Following defeat in the 44-day war against Azerbaijan last autumn, Armenia remains stuck in the Russian geopolitical orbit, and has been forced to make painful concessions to its arch enemy, Azerbaijan.
The West is accusing Russia of preparing to invade Ukraine. Both Moscow and Kiev are flexing muscles and deploying troops waiting for a “major war.” But is the Kremlin really interested in another land grab, or is Russia’s harsh rhetoric just a message to the Western leaders, primarily to the US President Joe Biden?
Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to face some serious challenges in 2021. The West has already started pressuring the Kremlin to release Alexey Navalny – the anti-corruption opposition figure who was arrested on January 17th upon his return from Germany, where he spent five months recovering from being poisoned by an alleged Russian nerve agent, Novichok. The West is aslso using the Navalny imprisonment to try -- once again -- to stop construction of the Nordstream II pipeline which is to carry Russian gas under the Baltic Sea to Germany. The US wants to limit European reliance on Russian gas and increase Europe's reliance on American gas.
Russisan coverage of the Capitol insurrection has juxtaposed the disorder in the United States to the proclaimed "order and stability" in Russia -- although recent mass protests in Russia over the imprisonment of Russian dissident Alexney Navalni (see accompanying article) have now put the Russians on the defensive.