Sunday, September 21, 2014

Communications / The Rundown

The Rundown -- August 22

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 21i
August 21, 2014
Antigovernment protests continue in Pakistan, UN relief operation under way in Iraq, McDonald's closed in Russia, plus stories from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan
RFE/RL in the Media
# Carl Schreck's profile of American who died fighting in Ukraine quoted in "New York Times" and RT
Business Insider mentions Luke Johnson and Carl Schreck report on Lesin probe 
# "Daily Mail" quotes Tom Balmforth's piece on McDonald's being shut down in Russia
# "New Yorker" quotes interview by Mumin Shakirov of RFE/RL's Russian Service with grocery magnate 
# European leaders worried about Ukraine military success in east 
# Last gasp attempt to gain back territory before Russian "aid" convoy allowed to enter Ukraine (likely today) 
# British student describes torture and detainment by separatists
# Moscow children's fashion show has "Ukraine" commit suicide 
# Russia gets its "color revolution"
# European banks expect "limited" impact from Russia sanctions; brewers hurt 
# Russian official says U.S. meat not welcome back, even after sanctions expire
# Russia loses "special relationship" with Germany 
Eastern Europe
# Belarus cancels ban on live cattle from EU 
# ISIL learning how to govern 
# Does U.S.-Kurd relationship need to adapt for new realities?
# Net closes in on "Jihadi John
# West may "have no choice" but to move closer to Iran to fight ISIL
# AFP confuses Arak with Iraq -- resulting in some major confusion
# Iran's parliament tries to stop Ahmadinejad's comeback
# "Washington Post" editorial pans Obama's Afghanistan pullout strategy 
# Amid Afghanistan's escalating war, a battle to beat polio
Infographic: Cross-border movement from Pakistan to Afghanistan
# Sharif caught between opposition and military
# Khan suspends talks with government, blaming U.S. interference 
# Serbia "torn" between Russia and the EU
Central Asia
# "New York Times" writes about skylines on the Kazakh steppe and "Economist" writes about steak on the steppe
# Uzbekistan's top officials about to be ousted?
# Abkhazia holds presidential election amid Ukraine turmoil
Of Interest

The Rundown -- August 21

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 20i
August 20, 2014
Opposition protesters threaten the prime minister in Pakistan, Afghans celebrate independence in Tajikistan, an exhibit on repression against activists in Russia, plus stories from Kyrgyzstan and Pakistan.

RFE/RL in the Media

# Wolfgang Renicke, writing in Project Syndicate, suggests RFE/RL create a Hungarian service 
"Wall Street Journal" Marketwatch cites RFE/RL report about Ramzan Kadyrov's cell phone search
# Read Golnaz Esfandiari in Informed Comment about Iranian officials' reaction to an Iranian woman winning a prestigious math prize 
# Read Anna Shamanska in the "Atlantic" on Russian TV's efforts to tie Ukrainian leaders to separatists 
# Read Tom Balmforth and Glenn Kates in the "Guardian" on the painting of a Stalin tower in Ukrainian colors 
# Read Glenn Kates in the "Guardian" on who's in and who's out among the separatists 
# Ferguson perfect for Russian trolling
# Russia closes four McDondalds for sanitary violations
# Russia wants Bulgarians to stop vandalizing Soviet monuments
# "The Top Secret Family Life of Vladimir Putin" - Owen Matthews, "Newsweek" 
# "Plenty of Room at the Top of Ukraine’s Fading Rebellion" - Andrew Kramer, "New York Times"  
# "Why the Ukraine Crisis Is the West’s Fault" - John J. Mearsheimer, "Foreign Affairs" 
Richard Branson has a plan to solve the Ukraine crisis 
# Ukraine super-rich helping fund and fight 
Eastern Europe
# Not sure if this is real
# The social media strategy behind James Foley's murder 
# One Yazidi refuses to convert so IS kills everyone
# Vice Video: Yazidis from mountain have mostly fled to Syria, under protection of PKK 
# UN calls Iraq most rapidly developing humanitarian disaster in recent memory
# Iran's parliament dismisses moderate science minister
# "Sanctions Cause Iranian Airplane Crashes" - Amir Handjani, "The Hill"
# Iran "giving advice" to Iraqi Kurds
# Photojournalist held in Iran released on bail
# Afghanistan orders expulsion of "New York Times" correspondent
# Coalition soldier stabbed to death in Afghanistan
# Protesters threaten violence in Islamabad 
# "The Fate of Feminism in Pakistan" - Bina Shah, "New York Times" 
Central Asia
# Satellite: Where China and Kazakhstan meet
Of Interest
# How Norwegian public radio is using Snapchat to attract younger audiences 
# Should Twitter and YouTube remove Foley images?

