Sunday, August 02, 2015


Communications / The Rundown

The Rundown -- April 22

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 21i
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April 21, 2015
A fatal explosion in Kandahar as police attempt to defuse explosives in Afghanistan, floods and preparations for elections in Kazakhstan, plus an American artist painting ''peace murals'' marking 20 years since the end of the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 21
RFE/RL in the Media
BBC cites RFE/RL Tajik Service on law to force parents to give children Tajik names 
 
Ukraine
# Bond rally at hint of optimism about debt restructuring
# Stephen Sestanovich says on Ukraine Putin is now "more bored than bellicose
 
Russia
# Russian website allows businesses, including Burger King, to advertise on women's breasts
# Gallup poll shows Russia receives lowest approval in the world, U.S. highest
# "How Putin Is Disrupting the Atlantic Alliance" - Ivan Krastev and Mark Leonard, Foreign Affairs
 
Eastern Europe
# Lukashenka's "soft Belarusization"
# Moldova trying to build up its army 
 
Middle East
# Saudis end air campaign in Yemen
# Guardian reports IS leader al-Baghdadi "seriously wounded in air strike"; Pentagon skeptical
# Is IS propaganda all it's cracked up to be?
 
Iran
# The secret replica of Iran's nuclear facilities, in the forests of Tennessee 
# Obama administration knew "for years" about Iran's short nuclear breakout time
# Iran wants OPEC prepared for it
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
New doubt to claims of IS attack in Afghanistan
# Afghanistan and Iran getting cozier
# Transparency law opening up Pakistan
# "Pakistan, the Saudis’ Indispensable Nuclear Partner" - Pervez Hoodbhoy, New York Times
 
Caucasus
# Turkey sends condolences on mass killing anniversary, but rejects genocide term
# "The Word Obama Can’t Bring Himself to Say" - Adam Lerner, Politico 
 
Balkans
# Macedonia says Kosovo gunmen took police hostage and called for an Albanian state
# U.S. official says Kosovo should try it's own rebels to avoid Serbia or Russia
 
 
Of Interest
# Facebook tweaking algorithm to make users less likely to see posts from publishers
# Autoplay video now "a staple of the web"

The Rundown -- April 21

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 20i
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April 20, 2015
A warm welcome for Chinese President Xi Jinping in Pakistan, the funeral of a journalist killed last week in Ukraine, plus stories from Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - April 20
Ukraine
# U.S. paratroopers begin training Ukraine national guard units
# Armed with new law, Ukraine targets its shadowy banks
# What it means to use Ukrainian or Russian on Ukraine's front lines 
 
Russia
# Russian security services say they have killed the head of a North Caucasus Islamist insurgency
# LGBT activist publicly shames Russians who send her threats
# Russia sets sights on Middle East
 
 
Middle East
# Air strike on Scud missile base rocks Sanaa 
# "Why the World Missed Yemen’s Downward Spiral" - Laura Kasinoff, Foreign Policy 
# At least 90,000 have been displaced near Baghdad in the last several days
# "Getting ISIS out of Iraq" - Robert Pape, New York Times
 
Iran
# Washington Post reporter charged with spying
# U.S. warship sent to block Iran weapons off of Yemen
# "A Message From Iran" - Mohammad Javad Zarif, New York Times
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
Kidnappings rattle Afghanistan Hazara community
# Heroine from Afghanistan flooding into India
# U.S. and Saudis plan sanctions on Pakistani charity
# "Why Are We Sending This Attack Helicopter to Pakistan?" - Husain Haqqani, Wall Street Journal
 
Caucasus
# Germany to use call Turkish mass killings of Armenians genocide 
# System of a Down "on facing history" and playing in Armenia
# HRW to Azerbaijan: Release activists and journalists behind bars
 
Balkans
# Belgrade says it will arrest Thaci if he comes to Serbia 

The Rundown -- April 20

Lenin Statue Toppled In Kramatorski
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April 17, 2015
(NATURAL SOUND) A huge tribute to Russian communist revolutionary V.I. Lenin was toppled on April 17 in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk, which has served as a provisional capital of the region since pro-Russian rebels overtook the city of Donetsk. (Video by RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service)
Lenin Statue Toppled In Kramatorsk
Russia
# Putin calls potential Israeli sale of weapons to Ukraine "counterproductive
# A look inside Russia's Ukraine war exhibition  in Moscow 
# "There is Another Russia Beyond Putin" - Timothy Garton Ash, Guardian
# "Why Putin's Next War Will Be at Home" - Leonid Ragozin, Bloomberg 
 
Ukraine
# OSCE monitors try to broker truce in Shyrokyne 
 
Middle East
# As many as 700 may have died when ship capsized off of Libyan coast
# More British Muslims have joined IS than joined the military
# IS may be regaining momentum in Iraq
# An art renaissance in Iraq
 
