Facebook Twitter Instagram Youtube LinkedIn Telegram

Moldova’s “patriots”, from Iurie Roșca to Ilan Shor: politicians serving Moscow’s interests in Chișinău (I)

Moldova’s “patriots”, from Iurie Roșca to Ilan Shor: politicians serving Moscow’s interests in Chișinău (I)

Russia has always had people defending its interests at the level of the political class and administration in Chișinău. Neither of them have tried to hide their connections to Moscow, while others seem to have played their part flawlessly, ending up at the helm of nationalist and pro-European movements, which most likely allowed Russia to control certain political mechanisms inside Moldova. In this first instalment, Veridica offers an overview of major politicians who have left their mark on 1990s’ Moldova.

Corneliu Rusnac
Corneliu Rusnac
02 Dec 2022
The Euro is poised to become the next target of disinformation in Bulgaria

The Euro is poised to become the next target of disinformation in Bulgaria

As pro-Europeans in Sofia are confident that Bulgaria will switch to the Euro in 2024 pro-Russian parties claim the adoption of the EU single currency will only bring economic instability. Debates and heated exchanges on this topic might become part of the political landscape in the next two years. Disinformation is bound to be part of the picture.

Svetoslav Todorov
Svetoslav Todorov
30 Nov 2022
Russia wants to use refugees to cause a rift in Ukrainian society

Russia wants to use refugees to cause a rift in Ukrainian society

Russia’s war in Ukraine has displaced a huge number of Ukrainian refugees. Millions of people fled Ukraine, heading to other European countries, although many chose to relocate to some of the country’s safer areas. Russia has been trying to turn this crisis to its advantage. In EU countries, it has been promoting false narratives designed to generate public hostility towards Ukrainian refugees. In the case of Ukrainians relocated at national level, Russian propaganda sought to focus on fueling public unrest and internal tensions.

Marin Gherman
Marin Gherman
28 Nov 2022
Why have peace negotiations between Ukraine and Russia become impossible?

Why have peace negotiations between Ukraine and Russia become impossible?

The last round of peace negotiations between Russia and Ukraine as part of the war launched by Moscow took place in March and did not produce any results. For over eight months, the negotiation process is in a deadlock, neither party being willing to accept peace at any cost: both Kyiv and Moscow want victory.

Marin Gherman
Marin Gherman
14 Nov 2022
Russia has launched a hybrid war against the Republic of Moldova

Russia has launched a hybrid war against the Republic of Moldova

The latest developments in Chisinau suggest that the Republic of Moldova seems to have become the target of a hybrid war launched by the Russian Federation to topple the current pro-European power and bring that state back into Moscow's sphere of influence. The authorities in Chisinau are forced to face an unprecedented energy crisis, successive increases in the prices of the most important products and services, but also protests organized by parties believed to be backed by the secret services in Moscow. Adding to these challenges is the deepening security crisis as a result of the war in Ukraine, particularly the missile and drone attacks on Ukrainian energy infrastructure in recent weeks.

Corneliu Rusnac
Corneliu Rusnac
11 Nov 2022
Polish-German relations: how historical myths shape the contemporary policy of the Polish government

Polish-German relations: how historical myths shape the contemporary policy of the Polish government

Poland's conservative government is increasingly critical to Germany, by virtue of a "historical" conflict that is largely imaginary. Anti-German sentiments are sometimes mixed with anti-EU ones, and even Russia, Poland's traditional enemy, is viewed more leniently. Could this be a first sign that a Polexit is being prepared?

Michal Kukawski
Michal Kukawski
07 Nov 2022
China in the Xi era

China in the Xi era

The 20th Congress of the Chinese Communist Party has tightened Xi Jinping’s grip on power in China. Before him, only the founder of the People’s Republic of China, Mao Zedung, had enjoyed such sweeping control over the country. The Xi era will likely go down in history as one of the most repressive regimes at home and most aggressive overseas, compared to the previous three decades of relative liberalization.

Ioana Dumitrescu
Ioana Dumitrescu
05 Nov 2022
The Czech Republic is looking for a president to replace pro-Russian Miloš Zeman

The Czech Republic is looking for a president to replace pro-Russian Miloš Zeman

For almost ten years the Prague Castle, the seat of Czech presidents, was one of the most pro-Russian and pro-Chinese places in the European Union. Miloš Zeman will leave office on March 8. It is too early to say who will succeed him, but we can already certainly say that the style and content of the presidency will change fundamentally.

