Sunday, March 29, 2015

Communications / The Rundown

The Rundown -- February 19

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 18i
February 18, 2015
Pakistani Shi'a demand justice after an attack on a mosque, Kyrgyz officials warn against the threat of religious extremism, and Turkey helps blind students in Tajikistan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 18

RFE/RL in the Media

Washington Post publishes Khadija Ismayilova's letter from prison 
Newsweek cites Brian Whitmore and his Power Vertical on Russia's waning influence
PRI interviews Daisy Sindelar on her My Ukraine project
YahooNews uses video from RFE/RL's Current Time behind separatist front lines
# Soldiers recount "painful retreat" from Debaltseve
# After Debaltseve, what's next? Germany says peace plan damaged, not dead
# Ukraine crisis in maps
# Forty-two percent of Russians believe the Internet is being used by foreign countries against it
# Orban tries to play down Putin's visit to Hungary, which was apparently requested by the Russian president
# British defense secretary warns of Russian threat to Baltics
# Only one price (oil) matters at Russia's Central Bank
Middle East
# The Kurdish "Mad Max gunmaker
# Libya asks UN Security Council to lift arms embargo to fight IS
ThinkProgress rebuttal of Graeme Wood's piece on ideology of IS
# NYT Video: From a Cairo private school to IS killing fields
# Khamenei says he could use gas exports as a lever in nuclear negotiations 
# Lawyer chosen to represent Washington Post reporter still being denied access to him
# In Afghanistan's deadliest year, battles between government forces and Taliban replaced suicide bombs as deadliest 
# Afghanistan's "complex" insurgency
# Awaiting trial, Musharraf holds court at his villa 
# New York Times essay on how Pakistan has changed: "The Great Divide"
# Bosnia arrests suspected militants on their way to Syria
# Azerbaijan extends Leyla Yunus's detention by five months
Central Asia
# Uzbekistan provides amnesty to prominent religious leader
Of Interest
# Social Bakers: Photos now produce lowest reach on Facebook 

The Rundown -- February 18

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 17i
February 17, 2015
Pakistani police clash with protesters angered by lost jobs, Kazakh parties approve early presidential elections, and Kosovars celebrate seven years of independence, plus stories from Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan, and Moldova.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 17
RFE/RL in the Media
BBC on Azerbaijan detentions, including Khadija Ismaylova
Meduza's guide to the world's Russia experts includes a note on Masha Gessen's time at RFE/RL 
PRI covers Daisy Sinderlar's Ukraine: Memory and Identity project
# RFE/RL mentioned in Washington Post piece about countering extremism 
# How Eliot Higgins proved Russia was shelling from its own territory (in depth here)
# Putin in Hungary, where new gas agreement is announced
# Crimea has become economic no-go zone
# "The Resistible Rise of Vladimir Putin" - Stephen Kotkin, Foreign Affairs
# Russia sponsors UNSC resolution on Minsk 2 while telling Kyiv to surrender in Debaltseve
# Buzzfeed: photos near Debaltseve show the brutality of war
# The origins of separatism in Donetsk
# Russia may be stoking Azerbaijan-Armenia hostilities 
Middle East/North Africa
# Italy fears IS invasion from Libya
# Libya is turning into Iraq
# IS militants reportedly burn 45 people to death in newly captured town
# Southern Iraq makes bid for autonomy
# Kurds losing patience with U.S. over IS
# The pros and cons of the emerging Iran nuclear deal
# Khamenei reportedly criticizes American Sniper 
# Taliban suicide attacks kill 25 in Afghanistan and Pakistan
# Afghan forces close in on Pakistan Taliban chief
# "A Plea From FATA" - Dawn, Anwar Shakir Wazir 
Of Interest
# Is mobile journalism the production tool or the product?