Iran
# Senior Revolutionary Guard leader says allowing inspectors onto military sites is out of the question
# "Russia-Iran Relationship is a Marriage of Opportunity" - Karoun Demirjian, Washington Post
 
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Fear as IS claims first suicide bombing in Afghanistan
# Xi heads to Pakistan with billions in infrastructure aid
# Pakistan arrests 47 Indian fisherman accused of violating its territorial waters
 
Caucasus
# 2016 Grand Prix in Azerbaijan going ahead
 
Balkans
# Thousands protest in Kosovo
# "Macedonia Steps Backward" - Nikola Dimitrov, New York Times
 
Of Interest
# Telegram may be a good way to share files

The Rundown -- April 16

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 15i
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April 15, 2015
Serbian pensioners protest against austerity measures, Kyrgyzstan finds dangerous chemicals in Chinese toys, and a blind photographer exhibits her work in Belarus, plus stories from Pakistan and Afghanistan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - April 15
Note: There will be no Rundown tomorrow 
 
RFE/RL in the Media
# Khadija Ismayilova wins prestigious PEN press freedom award (New York Times breaks the news) 
Washington Post editorial criticizing European Olympic Committees mentions Ismayilova's plight 
New York Times piece on VOA says RFE/RL duplicates "much of the agency's programming"
Mark Zuckerberg tells RFE/RL Azerbaijani Service's Turxan Qarishga that Facebook money transfer is expanding soon 
 
Russia
# Russia blocks Hollywood blockbuster Child 44 "because it makes Stalin look bad"
# Economist on Russia's financial rally
# "Shadow" over Russian V-day celebrations as Western leaders snub
# "In Exile, but Ready to Save Russia" - Ilya Ponomarev, New York Times
 
Ukraine
# Another Yanukovych ally found shot dead in Kyiv 
# "In Rebel Territory of Ukraine, Older Residents Fight to Live" - Andrew Roth, New York Times
# "Ukraine: Inside the Deadlock" - Ben Judah, New York Review of Books 
 
Iran
# Putin says weapons to Iran "purely defensive"
# How the Senate's Iran deal was done
# "Saudis Should Welcome the Iran Deal" - Vali Nasr, New York Times
 
Middle East
# IS gains ground in Anbar
# Trucks struggle to navigate Iraq's IS-controlled roads
# Video of Kurdish girl allegedly shooting at IS fighters goes viral
# "How the Bush Wars Opened the Door for ISIS" - Michael Kinsley, Vanity Fair
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# "Afghanistan's Female Sons" - Nadia Hashimi, Foreign Affairs
# Meet the cartoon kid superheroes of Pakistan
# "Loosening a Party’s Grip on Karachi, a Pakistani City Known for Violence" - Declan Walsh and Zia ur-Rehman, New York Times
# "India and Pakistan's Proxy War in Afghanistan" - Catherine Putz, Diplomat 
 
Central Asia
# Tajikistan's $100 million theatre
# Amnesty: West turning blind eye to torture in Uzbekistan
 
Balkans
# The worsening crisis in Macedonia
# HWR says police in Serbia abusing migrants, asylum seekers
 
Caucasus
# Erdogan condemns Pope for "genocide" comments
 

 


The Rundown -- April 15

RFE/RL Video Roundup - April 14i
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April 14, 2015
Hundreds of balloons released for kidnapped Hazaras in Afghanistan, an exhibition marks the day Georgians defended their language from Soviet efforts to strip it of official status in Tbilisi, plus stories from Tajikistan and Pakistan. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - April 14
RFE/RL in the Media
# Russian media, including Sputnik in English, on RFE/RL's expanding efforts in Russian (Izvestia in Russian)
# Czech president says he will apologize if he can't prove that former RFE/RL journalist admired Hitler (Prague Post)
 
Ukraine
# Fighting intensifies in eastern Ukraine
# Canada sending 200 trainers for Ukraine military
# "Decentralize or Perish" - Yuliya Bila, Foreign Policy 
# "Ukraine Is Attempting to Wipe Away Its Past" - Georgy Bovt, Moscow Times 
 
Russia
# Twerking is very controversial in Russia too
 
 
Iran
# Iran oversight legislation passes committee unanimously; Obama says he will not veto
# "Two Presidents and the Ayatollah" - Ellie Geranmayeh, Lobeblog
Video: Thomas Erdbrink speaks to man who leads "Death to America" chants in Tehran
 
Middle East
# IS escapees describe systematic rape  of Yazidi girls in new HRW report
# IS likely to increase kidnappings as oil money dries up
# Iraq has retaken "a quarter" of IS territory since August, says Pentagon
# Al-Qaida's Yemen branch says its top cleric, wanted by the US, has been killed
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Afghan warlord warns of IS rise
# Taliban fighters kill 18, behead eight
# How long can Pakistan stay out of Yemen fight?
 
