RA’s Daily Russia News Blast – Aug 14, 2017

TODAY: Gay Pride in St Petersburg gathers a hundred activists; five years of NGO constraints; renowned theater director’s passport confiscated; women to be accepted into Air Force; Snapchat finds itself registered with Russian regulator unawares; Washington may force embassy closure on Russia; defeating forecasts, economy grows; Venezuela bust is Putin’s boon. 

The Unreasonable Expectations of Democracy

There’s a few interesting comments on Arab Spring pessimism on the interwebs today. Here, writing in Foreign Affairs (stifle that yawn), Sheri Berman makes some interesting historical comparisons of political transformations, and points toward the unreasonable expectations many critics have placed on the world’s most recent democracy newborns. In addition to blaming new democratic regimes […]

Anti-Russia Sentiment on the Rise in Arab World

Australian newspaper The National has a summary translation of a column published in Al Hayat: Russia’s less-than-enthusiastic stance on the Arab Spring, and its high tolerance for repressive Arab regimes, raise many questions about Moscow’s real interests in the region, wrote Abdullah Iskandar, managing editor of the pan-Arab newspaper Al Hayat, in a column yesterday. […]