The Rundown -- August 20

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 19i
August 19, 2014
Barrel bombs dropped in Iraq, flooded Serbian cities rebuilt, the Sarajevo film festival in full swing, plus a story from Tajikistan.
RFE/RL in the Media
# "Washington Post" cites Tom Balmforth's report about claim Kadyrov searched 1,000 people for cell phone
NPR links to RFE/RL story about protests in Pakistan
# Food prices up 6 percent in Moscow and 10 percent in Saint Petersburg 
# In nod to Moscow, NATO to shun major eastern footprint
# "Hurt Putin Hurt Yourself?" - Vauhini Vara, "New Yorker" 
# "Russia Always Cheats on Arms Treaties" - Keith Payne and Mark Schneider, "Wall Street Journal" 
# Putin and Poroshenko to meet next week; but de-escalation may not be coming any time soon
# American fighter said to have been killed in battle; Vice's profile
# Ukraine bans 14 channels for airing "war propaganda
# The new Metropolitan Onufry has a lot on his plate 
# "Kiev Must Show Compassion to Eastern Ukraine" - Natalia Antonova, "Moscow Times" 
# Video appears to show American journalist beheaded; wanted to bring world closer to conflict in Syria
# "Vanity Fair" long-read about journalists missing in Syria
# Many Yazidis fear their female relatives are doomed in ISIL's hands
# Poet known as "lioness of Iran" dies at 87
# One result of Gaza: Iran and Hamas are back together
Billionaire named in suit against anti-Iran group
# Afghanistan bars "New York Times" reporter from leaving country
# "Obama Holds to Afghanistan Withdrawal Deadline" - Mark Landler, "New York Times" 
# Sharif told he must "share space with the army"
# Protesters march on parliament
# Russian troops to study drone use in Armenia
Central Asia
# Is Turkmenistan losing Iran as a gas customer?
# Tajikistan struggles to stem rise of Jihadi recruits

The Rundown -- August 19

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 18i
August 18, 2014
Antigovernment activists receive jail terms in Moscow, Kazakh fuel companies impose gasoline rations, and Afghans demand that war criminals be brought to justice, plus stories from Pakistan and Tatarstan.
RFE/RL in the Media
# RFE/RL Iraq Service English Twitter account cited in "Telegraph" liveblog on Iraq crisis 
# RFE/RL Ukrainian Service's Oksana Pelenska appears on Czech TV 24; as does Brian Whitmore 
Reason cites RFE/RL Ukrainian Service reporting on conflict in eastern Ukraine
# Man accused of killing RFE/RL Iraqi Service bureau chief sentenced to life imprisonment 
Repubblica cites RFE/RL coverage of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict (Italian) 
# "Hungary Eyes Russia's 'Illiberal' Model" - Kristina Jovanovski, Al Jazeera
# With aid convoy, Russia successfully changes the conversation
# Could Russia Today have prevented the Iraq War?
# Meet the Russia bulls
# Dozens of civilians said killed in convoy
# Photos: Ukraine's Donbas battalion 
# Pope endorses use of force in Iraq to protect minorities
# Fears in Baghdad that U.S. abandoning it in favor of Kurdish regions
# Iraqi Sunnis pushing for more concessions
# U.S. may at least tacitly be working with PKK, as force takes on more active role
# Cameron prepared to work with Iran to battle ISIL
# An argument for working with Iran to defeat ISIL
# 6.3 magnitude earthquake hits Iran
# Iran's taxi library
# Why the escalation this year along Afghanistan's eastern border?
# Signs that the war in Afghanistan is ending
# Pakistan protesters in showdown with government 
# Pushing the boundaries of digital diplomacy in Kosovo
# Suspected jihadists under house arrest in Kosovo
Central Asia
# India's quest for energy in Central Asia
Of Interest

The Rundown -- August 18

RFE/RL in the Media
Hollywood Reporter quotes Nenad Pejic on the possibility for expanded Russian language programming 
CNN and YahooNews use RFE/RL video of anti-government protests in Pakistan
German Marshall Fund writes about Moldovan Service's Sabina Fati's Silk Road blog 
# Foreign ministers meet; Russia says "certain progress" achieved 
# Police detain activists at pro-federalization protests in Siberia 
# EU stalling on Gazprom antitrust case
# "Sanctions Hurt Putin" - Sergei Guriev, "Moscow Times" 
# "Ukraine's Struggle Endangers Its Democracy" - Matthew Kupfer, "Moscow Times" 
# "Novorossia Is Coming Apart At the Seams" - Anna Nemtsova, Foreign Policy 
# A review of Andrei Kurkov's "Ukraine diaries
# Fresh parliamentary elections in doubt 
Eastern Europe
# Moldova may leave CIS
Mosul dam operation largest since U.S. withdrew forces
# A reporter's dispatch after a lethal helicopter crash
# Captured Yazidi women may be forced to marry IS fighters
# UN says Iran willing to cooperate on nuclear probe
# Khamenei takes to Twitter to slam Ferguson events
# Western journalists still detained a month later
# 35 people found in UK shipping container are Sikhs from Afghanistan
# Khan calls for mass civil disobedience 
# Indian hacker group defaces Pakistan railway site
# Why it feels like a crime to be Christian in Pakistan
Central Asia
Of Interest
# If you have kids, by them a notepad

