During the war in Ukraine, Telegram has been essential for communications. As a result, Moscow has infiltrated the encrypted messaging app’s channels to spread disinformation to Ukrainians and flood Russian users with pro-Kremlin content, indicating that when Moscow can’t block a technology, it will work to subvert and overwhelm it.
EU energy ministers adopted a natural gas price cap after months of heated negotiations, causing concern in the Biden administration and the European Commission that the cap will push exports of U.S. liquefied natural gas away from Washington’s allies in Europe and toward other countries that are willing to pay more for them.
Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Belarus this week to shore up support in Minsk for his war in Ukraine. Even if Alexander Lukashenko does not send troops to Ukraine, closer political and military ties between Moscow and Minsk signal Belarus’ loss of sovereignty and its de facto involvement in the war effort.
Brussels has been rocked this week by the biggest corruption scandal to hit the city in decades, with several people arrested as part of a probe into suspected bribery of European Parliament officials by a Gulf state. Amid all the fevered speculation, the biggest question on the minds of many now is: Who will be next to be implicated?
War is hell, but for large and politically influential defense contractors, it is also good business. This is fueling claims among some NATO allies that the U.S. is profiting from the war in Ukraine. There is no denying that U.S. defense contractors are benefiting, but accusations of war profiteering are simply off base.
Senior officials in the European Commission are seething at the national governments on the EU Council for what they view as caving to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s threat to veto aid to Ukraine amid the EU’s long-running dispute with Budapest over its failure to uphold democratic institutions.
This past June marked a milestone in trans-Atlantic energy relations: For the first time, the European Union bought more natural gas from the United States than from Russia. In some ways, this was a positive development for both sides. The EU, however, is also discovering that the U.S. is a strange energy superpower to partner with.
Tensions over the war in Ukraine have relaxed since the U.S. midterm congressional elections but could ramp up again if Europe continues to fall behind the U.S. when it comes to providing financial and military support for Kyiv. Europe cannot afford a rift on this issue while Ukraine’s–and its own—security is on the line.
After an inauspicious start, 2022 has been a year of low-key but surprisingly successful muddling through for multilateralism. While the war in Ukraine had the potential to throw international institutions into disarray, overall these institutions weathered the storm in better shape than seemed imaginable shortly after the invasion.