The Rundown -- February 17

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 16i
February 16, 2015
Afghans mourn a female politician killed in a bombing, Pakistani officials plan the return of displaced persons, and Kazakhstan promotes domestic products to ward off a flood of Russian imports.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 16
RFE/RL in the Media
Guardian cites RFE/RL interview with Ivan Krastev
# Peter Pomerantsev's family ties to RFE/RL mentioned in New York Times profile 
# Russian crooner Iosif Kobzon sanctioned -- a profile
# Kremlin making itself felt in Europe
# "The American Education of Vladimir Putin" - Fiona Hill and Clifford Gaddy, Atlantic 
# VKontakte takes some steps towards copyright respect
# Despite ceasefire, heavy clashes continue in Debaltseve; Russian control of main road seems to spell doom
# Could giving Ukraine weapons make for a quicker peace?
# Timothy Garton Ash: "a Syria in Europe" possible as long as Putin controls eastern Ukraine
Eastern Europe
# Romania sends ambulances to Moldova in tug-of-war with Russia
Middle East/North Africa
# Egyptian jets strike IS targets in Libya after mass execution video
# U.S. intensifies efforts against IS propaganda
# BBC Video: Room for optimism in Baghdad?
# "What ISIS Really Wants" - Graeme Wood, Atlantic 
# China's foreign minister pushes Iran on nuclear deal 
# "Washington’s Third Option Against a Nuclear Iran" - Raymond Tanter, Foreign Policy 
# Netanyahu may have leaked U.S. secrets to harm Iran negotiations
# Bomb attack in eastern Afghanistan kills female politician
# "The Afghan Militant in the Photo? The Wrong Man, and He’s Not Happy" - Taimor Shah and Joseph Goldstein, New York Times 
# What does Musharraf's admission about proxies tell us about Pakistan today?
# Armenia withdraws peace accords with Turkey from parliament
Central Asia

The Rundown -- February 13

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 12i
February 12, 2015
A toilet roll protest and a fistfight at the Ukrainian parliament, female commandos train in Pakistan, and Georgia moves to shore up its struggling currency.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - February 12
RFE/RL in the Media
Telegraph and Euronews use RFE/RL Ukrainian Service video of parliament fight 
Guardian republishes RFE/RL on the memes behind the scenes in Minsk
# RFE/RL use of Visme mentioned in Huffington Post
After Minsk
# "A Time Bomb Wrapped in a Ukrainian Peace Deal" - Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg
# Heavy shelling follows summit as both sides look to gain ground before ceasefire
# Ukraine headed for "total economic collapse"
# Ukrainian deputies give senator misleading photos
# Ukraine adds bonuses to try to rally troops
Eastern Europe
# EU steps in to reverse Russian embargo on Moldovan fruit
# Shi'ite militias fill military void, but Sunnis fear them
# White House delayed attempt to rescue IS hostages by a month
# Is IS starting to get a little defensive?
# Israel warns that it could unilaterally strike Iran
# Suleimani claims IS is "nearing end"
# "Curtail Iran and Win" - Roger Cohen, New York Times 
Seized computer helping Washington find Al Qaeda operatives 
# Top Afghan commander presses for flexibility in troop drawdown
# Pakistan likely knew of Osama bin Laden’s presence, admits former spy chief
# Pakistan braces for major water shortages
# "The View From Azerbaijan" - Tony Barber, Financial Times
Of Interest

The Rundown -- February 12

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 11i
February 11, 2015
Macedonian students demand autonomy for their university, Pakistanis displaced from the tribal regions call upon Islamabad for compensation and action, Kyrgyzstan's former prosecutor-general says she is receiving threats -- plus more stories from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Georgia.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 11
RFE/RL in the Media
International Business Times cites RFE/RL coverage of Minsk talks
Foreign Policy mentions Khadija Ismayilova case in story of a dissident hiding in Swiss Embassy for months
Minsk Talks
# Follow RFE/RL's liveblog as deal seems near following all-night negotiations 
# Close friend of Putin takes lead role in negotiations...for Ukraine?
# BBC reports that protesters shot at police during Maidan massacre
# U.S. weapons to Ukraine could take months
# Free speech or treason? On the journalist arrested for protesting conscription
#Putin advisor says U.S. trying to dismember Russia
# Obama asks Congress for more authorization of military force against IS
# IS sends foreign recruits into battle while local fighters stay behind
# Kayla Mueller may have been paired with IS fighter during captivity
# IS magazine claims wife of Kosher supermarket killer is in Syria
# Rohani says nuclear negotiations goal is a win-win outcome
# The death of Iran's "Dead Sea"
# What threat does IS actually hold in Afghanistan?
# Christians flee to Pakistan slum amid blasphemy allegations 
# Pakistan's history of disavowing international honorees
# "Pakistan's Anti-Terrorist Enthusiasm Wanes. . . Again" - Farheen Rizvi, Huffington Post
# Financial Times interviews Aliyev's spokesman, mentions human rights once 
Of Interest
# How hoaxes go viral and how to stop them

The Rundown -- February 11

Civilians Killed In Rocket Attack In Eastern Ukrainei
February 10, 2015
Local officials say at least five people were killed and 26 wounded after missiles hit a residential area and the military headquarters in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk. The victims included both civilians and soldiers. Damage from the missiles could be seen at a local school and apartment blocks. (Reuters)
Civilians Killed In Rocket Attack In Eastern Ukraine

