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Leonid Bershidsky
COMMENTARY / World
Jun 21, 2014
EU should embrace Albania's pot industry
If Brussels considered legalizing marijuana throughout the EU, then Albania, with its well-developed cannabis industry, could be welcomed to the union as a country with a legitimate, honorable specialization.
COMMENTARY / World
Jun 16, 2014
This cup should be the last for Sepp Blatter
No matter how much 'fire' he has left in him, FIFA President Joseph 'Sepp' Blatter should make the current World Cup in Brazil his last one.
COMMENTARY / World
Jun 3, 2014
Sex and drugs to be counted in Europe's GDP
In the next few months all EU countries that do not already include illegal and gray-market businesses in their gross domestic product calculations will have to do so. After all, there is no substantive difference between the services of a prostitute and a corrupt bureaucrat.
COMMENTARY / World
May 28, 2014
Ukrainians are more European than the French
If the European ideal is to create a citadel of tolerance and universal human values, who are the true Europeans?
COMMENTARY / World
May 23, 2014
How Putin won big in Chinese natural gas deal
Russian President Vladimir Putin has achieved what Western leaders feared — a long-term deal to supply natural gas to China at a respectable price. But Russia could end up China's satellite if it does not at least partially rebuild a relationship with the West.
COMMENTARY / World
May 19, 2014
Europe's economic Iron Curtain
Twenty-five years after the Berlin Wall fell, a just-released set of gloomy economic forecasts demonstrate how the countries formerly under Moscow's sway are still painfully connected to Russia and to one another.
COMMENTARY / World
May 2, 2014
Can Russia fix its mess in Ukraine?
Russian President Vladimir Putin can neither resolve the crisis in east Ukraine nor admit his powerlessness to end what he started. Kiev needs to find a way to negotiate with the local elite and law enforcers, providing convincing guarantees of safety.
COMMENTARY / World
Apr 18, 2014
Putin runs a costume drama in eastern Ukraine
There's one ploy Russian President Vladimir Putin has mastered and perfected in his 14 years in power: If something appears to threaten your power, create its evil twin.
COMMENTARY / World
Apr 11, 2014
Hungary: European Union's only dictatorship?
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor, whose party just won an overwhelming parliamentary victory at the polls, is living proof that EU membership is not an effective antidote to authoritarianism.
COMMENTARY / World
Apr 8, 2014
Want to be happy when you're old? Get a job
A Brookings Institution researchers has found 'well-being' benefits to voluntary part-time employment as well as to remaining in the workforce beyond retirement age.
COMMENTARY
Apr 4, 2014
African e-money is the next currency killer
All the talk of bitcoin in recent years has overshadowed the e-finance revolution in Africa, India and eastern Europe, where a service called M-Pesa has replaced banking for millions of people who don't have a bank account.
COMMENTARY / World
Apr 3, 2014
Will Ukraine's new boss be like the old boss?
The question facing Ukrainians is whether Petro Poroshenko, the man who seems poised to win the presidency on May 25, will prove that all their recent efforts to put an end to decades of corrupt, oligarchic rule have been in vain.
COMMENTARY / World
Mar 28, 2014
How Spain can avoid a nasty split like Crimea
There is no case for forcibly keeping territories under a country's rule if the majority doesn't want it.
COMMENTARY / World
Mar 21, 2014
Putin's speech as benevolent czar
Russian President Vladimir Putin's truly regal speech to Parliament heralded Russia's unabashed resurgence as an unscrupulous, unpredictable player in a world where lies and raw might trump any kind of legal framework.
COMMENTARY / World
Mar 11, 2014
Putin can afford the cost of annexing Crimea
Russian President Vladimir Putin has probably considered that the costs of absorbing Crimea and its roughly 2 million inhabitants will be high but not unbearable.
COMMENTARY / World
Mar 4, 2014
Will Ukraine invasion be Russia's Anschluss?
Ukrainians do need to recognize Russia's interests in the region and the rights of the Russian-speaking majority in the southeast of the country. If they show good will, Russian President Vladimir Putin may generously pull back his forces.
COMMENTARY / World
Feb 28, 2014
How long can Putin bask in the glow of Sochi?
Reading all the positive foreign reactions to the Olympics prompts one to try to imagine how a flunky of Russian President Vladimir Putin would put together a selection of quotes to please the boss.
COMMENTARY / World
Feb 21, 2014
The return of 1980s rhetoric in Russia
Today's Russia may be a wealthier, more open nation than the Soviet Union in the early 1980s, but President Vladimir Putin's propaganda machine is working hard on restoring the stifling moral climate of 30 years ago.
COMMENTARY / World
Feb 7, 2014
Sochi's toilet saga is a lesson in truthfulness
If the tandem-toilet incident is any indication, the organizers of the Sochi Olympics could end up flushing way any ambitions of giving an enormous boost to Russia's global image.
COMMENTARY / World
Dec 31, 2013
Putin plays games to salvage Sochi Olympics
Ahead of the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia, President Vladimir Putin is playing his own game of trying to make his autocratic regime more palatable to world leaders wondering whether they should show up at all.

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