Central Asia
# Scientists alarmed at pollution in Central Asia's longest river
 
 
Of Interest
# Mobile video is having a moment

The Rundown -- April 14

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 13i
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April 13, 2015
U.S. rapper Kanye West takes the plunge at an impromptu concert in Armenia, Christians celebrate Orthodox Easter in the war-torn city of Homs in Syria, ethnic Baloch accuse security forces of extra-judicial killings in Pakistan, plus stories from Afghanistan and Bosnia-Herzegovina. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 13
RFE/RL in the Media
CNN and Washington Post use RFE/RL Armenian Service video of Kanye West giving an impromptu concert and jumping into a lake 
HuffPost Live interviews RFE/RL Azerbaijani Service's Arzu Geybullayeva on Internet censorship in Turkey
 
Russia
# Putin lifts ban on S-300 surface-to-air missile sales to Iran
# Snowden "acting very strange" in Russia says Soldatov 
# Hillary Clinton's campaign commercial would have been illegal in Russia
 
Ukraine
# At talks, sides agree to further weapons withdrawals amid escalating violence 
# "The West is Wrong to Write Off Ukraine's Debts" - Alexander Lebedev and Vladislav Inozemtsev, Guardian
 
Middle East
# Islamic State militants breach Iraq refinery perimeter, repelled
Nightmare scene in Yarmouk, as residents caught between IS and Assad regime forces 
# Wall Street Journal on collaboration between Sunnis and Shi'ite militias in fight against IS
 
Iran
# U.S. Senator Cotton says Iran deal could lead to nuclear war
# Saudi Arabia rebuffs Iran call to pull out of Yemen
# Iran suspends off-season pilgrimages to Saudi Arabia amid tensions
# Rezian reportedly to face espionage charges
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Civilian casualties are up ahead of Afghan "fighting season"
# New documentary series, "The fighting Season"
# U.S. commander recounts experience dealing with recently assassinated Afghan warlord
# "Terrorism Case Renews Debate Over Drone Hits" - Mark Mazzetti and Eric Schmidt, New York Times 
 
Caucasus
# Azerbaijan declares Slovak politician wanted
 
Central Asia
# Russia and Kazakhstan in "trade war"
 
Of Interest

The Rundown -- April 13

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 10i
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April 10, 2015
Russia honors the Polish officials killed in a 2010 plane crash, Afghans plead for the safe return of kidnapped relatives, and Georgia buries a police officer killed in a high-profile shooting.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - April 10
RFE/RL in the Media
Yahoo uses RFE/RL video of Poland marking fifth anniversary of plane crash that killed president
Yahoo uses RFE/RL video of aftermath of suicide bombing in Kabul
 
Russia
# Russia (sort of) bans memes
# Russia says it has uncovered a group of spy satellites 
# Long Read: "What Russians Really Think" - Katherin Hille, Financial Times
 
Ukraine
# Group responsible for bombing campaign in Ukraine speaks to Simon Shuster
# The dying ex-officials and their ties to oligarchs
# Chechen commander in Ukraine drawn into Russia intrigue
# "Red tape" causing refugees to suffer
 
Middle East
# Reuters journalist leaves Iraq after threats from Shi'ite militias
# IS video shows destruction of ancient Assyrian city
Bombings kill 12 in Baghdad
# U.S. steps up air campaign as controversial Shi'ite militias withdraw
# U.S. Navy boarded freighter they suspected of delivering weapons to Huthis in Yemen 
 
Iran
# Hundreds of Iranians protest outside Saudi Embassy after claims of abuse in Jeddah airport
# Obama denounces efforts to "derail" nuclear deal
# "Iran's Supreme Leader Gets to No" - Eli Lake, Bloomberg
# Some states will keep sanctions on Iran with or without deal
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Five abducted aid workers killed in Afghanistan
# "Why is Pakistan not supporting its old friend?" - Ayesha Almazroui, National
# UAE ministers warn of "heavy price" for Turkey and Pakistan for "ambiguous stand"
 
Caucasus
# Pope calls mass deaths of Armenians "genocide"
Kardashian mania in Armenia
 
Balkans
# How Skopje became Europe’s new capital of kitsch

The Rundown -- April 3

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 2i
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April 02, 2015
Victims of the 1999 Kosovo war are returned to their families, Iraqis displaced by Islamic State violence start going home, and Serbs protest the planned Belgrade Waterfront, plus stories from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 2
RFE/RL in the Media
New Yorker writes in detail about Kolomoyskiy's rant against RFE/RL Ukrainian Service journalist 
Telegraph cites Carl Schreck's report about deportations of academics in Russia 
Guardian quotes RFE/RL Ukrainian Service interview with Yuriy Stets on "information army"
Yahoo uses RFE/RL Iraqi Service video of Kirkuk residents returning home 
 
Iran
# Iran framework deal reached with more details than expected
# Vox breaks down the deal "in plain English"; a skeptic's guide
 
