analysis

De-Stalinization and de-Putinization

The Russian Electoral Commission did not validate the candidacy of Boris Nadezhdin. But the emergence of such a candidate is symptomatic. The atmosphere in Russia in recent months is strikingly reminiscent of that at the end of Stalin’s rule.

20 min read

Ukraine’s dark clouds – and a silver lining?

By the end of last year, international news on Ukraine began increasingly to look like obituaries. “Kyiv on edge,” “Ukraine’s grim prospects,” “Ukraine braces for political disaster,” “Ukraine’s nightmare scenario is now a reality”: these are just a few headlines…

7 min read

Would Brussels Fall for Russia’s Trick of Obfuscated Political Reality in Georgia?

While Europeans saw the failure of the attempt to depose the Georgian president as “a victory for Georgia’s European future”, Jaba Devdariani shows, with facts to back it up, that it was in fact a maneuver by the Georgian government to conceal an otherwise serious affair of collusion by the ruling Georgian Dream party with the FSB.

7 min read

Ukraine’s War and Challenges of Decolonization

Why western “political realists” are wrong about the nature of the Russian-Ukrainian war which is in fact a “culture war”, and is all about history and identity. In fact, this war has shaken the academic world, writes one of the best Ukrainian political analysts, Mykola Riabchuk.

15 min read

Why the Anti-jewish Riots in the North Caucasus?

The pogrom at Makhachkala airport in Dagestan (southern Russia) took the world by surprise. How should we interpret this event? Was it spontaneous, or did the Russian authorities manipulate it to send messages to the West and Israel?

6 min read

Why Putin Chooses Chaos

On October 5, 2023, Vladimir Putin delivered a lengthy speech to the plenary session of the Valdai Discussion Club. Françoise Thom analyzes this speech, which unambiguously sets out the Kremlin’s global aspirations, and identifies its main ingredients.

16 min read

The Second Front

Historian Françoise Thom says, Russia barely gave in on its original plan to settle a pro-Russian government in Kyiv.

28 min read

The Harmful Role of the Kremlin and Wagner in Sudan

From the beginning of the conflict between the two military leaders who exercise power in Sudan, General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and his deputy, Mohamed Hamdan “Hemedti” Dagolo, pro-Russian voices have supported the latter: Hemedti would not be involved with the Sudanese Islamists.

11 min read

Sanctions: Useless, Really?

Criticism mounts today in the West with the strong encouragement of Kremlin propaganda against the sanctions put in place following Russian aggression against Ukraine.

15 min read

To Europe “po Blatu”

It seems that less-than-democratic regimes in the Balkans and the Caucasus are entertaining the feeling that Victor Orban’s Hungary represents…

5 min read

And now? On the Possibility of an All-out War

The war in Ukraine is in full swing. The order for the “partial mobilization” of Russian army reservists and part of the male population…

18 min read

Georgia: to be or not to Be

Russia’s aggression against Ukraine is having a considerable impact in the former Soviet countries.

12 min read

Europe Must Accept Being at War

Accustomed to post WW2 peacetime, European politicians refuse to think about the war as state…

6 min read

Reveling in Transgression

With Vladimir Putin, one always believes that the bottom of disgrace has been reached, that the Kremlin cannot do even worse.

18 min read

National Guilt and Personal Responsibility

Today, a simple “man in the street” in Russia has only a very blurred notion of his fault in what is happening in Ukraine…

9 min read

Putin: Flirting With Armageddon

After the Westerners’ refusal to accept the Russian ultimatum of December 17, the West is slowly becoming aware…

17 min read

Strategy of the Absurd

A lot of recent information about Russia can be disconcerting for a reasonable reader. It is absurd. It is incomprehensible.

6 min read

A Perspective on the Russian-iranian Alliance

In September 2015, when Russia intervened militarily in Syria in order to save the regime of Bashar Al-Assad, guarantor of its strategic “assets” in situ…

5 min read

Putin-biden: a Double-edged Summit

In Geneva on June 16, the American and Russian presidents, each in their own way, acknowledged that they had agreed on nothing, except that they should seek to get along better.

6 min read
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opinions

Russia: the end of Consensus

According to historian Françoise Thom, the almost monolithic appearance of Putin’s system is no cause for complacency. The policy of breaking away from Europe lies at the heart of the rift between two groups of the elite.

17 min read

The Bakhmut Apocalypse

From the capture of Bakhmout by the militiamen of Prigojine, Jean-François Bouthors examines the symbolic meaning of this Pyrrhic victory. For him, the Wagner militia embodies a nihilism comparable only to the ideology of Al-Qaeda and Daesh.

