Severodvinsk

The Barents Observer, which is a very good source on Arctic matters, has brought to my attention an article in Voenno-Promyshelly Kuryer on the problems and delays with the nuclear submarine Severodvinsk. The keel of this first sub in Yasen class was laid back in 1993, but the sea trials that started in 2011 have revealed… Read more »

Putin lashes against Sergei Medvedev

When I wrote the post about Zhirinivsky last week, I thought the issue could not get more bizarre – and was proven wrong. Yes, it can – and President Putin himself took care of that. He lashed against Sergei Medvedev with such passion that it is plain clear – the idea about putting environment first… Read more »

Golden Sunset

An anti-fascist protester lights a flare during clashes in the western Athens working class suburb of Keratsini on September 18, 2013. Photo Credit: LOUISA GOULIAMAKI

 

The recent crackdown on the Golden Dawn, the extreme right political party in Greece, met with a mixture of feelings on the part of the general Greek public: relief, exaltation, impatience, frustration, uncertainty, even fear. It was also surrounded with a number of questions. For some, just why? For most, why now? Why has it taken so long? What’s next? Will this backfire?Read More

Zhirinovsky

A remarkably bizzare twist to the Arctic tale: My good friend Sergei Medvedev posted a comment to a blog post, in which he argued that Soviet and Russian “conquest” of the Arctic had inflicted so much damage to the environment that all economic activity in the High North should be banned and a UN monitoring… Read more »

A “clash of civilizations”

Russian media is full of accounts of the “show pre-trial” on the Greenpeace activists, like for instance this article in Novaya gazeta. Lenta.ru is providing great newstream, particularly since Litvinov works for them; while Nezavisimaya gazeta tries to rationalize the demonstrative harshness. The point in Vedomosti that a “clash of civilizations” may be present in… Read more »

Brave Green-peaceniks

Gazprom was certainly better prepared this year to counter the Greenpeace action against the Prirazlomnaya platform in the Pechora sea – but this is the case of better preparedness making things much worse. The border guard ship (in the picture from the Greenpeace website) had to fire on the Arctic Sunrise in order to prevent… Read more »

The Novosibirsk islands

Interesting news about Putin’s plans for militarizing the Arctic: Holding a phone conference with the top brass on September 16, the CinC instructed the commander of the Northern Fleet to rebuild the base on the Novosibirsk islands abandoned in 1993. The battle group led by Petr Velikii held exercises in this area, including a marine… Read more »

A “planned provocation”

President Putin made a good point on the Arctic at the G20 press-conference: “I should say that we will not allow companies to proceed with their projects before they undergo a thorough environmental impact assessment. It is unacceptable to do otherwise, especially in the Far North where the natural environment is especially vulnerable”. The problem… Read more »

“Putin’s blurred Arctic vision”

Very good issue of the World Today (produced by the Chatham House) on the arctic matters. And what makes it particularly noteworthy, is my article, certainly, which was also re-printed in Moscow Times. “Putin’s blurred Arctic vision” is the title – not my choice of words, but I can go with that.

Arctic Sunrise enters the Kara Sea

I use this old picture of Soviet polar activities to illustrate a really important news: Greenpeace has proceeded with its work and its ice-breaker Arctic Sunrise has entered the Kara Sea despite receiving no permission from the Sevmorput administration. Russian media reports laconically on this enterprise, but much more can be found on the Greenpeace… Read more »