RFE/RL in the Media

# Read Daud Khattak in Foreign Policy on the viability of IS in AfPak 
Global Post cites RFE/RL's reporting on attack in Kramatorsk
Huffington Post quotes Christina Hicks on things to do in Prague
# Both sides open new fronts in fighting as Minsk talks get under way
# Congressional leaders backing $1 billion in lethal aid to Ukraine
# USA Today prints map of Ukraine without Crimea
# An eastern Ukraine photo essay
# In Ukraine, Putin gifts Sissi AK-47
# Lavrov's performance in Munich may have been more for Putin than for world
# Alexander Litvinenko inquiry: All traitors to Russia "should be exterminated," suspect claims
# Well known American actor in popular Russian TV show comes out as gay
Eastern Europe 
# Belarus is unlikely star of Ukraine talks
# The Belarusian artist still driving his homemade Soviet car
# Kayla Mueller's death confirmed
# Jordan moves "thousands" of troops to border with Iraq
# The mass graves that IS leaves behind
# NSA says Iran learned from U.S. cyberattacks 
# Should Netanyahu testify before Congress instead of giving a speech?
# In Congress, "impatience" on Iran grows
# White House weighs adjusting Afghan exit plan to slow withdrawal of troops
# UN says Taliban is enhancing links to organized crime in Afghanistan
Bridging the divide between Pashtuns on the Durand line 
# China confirms Pakistan nuclear projects

The Rundown -- February 10

RFE/RL Video Roundup - February 9i
February 09, 2015
Fighting unabated in eastern Ukraine, a dispute over a plot of land leads to shots being fired on the streets of Kabul, the countdown begins towards reopening two major museums in Serbia, plus stories from Armenia and Pakistan. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - February 9
RFE/RL in the Media
Slate cites RFE/RL in coverage of video messages by Russian and Ukrainian students
# CNN, Reuters, International Business Times and Euronews broadcast RFE/RL's Current Time video from the Ukraine battlefield
# Kerry tells lawmakers he privately supports arming Ukraine
# Separatists say they've encircled Ukrainian troops in Debaltseve
# Is Mariupol the next big battle of the Ukraine war?
# "Why Arming Kiev Is a Really, Really Bad Idea" - Stephen Walt, Foreign Policy
# EU puts off sanctions and Obama holds off on weapons -- at least until Minsk talks
# More than 80 percent of Russians view the U.S. negatively 
# NYT profiles Russian Central Bank head
# "The Long View With Russia" - Anne Applebaum, Washington Post
# "High Treason, a New Russian Low" - Masha Gessen, New York Times 
# At least 22 killed in suicide attacks in Baghdad
# Jordan's jails are a major IS recruiting ground
# IS member explains why he left group
# Traub: The U.S. can "do very little" to alter Middle East course right now
# The satirist who mocks Iran's ayatollahs
# "Proceed With Caution on Iran Diplomacy" - David Ignatius, Washington Post
# IS commander said to be killed in Afghanistan
# China taking on outsize roll in Afghanistan
# A Saudi prince's controversial hunting trip in Pakistan
Central Asia
# Historical sites recall Kazakhstan's Buddhist past
# Tajikistan's "last prophet" faces jail
# UN rapporteur slams Kazakhstan on rights

The Rundown -- February 9

U.S. Presents New National Security Strategyi
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February 06, 2015
The United States has presented its new national security strategy, a 29-page document setting out what it sees as the major security challenges. Speaking to the Brookings Institute, national-security adviser Susan Rice named Islamic State militants and Russia as key security issues. (Reuters)
U.S. Presents New National Security Strategy

RFE/RL in the Media

# Rob Coalson interviewed by the Atlantic Council of Canada on current state of affairs in Russia
# Brian Whitmore cited by Edward Lucas in Center for European Policy Analysis for his coverage of Putin
# Abubakar Siddique featured as an expert and interviewed for Council on Foreign Relations Taliban guide
# Read Abubakar Siddique in Dawn on whether Taliban should be classified as terrorists 
# RFE/RL and VOA "off the rails" for Azerbaijan coverage says another opinion piece in Roll Call 
# U.S. general says Russia mobilizing for war it thinks will happen in about five years
# North Korea tests cruise missile that is identical to one used by Russia
# "Is Putin Bent on Reshaping the World Order?" - James G Neuger, BloombergBusiness
# "Why [Putin's] Days are Numbered" - Alexandr Motyl, Foreign Affairs 
# New Minsk meeting planned for Wednesday 
# "Inside Ukraine’s Shock-Trauma Wards" - David Patrikarakos, Daily Beast
# "Don't Arm Ukraine" - John Mearsheimer, New York Times 
# Iraq's only female Yazidi MP on the battle to save her people
# Anonymous takes control of IS social media accounts 
# The "brutal logic" behind IS depravity 
# The fates of 23 IS hostages
# Both Kerry and Zarif say there will be no negotiations extension
# Zarif reportedly warned West that Rohani's administration would be at risk if talks failed
# Afghanistan opium addiction hits new high
# Afghanistan police force is studied for ties to Taliban
# Families of Peshawar massacre victims protest
Of Interest