Michael Švec
Michael Švec
31 Oct 2022
The Republic of Moldova: how the oligarchs and the pro-Russians failed their “revolution”

The Republic of Moldova: how the oligarchs and the pro-Russians failed their “revolution”

The anti-government protests organized daily, since September 18, by the Shor Party in Chisinau, turned increasingly slow during the month of October, to eventual stop all together not long ago. Now, Moscow is trying to expand its “cooperation” with pro-Russian political forces other than this party that it seems to have bet on at the beginning of autumn.

Corneliu Rusnac
Corneliu Rusnac
24 Oct 2022
Is Ukraine capable of withstanding a nuclear attack from Russia?

Is Ukraine capable of withstanding a nuclear attack from Russia?

Starting February 24, Russia has been using nuclear blackmail increasingly often, either via propaganda or in the discourse of various officials, from president Putin to the Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov. At first, Russia threatened only the West, but lately we have witnessed an increasing number of threats regarding the use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine. Will Ukraine be capable of withstanding a possible nuclear attack and stay in the fight? Are Ukrainian authorities, the army and the people ready for this scenario?

Marin Gherman
Marin Gherman
10 Oct 2022
Bulgaria’s elections: a rebranded Borissov, more pro-Russians in the Parliament and the same stalemate

Bulgaria’s elections: a rebranded Borissov, more pro-Russians in the Parliament and the same stalemate

After Sunday’s general elections, Boyko Borissov’s GERB came back on top but is left to the oldest Bulgarian dilemma – whether to lean towards the West or the East. Borissov has been rebranding himself as more critical towards Russia, but past corruption allegation make it hard for him to find partners. Pro-Russian parties also increased their clout, but they have no chance of forming a majority.

Svetoslav Todorov
Svetoslav Todorov
07 Oct 2022
Populism, Russia’s toxic influence and the rise of the far right in Europe

Populism, Russia’s toxic influence and the rise of the far right in Europe

The far right has had a remarkable year in a number of European countries, obtaining good results – and actually winning – elections held in countries such as Italy, Sweden, France and Portugal. The rise of the far right was facilitated by a plethora of factors, including demographic changes, major events or crises and Russia’s manipulations. Are we truly headed towards a Europe dominated by the far right, or is there a limit to this growing phenomenon?

Ioana Dumitrescu
Ioana Dumitrescu
04 Oct 2022
The Russian Connection in Poland

The Russian Connection in Poland

Polish conservatives have been among the most virulent critics of Russia in Europe for years. Beyond the rhetoric, however, their policies – and their ideology – are so similar to what Russia is promoting in EU member states that they seem to have been written in Moscow.

Michal Kukawski
Michal Kukawski
26 Sep 2022
Bulgaria’s next elections - a footnote rather than a turning point

Bulgaria’s next elections - a footnote rather than a turning point

Bulgaria is looking like a place that no one really wants to govern. The country is heading for its fourth elections in eighteen months and chances for a coalition are getting increasingly small. As major players are trying to win the popular vote, smaller parties are hoping for momentum, as polls predict that the next parliament might feature up to seven parties.

Svetoslav Todorov
Svetoslav Todorov
22 Sep 2022
The Czech Republic: Pro-Russian movements are back

The Czech Republic: Pro-Russian movements are back

The Czech Republic has been one of Ukraine’s staunchest supporters ever since Russia launched its large scale of the country, in February. However, pro-Russian groups are increasingly active in the Czech Republic, and they are trying to capitalize on the population’s financial and economic worries.

Michael Švec
Michael Švec
20 Sep 2022
Ukraine’s counteroffensive and its impact on the Republic of Moldova

Ukraine’s counteroffensive and its impact on the Republic of Moldova

The events of early September in Ukraine may have significant consequences on Chișinău as well. The counteroffensive mounted by Ukrainian troops in the northeast, the liberation of most of the Kharkiv region, but also of southern territories previously held by the Russian military, have increased the odds of foiling the Moscow’s plans for the Republic of Moldova, at least in the short run.