The Rundown -- August 15

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 14i
August 14, 2014
Armenians rally in support of Yazidis in Iraq, Ukraine sends aid to a separatist-held region, and Moldovans protest Russia's fruit embargo, plus stories from Russia and Pakistan.
RFE/RL in the Media
Al Jazeera cites RFE/RL reporting on Ukraine crisis
# "Cleveland Plain Dealer" cites RFE/RL reporting on Iraq crisis 
# "Guardian" uses tweet in story about "aid" convoy 
RT says American broadcasters see it as "major challenge"
# Two British journalists watch convoy of Russian military vehicles enter Ukraine
# In un-televised speech, Putin appears to tone down rhetoric 
# Russians face price hikes following Western food import ban 
# Russians react to events in Ferguson
# Strelkov "resigns," as does head of "Luhansk Republic" 
# "Ukraine Taps Volunteers Fueled by Anger, Bravado" - Philip Shishkin, "Wall Street Journali"
# "A Ukraine City Under Siege, ‘Just Terrified of the Bombing’" - Andrew Kramer, "New York Times" 
# Ukraine's "Babushka battalion"
Eastern Europe
Striking photos from Moldova
# Maliki agrees to cede power
# "Iraq and Syria's Poetic Borders" - Elias Muhanna "New Yorker" 
# "We Must Treat ISIS Like a State to Defeat It" - Faysal Itani, "Time" 
# ISIL spreads to Indonesia 
# Iran and U.S. both working to aid Kurdish forces in Iraq
# "No Iran Deal Is Better Than Any (Feasible) Deal" - James Jeffrey, Washington Institute 
# A bloody summer in Afghanistan 
# Hairstylists are big business in Afghanistan
# Convoys make their way to Islamabad and Lahore for expected massive protests
# "On Independence Day, Pakistan Braces for a Storm" - Russel Mead, "American Interest"
# A Putin cafe in Serbia 
# Letter to Council of Europe: "We Have Repression in Azerbaijan

The Rundown -- August 14

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 13i
August 13, 2014
Iraqis in Anbar Province protest the destruction of war, Afghan presidential campaign teams hammer out a power-sharing deal, Pakistan braces for Independence Day protests -- plus more stories from Pakistan, Tatarstan, and Moldova.


RFE/RL in the Media
# "Washington Post" editorial on Azerbaijan arrests links to RFE/RL Azerbaijani story on Leyla Yunus
Forbes cites RFE/RL Russian Service on Russian "aid" convoy
# Convoy now reportedly rolling towards separatist-controlled southern Ukraine
# "In Russia, Conspiracy Theories Always Ring True" - Mark Galeotti, "Moscow Times" 
# Putin's secret friendship with an ex-Stasi officer 
# "Federalization" idea spreading in Russia?
# Ukraine death toll doubles in a week, according to UN 
# Despite the evidence, Ukraine continues to deny shelling in cities
# Why has Iraq turned its back on Maliki?
# Rohani tweets photo of Iranian woman who received prestigious math prize
# Khamenei says cooperation with U.S. stops at nuke talks
# Pentagon says ISIL siege on Iraq mountain is over
# "How Maliki Broke Iraq" - James Jeffrey, Politico
# Video: Islamic State or Iran -- which is the bigger threat
# Pakistani militant group becomes active in Afghanistan
# Pakistan calls Modi's terror remarks "baseless rhetoric
# The female superhero fighting terrorists in Pakistan 
Central Asia
# Daewoo admits using cotton from Uzbek forced and child labor 
# Tajikistan ready to prosecute citizens who fight abroad
# The threat of Jihadism in Central Asia after U.S. withdrawal 
Of Interest
# The example Ferguson sets abroad; exhibit A
# Snowden gets the "Wired" treatment