The Rundown -- February 6

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 5i
February 05, 2015
Pakistanis mark solidarity with Kashmiri Muslims, opposition group protests police violence in Armenia, an antigay rally in Kyrgyzstan, plus stories from Georgia, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 5
RFE/RL in the Media
Reporters Without Borders on Khadija Ismayilova beginning third month in prison
# Merkel, Hollande in Kyiv and Moscow floating new Ukraine peace plan; but experts are pessimistic 
# Ukraine's currency plunges
# Former NATO chief warns Putin may attack Baltics to test NATO
# Influential new report argues for arming Ukraine; the case against it
# "U.S. Hasn't Kept Ukraine Aid Promises" - Josh Rogin, Bloomberg
# What House to unveil call for "strategic patience
Eastern Europe
# Belarusian ruble also in free-fall
# Was an early January assault on IS headquarters also a rescue mission?
# King Abdullah is not flying bombing raids, despite photos
# How IS is promoting Muath al-Kaseasbeh burning on social media
# al-Kaseasbeh's wife said he had a premonition something would go wrong
# Rohani accuses West of distorting Iran's nuclear plans
# Iran reportedly arrests 100 for dancing at mixed party
# Washington Post says emerging nuclear deal "raises major concerns"
# "How Not to Squander Hard-Won Gains in Afghanistan" - Michael O'Hanlon, Wall Street Journal
# Afghan warlords trying to revamp image in changing times
# Pakistan is unexpected leader in rehabilitating "former jihadis" 
Central Asia
Of Interest
# Are investigative journalists protecting their digital security?

The Rundown -- February 5

RFE/RL Video Roundup -- Feb. 4i
February 04, 2015
Drug smugglers arrested in Afghanistan, taxi drivers blocking roads in Pakistan, and World Cancer Day marked in Kyrgyzstan and Georgia
RFE/RL Video Roundup -- Feb. 4
RFE/RL in the Media
Huffington Post cites RFE/RL foreign fighters data
Christian Science Monitor cites Tom Balmforth's reporting on Russian dash-cams
# Putin gets suburban trains running again with six words that say a lot about how Russia works
# Russians hurting but still 70 percent say they think Moscow should continue with current policies
# Orban says main foreign policy goal is strong ties with Russia and Germany 
# "Welcome to the Most Corrupt Nation in Europe" - Oliver Bullough, Guardian 
# Medics and morgues can't keep up with the Ukraine casualties 
# Strelkov says Putin has made himself "hostage" to the war in Ukraine
# Crowd-funding the war in Ukraine from Manhattan
# IS reportedly doing almost unbelievably awful things to children
# Jordanians call for IS blood
# FoxNews embeds entire IS Jordanian pilot video
# How Baghdad may be inadvertently funding IS through civil servant pay
# Rohani tries to get Iranians to pay their taxes
# Iran's charge d'affaires in Buenos Aires speaks to Daily Beast about Nisman death
# At Washington Times "forum," Azerbaijan official warns U.S. of losing influence in Caucasus 
Central Asia
# Uzbekistan wins award for "socially responsible tourism"
# The Woman who sold her baby for $435 to buy firewood
# Pakistan plunges into fuel crisis
Of Interest

The Rundown -- February 4

RFE/RL Video Roundup -- Feb. 3i
February 03, 2015
Protesters want more women in the Afghan government, Ukraine mourns the death of a pop singer, gas prices to rise in Georgia, plus stories from Kyrgyzstan, and Pakistan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup -- Feb. 3