8 min read

Dissent, Crime, and the Future of Russia

When Russia is free again, the Russian people will again have to face a reality: the massive crimes committed in their name…

10 min read

A Slippery Slope

The double blackmail exercised by the Russian president, gas blackmail and world famine blackmail, is starting to pay off…

7 min read

The Other Russian Offensive

Faced with the perilous situation that the West’s unanimous condemnation of the war in Ukraine represents, Russia has launched…

11 min read

Beware the Sirens of Minsk

The Kremlin has gotten the attention it sought: it now has most of the western world guessing whether it will unleash…

5 min read

Reshaping Ukraine’s Western Integration

There is widespread fear of an escalation of the current Russian-Ukrainian armed conflict into a large and prolonged inter-state war in Europe.

11 min read

Resist the Homo Putinoidus!

Desk Russie recently published an article about the lawyer Ivan Pavlov, who is currently the victim of judicial persecution.

5 min read

The Senator and the Fraud

On June 21, in the Senate, Senator Nathalie Goulet organized a “press briefing” with Vadim Rabinovich, a Ukrainian press magnate and leader of the pro-Russian party…

6 min read
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cartoon

When Russia “helps” Africa

The African summit in St. Petersburg was not a great success. But Vladimir Putin was able to harangue to his heart’s content.

~1 min read

Confusion in the Kremlin

Since the Prigozhin mutiny, confusion reigns at the top of the Russian state and among the population: the head of Wagner, sometimes accused, sometimes pardoned, negotiating with Putin, keeping his money and leaving for Belarus to reconstitute his private army

~1 min read

A Feigned Innocence

Our cartoonist tackles the destruction of the Kakhovka dam by the Russians, while the Putin regime continues to claim, falsely, its innocence. Like so many times already…

~1 min read

Wild Geese

Drones descend on the Kremlin, Russian rebels attack Belgorod, Russian positions are attacked in Ukraine, but Vladimir Putin and his entourage continue to show their faith in the final victory.

~1 min read

Yevgeny Prigojine’s Mania for Grandeur

This time, our cartoonist tackles the mania for grandeur of Putin’s “cook” who, according to rumours, was ready to divulge Russian military secrets to the Ukrainians in exchange for victory in Bakhmout.

~1 min read

When we Keep Neutral Despite Everything

Our cartoonist attacks the so-called neutral position of the “Global South” which stubbornly refuses to recognize the criminal nature of the war…

~1 min read

“Vacation Camp”

This time, our cartoonist tackles the abduction of Ukrainian children by the Russian military…

~1 min read

When the Draft is in Full Swing in Russia

Several Russian officials have denounced the overzealousness of Russian recruitment offices, which issue military convocations to blind people…

~1 min read

Back to school

Back to school time! In today’s increasingly militarized Russia, many parents are dressing their toddlers…

~1 min read

When Putin Looks Like…

In a recent publication, Desk Russie found that Putin’s speech resembled the times to that of Stalin and Hitler.

~1 min read

“We are not Savages.” Really?

This time, our cartoonist attacks the Russian killers who mortally wounded, on May 30, the French journalist Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff…

~1 min read

A Brainstorming Session

This week, our cartoonist takes aim at Dmitry Medvedev, vice-president of the Security Council of the Russian Federation…

~1 min read

The strategy of barbarism

Desk Russie is continuing to publish the cartoons in which cartoonist Epo reacts to the realities…

~1 min read
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politics

The Russian Lobby in the United States

In this in-depth investigation, historian Laurence Saint-Gilles sketches the contours of the Russian lobby in the United States and examines the conditions that have enabled it to penetrate deeply into American society and politics.

31 min read

Istanbul Talks: What Does Russia Want?

The announcement of the Russian-Ukrainian negotiations has raised hopes in the West, and stock markets have rebounded.

6 min read

Prophecy and Anger: “Useless Knowledge”

In a 1988 book, La connaissance inutile (Useless Knowledge), the French philosopher Jean-François Revel analyzed a classic paradox…

6 min read

With Putin’s Russia, the Impossible Status Quo

During his trip to Moscow and then to Kyiv, President Emmanuel Macron insisted that Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity were non-negotiable.

9 min read

Kazakhstan: Voices of Russian Opponents

The Free Russia Forum was created in 2016 by a group of politicians, scholars, journalists, and cultural figures from the ex-USSR…

3 min read

Will There be a new War?

In the international community there is a growing talk of a new attack from Russia and Belarus on Ukraine.

2 min read

Special Operation “Elections” in Russia. User Guide

Thirty years after the failed putsch against Mikhail Gorbachev, and the victory of universal suffrage and people’s sovereignty, Vladimir Putin has launched a new SpetsOperatsia

8 min read

A dr Strangelove in the Kremlin?

In his big election speech on March 1, 2018, to thunderous applause, Putin catalogs the new doomsday weapons Russia is working on.

