Category: Global Politics

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Russian Oligarchs’ Influence in British Politics

Andrew Milroy
Nine Russian Oligarchs (Deripaska is top centre) - Source: Wikimedia - CC BY-SA 3.0

Dear Sir, How did the Russian oligarchs becomes so politically influential in Britain? Oleg Deripaska is at the root of the Tory Party dependency on Russian money. Deripaska, ironically now sanctioned by the British government, was originally targeted by the future Conservative chancellor George Osborne in 2008 when Osborne was partying on the Russian’s £80 […]

Germany: No more ‘Trading State’ and ‘Civilian Power’

Dr Helmut Hubel
Schröder and Putin November 2001 - FAZ

Russia’s war against Ukraine has not only annihilated countless human lives and completely destroyed whole cities. It has also unmasked decades-old myths, one of which concerns Germany as a ‘Trading State’ and ‘Civilian Power’. After the peaceful revolution in East Germany, the successful political process towards unification and the integration of the East into the […]

Putin the Terrible

Dr Helmut Hubel
Ivan the Terrible and son - Repin - Wikimedia Public Domain

Above is a famous painting by Ilya Repin (1844-1930) of ‘Ivan the Terrible and his Son’. The painter, one of Russia’s greatest artists, depicted the scene after the historian Nikolai Karamzin, who described how in 1581 the Tsar had hit his own son in terrible anger leading to his later death from his wounds. The […]

Putin is not learning from History

Andrew Milroy
Russian Tank destroyed in Mariupol - CC BY 4.0 (Міністерство внутрішніх справ України (Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine)

Embroiled in its invasion of Ukraine, the Russian army is now avoiding the formidable Ukraine armed forces and seeking to undermine Ukrainian morale by using cruise missiles and bombs to destroy civilian targets. Destroying buildings and infrastructure without putting infantry on the ground will not work. Russia’s own history in the “Great Patriotic War” 1941-1945 […]

The Orwellian Playbook

Mike Cashman
Steven Bray - One man Protest - With permission from Steven Bray

George Orwell in his classic novel ‘1984’ portrayed a totalitarian regime whose policies were justified by the need to fight a fictional enemy. Some modern leaders are following this ‘Orwellian Playbook’. The Tactics I have observed his tactics over the last few years. I have seen the invention of a bogeyman outside his own country […]

What is Britain’s Role in the World post Brexit?

Hadrian Cook

Following the disputes, division and disinformation in our national narratives, the road from the referendum of June 2016 to spring 2022 has been bumpy in the extreme. Some may find it amusing, in a dark sort of way, to enjoy politicians being exposed for illicit parties in Number 10 or finding themselves at the ‘could […]

A Mural in Solidarity with Ukraine.

Alex Singleton
‘Hope Peace’ – Redbridge Roundabout, Oxford 2022 – Source: Author

I needed to do this mural as I felt so strongly about the injustice of what is happening. I chose an urban roundabout in Oxford that could be seen by all drivers coming in and out of the city.  I use the symbol of the flower in many of my murals as it has a […]

International Laws but no Justice for Ukraine

Bob Copeland
International Criminal Court in Den Haag - CC BY-SA 4 0

Everybody across the world is united in the desire to live in peace with justice for all, nobody wants to see their towns and cities reduced to rubble. So how do we get justice for Ukraine? The Path to War in Ukraine After Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych was overthrown in 2014, Russia annexed Crimea in […]

The Fall of Democracy – Only a Matter of Time?

Joe Polson
Electoral Democracies CC BY-SA 2.0

The concept of ‘Liberal Democracy’ is perhaps the most ambitious form of government developed to date. It has, like all types of government, variations, some more directly ‘democratic’ than others. Despite their differences however, they all seek to achieve one sacred goal – to govern on behalf of their citizens rather than to govern despite […]

Ukraine: Britain’s Responsibility

Joe Polson
Map of the British Polish Ukrainian Trilateral on Geostrategy - CC BY-SA 4.0

Fear. It’s perhaps the greatest word one could use to sum up Western foreign policy since the Second World War. It was a fear of the growing Soviet/Communist regimes throughout Eastern Europe, Asia and South America which dominated the agenda. This fear masks the fact that Britain has a responsibility to Ukraine. Since the fall […]

Ukraine and Russia have a Troubled History

Andrew Milroy
War_in_Ukraine_(2022)_en CC0 1.0 Universal

In 1932-33 there was a catastrophic famine in Ukraine, which was entirely man-made, resulting from a deliberate policy directed by Joseph Stalin, the Soviet dictator. Stalin is idolised by Vladimir Putin. Known in Ukraine as the ‘Holodomor’ or ‘Murder by Starvation’.  At least 3.9 million Ukrainians died in that famine. The U.N. estimated 7 to […]

What can we do about Vladimir Putin?

