Foreign Press Review (20.03-26.03)

Featured Image

In contrast to the US where meetings with Russian officials have become almost a taboo one of the candidates in the French presidential race Marin Le Pen decided to make a surprise visit to Moscow at the invitation of the Russian State Duma’s international relations committee. In Moscow she held talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin and State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin. Ms Le Pen emphasized the counterproductive character of the EU sanctions against Russia and called for cooperation in combating terrorism. Experts suggest that the meetings will help to consolidate her electoral supporters, many of whom have a positive view of Russia’s defense of conservative values. As for the Kremlin, it showed that Russia “reserves the right to meet with representatives of all political forces of the country”, which seems, according to some observers’ opinion, to be a thrust against current neo-McCarthyism in the US.

On Monday, March 20, the first open hearing into President Trump’s alleged Russia ties took place in the US. During a testimony before the House Intelligence Committee FBI director James Comey publicly confirmed that his agency was “investigating the nature of any links between individuals associated with the Trump campaign and the Russian government, and whether there was any coordination between the campaign and Russia’s efforts”. Presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov commenting on the hearings expressed his doubt on the possible appearance of new information and once again emphasized that it is an internal American issue and compared it to hysteria. Later the week CNN exploded another information bomb citing anonymous US officials, who claimed that Trump’s associated possibly coordinated the release of information aimed at damaging Hilary Clinton’s presidential bid with Russian operatives. It is worth noting that almost every article concerning the case includes a remark that counterintelligence investigations tend to be lengthy and, moreover, implies usage of the most classified intelligence programs. So the public isn’t likely to be presented with any evidence and that gives the media a perfect opportunity for new speculations in the future.

Meanwhile, the press published information that US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is planning to skip NATO foreign ministers meeting in Brussels, which is scheduled for April 5-6. Reportedly he wants to attend the negotiations between US President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping in Florida and – this faced even more criticism on the part of some European and American officials and experts – then he plans to visit Moscow for a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The basic argument of those who oppose this decision is that Mr Tillerson is going to speak to a NATO rival before having a meeting with America’s allies. In the eyes of small European countries it might show the attitude of the new US administration to the alliance, which, given Trump’s words about “obsolescence” of NATO previously, raises new questions about US commitment to the organization.

Russia-US relations

The Missing Logic of Russia-gate

By Robert Parry


Russia-bashing and innuendos about disloyal Americans were all the rage at Monday’s House Intelligence Committee hearing on alleged Russian “hacking” of the presidential election, but logic is often missing.

This is how Trump can achieve a balanced policy with Russia

By The Times Editorial Board

The Los Angeles Times


This nation will still have much to do to clarify significant issues in its relationship with Russia.

Might Neo-McCarthyism Mean War vs. Russia?

 By Stephen F. Cohen

The Nation


The “unmasking” of Putin’s American “contacts” is premised on his “act of war” against the United States—for which there is still no evidence.

AP Exclusive: Before Trump job, Manafort worked to aid Putin

By Jeff Horwitz and Chad Day

The Associated Press


Before signing up with Donald Trump, former campaign manager Paul Manafort secretly worked for a Russian billionaire with a plan to “greatly benefit the Putin Government,” The Associated Press has learned.

The real winner of the House Intelligence Committee hearing on Russia

By Michael McFaul

The Washington Post


Of course, many factors combined to produce Trump’s victory, but Putin’s intervention most certainly played a contributing role.

Russia-West relations

Exclusive: Tillerson plans to skip NATO meeting, visit Russia in April – sources

By Arshad Mohammed and John Walcott



U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson plans to skip a meeting with NATO foreign ministers next month in order to stay home for a visit by China’s president and will go to Russia later in April, U.S. officials said on Monday, disclosing an itinerary that allies may see as giving Moscow priority over them.

Trump’s Russia policy is scaring allies and confusing even the Kremlin

By Zack Beauchamp



Allies and adversaries alike are wondering whether Washington’s true Russia policy is what Mattis is doing or what Trump is tweeting.

How the West Can Defend Itself From Putin’s Russia

By Yascha Mounk



It’s time to return to a Cold War mentality.

Russia-France relations

Putin Meets Marine Le Pen in Moscow, Denies French Election Interference

NBC News


Russian President Vladimir Putin made his preferences in the French presidential election clear Friday by hosting far-right candidate Marine Le Pen at the Kremlin, but analysts are skeptical about Russia’s ability to sway the outcome of the vote.

Russia-UK relations

British banks handled vast sums of laundered Russian money

By Luke Harding, Nick Hopkins and Caelainn Barr

The Guardian


Billions of dollars were moved out of Russia in ‘Global Laundromat’ operation, with anonymously owned UK companies playing major role.