RFE/RL in the Media
Guardian picks up coverage by Arslan Saidov and Claire Bigg of a video message by Ukrainian students to their Russian counterparts
Global Post cites Rob Coalson's explainer on military aid to Ukraine
CNN/Reuters use RFE/RL Current Time video from Debaltseve 
# Saudis said to be using oil leverage to tempt Putin to abandon Assad
# Russia plans joint military drills with North Korea and Cuba
# Military analyst says massive Russian invasion of Ukraine imminent 
Eastern Europe
# Town social media groups become "lifeline" for civilians in eastern Ukraine
# Russia and Ukraine in indirect talks over Black Sea air corridor
# HRW criticizes separatists and Kyiv over rising civilian death toll
# "How the West Is Losing Ukraine" - Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg
# Jordanian pilot burned alive by IS had likely been dead for weeks
# George Packer: IS less like a conventional authoritarian state than a "death cult"
2,500 year old Jewish tablets discovered in Iraq
# Syrian rebels say they're holding an Iranian fighter and are willing to swap 
# U.S. and Iran discussing compromise that would allow Iran to keep nuclear enriching technology
# For Afghans, 2014 was the bloodiest year
Anxiety grows over Afghanistan's unity government
# Ashton Carter says he'd consider changing Afghanistan withdrawal plans if situation warranted
# Obama proposes more than $1 billion for Pakistan
# ICJ absolves Croatia and Serbia of genocide
Of Interest

The Rundown -- February 3

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Feb. 2i
February 02, 2015
Former senior officials arrested in connection with killings in Georgia, long queues for dollars amid rumors of currency collapse in Turkmenistan, victims of separatist rocket attack honored at events in Ukraine, plus stories from Pakistan and Bosnia. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - February 2
RFE/RL in the Media
Business Insider features RFE/RL's visualization on Russia' gas leverage in Europe
Daud Khattak quoted in The Australian 
# Is this case against a Russian mother of seven, Moscow's own admission that its troops are in Ukraine?
# Financial Times tick-tock of slow realization in West that Putin couldn't be a partner
# Orange snow covers Saratov
# Thousands gather in Budapest to protest Hungary's shift to Russia
# Zakharchenko blames "miserable" Jews for crisis in Ukraine
# Ukraine separatists upbeat after infusion of aid
# Could failing to arm Ukraine lead to a bloodier conflict in the long run?
# Local media claims Iraqi father killed seven in response to IS executing his son
# Kurdish fighters struggle to hold gains against IS
# Al-Maliki remaining politically active
# More Brits dislike Israel than Iran, according to poll
# Ahmadinejad's new website, Instagram account suggest he's attempting comeback
# U.S. decides to declassify data on Afghan troops 
# Drought-hit Pakistan turns to solar water treatment
# The duel between Russia and Pakistan over the corpse of a hanged terrorist
# Pakistan prepares for Saudi royal to hunt protected birds
Of Interest

The Rundown -- February 2

Avdiyivka, 'City Of Ghosts' In Eastern Ukrainei
February 01, 2015
Avdiyivka, just north of Donetsk, has been shelled by both sides of the conflict between Ukrainian forces and Russian-backed separatists. There are no soldiers in the town, and many inhabitants have also left. Those who remain have no running water or electricity, many have no gas. Schools and shops are closed. RFE/RL's Shahida Yakub, who visited on January 28, describes it as a ''city of ghosts.''
Avdiyivka, 'City Of Ghosts' In Eastern Ukraine
RFE/RL in the Media
Slate picks up RFE/RL report on Ukraine separatists organizing a "conference of unrecognized states"
Inquisitor uses RFE/RL coverage of the alleged unmasking of Putin's daughter 
Digital Journal cites RFE/RL Russian Service coverage of mother of seven imprisoned in Russia 
# Russia awards $3 billion Crimea bridge contract to Rotenberg, Putin's old Judo partner
# Five Russian nuclear weapons of war the West should fear
# "Spy vs. Nonspy in Putin’s Russia" - Julia Ioffe, New York Times 
# U.S. officials edging towards supplying arms to Ukraine
# Rebels report heavy losses in Debaltseve as civilians flee
# Donetsk separatists legalize private coal mining
# The Ukrainian journalist trying to avoid conscription 
# What moviegoers in Baghdad think of American Sniper
# Assad still "too delusional" to end war says interviewer 
# Iraq's PM pledges hard line against alleged militia abuses
# UN says nearly 1,400 died in Iraq violence in January
# Rohani accuses hardliners of "cheering on" other side
# Iran has Holocaust cartoon contest in response to Charlie Hebdo
# Why new Iran sanctions are looking less likely
# "What If America Had Never Invaded Afghanistan?" - Robert Grenier, Atlantic
# Kabul Charlie Hebdo protests turn violent
Language politics back in the spotlight in Afghanistan
# Is Pakistan really cracking down on terrorism?
# Mourners bury dead after gruesome mosque bombing
# Macedonia authorities allege plot to overthrow the government
Of Interest