Middle East
# Saudis warming up to Muslim Brotherhood as lesser of two evils compared to Iran
# Military officials say Tikrit was used to drive a wedge between Iran and Iraq 
# The "warrior Imams" fighting with militias in Iraq
 
Ukraine
# Ukraine agrees to cheaper short-term gas deal with Russia
Three arrested in Ukraine over bombing campaign 
# Ukraine is banning films and TV shows that glorify Russia's military
# Ceasefire a "dark joke" to many in east Ukraine
 
Russia
# The Russian Orthodox Church has become the most prominent of Russian censors 
# One flaw may be that it relies on goodwill of Putin 
# "Russian Artists Face a Choice: Censor Themselves, or Else" - Rachel Donadio, New York Times 
 
Eastern Europe
 
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# U.S. military unable to account for $45 billion spent in Afghanistan
# Suicide bombing kills 17, including parliamentarian, in eastern Afghanistan 
# Afghanistan's "separate but equal" education
# Pakistan deports Al-Qaeda suspect to the U.S. 
#Pakistan's "last Jew" writes about how he'll be spending passover
 
Central Asia
# Karimov said to be hiring hit-men abroad
 
Of Interest
# How governments around the world manipulate the Internet

The Rundown -- April 2

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Apr. 1i
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April 01, 2015
Nationalists protest against a play by Oscar Wilde in Russia, Pakistanis rally in support of Saudi airstrikes on Yemen, Iraqi Christians celebrate New Year, plus stories from Afghanistan and Tajikistan. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - April 1
RFE/RL in the Media
# Brian Whitmore on Monocle to discuss Russia's role in the Middle East
Washington Post cites report by Ganjinai Ganj and Farangis Najibullah on sex workers wearing hijabs in Tajikistan 
Moscow Times reprints Carl Schreck's piece on Western scholars being deported 
 
Ukraine
# East Ukraine separatists pay pensions in Russian rubles
# Simon Ostrovsky goes to Ukraine "border" with separatists, where he reports Ukrainian authorities don't allow essential goods through
# New Russian spring offensive "likely
# Ukraine refuses to extradite Saakashvili 
 
Russia
# Russian trawler sinks, leaving at least 54 dead 
# World Bank says Russian recession will be longer than expected
Forty-five percent of Russians polled think Stalin's repressions "justified" 
# Greece turning to Russia and China as EU negotiations sour 
 
Iran
# In the 11th hour, Obama ordered negotiators to ignore deadline 
# Is the nuclear deal "too big to fail?
# "Deal or No, Iran Will Remain a Nuclear Threat" - Dennis Ross, Politico 
 
Middle East
# Does IS "want a truce?
# A snapshot of IS militants' Libyan stronghold 
# NYT reviews books on IS 
 
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# The "prison-like conditions" for displaced Afghan women 
# Pakistan militant groups pledge support to Saudi campaign in Yemen
# "The Dangerous, Delicate Saudi-Pakistan Alliance" - Arif Rafiq, Foreign Policy 
# "Why Pakistan Will Fight Saudi's Wars but Not Its Own" - Farheen Rizvi, Huffington Post
 
Central Asia
# "Karimov's Crumbling Kleptocracy" - Alisher Ilkhamov and Jeff Goldstein, Foreign Affairs 

The Rundown -- April 1

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 31i
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March 31, 2015
A burning effigy of Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka in Kyrgyzstan, progress on a Central and South Asian energy deal in Afghanistan, and a festival for a Sufi poet in Pakistan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - March 31
RFE/RL in the Media
New York Times mentions raid of RFE/RL Baku offices in December 
 
Iran
# Russia says "key aspects" agreed in Iran nuclear talks, others less optimistic 
# Poll: Clear majority supports nuclear deal with Iran
# "Obama's Real Failure on Iran" - James Poulos, The Week 
 
Middle East
# Iraq says it has taken Tikrit, but the claim is disputed
# Former PM al-Maliki still looms large in Iraq
# Prosecutor, taken hostage by militant leftist group, dies as Turkish special forces storm building
# "Tired of War, Yemeni Bloggers Say, ‘Enough’" - Robert Mackey, New York Times 
 
Ukraine
# "Children of War" - Christopher Miller, Mashable 
# MH17 investigators say Buk rocket strike is primary theory in downing
 
Russia
# Russian special forces soldier describes active role of Russia in conflict
# Kudrin to Putin: Save Russia from five years of stagnation
# Greek pm calls sanctions a "road to nowhere"
 
Eastern Europe
# The food in Belarus is better than in Rome
# Lukashenka says U.S. should be more involved in Ukraine peace process 
 
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Company formerly known as Blackwater has earned over half a billion dollars in poppy war
# ProPublica crowd-sourcing investigation on rebuilding in Afghanistan
# Pakistan leaders in Saudi Arabia to discuss Yemen cooperation
 
