Ukraine: Out of the Frying Pan

In the end, the street triumphed over the elite. Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych tried to hang on to power, and failed. Russian President Vladimir Putin tried to maintain Russian influence, and failed. The EU tried to mediate, and failed. And the United States tried to…well, I’ll get to that in a moment. Over the weekend, the Maidan movement in Kiev rejected the agreement reached...
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Ecotopia

The first Ecotopia took place in 1989 in Germany, in a field not far from Cologne in West Germany. Three hundred and fifty people lived in tents for three weeks. They ate organic food. They discussed environmental issues and movement politics. They sang, put on ecoplays, and used a special currency (the ECO) to buy and sell items. These open-air Green festivals took place every year until 2008....
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The Scandal of Syria

Olivia Pope wears the white hat. Or, as fans of the TV show Scandal know, she desperately wants to believe that she wears the white hat. Olivia Pope is a Washington fixer. She has assembled a team of “gladiators” who do whatever necessary — bending the law, breaking the law, tearing the law into tiny little shreds — to defend the “good guys.” But Olivia Pope, despite her name, is...
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The Goldilocks Generation

If you were of a certain age and with certain skills, the changes that took place in 1989 in East-Central Europe created an enormous world of opportunity. Those young enough to change with the times could suddenly rise to the heights of politics and business. And if you spoke English – or were willing to learn it very quickly – you could become an intermediary with the West and enter an...
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Romania’s Fragile New Left

Romania is perhaps the last place to expect an independent Left to take root. Unlike in Poland or Hungary or Yugoslavia, a critical socialist movement didn’t emerge in response to the orthodox Communists in power. And the Social Democrats that crawled from the wreckage of the 1989 revolution – first as part of the National Salvation Front and then in their own Social Democratic Party –...
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