The Rundown -- January 30

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Jan. 29i
January 29, 2015
A film in Serbia documents a massacre of Kosovo Albanians, protesting for unpaid wages in Kazakhstan, a strike empties the business district of Karachi, Pakistan -- plus more stories from Pakistan and Kyrgyzstan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Jan. 29
RFE/RL in the Media
Washington Post mentions Khadija Ismayilova case in panning pro-Azerbaijan Washington Times supplement 
The Independent cites Rob Coalson's feature on Greece's ties to Russia
# Greece  backs down, extends Russia sanctions
# Putin's daughter may have been outed -- and it may have been orchestrated by the Kremlin
# Russian military planes disrupt aviation near UK
# Russian conscripts' relatives fear they're being tricked into going to Ukraine
# In response to Ukraine crisis, Berlin to launch new think tank
# Polish defense minister says Ukraine peace hopes are fading
# Steven Pifer and Strobe Talbott call for arming Ukraine
Eastern Europe
# In seven-hour news conference Lukashenka warns Russia and the West
Iraq/Syria/Saudi Arabia
# Jordan lets IS deadline pass
# Inside Kobani, liberated from IS
# "Covert CIA Mission to Arm Syrian Rebels Goes Awry" - Adam Entous, Wall Street Journal
# "Israel Is the New Front in the Syrian War" - Phillip Smyth, Foreign Policy 
# U.S. draws closer to Iran-tied Houthi rebels in Yemen
# Three American contractors killed in "insider attack" in Afghan capital
# The Pakistani refugees who are living in a minefield
# Amal Clooney argues case in Armenian genocide hearing
# Hollande urges Turkey to 'break taboos' on Armenia WWI killings
# Azerbaijan sentences opposition journalist to five years in jail
Of Interest
# On Bloomberg's new site design

The Rundown -- January 29

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Jan. 28i
January 28, 2015
Russian military support for Tajikistan, Armenia celebrates its national army day, dancing in the streets of Quetta, Pakistan -- plus more stories from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Kazakhstan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Jan. 28
RFE/RL in the Media
Guardian uses RFE/RL photos of Uzbek buzkashi
Washington Times cites RFE/RL report about EU considering "terrorist" designation for Ukraine separatists 
Institute for War and Peace Reporting features RFE/RL Georgian Service reporting from "no man's land" on boundary with South Ossetia 
# Greece is one hold out on call for new Russia sanctions; sanctions now "Syriza's bargaining chip"; (read Rob Coalson's piece about extremely close ties with Russian influencers)
# "Why Putin Is the Big Winner in Greece’s Elections" - Keith Johnson and Jamila Trindle, Foreign Policy 
# Russian Duma to consider condemnation of West Germany's "annexation" of East Germany
# Split with Stephen Cohen among scholars goes public over dissertation prize
# Bellingcat reconstructs May 9 Mariupol clash -- says shooting provoked by separatists
# Ukraine clamps down on travel to and from separatist areas
# Is Putin's statement about a "foreign NATO legion" a trial balloon aimed at ramping up military engagement in eastern Ukraine?
# Increased Iraq output heightens intra-OPEC conflict
# Jordan offers prisoner swap for hostage pilot
# Washington Post journalist to stand trial "soon" in Iran
# Democratic support for Iran sanctions bill waning
# On Iran's goals in Syria
# Afghanistan arrests militants linked to journalist's killing
Central Asia
# Kazakhstan bans rallies, fearing Ukraine-style turmoil, according to UN report
Dozens injured in Kosovo anti-government demonstrations

The Rundown -- January 28

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Jan. 27i
January 27, 2015
Commandos train teachers at a Pakistani women's college to use handguns against terrorists, Armenian small business owners protest lower taxes, Afghans demonstrate against Charlie Hebdo cartoons -- plus stories on Holocaust Remembrance Day in Serbia, Moldova, and Georgia.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - January 27
RFE/RL in the Media
# In the Guardian, Murad Gassanly suggests a less hostile approach in dealing with Azerbaijan to encourage release prisoners like Khadija Ismayilova 
# Pre-trial detention of Ismayilova covered by ReutersSoros presses Azerbaijan to loosen crackdown
Washington Post cites Yelena Polyakovskaya's interview with an Auschwitz liberator 
Yahoo News covers interview by RFE/RL's Radio Farda of woman who survived Auschwitz because of a clerical error
Buzzfeed links RFE/RL feature about Russia-Ukraine/Poland Auschwitz fight
# New Greek PM denounces EU Council statement blaming Russia for violence in eastern Ukraine; new Greek FM pictured with Dugin; defense chief with Pushkov in January
# EU likely to consider further sanctions at a summit next month
# Russian weight loss club proposes Siege of Leningrad diet
# The boring life of a Russian spy in the United States
# "Remember Russia? It’s Still Doomed" - Matt O'Brien, Washington Post
# Separatists make more advances in Donetsk suburbs
# "Save the New Ukraine" - Bernard-Henri Levy and George Soros, New York Times
# Video: Vice News on the civilians caught in between the fighting
# Canada's troops keep getting into firefights in Iraq
# Map: How the flow of foreign fighters to Iraq and Syria has surged since October
# Kurdish protectors vow to keep their 'Jerusalem'
# "Our Man in Damascus" - Wall Street Journal
# Menendez urges delay in his Iran sanctions legislation
# Iran says it warned Israel about "revenge" through U.S. diplomatic channels
# "The Netanyahu Disaster" - Jeffrey Goldberg, Atlantic
# Falling oil prices draining Rohani's political capital
# Ahmadis no longer finding refuge in Sri Lanka
# What Pakistan makes of the Obama-Modi chemistry
# OSCE calls on Armenia and Azerbaijan to cease hostilities
Central Asia
Black cars reportedly banned by customs officials in Turkmenistan
# Kazakhstan strains reserves to smooth way for gradual devaluation
Of Interest
# "How The Language Police Are Perverting Liberalism" - Jonathan Chait, New York 