The Rundown -- August 13

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 12i
August 12, 2014
A Belarusian human rights defender gets a three-year prison term, Ukrainian activists demand early parliamentary elections, a Bosnian streetcar named "Nostalgia" marks the 100th anniversary of World War I, plus stories from Pakistan and Tajikistan.
# "National Review" pulls from RFE/RL story on Night Wolves' anti-Ukraine interpretive dance
Huffington Post cites RFE/RL reporting on Albanian joining ISIL
Business Insider cites RFE/RL Ukraine liveblog
# Read Daisy Sindelar on Russia's troll army in the "Atlantic" and Defense One
# RFE/RL Iraq's Petr Kubalek featured on Czech TV at least five times for Iraq expertise
# Tense standoff looms as Russian "aid" convoy approaches Ukraine; EU says Red Cross must vet and distribute
# On Russia's border with Ukraine, fighters and military gear move freely
# Russia greets al-Sissi with arms display
# Russia won't pay for French warships until second is delivered 
# Russia is the second largest immigration haven in the world
# Draft law would allow Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council to ban any website at any time
# Ukraine appears to abandon border outposts with Russia
# In besieged Ukrainian city residents bury dead in yards and gardens
# "Ukraine is Winning the War" - Chrystia Freeland, Politico 
Eastern Europe
# Belarus first in female obesity
# Russia food ban hurts Moldova 
# "New York Times" on Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's beginnings
# U.S. sending 130 more military advisers to Iraq
# "Why the Bombing Campaign Won't Fix Iraq" - Reidar Visser, "Foreign Affairs" 
# "The U.S.’s Timid Third Iraq War" - Mark Thompson, "Time" 
# Iran appears to approve of Iraq PM pick
# Why Iran fears Iraq's Kurds
# Iran sidesteps sanctions with natural gas byproduct
# Iran's new gay executions
# Afghanistan's marathon presidential election brings country to standstill
# "Iraq Crisis Teaches Obama a Harsh Lesson on Afghanistan" - Camelia Entekhabi-Fard, Al Arabiya 
# Modi slams Pakistan in visit to Indian-administered Kashmir 
# The threat of Pakistan's angry young marchers
# Gay Azerbaijani teenager set ablaze by homophobic parents
Of Interest
# A short course in media ethics
# How "Mother Jones" mastered Facebook
# Five rules for better branded video

The Rundown -- August 12

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 11i
August 11, 2014
Amnesty International urges the United States to investigate Afghan civilian deaths, Pakistani authorities lock down the capital ahead of an antigovernment march, the Ukrainian capital reopens the city center for traffic after months of protests, plus other stories from Moldova and Pakistan.
RFE/RL in the Media
# Luke Johnson interviewed on the Bill Press Show
# "Newsweek" cites RFE/RL coverage of Nagorno Karabakh conflict 
YahooNews uses RFE/RL video of pro-Ukraine battalions battling for Donetsk town
# Russia dispatches 280 trucks carrying humanitarian aid to Ukraine; NATO warns of "high probability" of invasion
# "Putin Has Stumbled in Ukraine" - Fyodor Lukyanov, "Moscow Times" 
# Russia turns to China for defense and aerospace equipment
# "Putin's Dilemma" - Sergei Guriev, Project Syndicate
# Germany asks Ukraine to forgo sanctions that threaten gas transit
# Last week: Moscow will start Ukraine invasion with humanitarian aid mission
# Ukraine's Azov Battalion has a lot of Neo Nazis 
Eastern Europe
# Do Belarusian farmers stand to profit from Russia sanctions?
# Inside Obama's push for regime change in Iraq
# A breakdown of Iraq's political crisis
# Power struggle comes to Baghdad's streets
# Maliki a "source of frustration" for two U.S. presidents
# The Gulf War photo no one would publish
# Iran's parliament votes to forbid vasectomies
# Afghan army kills at least 51 militants in 24 hour operation
# Islamabad reportedly may be sealed off
# "Wrath of Khan" - "Economist" 
Central Asia
# Can Dushanbe "keep the lid" on the Internet?
# Turkmenistan human trafficking survivors rebuild their lives
# Russia pledges $500 million to Kyrgyzstan for Eurasian Union integration
# Azerbaijan Foreign Ministry criticizes Polish Foreign Ministry for statement on arrests of rights' activists
Of Interest
# What happens when you like everything on Facebook 

