Geography Archives: Ukraine

  • Losing Heads and Sending Arms

    Two famous heads got lost in Berlin.  Neither loss, I hasten to add, was connected with brutality.  From the past or near future, they caused melancholy or rejoicing, depending on your viewpoint. One loss really occurred twenty-two years ago, when the 62-foot red granite statue of Lenin on East Berlin’s Lenin Square and Lenin Allee […]

  • Sour Pickles and Sour Grapes

    When politicians vacation and little action is expected, the words German journalists use for such summer doldrums is “Saure-Gurken-Zeit” — “sour pickle time.”  Since German often squeezes things together into what Mark Twain called “not words but panoramas,” it’s usually written with no break, “Sauregurkenzeit,” and may be derived from the time before the harvest […]

  • Political Parties, Left, Right, and Purely Satirical

    During my month in my home country, the USA, things kept moving along on this eastern side of the Atlantic.  I must try to catch up! In early June Europe had to digest results of the European Parliament elections — and choke down some pretty revolting clumps.  Far-right groups took alarming leads in France and […]

  • Venezuela: Questions about Democracy and a Free Press

    First question: Why? If Venezuela’s government is a dictatorship, why have there been 18 elections in 15 years under the late president Hugo Chávez Frías (d. 2013) and his democratically elected successor Nicolás Maduro?  Why is it that according to many international observers Venezuela’s democratic elections are, in the words of ex-president Jimmy Carter, “the […]

  • Germany’s Left Party on the EU and NATO

    Running up a down escalator is itself mighty difficult.  Trying to keep your footing both on an up and a down escalator at the same time is simply hard to imagine.  Yet it gives an idea of Germany’s present Ukrainian policy. Soon after Soviet soldiers left East Germany between 1989 and 1994, the newly-unified country […]

  • Russia and the Ukraine Crisis: The Eurasian Project in Conflict with the Triad Imperialist Policies

    Moscow, March 2014 1. The current global stage is dominated by the attempt of historical centers of imperialism (the US, Western and Central Europe, Japan — hereafter called “the Triad”) to maintain their exclusive control over the planet through a combination of: so-called neo-liberal economic globalization policies allowing financial transnational capital of the Triad to […]

  • Don’t Pray for Venezuela: The Struggle Against Contemporary Fascism

    The progressivist view of history often goes hand in hand with the faith that a new class — sometimes the proletariat, at other times “the people” — has a privileged perspective or consciousness.  If scientific (as opposed to vulgar) Marxism debunks this idea on a theoretical level — showing how commodity and money fetishism’s inversions […]

  • Ukraine Between “Popular Uprising for Democracy” and “Fascist Putsch”

      Let’s begin with Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s version.  One can think what one likes about deposed Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich, but his election in 2012 was recognized as legitimate by international observers and, after a certain hesitation, by the defeated candidate, Yulia Timoshenko.  In fact, relatively honest elections were just about the only positive […]

  • National Endowment for Democracy (NED) in Venezuela

    As protests have been taking place in Venezuela for the last couple of weeks, it is good to check on the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the US Empire’s “stealth” destabilizer.  What has the NED been up to in Venezuela? Before going into details, it is important to note what the NED is and is […]

  • Stumble Stones in Germany

    The late, late snow has finally disappeared from Berlin’s streets.  Visible once again, here and there, are the “stumble stones” — Stolpersteine in German. Many Berlin tourists will enjoy the night life.  They may also look upwards — at the giant TV tower, the Brandenburg Gate, at ancient and less ancient churches.  There is a […]

  • Why Is Cuba’s Health Care System the Best Model for Poor Countries?

    Furious though it may be, the current debate over health care in the US is largely irrelevant to charting a path for poor countries of Africa, Latin America, Asia, and the Pacific Islands.  That is because the US squanders perhaps 10 to 20 times what is needed for a good, affordable medical system.  The waste […]

  • Tadeusz Kowalik, 1926-2012

      Professor Tadeusz Kowalik (1926-2012) was a noted Polish economist who played a major role in Polish economic debates for more than a half century.  A graduate of the University of Warsaw, Kowalik was a student of the distinguished Polish Marxist economist Oskar Lange and like his teacher, was a prominent advocate of market socialism […]

  • No Deutschland Über Alles — and No Bris

    Germany suffered two losses last week and underwent one very intimate decision.  Whether the latter was a win or a loss depends on your (point of) view — about male circumcision. Most important to most Germans was probably their hope to win the European soccer championship, held this year in Poland and the Ukraine.  Germany […]

  • Outcome of the Visit to Syria by a Mission of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)

      In August a UN OCHA Mission visited Syria to assess humanitarian needs in the country stemming from the ongoing crisis there.  The Mission included staff from several UN institutions and humanitarian agencies (UNHCR, UNICEF, WHO, WFP, IOM, etc.).  The Syrian authorities provided the Mission unimpeded access to all objects of interest.  The UN officials […]

  • Cautionary Tales for Would-Be Weather Engineers

      James Rodger Fleming.  Fixing the Sky: The Checkered History of Weather and Climate Control.  Columbia Studies in International and Global History Series.  New York: Columbia University Press, 2010.  Illustrations. xiv + 325 pp.  $27.95 (cloth), ISBN 978-0-231-14412-4. In Fixing the Sky, James Rodger Fleming traces human efforts to control weather and climate from ancient […]

  • Russia, Turkey, and the US Push for Regime Change in Syria

    Seldom it is that the Russian Foreign Ministry chooses a Sunday to issue a formal statement.  Evidently, something of extreme gravity arose for Moscow to speak out urgently.  The provocation was the appearance of a United States guided missile cruiser in the Black Sea for naval exercises with Ukraine.  The USS Monterrey cruiser equipped with […]

  • Russia’s U-Turn

    Russia went to the Group of Eight (G-8) summit meeting at Deauville as an inveterate critic of the “unilateralist” Western intervention in Libya, but came away from the seaside French resort as a mediator between the West and Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi.  The United States scored a big diplomatic victory in getting Moscow to work […]

  • How Many Cancers Did Chernobyl Really Cause? (Updated Version)

    This is an update of my April 7 post on cancers resulting from Chernobyl — this post includes more detailed information and a more recent estimate of the total radioactive dose from the Chernobyl accident. There is a lot of confusion about how many excess cancer deaths will likely result from the 1986 Chernobyl accident […]

  • How Many Cancers Did Chernobyl Really Cause?

    There is a lot of confusion about how many excess cancer deaths will likely result from the 1986 Chernobyl accident in Ukraine.  As we see below, 70,000 and 35,000 are reasonable estimates of the number of excess cancers and cancer deaths attributable to the accident. Much lower numbers of cancers and deaths are often cited, […]

  • Joint Statement of 58 Communist and Workers’ Parties against Imperialist Aggression in Libya

    The imperialist killers headed by the USA, France, Britain and NATO as a whole and with the approval of the UN started a new imperialist war.  This time in Libya. Their allegedly humanitarian pretexts are completely misleading!  They throw dust into peoples’ eyes!  Their real goals are the hydrocarbons in Libya. We, the Communist and […]