Caucasus
# Azerbaijan expels visiting Human Rights Watch representative
 
Of Interest
# Twitter unveils Curator tool
# NYT introduces one sentence stories for Apple watch

The Rundown -- March 31

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 30i
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March 30, 2015
A warm welcome for a U.S. military convoy in the Czech Republic, tearful reunions as Pakistanis evacuated from Yemen return home, plus stories from Moldova and Georgia. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - March 30
RFE/RL in the Media
# Joanna Paraszczuk quoted in Bloomberg on threat to Russia of returning fighters 
 
Iran
# Fears that Khamenei hasn't empowered negotiators to make necessary concessions
# Bloomberg: Talks should continue if deal isn't reached today
# The "weirder" negotiations going on in Lausanne
# Could U.S. airstrikes in Iraq and Yemen have made Americans less averse to strikes in Iran?
# Saudi Arabia lashing out against Iran
# Iran Says U.S. Drone Kills 2 Advisers in Iraq
 
Middle East
Smokers rebel against IS cigarette ban
# Air strike hits Yemen refugee camp 
# Saleh still pulling strings in Yemen
# "The Huthi Enigma" - Robert Worth, New York Review of Books 
 
Ukraine
# Soros offers $1 billion in investments in Ukraine if West helps with private investment
# Ukraine protestants complain of intolerance in the east
# "30-Somethings Remake Ukraine" - Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg
 
Russia
# Assad says Russia has signed arms deals with Russia since 2011, contradicting Moscow's claims
# The mysterious Moscow "hit list" shadowing Russian politics
# Some investors bullish on Russia
# "Greece Looks to Russia as Deal With Europe Stumbles" - Liz Alderman, New York Times
# Mark Galeotti on how Putin could start to crumble in 2016
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Clashes with Taliban halt supply of power in south Afghanistan
# Ghani "walks tightrope" over U.S., Pakistan ties
# Pakistan to join Saudi coalition against Yemen rebels says official; others deny
 
Central Asia
# Karimov "wins" more than 90 percent of vote
 
Of Interest
# BBC updates social media guidance
# Instapaper adds speed-reading option

The Rundown -- March 30

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (L) talks with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov during a new round of Iran nuclear talks, in Lausanne, March 28, 2015.

RFE/RL in the Media
# Dmitry Volchek and Daisy Sindelar's expose on a Russian troll factory covered by Daily MailNewsweekIndependentEndgadgetNew York Post and Express; gets the attention ofSputnik too 
Breitbart cites Golnaz Esfandiari's interview with an Iranian journalist who fled Iran during nuclear talks
 
Iran
# As deadline nears, Iran backs away from key detail, refusing to ship enriched uranium abroad
# Two other issues remain 
# Netanyahu says deal "worse" than feared
# "A Calculated Risk" - Steve Coll, New Yorker 
 
Middle East
# Saudi air strikes cripple Yemen air force
# Arab leaders agree to form joint military force
# "Operation Charlie Foxtrot" - David Rothkopf, Foreign Policy
# Russian official says 1,500 from North Caucasus fighting in Iraq and Syria
 
Ukraine
# Crimean Tatar TV station likely to be shut down
# "Peaceful colonization" is not a strategy for eastern Ukraine
# "What Will the Kremlin Do Next In Ukraine?" - Vladimir Frolov, Moscow Times
 
Russia
# Putin honors two paratrooper brigades with "massive heroism" but says it has nothing to do with Ukraine
# Russia and NASA discuss building a new space station
# "Putin's Economic Team Plays Houdini" - Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg 
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# AP journalist's killer sentenced to 20 years
# "What a Mob Says About the State of Islam in Afghanistan" - Nushin Arbabzadah, Foreign Policy
# "Afghanistan’s Next Chapter" - New York Times editorial 
# Two Czech tourists, held captive since 2013, freed
# How will Pakistan respond to the crisis in Yemen?
 
Central Asia
# Uzbekistan "votes" with 91 percent turnout 
 
Caucasus
# Russian soldier's murder trial to be conducted in Armenia
# "At Home in Armenia" - Juliet Pennington, Boston Globe
 
Of Interest
# How the Lincoln Memorial might have looked

The Rundown -- March 27

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 26i
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March 26, 2015
Humvees in Ukraine, a $200,000 Mercedes in Serbia, plus antiterrorism in Kyrgyzstan and a scout camp in Iraq. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 26
RFE/RL in the media
RT and Reuters on upcoming study about U.S. "information war"
Toronto Star quotes Rob Coalson's piece about Ukraine oligarchs
 
 
Russia
# Putin says Western spy agencies plotting for 2018 election
# Russian army TV channel invites Jeremy Clarkson to present motoring show
# "The Central Banker Who Saved the Russian Economy From the Abyss" - Evgenia Pismennaya and Ilya Arkhipov, Bloomberg 
 