The Rundown -- August 11

RFE/RL in the Media
BBC cites Frud Bezhan's interview with expert on Iraq crisis
Latin Post cites RFE/RL reporting on Iraq crisis
# Kyiv threatens to cut off flow of Russian oil and gas to Europe
# "Why Arming Ukraine is a Bad Idea" - Kimberly Marten, "Washington Post"
# Ukraine strategy gambles on restraint by Russia
# Is the battle for Ukraine's east about fracking
# Exxon Mobile starts drilling in Russian Arctic
# Will Russia start blocking websites in real time?
# "Daching: How to Get Beaten Up in the Russian Countryside" - Aleksei Ermenko, "Moscow Times"
# The most important sentence in Obama's Iraq statement
# Opportunity for Moscow in Iraq instability
# "Oil and Irbil" - Steve Coll, "New Yorker"
# At least 39 killed in Iranian plane crash
# "Sex of every kind" taking place outside marriage in Iran
# "Iran Ignores a Lucrative Deal Over its Nuclear Activities" - Reuel Marc Gerecht and Mark Dubowitz, "Washington Post"
# New Kerry-brokered Ghani-Abdullah deal
# Amnesty says U.S. concealed "war crimes" in Afghanistan
# Afghanistan lessons learned
# Imran Khan calls for million-strong protest to pressure Pakistan government
Central Asia
# Kazakhstan won't participate in Russia food import ban
# Putin holds talks between Armenia and Azerbaijan presidents
Of Interest
# The glamorous life of a White House journalist

The Rundown -- August 8

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 7i
August 07, 2014
Smoke and fire return to Kyiv's Independence Square, auditing Afghanistan's presidential election ballots, protests at Kazakhstan's National Bank -- plus stories from Moscow, Bosnia, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan.
RFE/RL in the Media
Huffington Post France quotes RFE/RL Russian Service interview with former prisoner of separatists
# In interview in "Diplomat," author cites reporting by RFE/RL in Pakistan
Business Insider cites explainer on Nagorno-Karabakh by Carl Schreck and Luke Johnson
# Read Daud Khattak in Foreign Policy on North Waziristan operation
# RFE/RL Ukrainian Service video of dolphins forced from Donetsk used by NowThis
# Obama approves limited airstrikes, food drops, in Iraq 
# "Obama, With Reluctance, Returns to Action in Iraq" - Peter Baker, "New York Times" 
# The "maddening" situation for Iraqis desperate to get U.S. visas
# Russia's slow "drip" invasion of Ukraine
# Borodai resigns and fighting continues
# Journalist writes of being raped by "Very Respected Journalist" in Kyiv 
# Moscow bans Western foodstuffs and threatens more sanctions to come
# "Why the Kremlin Is Betting on Escalation and Isolation" - Joshua Yaffa, "Foreign Affairs" 
# Snowden given three more years in Russia
# Top U.S. official warns that Russia-Iran deal could threaten nuclear negotiations
# "Sorry, Skeptics: The Iran Nuclear Deal Is Working" - Greg Thielmann, The National Interest
# Can Iran have -- and does it want -- a genuine thawing with the West?
# Kerry makes unannounced visit to press compromise
# Taliban taking advantage of Afghanistan political paralysis 
# Pakistan arrests activists ahead of planned political rally
# "A Bubble Called Pakistan" - Husain Haqqani, Indian Express
# Azerbaijan's "alarming" human rights situation

The Rundown -- August 7

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 6i
August 06, 2014
Sikhs protest violence in Pakistan, a Moscow prison wedding for an opposition activist, a hunger strike to save homes in Kazakhstan, and more flooding in Bosnia.
RFE/RL in the Media
The Nation mentions RFE/RL Gandhara interview with Malala Yousafzai 
# If Putin were to fall, what would follow?
# Russia says it will block some food imports from countries that imposed sanctions on it
# "Putin Can Afford to Back Down on Ukraine" - Cynthia Hooper, "Moscow Times"
# Russia may be losing influence over European energy markets
# Russia masses 20,000 troops on Ukraine border
# Scientists may have solved the mystery behind Siberia's giant hole
# MH17 forced to halt work due to violence
# The far-right foreigners in Ukraine's Azov battalion
# ViceNews interviews the American "Franko" serving in Ukraine 
# "To Beat Putin, Support Ukraine" - Michael McFaul, "New York Times" 
Eastern Europe
# Moldova asks Russia to remove troops and weapons from Transdniester
# Conservative Iranian media accuse detained "Washington Post" journalist of spying
# An interview with Iran's Banksy
# A report card for Rohani's first year
# To flee Iraq violence, some need to go through Syria
# Militants in Iraq loathed, but so far no curbing them 
# Video: Yazidi parliamentarian's passionate speech
# It might be too costly for Kurds to split from Iraq
# Multimedia: "Helmand's Golden Age"
# Should Abdullah be left behind?
# "Waiting Out the Afghan War" - Elliot Ackerman, "New Yorker" 
# Blasphemy and religious intolerance in Pakistan
# Aliyev visits near frontlines of Nagorno-Karabakh conflict 
Central Asia
# Kazakhstan creates giant energy ministry
Of Interest
# BBC launches blacked out Thai news service on Facebook
# "New York Times" building newsroom strategy team

