Abkhazia, Transdniestria, and northern Cyprus, three unrecognized statelets in Europe that arose during conflicts in the twentieth century, have endured for decades. Despite many problems, they are self-governing and stable, and they show no signs of collapsing.
Similar to Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014, Western powers have been confined to watching events from the sidelines without finding an effective response—so far.
While the EU is absolutely right to be taking steps to limit the power of the tech giants, it is remiss in neglecting the benefits of digital democracy.
A naval skirmish between Russia and Ukraine in the Sea of Azov further strains an already strung-out relationship. Ultimately, Moscow cannot afford to escalate the tensions—neither can Kyiv.
Europe’s newest member states can do much more to shape the debate in the EU. Forging alliances with their Western counterparts would be a first step.
A multitude of challenges confront the EU in 2019. How European leaders address these developments over the course of the next year will have far-reaching consequences.
Bottom-up citizen interest in more direct forms of political control is a genie that cannot easily be put back into a bottle. Across Europe, direct democracy needs to be improved rather than suppressed.
The rift between Western and Central Europe runs deep. It is the result of different definitions of what the EU is and what it should be.
Around the world, conservative groups have been gaining influence, bolstering the power of right-wing leaders. It is a trend driven not only by older generations but also by the young.
President Poroshenko hopes to win votes from the issue of church autonomy. But it is a risky strategy, and some commentators are warning about potential violence.