NATYLIE BALDWIN—Arctic ice, receding at a record pace, revealed five new islands in the Russian far north this year that had been hidden under the ice sheets for all of recorded human history. Russian scientists aboard a research ship near the northern coast of Siberia last week were amazed to discover a massive eruption of methane bubbles from the ocean floor. The huge clouds of the super-greenhouse gas suggest that the underlying permafrost is melting faster than anyone could have anticipated.
RUSSIA & NOVOROSSIYA
- ECOANIMALENVIRONMENTAL STRUGGLESRUSSIA & NOVOROSSIYARUSSIA DESK
- AMERICAN BRAINWASHAMERICAN EXCEPTIONALISMAMERICAN PROPAGANDARUSSIA & NOVOROSSIYARUSSIA DESKSOVIET UNION
During the first decades of the Soviet rule, excited artists and architects, both Russian and foreign, created many breathtaking concepts for new Soviet living. They typically reflected the grandeur of the Communist project. In a way, they shared an important quality with bold sexual fantasies: they were every inch as exciting as impractical, not least because the USSR lacked money and good engineers. Wise old man that he was, Stalin realized it right from the outset. Which is why in the 1930s, he ordered everyone to stop daydreaming. Our creative talents threw in their lot with the tested-and-tried from the past.
- CAPITALIST SICKNESSCHINARUSSIA & NOVOROSSIYAUS GOVERNMENT CRIMESUS MILITARY
ANDREW KORYBKO—The visit of new Indian Defense Minister Rajnath Singh to Moscow from 5-7 November along with a 50-member military-technical business delegation will continue the trend of improving Russian-Indian defense ties after their comparative weakening over the past few years, though this must be balanced with improved Russian-Chinese connectivity through the Eurasian Union’s planned integration with the Belt & Road Initiative via the proposed vision of N-CPEC+ otherwise Beijing might understandably come to believe that improved Russian-Indian defense ties are aimed at countering its growing military capabilities and thus risk inadvertently triggering a security dilemma.
- AFRICARUSSIA & NOVOROSSIYARUSSIA DESK
In the 1960s Moscow gave free education to thousands of Africans. Soviet-trained engineers and technicians were essential for manning Soviet-constructed infrastructure in African nations, while Soviet-trained officers commanded African troops equipped with Soviet-supplied hardware. A similar trend emerged today.
THE SAKER—Even inside Russian society there are real patriots (not just western agents) who are getting mighty fed-up with the Kremlin’s, let’s kindly call it “meek” or “hyper-polite” attitude. Meekness is a great quality, so are good manners. But other attitudes and actions are needed when faced with rogue thug-like regimes, especially when those regimes are both self-worshiping and appallingly ignorant.