• Sergei Karaganov Reveals a Russian Elite’s World Vision

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    The cancel culture has hit high level diplomatic discussions. U.S. Russian negotiations are in the deep freeze. Even the head of the humanitarian International Committee of the Red Cross was severely criticized for talking to and shaking hands with the Russian Foreign Minister. Dialogue or contact with Russians is nyet, nyet. We have little knowledge of what Russians are thinking.

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  • NATO’s Partnerships 360 Symposium: A Fatal Attraction?

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    “This is just perfect for Switzerland,” exulted a high-level Swiss defense official when Switzerland joined NATO’s Partnership for Peace (PfP) in 1996. “We can have access to the bar without being full country club members.” He added: “I don’t like playing golf anyway,” an allusion to Swiss neutrality which forbids Switzerland from joining any military alliance such as NATO.

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  • Witnessing and Celebrating a Unique Win-Win Moment

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    Sports, like politics, is a based on binary win-lose calculations. Games and elections are summarized in sports and front pages by W and L. Who won? Who lost? The excluded middle, or more conventionally consensus, cooperation or compromise, have gone the way of black-and-white television and Sony Walkmans. In our current polarization, we only want to know who’s up, who are the winners. Tradition now has it to go to Disney World to celebrate whatever victory one has accomplished. Prepare the downtown ticker tape parade, let the loudspeakers blast “We Are The Champions,” winning and celebrating are today’s accepted symbols of success.  

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  • Ukraine Reconstruction, Peace and Justice

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    Is it possible to speak of reconstruction while a war is still going on? The Swiss government and Ukraine co-organized an international conference in Lugano July 4-5 to deal with rebuilding Ukraine. Although not as high-level as the recent G-7 or NATO summits, the aim of the conference, according to Ignazio Cassis, the Swiss Foreign minister who also holds the rotating Swiss presidency, was to have a “Lugano Declaration” similar to the Marshall Plan that described the reconstruction of Europe after World War II. One thousand participants from 40 countries and representatives from international organizations attended as well as almost one hundred representatives from Ukraine. 

     

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