The Rundown -- August 6

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Aug. 5i
August 05, 2014
Islamic State militants force thousands of Yazidi Iraqis to flee into Kurdish areas, Armenian workers at a Russian-owned factory go on strike, Tajikistan hosts a Turkmen culture festival, plus stories from Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, and Russia.
RFE/RL in the Media
ViceNews cites RFE/RL Ukrainian Service on the struggles of heroin addicts in Crimea
# "Atlantic" cites RFE/RL Uzbek Service on Internet being shut down before standardized test
# Putin says Russia will answer with its own sanctions
# Russia moves to deport wife of activist
# Bloggers registering asked to share passwords with Russian Internet monitoring agency
# Russian gang amasses over 1 million Internet passwords
# Ukraine's revolution stalled due to war in the east
# Ukraine pop star a casualty in culture war with Russia 
# Has Western media coverage of the Ukraine crisis been fair?
# Video: Numbers of refugees and IDPs soaring
Eastern Europe
U.S. general killed in apparent insider attack
# Is the White House responsible for Pakistan's polio epidemic?
# Pakistan opposition leader plans mass rally for new elections
# Russia says it signs oil-for-goods accord with Iran, then says it hasn't
# Iranian official says Tehran seeking successor to al-Maliki
# Israel and Saudi Arabia reportedly coordinating potential Iran attack
# Will the U.S. help the Kurds fight ISIL?
# ISIL releases pictures of alleged beheadings of soldiers in Abar
# Iraqi Yazidis stranded on isolated mountaintop begin to die of thirst
Central Asia
# Uzbekistan denies reports of coming U.S. military base
# Kazakhstan reportedly becoming new hub for sex tourism
# Azerbaijan human rights plummet to new low
Of Interest
# Pro Publica's recipe for collaboration
# Looking for the enduring photo in Gaza

The Rundown -- August 5

RFE/RL Video Roundup - August 4i
August 04, 2014
Jailed opposition activists make their pleas in a Moscow court, Serbs honor victims of Croatia's war of the 1990s, and Afghan children perform at a circus festival, plus stories from Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Tatarstan, and Belarus.
RFE/RL in the Media
# "Moscow Times" cites reporting by Luke Johnson and Carl Schreck on probe of Kremlin-connected businessman in California
EU Observer cites RFE/RL on Russian military exercises 
Barfblog cites RFE/RL Balkans Service on Listeria outbreak in Macedonia 
Tracking the Buk on its open-source odyssey 
# Donetsk and Luhansk nearly isolated, but Russia gets propaganda victory
# Separatists using ambulances to transport fighters
# "Wall Street Journal" profiles a Ukrainian prisoner and his N. Ossetian jailer
# Russian buildup makes it ready for cross-border incursion into Ukraine at any moment
# Factbox: The effect of Russia sanctions on European businesses 
# Does Putin need Kudrin?
# Obama may not have been completely accurate in his Russia criticisms 
# The experienced Russian separatist bureaucrats joining Ukraine conflict
# "Putin the (not so) Great" - Michael McFaul, Politico
Eastern Europe
# Belarus says it can help Ukraine with oil products
# IMF says Belarus and Lithuania will be hardest hit by European sanctions on Russia
# Afghanistan's tech boom
# Pakistan mountains bereft of foreign climbers a year after terrorist attack
# Pakistan Taliban sends warning to Committee to Protect Journalists
# As German interest in Russia investment wanes, Iran becomes more appealing
# Iran officials say they have armed Hamas for Gaza fight
# Is the jailing of western journalists a ploy to weaken Rohani?
# Baghdad and Kurds cooperate on counterattack against militants
# India shaken by case of Muslim men missing in Iraq
# Death toll now at 18 in Nagorno-Karabakh conflict
Central Asia
# Kazakhstan grapples with reform of sovereign wealth fund
Of Interest
# Ten useful IOS apps for mobile journalists 

The Rundown -- August 4

RFE/RL in the Media
# Brian Whitmore quoted in ViceNews on Russian involvement in Ukraine conflict
Real Clear Politics quotes Brian Whitmore on rumors that Putin may be looking for a way out
# "Moscow Times" cites Carl Schreck's report on blocked fake Twitter account of new U.S. ambassador to Russia
CBC cites RFE/RL reporting on social media posts implicating Russia in Ukraine conflict
# David Remnick profiles Michael McFaul
# U.S.-Russia nuclear deal stalls amid tensions
# Donetsk residents prepare for long siege; army at outskirts
# "Financial Times" profiles Nuland
# In Slovyansk, a "test for Ukraine
# Maidan camp is still there and some would prefer it wasn't
# Underground art collective strikes eastern Ukraine
# Abdullah refuses to accept resumption of vote count
# In Pakistan, millions forced from homes
# Russia's strategic Pakistan play
# Islamic State seizes Iraq's largest dam
# Facts about Iraq's Yazadi minority
# Iran's Revolutionary Guards defending shrines in Iraq
# In Iran, Gaza demonstrations draw reformists
# How Iran sanction fears hurt humanitarian trade
Central Asia 
# Escalation in fighting in Nagorno-Karabakh with at least 15 dead