Ukraine
# West holds off on Ukraine aid pledges, seeking reforms
# Wizzair Ukraine to close
# Journalists rate Ukraine's best friends in Brussels 
# "Help Ukraine to Arm Itself" - Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg 
 
Middle East
# Some Shi'ite militias boycotting Tikrit fighting because of U.S. bombing 
# Egypt says it may send troops to Yemen fight; Iran condemns intervention
# Al-Qaeda may be main beneficiary of power vacuum in Yemen
# U.S. drops gory propaganda leaflets over Syria
 
Iran
# US considers allowing Iran to still run centrifuges at fortified site
# Rohani writes to Obama and speaks to Cameroon as deal deadline approaches
# "To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran" - John Bolton, New York Times 
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Soldier indicted for producing child porn in Afghanistan
# Pakistan considering Saudi request to take part in Yemen operation
# Pakistan's newest "political odd couple
 
Central Asia
# Mysterious sleeping ailment continues in Kazakhstan
 
Of Interest

The Rundown -- March 26

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 25i
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March 25, 2015
A suicide bombing hits Kabul, vandals disfigure a shrine to assassinated Russian opposition leader Boris Nemtsov in Moscow, and an experiment in alternative energy in Pakistan, plus stories from Bosnia and Armenia. (RFE/RL)
RFE/RL Video Roundup - March 25
RFE/RL in the Media
# Report by Enders Wimbush and Elizabeth Portale says U.S. and BBG losing "information war
YahooNews uses RFE/RL video of aftermath of Kabul car bomb
Washington Post cites RFE/RL Uzbek service on name change for Victory Day in Uzbekistan 
 
Russia
# Foreign carmakers leaving Russia
# Russia unveils plans for high speed railway and superhighway connecting Europe and America
# Obama reportedly snubs NATO chief in Washington
# Nicaragua may get Russian fighter jets 
 
Ukraine
# Ukraine arrests two top officials on live TV
# Ukraine receives humvees from U.S. 
# "The Political Perils of a Ukraine Default" - Marc Champion, Bloomberg 
 
Eastern Europe
# Revolution "impossible" in Belarus 
 
Middle East
# Hadi flees Yemen and Saudi Arabia begins air strikes, as anti-Huthi Gulf coalition forms 
# Former president Saleh believed to be helping Huthis
# U.S. conducting airstrikes over Tikrit; perhaps closest cooperation with Iran yet 
 
Iran
# In nuclear talks, Iran seeks to avoid specifics
# U.S. officials fear Iran attacking U.S. troops in Iraq
 Soleimani in Iraq for Tikrit offensive 
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# The Afghanistan translator who became a 9/11 millionaire
# Bowe Berghdal charged with misbehavior before the enemy and desertion 
# "President Obama Must Stand With Afghanistan" - Tom Cotton, Politico 
 
Central Asia
# "Kyrgyzstan Reaches out to Europe – While Inching Closer to Russia" - Hugh Williamson, Guardian 
# Troops from Uzbekistan and Russia reportedly deployed to Turkmen-Afghan border
 
Caucasus
# Harvey Nichols opens department store in Azerbaijan
 
Of Interest
# The most important thing on the Internet is the screenshot
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The Rundown -- March 25

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 24i
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March 24, 2015
Thousands of Afghans demand justice in the wake of a mob killing, Kyrgyzstan marks the 10th anniversary of its Tulip Revolution, and Armenian workers accuse their employer of siphoning off their salaries.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - March 24
RFE/RL in the Media
Global Voices interviews Golnaz Esfandiari, "English-Language journalism's ‘bridge’ to Iran"
New York Times mentions RFE/RL as model for BBG plan to create entity for Spanish-language broadcasting 
 
Ukraine
# Amid "ugly" fight with Poroshenko powerful Ukrainian oligarch Kolymoysky resigns
# Oligarch battle "the most serious internal crisis" since new Ukrainian government came to power
# "Ukraine: Divided and Bitter" - Tim Judah, New York Review of Books
# "To See Ukraine’s Future, Recall Crimea" - Andrew Foxall, New York Times
 
Russia
# Russian bid to stop UN benefit for gay couples fails badly 
# Jordan signs $10 billion nuclear power plant deal with Russia
# "Is Russian Literature Dead?" - Owen Matthews, Foreign Policy
 
Iran
# White House accuses Israel of spying on nuclear negotiations and using details to lobby Congress; different than normal spying?
# Iran hard-liners "show restraint" on nuclear talks
# Video profile: NYT's "Man in Tehran"
 
Middle East
# IS militants skimming from salaries paid to state employees
# HRW says Iraqi security forces burned Sunni villages to the ground after liberating them from IS
# U.S. joins Iraqi offensive in Tikrit
# Tunisian Star Wars town now a way-station for IS militants 
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Obama announces decision to maintain troop levels through 2015
# Ghani on U.S. reliance
# U.S. drone strike kills nine Pakistani Taliban in Afghanistan
# Pakistan official says country needs short-range "tactical" nuclear weapons 
 
