#197: We Have Good Reasons for Hope

In these depressing times, we seem to always be on the brink of the end of the world, the end of democracy, the end of a livable climate, the end of free speech, sanity, respect, fairness, justice, nuance, context, humanity, whatever – you name it. There is either too much or too little of wokeness… Continue reading #197: We Have Good Reasons for Hope

#195: Fake “Referenda” Prove that Putin Doesn’t Want to Negotiate

Let’s just make one thing clear: What is happening in occupied Ukraine, what happened in 2014 in Crimea, Donetsk and Luhansk, cannot be called referenda. They are fake. They are not elections. They are nothing but a performance of voting, but no actual voting is taking place. For an election or referendum or vote to… Continue reading #195: Fake “Referenda” Prove that Putin Doesn’t Want to Negotiate

#190: On the Ability of Russians to Suffer their Government

As sanctions keep hurting Russia’s economic outlook, we keep hearing that the Russian people are able to endure anything, and that they will tolerate all of this, that it would be pointless to sanction the country and that we should just give in to Putin’s genocidal demands. Yet it is not the West which is… Continue reading #190: On the Ability of Russians to Suffer their Government

#189: Soviet Monuments Need To Go

The destruction of a Soviet monument in Riga this week was quite the sight to behold: This strange obelisk celebrating, allegedly, the victory by the Soviet Union against Nazi Germany was erected in 1985 to celebrate Soviet imperialism and colonialism and demonstrate the USSR’s hold over Latvia, a country the Soviet Union conquered when it… Continue reading #189: Soviet Monuments Need To Go

#188: What Is “The West” Today? From “Civilization” to Cooperation

Quite regularly, we can hear explanations about both foreign and domestic policy that rely on concepts about “the West.” It is rather commonplace to assume that the world is divided into different political camps that are influenced by different cultures. No other division is more popular than the distinction between those countries who are part… Continue reading #188: What Is “The West” Today? From “Civilization” to Cooperation

#183: What Are Russians Thinking?

We keep hearing in the news frequently that most Russians support Putin’s war. This is highly misleading, and very probably wrong. There cannot be objective surveys in Russia. All independent journalistic institutions have either been closed or are about to close. Any independent thinking is being actively discouraged, and if discouragement does not work, it… Continue reading #183: What Are Russians Thinking?

#178: Russia Deserves Better

President Putin is working hard to weaken Russia. During the last decades, he has almost completely destroyed the last remnants of Russian democracy. Instead, he has built a system built on lies, repression and violence. Proudly, he announces that Russia is returning to old strength, that the Russian people are experts at suffering, and that… Continue reading #178: Russia Deserves Better

#166: Reflections on Memorial Day

It is strange to have to look up the meaning of a central holiday of the country into which you have immigrated. I grew up in Socialist/Communist East Germany, and that was a criminal state, I did not care for its traditions. The Catholic Church dictated most of my holiday schedule – the Protestants varied… Continue reading #166: Reflections on Memorial Day

#165: Realpolitik Is About Appeasing Power, not Reality or Morality

Henry Kissinger reminded us recently that Realpolitik means to make a compromise with a “great power” like Russia. Specifically, that compromise was supposed to respect Russian claims and restore the “status quo ante” before the most recent attack – thus codifying the theft of Crimea and parts of the Donbass. Such a statement clearly ignores… Continue reading #165: Realpolitik Is About Appeasing Power, not Reality or Morality

#155: Dear Russia: Make It Stop

Dear Russia, your president is lying to you. That happens sometimes, politicians are not always honest for a variety of reasons. Your president is stealing from you. That also sometimes happens. Your president is ruining you reputation. That also sometimes happens. Your president is doing something that you would really not approve of if you… Continue reading #155: Dear Russia: Make It Stop