Dr Helmut Hubel
Vladimir Putin - Source: Wikimedia Commons

What could prevent (or could have prevented) Putin from conquering Ukraine? Unfortunately, there are only a few options – and they’re all too late or impractical. On 21 February 2022, one day after the Beijing Winter Olympics had finished, Vladimir Putin openly declared war against Ukraine. As Putin’s aggressive and murderous regime has demonstrated during […]

China’s stake in Russia targeting Ukraine

Andrew Milroy
Putin and Xi - Source: Wikimedia Commons

Dear Sir, The recent discussions and agreement between Russia and China on Ukraine brought back memories of the infamous Stalin-Hitler pact of 1939, when the Russian leader was duped into  supporting Hitler. Yet a year or so later in 1941 the massive Nazi Barbarossa invasion of the Soviet Union was launched. Russia still bears the […]

How much Hitler is in Putin?

Dr Helmut Hubel
Start of Orange Revolution - Independence Square Kyiv - (CC BY-SA 3.0)

At first glance, this question seems stupid, completely out of place. And I am certainly not thinking of Hitler’s ultimate goals – conquering the Soviet Union and annihilating Europe’s Jewish population. These horrendous crimes will remain unique. However, what I am concerned with is the problem of ‘revanchism’. Germany (and its allies) had lost World […]

The Wannsee Conference – Why we must Remember

Philip Cole

Late January is the time for Holocaust Memorial Day when we remember the attempted, and almost successful, genocide of the Jewish people. This is something that needs to be commemorated everywhere, but some European countries are better than others at doing so. Because of their history the Germans have a particular interest in keeping memories […]

Stal-Put-in’s Anthem

Dr Helmut Hubel
Anthem of the Russian Federation - Wikipedia

In the last chapter of the Memoirs of Dmitri Shostakovich, recorded and edited by the musicologist Solomon Volkov, there is a detailed description of how the State Anthem of the Soviet Union was created. During Soviet times this book of the emigrant Volkov had been denounced as a “malicious forgery” and only after 1991 did […]

System Change not Climate Change: The Kurdish Example

Stephen Hunt
Rojava (North East Syria) - Free to use: Kurdistan Solidarity Network

It would be an understatement to say that it is important to keep the momentum towards addressing the ecological crisis going in the aftermath of the autumn’s global summit on climate change. It is essential. The high-profile COP26 may have left you feeling somewhere between positive, in that some small steps to progress were made, […]

Russia’s new Stalinism kills ‘Memorial’

Dr Helmut Hubel

On 28 December 2021 Russia’s Supreme Court, in an action redolent of Stalinism, ordered the closure of ‘Мемориал‘ (Memorial) – the country’s last and most prestigious symbol of civil society. Founded by the late Andrei Sacharov in 1987, during the period of Gorbachev’s ‘glasnost’ (openness), this organization had taken on the courageous and daunting task […]

Escaping the Covid Groundhog Day

Alex le May
Photo by Ivan Diaz on Unsplash

Should health planners in low-income countries prioritise Covid vaccination? Has anyone asked them? We need to support low-income countries to tackle local health priorities if we want to give global vaccination coverage a fighting chance. This requires a significant shift in our attitude to development assistance. Otherwise, we’ll be living with a Covid Groundhog Day […]

Blah Blah Blah

Peter Burke

Was COP26 an opportunity lost? Was it always destined to be? Could there be a link to Brexit? What do you think?!

The Climate Emergency – Part 2: What to do and what to stop doing

Bob Copeland

As with stopping Covid-19 from spreading, it should not be difficult to see what needs to be done and what we need to stop doing, to save the planet. However, judging by what the UK government has just announced, it is clearly beyond their capability. What needs to be done to help save the planet […]

The Muppets Show

Toby Hawkins

Toby tells us what we already know – UK is being run by “The Muppets Show”. UK has lost its status as a respected world leader.

The Climate Emergency – It’s Looking Very Perilous

Paul Ryder

Innate in human nature is a desire to protect and improve our situation in life, and a readiness to do this collectively. People with poor situations want, very reasonably, to improve themselves with better housing, food and conditions, yet people with already good situations still want, less reasonably, to get even better housing, food and […]

Afghanistan – The Graveyard of Empires

Dr Helmut Hubel

After 20 years of war in Afghanistan, the Presidents Trump and Biden have ordered the withdrawal of U.S. troops – without any meaningful consultation among its NATO allies. For the UK, the hasty withdrawal constitutes the end of its third war in Afghanistan – after 1839-1842 and 1878-1880. After the defeats of the British empire, […]

Populism and corruption this side of the Atlantic

The Editor

Ed: After Paul Ryder’s riveting treatment of Populism and Corruption in Trump’s USA, which we featured in March, here is a condensed version of his sequel showing how the UK is equally threatened. A right wing party moves further right When populism rules, and one party in a two-party democracy goes rogue, democracy is undermined […]