Christmastime Research in Istanbul

Friday, December 29, 2023

I've spent the last couple of weeks in Istanbul, and it's been good to be back. 

March, 1992: I'm the one in the jean jacket

Ukraine and Russia: Any Deal Should Include NATO Membership

Saturday, December 23, 2023

I saw an interesting article in the New York Times today regarding possible Russian interest in negotiating a peace deal with Kyiv. 

As I discussed in a post last week, I think it would be foolish to let Putin off the hook by allowing him to declare victory in a war that's going so badly for Russia. I'd much rather see the Russian Army bleed out in eastern Ukraine than have it be in a position to recover and threaten Ukraine again in another few years. If the Ukrainians are willing to keep fighting, I think the US and its NATO allies should support them. 

But what if the Ukrainian government were to consider a peace plan? What might it look like?

Arming Ukraine: Why it's in American Interests

Friday, December 15, 2023

Every GOP senator voted no this week on a supplemental funding bill that included money for Ukraine. The vote, which failed 49-51, required 60 supporters in order to pass. Republicans voting no mainly argued that they wanted the Biden administration to make concessions regarding US border policies before they would consider supporting the spending bill. 

Bernie Sanders also voted against the measure, which included funding for Israel, arguing that the US shouldn't be giving money to the Israeli government "with no strings attached." 

In fact, it seems likely that, eventually, the measure will pass and that aid to both Ukraine and Israel will continue. At the same time, however, the vote points to a worrying trend regarding the evolution of American thinking regarding the Russia-Ukraine war.