The Rundown -- August 1

RFE/RL Video Roundup - July 31i
July 31, 2014
Rescue teams search for drowning victims in Pakistan, foreign ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization meet in Tajikistan, Russian opposition members raise funds to help jailed protesters, and Turkmenistan renovates a city.
RFE/RL in the Media
# Brian Whitmore interviewed on Czech 24
# "For Eastern Ukrainians, a Growing Doubt: Is Russia Manipulating Us?" - Scott Peterson, Christian Science Monitor 
# Ukraine economy accelerates decline
# Vice dispatch: uncovering the mass graves
# "The Ukraine Crisis Explained In GIFs And In-Depth Policy Papers From Esteemed Political Institutions"
# Russia's blogger law goes into effect today
# Putin has unleashed forces he can't control
# Is Moscow using Ukrainian refugees to shift balance in Muslim-majority regions?
# The cats that guard the Hermitage
# A rundown of Russian memes
# Afghanistan vote audit will restart over the weekend
# Rare sectarian attack in Afghanistan, where 14 Shi'ite Muslims are killed
# U.S. says Pakistan Waziristan offensive is disrupting militant attacks
# At least 32 people drown at Karachi beach
# Quds forces scoff at calls to disarm Hamas
# Is Gaza making a nuclear deal less likely?
# Iran reportedly considering banning Samsung over Israeli commercial
# Iraq conflict has benefited Assad
# Pro-government militias' "trail of death"
Central Asia
# Tajikistan opposition feels heat ahead of elections
# Amnesty sharply criticizes arrests in Azerbaijan 
Of Interest
# Turkey's "Twitter spies"

The Rundown -- July 31

RFE/RL Video Roundup - July 30i
July 30, 2014
Leading Azerbaijani rights activists questioned in an espionage case, a Kazakh magazine editor fined for an article on Hitler, a Russian ultranationalist goes on trial in Moscow, and entrance exams in Turkmenistan's universities.
RFE/RL in the Media
FoxNews opinion urges expanding RFE/RL "outreach and intensity"
# "Washington Post" and Business Insider use RFE/RL reporting on Strelkov's cursing ban 
# Russian soldier's Instagram shows him operating equipment inside Ukraine and a Buk in Russia 
# Ukraine did not provide full account of dangers for flight
# Ukraine claims separatists are laying mines by MH17 crash 
# "Independent" reports that Germany and Russia are working on secret land-for-gas deal to end Ukraine crisis; but "WSJ" reports German-Russia relationship has disintegrated  
# Breakdown of 25-year effort
# "Putin's Losing Streak" - Stephen Holmes and Ivan Krastev, "Foreign Affairs"
# "Why Is Washington Risking War With Russia?" - Katrina vanden Heuvel and Stephen Cohen, "The Nation"
Eastern Europe
# Belarus to host Ukraine-Russia talks
# Belarusians may have their cars seized if caught littering
# Frontline special: Losing Iraq
# Texas court considers oil Baghdad says Iraqi Kurdistan sold without permission
# Anger in Iraq as militants destroy ancient historic sites
# Baghdad's drifter scene
# "Guardian" editorial urges Rohani to "speak out" on detained journalists
# Video: Mother of "Washington Post" journalist appeals to Tehran
# Afghanistan may cost more than Marshall Plan
# Social media is deadly in Pakistan
# Are parents responsible for Pakistan's Polio surge?
# Azerbaijan rights activist charged with treason
# Will sanctions on Russia hurt Armenia?
Central Asia
# Metro riders in Tashkent have to deal with "pre-flight security"
# Dividing the economic spoils post-Gulnara
Of Interest
# American suicide bomber in Syria took trip back to U.S. first 