14 min read

Russia: Facing the Afghan Wasp Nest

“Among our enemies, the most to be feared are often the smallest,” said Lafontaine. Russia, which has strenuously worked for the advent of “multipolarity”…

10 min read
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interview

Putin’s Russia: a Protean Ideology

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Eurasianism among Russian political emigrants — a philosophical and political theory…

5 min read
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essay

Where is the Will of the West?

The West and Ukraine had everything they needed to win: economic resources far superior to Russia’s, a technological edge in military capabilities, and last but not least, the international law on their side. Despite this, Putin now believes he has the wind in his sails, to the extent that he no longer conceals his unchanged ambitions for Ukraine and beyond. How did we get to this point?

21 min read

They Made Putinism: Mikhail Lesin (1958-2015) from Russia Today to Hollywood

Dubbed by some as “the number one enemy of Russian independent media”, Mikhail Lessin was instrumental in reshaping the media landscape after Vladimir Putin became president. And he’s buried in Hollywood. The fifth part of the serial of the historian Cécile Vaissié.

26 min read

They Made Putinism: Alfred Koch, the man of Privatizations and NTV

The historian Cécile Vaissié offers Desk Russie the fourth part of her soap opera. If Alfred Koch is quite universally hated in Russia, it is above all because he is associated with the privatizations of the 1990s. Less so because he, “like the shark of capitalism”, contributed to the suffocation of the media under Putin.

28 min read

Nezalezhnist — On Zelensky’s Style

French art historian and writer of Russian origin, Olga Medvedkova analyzes the essence of Zelensky’s style…

9 min read
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tribune

Creating Frankenstein

Today’s Russia was largely prefigured by the red-brown coalition in the early 1990s, and Putin is just its embodiment…

8 min read

Putin or the Passion for Evil

Putin’s aggression against Ukraine was perceived as a thunderclap by the West, because it is always difficult to believe the worst.

4 min read

Sowing Chaos

The Russian president is known for his professional habit of disguising the truth, but he is sometimes surprisingly frank.

3 min read
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history

The Rhetoric of the Aggressor

The historian Françoise Thom examines the speeches of Hitler, Molotov and Putin in order to show how similar their themes and reasoning.

23 min read

Thirty Years Since the August Coup

The August, 1991 Moscow coup was a desperate attempt to save the Soviet Union. When it collapsed, the will to preserve the socialist system disappeared and the Soviet Union…

8 min read
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documents

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appeal

Our Call: Free Vladimir Kara-Murza

Vladimir Kara-Murza, a close friend of Boris Nemtsov and one of the most prominent members of the liberal…

1 min read
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book

The Russian Diaspora, a “Battlefield”?

In his recent interview with Desk Russie, the academic Sergei Medvedev pointed out that “the Kremlin is actively working with emigration”

6 min read

Russian-soviet History: the March Backwards

The new book of Françoise Thom, La marche à rebours. Regards sur l’histoire soviétique et russe, Sorbonne université presses, 2021…

15 min read
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editorial

The Time for Courage

Faced with the now massive war launched by Putin against Ukraine, it would be disastrous to give the head of the Kremlin…

3 min read
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human rights

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media

The Power of Propaganda

Former Soviet political prisoner Russian journalist Aleksandr Podrabinek analyzes the power of Kremlin propaganda…

5 min read
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russian voices

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analyse

The Toxic Spell of “Imperial Knowledge”

Ukrainian political scientist and thinker Mykola Ryabchuk explains how Russia’s imperial vision of Ukraine has penetrated deeply into Western society, how its most toxic myths and clichés have been uncritically accepted and normalized.

12 min read
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caricatures

The Best Christmas Gift

What is the best Christmas present for Ukrainians who are suffering in their flesh from the savage and violent war waged by Putin and his minions?

~1 min read
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investigation

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tribute

Maria Vassilievna Rozanova: a Major Figure of Russian Literature and Dissidence

It is not easy to profile Maria Vassilievna Rozanova (1930, Vitebsk - 2023, Fontenay-aux-Roses), a publisher, author, art historian, architect, jeweler and fashion designer. This valiant, brilliant and unclassifiable woman was a key figure in Russian intellectual life and a great mind.

6 min read
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ukrainian voices

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cinema

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electoral watch

Zemmour or the Fascination for Putin

For several weeks, Eric Zemmour has been at the forefront of the media scene. When it comes to East-West relations…

5 min read
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essai

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justice

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news briefs

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pearls

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report

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reportage

The Influx of Russians Troubles Georgia

Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, nearly 700,000 Russians are believed to have fled their country — in opposition to the war

5 min read
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society

Defederating Russia

What happened to the Russian Empire? It disintegrated at the end of an imperialist war.

6 min read
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