Assessing EU action within Ukraine - through a provincial lens


This is an entry that has been waiting to be written for a long time. Much has been written about the short falls of Ukraine politically and institutionally.  Much has been rightly criticised too.  Much will continue to be written too, whilst ever-changing yet headline grabbing personnel rotation is used to mask the lack of […]

Russia is no longer a strategic partner - European Parliament


Yesterday the European Parliament passed another resolution relating to Russia.  One of the headline grabbing paragraphs in this latest text stated: “Russia, because of its actions in Crimea and in Eastern Ukraine, can no longer be treated as, or considered, a ‘strategic partner’. Russia now openly positions itself and acts as a challenger of the […]

Running down the Minsk II clock


Having received an email asking why no erudite (or not) entry has been published relating to the resignation of Heidi Tagliavini as OSCE mediator for the tripartite talks between The Kremlin, Kyiv and the “people’s republics”, it is perhaps time to write a few lines. The resignation of Heidi Tagliavini, for whatever reason - and […]

A lot more EU mush to push

These past few days have seen (unusually) some very insightful and indeed right-thinking commentary upon the EU, Ukraine and Russia.  Like London buses, nothing for ages and then three come along at once. Lilia Shetsnova rips the stuffing out of the “humiliation syndrome” offered up by Kremlin apologists and “understanders” of which there are more […]

Not in my lifetime

Stripping away the rhetoric, the reality of the Riga Summit sets in, and the reality is that the EU seems very pleased with itself for essentially standing still/firm, rather than retreating, before a belligerent Kremlin.  Perhaps rightly so, as The Kremlin begins to work its insurgency within the EU (Greece, Hungary and potential EU Member […]

Post Riga Summit - Disappointments yet to come

Much has been offered in the media and academia relating to disappointments for Ukraine (and Georgia) at the on-going Riga Summit. With regard to Visa-free, which both nations, rather too hopefully considering how they benchmark against the required standards, were hoping to get definitive start dates.  In reality, further assessments are likely in the Autumn […]

Avoiding the avoidable whilst doing the necessary (Long time no blog!)

Firstly, long time no blogging from your regular(ish) author.  It will take a few entries to “get back into the saddle” no doubt.  As such, a rather long, yet shallow and less than nuanced entry to get matters going once more.  Prepare for some less than erudite rambling, but hang in there dear readers, hopefully […]

Nancy Sinatra on Ukraine’s Economic Relationships


Nikolai is still on vacation, now on the beach in [censored], drinking a… tall cup of coffee, yes, that’s it! A tall cup of coffee probably with a slight dash of Irish Bailey’s Cream. Filling in for him is the crazy guy from the swimming pool at the Kyiv Hilton. Call it the Sinatra Family […]

In search of sponsors in a sea of EU/US grant money - Ukraine

Only in exceptional circumstances does this blog become even remotely personal in its content - and this will be one of few occasions. It is very rare that the civil society activities of this blog are ever mentioned within it - and never in detail if they are.  There are reasons for that, which are […]

CoE EuroMaidan report, a most damning read - And now what?

This Council of Europe report into the EuroMaidan investigations - or perhaps more accurately described as the complete and utter absence of coherent, effective and genuine investigations into the EuroMaidan events - is an exceptionally (and rightly) damning read when it comes identifying the complete absence of management, responsibility, cooperation between and effectiveness of Ukrainian […]