The Rundown -- January 27

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Jan. 26i
January 26, 2015
Russian security forces raid the only Tatar-language TV station in Crimea, a former senior Kazakh official is escorted from the courtroom after saying corruption charges against him are politically motivated, Moldovans protest against the role of the Communist Party in support of a minority, pro-European government, plus stories from Armenia, Afghanistan and Kyrgyzstan. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Jan. 26
# Separatists record scenes tormenting detainees and possible evidence of summary executions
# Economist: This is war and there's no going back
# Ukraine losing war on three fronts
# Putin says "foreign NATO legion" in Ukraine as Russian-backed separatists advance
# U.S. military trainers headed to Ukraine 
# Three men busted in spy ring; Russian state owned media involved, but RT says "definitely not" it 
# S&P downgrades Russian credit rating to junk; why it may be the perfect time to invest
# "The Campaign Against Leviathan" - Masha Lipman, New Yorker 
Eastern Europe
# Belarus to "de-Russify" schools
# Kurdish militia says it has gained full control over Kobani
# Foreign Affairs interviews Assad 
# Iraqi "sleeper cells" said to be helping to fight IS
# Meet the woman IS wants to exchange for a Japanese hostage
# Ex-CIA officer convicted on all counts of leaking details on efforts to thwart Iran to New York Times reporter
# Argentina's "insane political scandal" explained
# USAID suspends its largest nonprofit contractor in Iraq and Afghanistan
# IS statement announces expansion to "Khorasan"
# Pakistan's angry middle class
# Following Peshawar massacre, teachers bringing guns to school
# How Pakistan and China are covering Obama's visit to India
# "Eight Things That Don’t Add Up about the Gyumri Murders" - Marianna Grigoryan, Eurasianet
Five indicted in Kosovo on terrorism charges 
# OSCE condemns attack on journalists covering protest in Kosovo
Of Interest
# Obama's "troubling" allies

The Rundown -- January 26

Fighting At A Ukrainian Army Checkpoint In Eastern Ukrainei
|| 0:00:00
January 25, 2015
Firefights broke out at a Ukrainian army checkpoint between the cities of Donetsk and Luhansk. On January 24, the 40th Battalion's 17th Tank Brigade came under attack at Debaltseve from the direction of Luhansk. (RFE/RL Ukrainian Service correspondent Levko Stek).
Fighting At A Ukrainian Army Checkpoint In Eastern Ukraine
RFE/RL in the Media
Guardian features Daisy Sindelar's My Ukraine, Memory and Identity
Washington Post and Yahoo News use RFE/RL Afghan Service video of Charlie Hebdo protests 
# War is back in full in Ukraine as separatists shell Mariupol; why the city is important
# UN to hold emergency session Monday
# "Why War Has Exploded Again in Ukraine" - Christopher Miller, Mashable
# Kyiv Post says Ukraine drastically under-reporting its own casualties 
# Washington, Berlin warn of further sanctions following renewal of violence in eastern Ukraine
# Pavel Felgenhauer: Putin's aim is to destroy Ukraine's independence, defeat West
# Russian state news agencies cutting costs
Greece vote
# Radical leftist party wins and announces coalition with right wing; "on collision course with Europe
# Party had railed against Russia sanctions
# With one hostage believed beheaded, Japanese government may be conflicted about whether to negotiate with IS
# White House accidentally names American woman held by IS
# "A General’s Apology for Iraq & Afghanistan" - James Warren, Daily Beast
# Video: U.S. military advisers don't rule out heading to front lines
# The king of Turkey's social media imams 
# Zarif called to parliament for taking a walk with Kerry
# Netanyahu defends planned address to Congress as way to stop nuclear deal
# Israel said to send message to Iran via Russia
# Iran protests "ineligible" Iraq player at Asian Cup match
# A family holiday in Afghanistan
# The first Pashto-Chinese dictionary 
# Massive power failure plunges 80 percent of Pakistan into darkness
# Head of group linked to 2008 Mumbai attacks speaks publicly at anti-Charlie Hebdo protests 
Of Interest
# Modi's wife has only met him twice
Top challenges facing digital audio in 2015
# How Mashable used Snapchat in 2014