Corneliu Rusnac
Corneliu Rusnac
19 Sep 2022
Liz Truss, the “political chameleon” tasked with navigating four overlapping crises in the United Kingdom

Liz Truss, the “political chameleon” tasked with navigating four overlapping crises in the United Kingdom

Liz Truss is taking over as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom at a time when the country is struggling with multiple crises: the crisis in the energy and healthcare sectors, the crisis generated by Northern Ireland’s post-Brexit standing, and the war in Ukraine. Throughout her political career, Liz Truss stood out through her readiness to radically alter her political views. Her survival as Prime Minister may require her to display some degree of consistency.

Ioana Dumitrescu
Ioana Dumitrescu
14 Sep 2022
Why is Kharkiv so important for both Ukrainians and Russians. An outpost of the “Russian world” vs. a symbol of Ukraine

Why is Kharkiv so important for both Ukrainians and Russians. An outpost of the “Russian world” vs. a symbol of Ukraine

The successful counteroffensive of the Ukrainian armed forces in the Kharkiv region was not just the result of good tactical planning, but also a consequence of pro-Ukrainian sentiment at society level, determined by the country’s history, its invaluable cultural legacy and the positive experience of the first two phases of fighting off the Russian aggression.

Marin Gherman
Marin Gherman
13 Sep 2022
Russia’s expansionism, Putin’s outposts in Europe and the Kosovo precedent

Russia’s expansionism, Putin’s outposts in Europe and the Kosovo precedent

Russia doesn’t recognize Kosovo as a sovereign state, but it’s using it to endorse the “independence” of separatist/captured territories in Georgia and Ukraine: Abkhazia, South Ossetia, Crimea and Donbas. Besides, the Serbian enclave in Kosovo, Mitrovica, can be used by Moscow as a genuine outpost on the border with a NATO-protected territory. Just like other “outposts” Putin is relying on in Europe, Mitrovica too can be useful when Moscow wants to get something done or simply wants to distract everyone’s attention – even from a war such as the one in Ukraine.

Ioana Dumitrescu
Ioana Dumitrescu
26 Aug 2022
Moscow is pulling Bulgaria back, as the country is heading to snap elections

Moscow is pulling Bulgaria back, as the country is heading to snap elections

After ousted PM Kiril Petkov’s coalition was adamant in its pro-West and pro-EU position, current interim government, selected by President Radev and led by caretaker PM Donev, is making chaotic moves, risking further instability.

Svetoslav Todorov
Svetoslav Todorov
23 Aug 2022
Opinion barometers after six months of war: Ukrainians are breaking up with the “Russian world” for good and want to be part of the EU, but not at any cost

Opinion barometers after six months of war: Ukrainians are breaking up with the “Russian world” for good and want to be part of the EU, but not at any cost

Putin's objective to bring the neighboring country back into Moscow's orbit and into the so-called “Russian world” seems, more than ever, doomed to failure: Ukrainians no longer believe in the possibility of a reconciliation with Russia even after the fall of the Putin regime. The majority of Ukraine's population now wants European integration, but does not seem willing to accept all the EU's conditions.

Marin Gherman
Marin Gherman
15 Aug 2022
Ukraine's wartime press: hit by “deoligarchization”, underfunded and increasingly controlled by authorities

Ukraine's wartime press: hit by “deoligarchization”, underfunded and increasingly controlled by authorities

In recent months, the press in Ukraine has gone through a series of important changes, as it had to adapt to the new realities dictated by the war – funding cuts, personnel problems, involvement in the effort to mobilize the population. On the other hand, the media landscape is also feeling the impact of the “deoligarchization” law, promulgated by President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in November 2021, before the start of the war.

Marin Gherman
Marin Gherman
08 Aug 2022
The Suwałki Gap: could a war between NATO and Russia start over its control?

The Suwałki Gap: could a war between NATO and Russia start over its control?

With NATO-Russia relations at their lowest level in history, following the latter’s invasion of Ukraine, a stretch of land connecting Poland to Lithuania has come into focus. The Suwałki Gap borders Russia’s Kaliningrad enclave. It could be a tempting target, as its control would help Russia cut NATO’s land bridge to its Baltic members. It could also be used, this time by the Alliance, to further isolate Kaliningrad. Is the Suwałki Gap the powder keg between NATO and Russia?