Balkans
# "Letter from Macedonia" - Rupert Wolfe-Murray, Huffington Post
 
Caucasus
# Armenian anti-NGO law "inspired by Moscow"
 
Of Interest
# Facebook wants to replace websites for news
# If you drilled a hole through earth, it would take 38 minutes for an object to drop to the other side
# U.S. ambassador to Libya quits Twitter

The Rundown -- March 24

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 23i
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March 23, 2015
Afghans demand justice in the wake of a mob killing, Moldova's semi-autonomous Gagauzia region elects a new governor, and Tajikistan celebrates Norouz, plus videos from Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, and Ukraine.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - March 23

RFE/RL in the Media

Newsweek cites Brian Whitmore and his "influential" Power Vertical blog on Nemtsov killing 
Vox uses RFE/RL Ukrainian Service video of Kolomoysky outburst against RFE/RL journalist 
 
Russia
# Opposition lawmaker: RT should be registered as lobby group instead of media
# How Russia tries to "recruit" bloggers
# "Could Kadyrov Replace Putin?" - Mark Galeotti, Moscow Times
 
Ukraine
# Ukraine pledges to stop buying Russian gas starting in April
# Ukraine's ruling party hit by spate of apparent suicides 
# Bloomberg video: Chart shows "dismantling of Ukraine economy
 
Eastern Europe
# Gagauzia elects pro-Russian leader
 
Iran
# Israel looking to France to oppose Iran deal
# Iran working "unconstrained" to tighten grip on Arab states 
# "Obama's Empty Message to Iran" - Eli Lake, Bloomberg 
# "Iran’s Coming Leadership Crisis" - Sohrab Ahmari, Wall Street Journal
 
Middle East
# Erdogan in rift with government 
# Obama to host Iraqi PM on April 14
# Battle for Tikrit "key" to Iraq's future
# Group of 11 medical students go to IS-controlled territory
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Gunmen kill 13 bus passengers in Afghanistan
# Video of alleged IS member recruiting Afghans
# "Afghanistan and Pakistan: The False Promise of Rapprochement" - Mohammed Umer Daudzai, New York Times 
# Pakistan displays locally made armed drone
 
Central Asia
# OCCRP's investigation into Gulnara Karimova's (former) empire
# China and Russia tussle for influence in Kazakhstan
 
Of Interest
# How Vox grew its audience on Facebook

The Rundown -- March 20

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 19i
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March 19, 2015
Displaced people return to their homes in Pakistan, high school students protest in Macedonia, security stepped up for Norouz in Afghanistan, plus stories from Armenia and Pakistan.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 19
RFE/RL in the Media
Buzzfeed cites RFE/RL reporting on anti-gay movements in Kazakhstan
BBC cites RFE/RL Russian Service report on Kremlin-backed troll farms
Daily NewsTelegraphDaily MailThe Blaze use RFE/RL video from horrific scene of a woman beaten to death for allegedly burning the Koran in Kabul
 
Russia
# EU says sanctions will stay in place until Minsk deal is implemented
# New York Times questions Kadyrov about Nemtsov murder -- Kadyrov says he doesn't know what goes on in Moscow 
 
Ukraine
# U.S. army paratroopers to train national guardsmen in Ukraine
# Foul stench in rebel-held east Ukraine as war hits water treatment
# "The Gains From Ukraine" - Ryan Evans, New York Times 
# Video: Protestants must practice in secret in Donetsk
 
Eastern Europe
# Belarus surprises Russia with China potash deal 
# Moldova bans two Russian journalists who planned to present the Crimea documentary 
 
Iraq/Syria
# IEDs one of the biggest challenges for Iraqi forces
# IS increasingly using encryption software to evade surveillance
# IS claims responsibility for Tunisia attack, but officials can't establish link
# The IS honey trap 
 
Iran
# Draft Iran accord would cut Iranian centrifuge production by 40 percent
# U.S. officials say earlier Iran centrifuge test was an error
# Fears that Saudi Arabia will try to match Iran
# "Inside the lives of Iranian women" on a Tehran stage
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# According to study, violence more likely to occur in pro-U.S. villages of Afghanistan
# Vice: The precarious future of female education in Afghanistan
 
Central Asia
# Putin to visit Astana today
# Why cheap oil may be good for China in Central Asia
 
Caucasus
 

 


The Rundown -- March 19

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 18i
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March 18, 2015
A Kyrgyz protest demands the extradition of former President Bakiev from Belarus, Afghan prisoners are released under an amnesty, and Pakistan lawyers go on strike after the killing of their colleague.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 18
Russia
# Navanly against sending weapons to Ukraine
# GM to close Russian assembly plant
# "Kant Is a Moron" says graffiti on the philosopher's crumbling house
 