The Rundown -- January 23

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Jan.22i
January 22, 2015
Afghan religious scholars condemn the depiction of the Prophet Muhammad in a French magazine, internally displaced people in Pakistan protest about their living conditions, an Iraqi police chief takes journalists on a tour of an area that was retaken from militants last fall, plus stories from Pakistan and Tajikistan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Jan.22
RFE/RL in the Media
# Golnaz Esfandiari's story about Iran destroying thousands of satellites picked up by Business Insider and Vice
Yahoo News uses RFE/RL Afghan service video of Kabul protests against Charlie Hebdo 
# Russian legislator says Russians should eat less to compensate for rising food prices
# Russia moves forward with Turkey gas pipeline
# Putin's inner circle is shrinking as he becomes suspicious of disenchanted oligarchs
# Washington Post: Ukraine should not just be a "hiccup" in relations with Russia
# Pro-Russian forces gaining ground as mortar hits Donetsk city bus, airport cleared and Ukrainian "cyborgs" forced to march in Donetsk
# "The Death of Ukraine’s Cyborg Army" - James Miller and Pierre Vaux, Foreign Policy
# At Davos, Poroshenko struggles to woo foreign investors
Iraq/Syria/Saudi Arabia
# King Abdullah dies; successor may have dementia
# Ambassador says air strikes have killed more than half of IS' leadership
# U.S. and Iraq are preparing summer offensive to retake Mosul
# Japanese hostage deadline passes as IS says it will soon make statement
# Khamenei's open letter to Western youth about Islam
# Transcripts from Argentine phone calls detail efforts to shield Iran
# Mossad, breaking ranks with Netanyahu, tells U.S. sanctions will kill Iran nuclear deal
# On chances for IS success in making inroads in Afghanistan
# Bloomberg says China can help end Afghanistan war
# Pakistan wants Afghan refugees to go home
# Russian soldier pleads guilty in Gyumri massacre
Of Interest
# New York Times Twitter lessons

The Rundown -- January 21

RFE/RL Video Roundup -- Jan. 20i
January 20, 2015
Armenians mourn a six-month-old boy stabbed in an attack that stunned the country, Afghan cabinet nominees appear in parliament for a vote of confidence, hundreds demonstrate in Kyrgyzstan against depictions of the Prophet Muhammad in a French magazine, plus stories from Macedonia, Iraq, and Pakistan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup -- Jan. 20
RFE/RL in the Media
HRW says Merkel should call on Aliyev to release Khadija Ismayilova and others in her meeting with Azerbaijan's president
A coup in Yemen?
# Houthis call for power-sharing deal after storming presidential palace
# The crisis explained in four questions
# Why Yemen constantly appears to be in the middle of a coup
# War on al-Qaeda threatened
# Russia and Iran sign military cooperation agreement
# Russia sounds alarm as Lake Baikal's water levels drop
# Russian Duma passes first reading of law banning "undesirable foreign organizations
# New round of peace talks today in Germany; perhaps renewed fighting is just diplomatic maneuvering 
# Separatists claim to be building air force by raiding museums
# Some 150 people have been dismissed as prosecutors under lustration laws
# Obama's SOTU proposal for use of force resolution lacks specifics so far
# IS has executed "scores" this month says U.N. 
# Could IS actions against Japanese hostages lead to change in Japan's pacifist constitution?
# Why what we call IS matters
# Iran warns football players not to take selfies with female fans abroad
# Questions mount in Argentine prosecutor's suicide
# Girls in Afghanistan "skateboarding their way to empowerment
# HRW says violence and intimidation against journalists in Pakistan is rising
# Pakistan's cross-dressing men
# Pakistan Charlie Hebdo protesters call for "another hallow cost"
Central Asia
# The case for Almaty to host the winter Olympics
# Head of Russian investigative agency says Gyumri suspect will be tried in Armenia (but doesn't specify by whom)
# "Armenia Can't Count on Russia Any More" - Richard Giragosian, Al Jazeera
# Turkey calls for "new beginning" with Armenia
# Macedonia passes same-sex marriage ban

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