian Hackers and American Hacks 11 Dec 2016, 6:44pm Russian Hackers and American Hacks
The CIA that misjudged Putin for years is now sure of his motives.
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11 Dec 2016, 5:24pm Updated Russia’s Hand in America’s Election
Why would President-elect Trump object to a thorough, bipartisan probe into Russian meddling?
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The Guardian view on the fall of Aleppo: it will not end the suffering | Editorial 11 Dec 2016, 2:29pm The Guardian view on the fall of Aleppo: it will not end the suffering | Editorial
Almost six years of war have devastated Syria. There is more to come, in spite of the Russian-backed regime’s military advancesThe fall of east Aleppo now appears imminent,
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Russian MPs are not the first to try to write LGBT people out of video games | Keza MacDonald 7 Dec 2016, 5:45am Russian MPs are not the first to try to write LGBT people out of video games | Keza MacDonald
Fifa 17 is the latest target. But increasingly games reflect the world as it is – not as reactionaries would like it to be
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24 Nov 2016, 3:21am Warning Russia on Hacking Isn’t Enough
Because Mr. Trump, an outspoken admirer of Mr. Putin, is unlikely to act, it is up to Mr. Obama to hold the Russian president to account.
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12 Nov 2016, 2:30pm The Danger of Going Soft on Russia
What’s needed is a pragmatic review of American-Russian relations.
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1 Nov 2016, 10:21am Taking Note: Pussy Riot’s Nadya: Trump ‘Should Be Disqualified’
The Russian punk protester talks about the election, Putin and her new music video.
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23 Oct 2016, 2:00am Do you want your shower to help Russian hackers? | John Naughton
The internet of things has created a global network of devices vulnerable to cyber criminals – and no one wants to fix it M y eye was caught by a Kickstarter campaign for a
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19 Oct 2016, 11:17am If the US hacks Russia for revenge, that could lead to cyberwar | Trevor Timm
The US should attempt to de-escalate tensions by negotiating some form of international cyber treaty before this gets out of control What’s the CIA’s brilliant plan for stopping Russian cyber-attacks on the US and their alleged interference with the US election? Apparently, some in the agency want to escalate tensions between the two superpowers even more and possibly do the same thing right back to them. NBC News
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17 Oct 2016, 9:50am Contributing Op-Ed Writer: Israel Knows That Putin Is the Middle East’s New Sheriff
With the United States abdicating its leadership role, Netanyahu has to play along with Russian plans for Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.
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12 Oct 2016, 6:10am Protests outside the Russian embassy – what is Boris Johnson up to now? | Mary Dejevsky
Facetious or in earnest, the foreign secretary’s call in the Commons shows just how hard it was for him to defend the government’s line of inaction on SyriaYou never quite know what Boris Johnson is up to. Was he mischief-making, articulating a new official policy or demonstrating his inexperience when he asked why Britons were not flocking to the Russian embassy to protest against its actions in Syria? Where, the foreign secretary mused, echoing the campaigning Labour MP Ann Clywd, was the Stop the War Coalition when you needed them? (Both politicians were speaking at the Commons debate on Syria yesterday).
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5 Oct 2016, 3:21am Op-Ed Columnist: Let’s Get Putin’s Attention
The Russian leader’s rogue behavior threatens America and the E.U.
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1 Oct 2016, 11:30pm Is despair and disbelief all we can offer to the savagery being visited on Aleppo? | Samir Puri
As Russia and Bashar al-Assad seek to play out a deadly endgame, other world powers seem incapable of stopping the destruction of Syria’s second city, leaving an indelible and shameful stain on the global conscienceOutrage is the only conceivable reaction to the devastation wrought on Aleppo. A relentless aerial assault by Syrian and Russian forces has targeted hospitals, the water supply and facilities of White Helmet emergency workers, let alone the UN humanitarian convoy that was struck on 19 September. The images, of corpses pulled out from beneath collapsed masonry, to a bloodied underground emergency room floor, are simply appalling. Disbelief follows. How, in this day and age, could such tragedy come to pass? The use of airpower to devastate a city had seemingly been consigned to history. Where on earth, in the 21st century, are the legal mechanisms and the accountability to halt such devastation? The powerlessness of the UN and its associated bodies is palpable. This is especially the case when it is confronted with regimes such as those of Bashar al-Assad and Vladimir Putin that feel no compunction over a scorched-earth response to insurgency and do so with calculation.
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30 Sep 2016, 1:48pm Only Russia and the US can end the war in Syria | Letters
The Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) has sent an appeal to the governments of the Russian Federation and the United States, demanding an end to the armed conflict in Syria. Given the serious war crimes against the civilian population of Aleppo and other cities, we urgently call for a peaceful solution for Syria. The STP demands that Russia stop bombing the eastern parts of Aleppo that are controlled by Islamist rebels, and persuades the allied Syrian regime to withdraw its air force from there as well – immediately. The US must ensure that all radical Islamist groups in the area of Aleppo are disarmed, or that they will at least comply with a ceasefire. In our opinion, this would be the only way to prevent a mass exodus from the parts of the city that are controlled by the regime. There are still about 1.5 million people – including at least 100,000 Christians, Armenians, Assyrians/Aramaeans/Chaldeans, Kurds, Alevis, Ismailis, Shias and Yazidis – living there. For them, the radical Islamist groups, who want to turn Aleppo into a purely Sunni-Arab city, are a deadly threat.
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26 Sep 2016, 7:38pm The Sino-Russian Axis
Joint naval exercises show a common strategic purpose: Push the U.S. out.
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21 Sep 2016, 5:00am The Fancy Bears leaks shouldn’t tar all athletes with the same doping brush | James Riach
The cyber hackers are trying to conflate athletes’ therapeutic use drug exemptions with Russian state-sponsored doping. They do not amount to a ‘licence to dope’ We live in an age when many
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20 Sep 2016, 8:04am Op-Ed Contributor: How a Russian Fascist Is Meddling in America’s Election
How the antidemocratic ideas of Ivan Ilyin are guiding the Kremlin’s interference in U.S. presidential politics.
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17 Sep 2016, 7:05pm Information is a potent weapon in the new cold war
Loss of public trust killed the USSR and it can bring down Western elites tooAsked by Bloomberg this month about Russian involvement in the hacking of the US Democratic national committee, Vladimir Putin issued a non-denial denial. Basically, his answer boiled down to this: whoever did it did a good thing. This response only added to the stir created by the initial accusation that Russia was behind the activities of the “Fancy Bears”. The fear of Russia manipulating presidential elections in the world’s mightiest democracy has been spreading across the United States. Getting to the real perpetrators of hacking attacks is notoriously difficult. Yet seen from the Kremlin hackers perform a valuable public service by revealing secrets – not to foreign intelligence services, but to the western public. The political power of these revelations was first demonstrated by WikiLeaks, which broke the confidentiality of US diplomatic cables. The effect was much enhanced by the Snowden files, which exposed,
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