 
Ukraine
# The mysterious "Internet mishap" that sent UK nuclear program data to Ukraine
# "The Making of a Christian Taliban in Ukraine" - Marcin Mamon, Intercept
 
Iraq/Syria
# HRW report says Iraq forces turned on nearby villages after military victory (satellite mages)
# What is "Jihadi John's" role in IS
# You probably won't read this piece about Syria
 
Iran
# Thomas Friedman suggests IS may be only way to stop Iran
# "Don’t Let Iran Off the Hook for Human Rights" - Suzanne Nossel, Foreign Policy 
 
Balkans
# Serbia arrests eight suspected in Srebrenica massacre
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# U.S. likely to delay closure of two Afghan bases
Seven killed at governor's compound in Afghanistan
# Can Afghanistan and Pakistan ever get along?
# Pakistan stays controversial execution
 
Central Asia
# Does Iran have a "bridge" to Central Asia?
 
Of Interest
# Infographic: Dollar:other currencies
# Chrome beta to bring push notifications to desktop

The Rundown -- March 18

RFE/RL Video Roundup - March 17i
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March 17, 2015
Iraqi Peshmerga fighters gain ground against Islamic State militants, Kyrgyzstan commemorates the victims of civil unrest, Serbian teachers protest to preserve their salaries, plus stories from Pakistan and Bosnia-Herzegovina.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - March 17
RFE/RL in the Media
Today's Zeman cites RFE/RL interview with German-Turkish leader calling on Ankara to recognize "genocide"
 
Russia
# Russia rules out handing back Crimea, expands war games
# Looming recession unsettling once booming city of Kaluga 
# "Has the Russian System’s Agony Begun?" - Lilia Shevtsova, American Interest 
# Why an American, and the the best woman basketball player in the world, is playing in Russia
 
Ukraine
# Ukraine approve special status law, but separatist leaders say it doesn't meet Minsk demands
# Ukraine scrambles to avoid new unrest after child killed by military vehicle
# Three soldiers killed in eastern Ukraine fighting 
# Crisis taking toll on Ukraine's oligarchs (Akhmetov has lost as much as $5.8 billion)
 
Iraq/Syria
# Iraq's Tikrit offensive stalled by IS bombs
American basketball players gain fans in Iraqi league
# IS vandalizing historic church in Mosul
# IS' "long con" in Syria
 
Iran
Optimism and caution from nuclear negotiators as deadline nears
# UN says Iran oppression of rights, women worse under Rohani
# "Iran, Inequality, and the Battle of American Norms" -  Adam Gopnik, New Yorker 
 
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# UN envoy and Russian representative say IS has foothold in Afghanistan
# Is Turkey a target in Afghanistan?
# Pakistan hangs 12 convicts in jails across the country
# Lawyer for man who helped CIA find bin Laden shot dead in Pakistan
 
Caucasus
# Azerbaijan sentences opposition activist to six years in jail
 
Of Interest
# On of the greatest AP corrections ever

The Rundown -- March 17

RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 16i
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March 16, 2015
Christians protest after church massacre in Pakistan, new border restrictions for Russian citizens introduced in Ukraine, efforts to overcome resistance to measles vaccination in Kyrgyzstan, plus stories from Azerbaijan and Bosnia.
RFE/RL Video Roundup - Mar. 16
RFE/RL in the Media
Breitbart cites RFE/RL's Under the Black Flag blog's coverage of intense fighting in Tel Tamir
# Brian Whitmore's coverage of the Kadyrov connection to Nemtsov murder cited in Twin Cities Pioneer Press 
 
 
Russia
# Russian soldiers who served in Crimea speak to Meduza
# Russia's northern fleet put on full alert in the Arctic
 
Ukraine
# Riots in Kostyantynivka after Ukrainian armored vehicle runs over child 
Fighting rages near Donetsk airport despite ceasefire 
 
Iraq/Syria
# IS maintains hold over some parts of Tikrit; Saddam's tomb virtually leveled 
# Assyrian artifacts to be returned to Iraq
# IS allies try to cut off Libya oil revenue
# Anonymous releases list of more than 9,000 IS-linked Twitter accounts
 
Iran
# Saudi Arabia warns Iran deal could start nuclear fuel race 
# An Iran deal could make oil prices even lower
# Iran court sentences son of former president to 15 years
 
Afghanistan/Pakistan
# Afghanistan talks with Taliban coming soon
# "How Obama Handed Afghanistan a Prisoner Dilemma" - Jenifer Fenton, Al Jazeera 
# Impostor posing as ex-Pakistan cricketeer dupes BBC
 
Central Asia
# Tajikistan president's son to lead national anti-corruption agency
 
Caucasus
# Concern in Baku over Russia-Georgia-Armenia transit
 
Of Interest

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