Archive for September, 2009
Moldova’s transfer of power is in full swing, confirming an earlier claim I made that Moldova is the only post-Soviet state (the Baltics aside) where every single transfer of power since 1991 took place through a tortuous, but still uninterrupted, cycle of elections. (Though, to be fair, Ukraine is more pluralistic and is likely to have a transfer of power through elections in Januari 2010.
Voronin’s fin de regime
On 9/11 Vladimir Voronin announced his resignation. Except for Communist party members few ventured to say a good word about Voronin’s eight years in power and except for the pro-Communist TV channels few seemed to regret it. It was also striking just how short and muted the farewell was (see a piece I wrote on that in Romanian). When Eltsin or Shevardandze resigned (in 1999 and 2003 respectively) their departures were historical events that sparked heated discussions in talk-shows, newspapers, or public transportation for days, if not weeks. You could not avoid thinking of their (mixed) historical legacy and you could not avoid a pervasive sense of entering a new epoch. Read the rest of this entry »
(MORE updates…) Here is an interesting opinion poll (Eurasia Monitor) where post-Soviet publics are asked whether they prefer integration into the EU, union of Russia/Belarus/Ukraine/Kazakhstan or independence without integration with any such entities. The results broadly confirm some of the findings from our recent ECFR report on Russian and European neighbourhood policies which argues that EU soft power in the region is not uncotested.
Among the more interesting results are (see page 35 of this opinion poll):
- Georgia comes first in pro-EU sentiment with 36% being in favour of integration with the EU. But it also comes first in pro-independence sentiment with 48% (not willing to join any integrationist blocks). Unsurprisingly only 3% want integration into a Russian-led Union. Read the rest of this entry »