A Russian officer stands near a landed Il-76 military cargo plane on Alexandra Land, an island near Nagurskoye, Russia, May 17, 2021 (AP photo by Alexander Zemlianichenko).

Since Feb. 24, the eyes of the world have been fixed on Eastern Europe. But the events unfolding in and around Ukraine portend great changes for another region: the Arctic. Commonly viewed as a “territory of dialogue,” the Arctic has over the past three decades won a reputation as a “zone of peace” marked by exceptionally calm and collaborative security dynamics. Indeed, this is what former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev envisioned back in October 1987, when he launched a series of policy initiatives aimed at lowering the level of military confrontation in the Arctic by facilitating cooperation among the eight […]

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On March 2, the European Union announced that the Russian state-sponsored channels Sputnik and RT would be banned from broadcasting within the union, citing the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the Kremlin’s “systematic, international campaign of disinformation, information manipulation and distortion of facts.” And British media regulator Ofcom announced today that it was taking RT off the air after an investigation found it was “not fit and proper to hold a license in the UK.” The dangers of the propaganda spouted by RT and Sputnik are considerable. These outlets sow divisions, cleave societies, threaten free and fair elections—and, now, shield […]

Bogdan, who is staying to fight while his family leaves the country, says goodbye to his wife Lena at the Kyiv station, Ukraine, March 3, 2022 (AP photo by Emilio Morenatti).

As the war in Ukraine enters its third week and the refugee crisis in neighboring countries intensifies, among the many heartbreaking stories in the international spotlight is the separation at the border of Ukrainian families fleeing the fighting. As The New York Times’ Daily podcast reported, fathers, brothers, boyfriends and husbands as well as single men between the ages of 18 and 60 are being forced to stay and enlist in Ukraine’s military, while women of all ages are not only being allowed over borders but actively encouraged to flee. This denial of the right to flee on the basis of age and […]

Refugees from Ukraine arrive at the railway station in Przemysl, Poland, Feb. 27, 2022 (AP photo by Czarek Sokolowski).

As the uncertainties surrounding Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continue to multiply, one thing seems clear: Europe is poised to experience a level of population upheaval not seen on the continent since the 1940s. Exactly a week has passed since the war began, and already more than 1 million Ukrainians have fled to neighboring Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania and Moldova. European Union and United Nations officials are warning that the number seeking refuge in the EU could soon exceed 7 million. Such a figure, which would vault Ukrainians into being the world’s largest refugee group, may well prove an underestimate. Russia’s […]

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin prior to their talks in Beijing, China, Feb. 4, 2022 (Sputnik photo by Alexei Druzhinin via AP).

As Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues to draw outrage and reprisals from the international community, China is maintaining the cautious distance from Moscow it has taken since the onset of the crisis, with many observers suggesting that Beijing may have been caught unaware by Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to authorize a full-scale invasion, after months of tensions between Kyiv and Moscow. Yet behind China’s heavily censored internet firewall, where media outlets disseminate Russian propaganda and blame the West for instigating the conflict, Chinese internet users see Putin as a hero and are cheering Russia’s incursion on. In a joint statement issued on the […]

Ukraine’s ambassador to the United Nations, Sergiy Kyslytsya, listens during the U.N. Security Council meeting on the Russian invasion of Ukraine, at the U.N. headquarters in New York, Feb. 25, 2022 (AP photo by John Minchillo).

“We the peoples of the United Nations, determined to save succeeding generations from the scourge of war … do hereby establish an international organization to be known as the United Nations.” These words, from the preamble of the United Nations’ founding charter, capture the ambition, far-sightedness and optimism of the leaders who founded the organization in 1945. But today, they ring a little hollow. On Feb. 24, after years of tension and months of anxiety, Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. With social media users sharing an almost blow-by-blow account of the conflict online, the world has looked on in horror as […]

U.S. Army soldiers search one of Saddam Hussein’s palaces damaged after a bombing, in Baghdad, April 7, 2003 (AP photo by John Moore).

Ever since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine last week, comparisons to the United States’ 2003 invasion of Iraq have inevitably and understandably emerged. After all, at transformative moments in world history like the one we’re currently witnessing, analysts naturally draw historical analogies to make sense of contemporary events, mining the past in search of patterns and causal connections that bear some resemblance to what is unfolding today. And while no two situations are ever exactly alike, the comparison to Iraq in 2003 is particularly important, since it has considerable bearing on whether and how the United […]