A year after Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s Zeitenwende speech, progress has been made in remaking Germany’s defense strategy on multiple fronts. But the lingering concern is whether Scholz has the political capital—and courage—to break away from the structural incentives that have guided Germany’s security posture since reunification.
Part of what enabled Ukraine to win the public diplomacy war following Russia’s invasion was its obvious adherence to the Geneva Conventions in the face of an aggressive onslaught. But as the war dragged on and Russian atrocities piled up, Ukraine has taken other actions that risk chipping away at its hard-won moral high ground.
Latin America’s broad support for last week’s U.N. resolution calling for a cessation of hostilities in Ukraine and a withdrawal of Russian forces was a clear stand in favor of Ukraine’s sovereignty. But if the U.N. vote was cause for celebration, it was also a rare condemnation on regional leaders’ part of Russia’s actions.
Over the past year, the implications of the war in Ukraine have been the subject of much analysis and debate. It has been a war between two armed forces, but also between two diametrically opposed systems of values. It has been an economic war and a war of competing narratives. But above all, it has been a war of contradictions.
In his State of the Nation address Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin reiterated familiar themes of his propaganda narrative on the war in Ukraine, from protecting Russia from Western cultural “degeneration” to fighting “neo-Nazis” in Kyiv. But propaganda only works if audiences want to believe in what is being promoted.
Today marks one year since Russia launched a large-scale invasion of Ukraine, causing massive military casualties on both sides and widespread destruction of Ukrainian infrastructure. Sadly, the need to discuss this war as a current event will probably not end this year or the next. Rather, the war is likely to last for years to come.
Capitals in Europe are observing a grim anniversary this week. Tomorrow marks one year since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine pushed the continent overnight into a new reality. With no end to the war in sight, the big discussion in European capitals now is how to sustain Ukraine’s war effort over the long haul.
This week, with the first anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine approaching, major players on the global stage took the opportunity to articulate their view of Europe’s first interstate war since World War II, as well as how they want their role in the epicenter of the world’s principal geopolitical conflict to be perceived.
In the Shadow of War, Ukraine’s New Political Order Is Taking Shape
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy had a mixed record in delivering reforms after his 2019 election. Sistema—what Ukrainians call the country’s informal rules of governance that are notoriously resistant to change—was simply part of normal Ukrainian politics. But normal politics in Ukraine ended with the Russian invasion on Feb. 24, 2022.
Strategic debates in the EU are currently focused on sustaining the trans-Atlantic alliance to contain Russian aggression, while searching for an approach to China that balances deterrence and engagement. Yet in its preoccupation with Russia and China, the EU is not paying enough attention to India’s emergence as a global power.
The U.N. General Assembly will vote this week on a resolution marking the first anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and calling on Moscow to end the war. While the resolution is unlikely to affect Russia’s actions, it will allow Ukraine to demonstrate that it still enjoys broad international support for its struggle.
For the past month, France has been in the grip of protests against pension reforms proposed by the government of President Emmanuel Macron, with close to a million people demonstrating across the country on Feb. 11. The protests have so far been entirely orderly. But with the government sticking to its guns, tension is mounting.
The European Union got a welcome bit of good news this week with a surprise revision to the European Commission’s economic outlook, which now predicts the union will narrowly avoid a recession and has already passed peak inflation. The forecast, though, stands in stark contrast to recent predictions for the United Kingdom.
As Vladimir Putin cracked down on dissent following the invasion of Ukraine, Russians opposed to the war started leaving the country in large numbers. The departure of hundreds of thousands of people as the direct result of the war will have a powerful impact on the country in two distinct ways: It will help Putin and hurt Russia.
BRICS countries all are lending support to Moscow at a time when it has been largely cut off diplomatically and economically from the Western world. But while the group functions as a source of support for Russia, it is important to distinguish the differences in how and why they are offering that support.
The liberal European order has been under attack from within and without in recent years. The EU became a convenient punching bag for opportunistic politicians in many of its member countries, and centrist political parties are being challenged by a populist wave that may not have yet crested. The work to rebuild trans-Atlantic ties with the U.S. under President Joe Biden has begun, even as Russia’s attempts to destabilize the European order have not abated.
EU leaders gathered in Brussels today, hoping to devise a response to protectionist subsidies included in the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act, or IRA, a topic that is becoming increasingly important to trans-Atlantic relations. Instead, they found themselves occupied with a surprise guest: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.