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looking beyond borders

foreign policy and global economy

Archive for the tag “Soviet Union”

How U.S., Soviets, India, Pakistan Vied To Shape A New Afghanistan In Late 1980s

U.S. Ambassadors Dean and Raphel warned Washington unconditional support to Pakistan and fundamentalist factions of mujahedin was destabilising the region. The Reagan administration supported India’s active role in connection with Soviet withdrawal, but changed position when Delhi tried to keep extreme fundamentalists from coming to power. Pakistan’s nuclear weapons program was major Indian concern in connection with U.S. aid to Islamabad; New Delhi and Washington consulted closely on arms control, cables show.

Read Here – U.S. National Security Archives

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The New Disappeared

From the military juntas that ruled Argentina and Chile in the 1970s and 1980s to Joseph Stalin’s iron-fisted regime in the Soviet Union, dictatorships have a long history of making their detractors “disappear.” Today, this sinister practice seems to be making a comeback.

Read Here – Project Syndicate

Trump’s Soviet Approach To Intelligence

Collecting intelligence for someone who doesn’t want it is at best a waste of money, and at worst a prescription for disaster. Again, the Soviet example is a good one. In the lead-up to the second World War, and repeatedly during the war years, the Soviet Union squandered intelligence from the best spy network ever. Perhaps the biggest geo-strategic blunder in history was the Soviet failure to anticipate Operation Barbarossa, the 1941 Nazi invasion which almost led to the annihilation of the Soviet state.

Read Here – The Atlantic

It’s time India Got Real About Its Ties With Russia

File picture showing Russian President Vladimir Putin with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi

There is little indication that Putin views India in sentimental terms, unlike an earlier generation of Russian officials exemplified by former Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov or the late Russian envoy Alexander Kadakin. India’s high-profile and sustained outreach to Moscow in 2018 is not a reversion to an imagined past.

Read Here – The Hindustan Times

Russia Struggles To Mourn the Romanovs 100 Years On

The death of Nicholas II and the Romanov family remains a controversial moment in Russia’s history. Tsarism and Bolshevism are — for the most part — not presented as conflicting forces in a battle in which one order defeated another. Rather, tsars, Bolsheviks and later communists, are seen as a succession of “greats.” In Moscow, visitors can admire the glamour and grandeur of the tsars at the Historical Museum in the Red Square before lining up for the Lenin Mausoleum only a few steps away.

Read Here – The Moscow Times

They Saved Hitler’s Skull. Or Did They?

Seventy-three years ago, on Monday, Adolf Hitler killed himself in his Berlin bunker alongside his wife of one day, Eva Braun. With the Red Army closing in, their bodies were hastily burned and buried in a shell crater in the nearby garden. That’s the official story anyway.

Read Here – Slate

A Soviet Nerve Agent Triggers A New Cold War

The poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter earlier this month has significantly worsened already tense relations between Moscow and the West. The crime marks the first chemical weapons attack on Western Europe since the end of World War II. 

Read Here – Der Spiegel

Cold War II

A quarter-century after the end of the Cold War, the world unexpectedly finds itself in a second one. This state of affairs was anything but inevitable, and it is in neither side’s interest to escalate tensions further.

Read Here – Project Syndicate

Why China And The US Will Continue To Squander Money On Spying

From Washington, Moscow and Beijing to Tokyo, governments around the world will continue to squander money on espionage and counter-espionage. It is a great shame for taxpayers – most of these operations are so secretive that they are not accountable to the public nor subject to supervision. They are inherently wasteful and do not always serve the greater good of all. If deployed elsewhere, even a fraction of the resources would solve many problems we are facing today, but it is naive to believe things will be otherwise.

Read Here – South China Morning Post

When The Soviet Union Paid Pepsi In Warships

In April 9, 1990, American newspapers reported on an unusual deal. Pepsi had come to a three billion dollar agreement with the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union had long traded Stolichnaya vodka in return for Pepsi concentrate. But this time, Pepsi got 10 Soviet ships. This wasn’t the first time that Pepsi sold soft drinks in return for a flotilla. The previous year, the company even received warships. This situation—a soft drink conglomerate briefly owning a fairly large navy—was the unusual result of an unusual situation: a communist government buying a product of capitalism from the country it considered its greatest rival.

Read Here – Atlas Obscura

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