Information wars

Why we should all tune in to Russia Today

By Taki

The Spectator


Unlike US networks and the BBC, it has a sense of humour and doesn’t do fake news.

Russia and the Middle East

While Washington Investigates Russian Meddling, Moscow Is Expanding Its Global Influence

By Matthew Rojansky

The Huffington Post


As America looks the other way, the Kremlin is filling the Middle East power vacuum.

In the Middle East, Russia is reasserting its power

The Economist


Bombs and diplomacy, both part of the toolkit.

Russia-Japan relations

In Japan, Russia and China Find Common Ground



For the first time in three years, Russia and Japan have revived an avenue of negotiation that had stalled in the face of enduring tension between the two nations. Foreign and defense ministers from both countries met in Tokyo on Monday to hold 2+2 talks on security issues in the Asia-Pacific region.

Russia-Ukraine relations

The Brazen Killing Of A Putin Critic Fuels Suspicion Of The Kremlin

By Nick Robins-Early

The Huffington Post


The former Russian member of parliament was fatally shot in broad daylight in Ukraine’s capital.

Russia’s internal politics

The Putin paradox

The Guardian

From the US elections to Ukraine, Russian policy is having a greater impact on global affairs than at any time since the cold war. We scrutinise the man who has done more than anyone to shape those policies, and ask how someone so reviled in the west has been so successful at home.

Articles also deserving your attention

  1. France’s Marine Le Pen urges end to Russia sanctions (24.03.17)
  1. B.I. Is Investigating Trump’s Russia Ties, Comey Confirms (20.03.17)
  1. Roger Stone takes center stage as Congress lines up Russia probe witnesses (20.03.17)
  1. Man Tasked With Investigating Trump’s Ties To Russia Makes Friendly Visit To White House (22.03.17)
  1. FBI’s Russian-influence probe includes a look at Breitbart, InfoWars news sites (20.03.17)
  1. What Russia Wants — and Expects (22.03.17)
  1. These Five Facts Explain Why Trump’s Russia Reset May Be Over (24.03.17)
  1. The committee probing the Russia scandal has erupted into open warfare (24.03.17)
  1. The Clinton campaign warned you about Russia. But nobody listened to us (24.03.17)
  1. A Breach in the Anti-Putin Groupthink (21.03.17)
  1. Vladimir Putin Has Already Won (23.03.17)
  1. Is the Trump-Russia story an octopus or spaghetti? (24.03.17)
  1. Trump’s White House is starting to look a lot like Putin’s Kremlin (22.03.17)
  1. Putin is waiting to see whether Trump will fund pro-democracy programs (20.03.17)
  1. When Putin’s your neighbor, the Russian threat is chilling (20.03.17)
  1. S. General Urges Nuclear Upgrade as Russia Grows ‘More Aggressive’ (22.03.17)
  1. Rezekne, Latvia, Frets About Trump NATO Stance, War With Russia (20.03.17)
  1. ‘Russia Is a Threat … to All of Europe’ (24.03.17)
  1. The Under-the-Radar EU Vote That Opens the Door for Russia (24.03.17)
  1. Russia denies it is supplying the Taliban after Nato general claim (24.03.17)
  1. Why Turkey might buy Russia’s S-400 defence system (24.03.17)
  1. Modi Befriends Trump As Putin And Xi Move Closer Together (24.03.17)
  1. Turkey-Russia tensions resurface after border killing (23.03.17)
  1. Israeli air raids in Syria raise fears of wider conflict (22.03.17)
  1. Belarus Is the Latest Thorn in Putin’s Side (21.03.17)
  1. Japan, Russia bolster cooperation, urge NKorean restraint (20.03.17)
  1. Russia-China arms sales stoke US air superiority fears (21.03.17)
  1. Fillon accuses French government of ‘orchestrated leaks’ to torpedo his presidential bid (22.03.17)
  1. Crimea: The place that’s rather difficult to get into (21.03.17)
  1. Russia’s Space Program Is Struggling Mightily (21.03.17)
  1. Putin Plans For Reelection Without Crimea Euphoria And The Trump Bubble (20.03.17)
  1. Days before his death, Putin critic said in interview he knew he was in danger (23.03.17)
  1. Russia and Ukraine out of tune over Crimea at Eurovision Song Contest (24.03.17)
  1. Weak oil prices in future mean a weak Russia and Putin (23.03.17)
  1. Auf wiedersehen, Putin: Berlin’s new Russian émigrés (24.03.17)

List of Comments

No comments yet.