The Rundown -- July 30

RFE/RL Video Roundup - July 29i
July 29, 2014
Iraqis condemn militants' expulsion of Christians from Mosul, Russia bans Ukrainian canned fruits and vegetables, and Muslims celebrate Eid al-Fitr in Turkmenistan and Kyrgyzstan.
RFE/RL in the Media
Business Insider cites Tom Balmforth's report on efforts to brand certain governments "aggressor countries"
CNN, affiliate, use Iraqi Service video of Christian march in Dohuk
# New sanctions: Here's where they'll hurt; but still plenty of loopholes 
# Russia considering ban on EU fruit imports
# "Putin's Ukraine Unreality Show" - Arkady Ostrovsky, "Wall Street Journal" 
# Shaun Walker meets Igor Bezler, who threatens to execute him 
# Ukraine fighting closing in on Donetsk
# 17 Horlivka hostages reportedly released 
# CNN video: Ukraine has fired ballistic missiles at rebels 
Eastern Europe
# Belarus considers ban on Ukrainian beef and dairy 
# The Belarusians fighting on both sides of the Ukraine conflict 
# Suicide bomber kills Hamid Karzai's cousin 
# State Department report says Pakistan not punishing attackers of religious minorities 
# Free of the Taliban, Pakistan’s Pashtun poets revive their craft
# Khamenei calls for Muslims around the world to help arm Gaza 
# Why Iran fears an independent Kurdistan 
# Militants reportedly hold mass execution in Tikrit 
# U.S. plans largest ever sale of Hellfire missiles to Iraq 
Central Asia
# Turkmenistan joins list of world's worst religious freedom violators 
How strong is the Islamic movement of Uzbekistan?
# Would Turkey consider free trade agreement with Eurasian Union?
# Azerbaijan to buy Russian Yak-130 combat trainers 
Of Interest
# The British PR firms spinning stories for dictators 

The Rundown -- July 29

RFE/RL Video Roundup - July 28i
July 28, 2014
Muslims in Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Russia, and Tajikistan celebrate Eid al-Fitr, plus stories from Moldova and Serbia.
RFE/RL in the Media
# Another pro-Azerbaijan op-ed in "The Hill" -- this one criticizes RFE/RL Azerbaijani Service for negative reporting on "wildly popular" Aliyev
# "Moscow Times" mentions RFE/RL Uzbek Service account of attempting to join Ukraine separatists  
# U.S. and Europe to sharply escalate sanctions on Russia; why did it take so long?
# U.S. says Russia violated missile treaty
# Vladimir Putin could cost every Russian citizen $7,000
# BP's "Faustian pact" with Russia goes horribly wrong
# "The Russian Dream Is All About Empire" - Svetlana Alexievich, "Le Monde"
# "Russia’s Corrupt Chokehold on Europe" - Anne Applebaum, Slate
Heavy fighting around crash site
# MH17 crash changed very little on the ground in eastern Ukraine
Eastern Europe
# Belarus may replicate Russian anti-gay law
# Ukraine building 400 km anti-tank ditch on border with Transdniester
# U.S. aims for Afghan elections have changed
# U.S. paratroopers "hope to deal a few final blows" against Taliban
# Rise in blasphemy attacks in Pakistan
# Zarif steps up Gaza diplomacy
# "The Road to a Bad Nuclear Deal With Iran" - Ephraim Asculai and Emily B. Landau, "The National Interest"
# Terrorists groups find buyers for oil
# Iraq falling apart as world focuses on other events
# Congressional trip to Azerbaijan may have violated ethics rules
Central Asia
# Kazakhstan wants to host Tour de France
Of Interest

The Rundown -- July 28

RFE/RL in the Media
# RFE/RL mentioned in "Boston Globe" opinion on need for more public diplomacy efforts
# BBG chairman mentions several recent RFE/RL citations in "Time" opinion
# RFE/RL Afghanistan "In Search of the Missing" story reprinted in "Guardian"
# Heavy fighting prevents international investigators from reaching crash site
# Ukrainians quietly being replaced by Russians in separatist leadership posts
# U.S. releases photos they say show Russia is firing at Ukraine from Russia
# Bloomberg reporter details capture by Dnipr battalion
# "Russia Is Pregnant with Ukraine" - Vladimir Sorokin, "New York Review of Books" 
# "Economist" on the consequences for Russia's "web of lies"
# Hague court orders Russia to pay $50 billion in Yukos case
# Could Moscow ban McDonald's hamburgers?
Eastern Europe
# The Moldovan tunnels that house Goering's wine collection
# Taliban making military gains in Afghanistan
# U.S. loses track of hundreds of thousands of guns given to Afghan police
Four Ahmadis killed in mob attack for alleged blasphemous Facebook post
# Iraq's top cleric hints Maliki should step aside
# ISIL destroying Shi'ite mosques
# "Let Sunnis Defeat Iraq’s Militants" - Rafe Al-Essawi and Atheel al-Nujaifi, "New York Times"
# Iranian students face expulsion from Norway over sanctions
Iran General: We Will Hunt Down Israelis House To House
# Justice Department moves to censor anti-Iran group's files
# Obama quietly sending more advisers to Iraq
Central Asia
# Berdymukhamedov is finally getting his own statue
# Kazakh volleyball star slammed by teammates for being too attractive
Of Interest
# Congressman wears lapel pins on both lapels (and mistakes U.S. delegation for Indians)

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