Today marks the centennial of the start of upheaval in Petrograd – events now known to history as the February Revolution – which forced Tsar Nicholas II to abdicate and paved the way for an experiment in Communism that lasted over 74 years.
During the Soviet era, Communist authorities propagated a rigid form of atheism, while persecuting believers to varying degrees in different eras. These days in Russia, the opposite is the case: the state is upholding strict Orthodox Christian doctrines, while using the judicial system to muzzle non-believers and religious dissenters.
Few parts of the world are the subject of as much sustained journalistic ignorance as Central Asia. News from what are patronizingly known as the “stans” rarely makes it into mainstream news outlets, except in connection to Islamic terrorism, authoritarianism, and ethnic and religious tensions.
Donald Trump’s rise to power, combined with the UK’s decision to leave the European Union, is neutralizing American and British influence in the Balkans. As a result, the volatile region is vulnerable to a surge of illiberalism that could result in the renewal of ethnic-based conflict.
Is the geopolitical conflict between the United States and Russia not the result – as it is usually portrayed – of fundamentally different values held by the two states? Is the problem really that their geopolitical values are in fact too similar?
Sex-selective abortion in Georgia is a topic that has caught international attention. From an Economist article published in September 2013 to a 2015 UN report, Georgia tends to be portrayed as having one of the worst sex-selective abortion problems in the world. Closer inspection of the data, however, suggests the issue may be blown out of proportion.
According to a number of biographical accounts, history was Russian President Vladimir Putin’s favorite subject in school, and he appears to retain a keen interest in history right up to the present day.
“The history of Russia is the history of a country that colonizes itself.” This phrase, first coined by the historian Sergei Solov’ev in the 1840s, gained widespread currency thanks to Vasilii Kliuchevskii’s Course of Russian History, first published in 1911 and still popular today.