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Podcast: The Second Front

Which side is stronger on the governance front?
Which side is stronger on the governance front?

The battle between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russia separatists in Donbas is settling into a tense and fragile stalemate.

But the real battle between Moscow and Kyiv is only just beginning.

If 2014 was largely defined by the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine, now -- with both countries economies devastated by the conflict -- the coming year will likely be defined by a war of governance. Moscow is doubling down on its statist authoritarian model, while Ukraine is attempting to create a European-style free-market democracy.

And a lot is riding on which model wins.

On the latest Power Vertical Podcast, we discuss this front in the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Joining me are Kirill Kobrin, editor of the Moscow-based history and sociology magazine Neprikosnovenny Zapas; Natalya Churikova, managing editor of RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service and host of the program European Connect; and Andreas Umland, a professor of Russian and Ukrainian history at Kyiv Mohyla Academy and a senior research fellow at the Institute for Euro-Atlantic Cooperation in Kyiv.

Also on the podcast, we look at the military situation in the Donbas and examine the respective strategies of Moscow and Kyiv.


Podcast: The Second Front
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About This Blog

The Power Vertical
The Power Vertical

The Power Vertical is a blog written especially for Russia wonks and obsessive Kremlin watchers by Brian Whitmore. It offers Brian's personal take on emerging and developing trends in Russian politics, shining a spotlight on the high-stakes power struggles, machinations, and clashing interests that shape Kremlin policy today. Check out The Power Vertical Facebook page or


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