Michal Kukawski
Michal Kukawski
01 Aug 2022
Narratives used by Ukraine to boost the morale of the population

Narratives used by Ukraine to boost the morale of the population

Russia’s campaign in Russia is doubled by an information war, which among other things seeks to discourage Ukrainian resistance. Kyiv is trying to respond to this campaign, on the one hand to demoralize the enemy as well, while on the other hand to enliven Ukrainians’ fighting spirit. The protracted war, however, has prompted Ukrainian leaders to adapt their discourse.

Marin Gherman
Marin Gherman
15 Jul 2022
Madrid 1997 – Madrid 2022. An evolution of NATO’s perception of the Russian threat

Madrid 1997 – Madrid 2022. An evolution of NATO’s perception of the Russian threat

At the 1997 NATO Summit in Madrid, the Alliance kicked off its eastward enlargement process by integrating ex-communist countries that used this opportunity to make sure they would never again fall under Russia’s control. A quarter of a century later, also in Madrid, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization launched a new strategic concept, taking note of Moscow’s aggressions and threats.

Ioana Dumitrescu
Ioana Dumitrescu
08 Jul 2022
Battle fatigue in Ukraine and the West and the lessons of the past

Battle fatigue in Ukraine and the West and the lessons of the past

More than 4 months after the start of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the so-called “battle fatigue” is starting to show signs both in Ukraine and in the western world. It’s become rather obvious in politicians’ speeches, in the wear and tear of the military and civilians, in the way war is reflected in the international press and in the public's interest in war-related topics.

Marin Gherman
Marin Gherman
01 Jul 2022
Bulgaria circles back to a political turmoil

Bulgaria circles back to a political turmoil

Six months in, the reformist cabinet of PM Kiril Petkov was taken down by the growing opposition which initiated the first ever successful no-confidence motion in Bulgaria’s history.

Svetoslav Todorov
Svetoslav Todorov
24 Jun 2022
The Republic of Moldova: the new head of the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office will have to solve cases that also concern leaders of the current opposition

The Republic of Moldova: the new head of the Anticorruption Prosecutor’s Office will have to solve cases that also concern leaders of the current opposition

A prosecutor who has investigated numerous cases of major corruption in the United States has been appointed head of the Anticorruption Prosecutor's Office in the Republic of Moldova, an institution similar to the Romanian National Anticorruption Directorate. The appointment of the new prosecutor is important both for the reform of the judiciary and the rapprochement of the Republic of Moldova with the EU, and for the consolidation of the political class in Chisinau, especially the opposition in Parliament, as the leaders of this opposition, oriented towards Russia, seem to all have integrity issues.

Corneliu Rusnac
Corneliu Rusnac
22 Jun 2022
How the war in Ukraine caused a rift within Central Europe’s Visegrad Group

How the war in Ukraine caused a rift within Central Europe’s Visegrad Group

The Visegrad Group (V4) acted, for years, in concert to give the populist leaders of Central European countries some levarage against the other EU countries. The war in Ukraine caused a rift within the V4, as Hungary prefered to preserve as much as possible its relationship with Russia, much to the dismay of its partners.

Michael Švec
Michael Švec
15 Jun 2022
How official narratives about the war have shifted in Russia and Ukraine in the three months since the conflict broke out.

How official narratives about the war have shifted in Russia and Ukraine in the three months since the conflict broke out.

The war in Ukraine was launched by Russia under the pretext of de-nazifying the neighboring country. From Moscow's point of view, it should have been a quick operation ending with a regime change in Kyiv. For the Ukrainians, on the other hand, the priority in the early days was survival. Developments on the ground - and the success of the Ukrainian defense - have led to the adjustment of these objectives, which can be seen in the narratives of the two camps.

Marin Gherman
Marin Gherman
06 Jun 2022

Article made for project
Fake News - Fake reality: Social resilience through critical thinking.

The project is carried out by the Association of Social Alternatives in partnership with the Association of the International Alliance of Romanian Journalists and the Center Iași County of Resources and Educational Assistance and benefits from a financing amounting to 148,055.00 euros, through the Active Citizens Fund Romania program, funded by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the 2014-2021 EEA Grants. The contents of this material do not necessarily represent the official position of EEA and Norwegian grants 2014-2021; for more information access www.eeagrants.org.

We work together for a green, competitive, inclusive Europe.

Details about the project here:

SOCIAL ALTERNATIVES