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Essay, May/June 2014
Marina Ottaway and David Ottaway

Iraqi Kurdistan has achieved new prosperity by exporting its own oil and gas to Turkey, against the objections of Iraq’s central government. By challenging Baghdad’s claims to exclusive control of Iraq’s natural resources, the Kurds are showing how economic cooperation can make Middle Eastern borders more porous.

Jonathan Hopkin and Mark Blyth

Wealthy Russian expats seem to wield substantial influence over the British government's approach to the Ukraine crisis, which points to the outsized role that such super-rich play in British politics. But all that foreign money reveals deep structural weaknesses in the British economy.

Kemal Kirisci and Raj Salooja

Turkey has maintained a generous open-door policy for Syrian refugees. As Syrian refugees continue to pour into the country, Turkey must address their long-term status within its borders.

Jakob Mischke and Andreas Umland

Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Germany’s foreign minister, inherited a long German tradition of bracketing human rights concerns when dealing with Russia. But Steinmeier's forceful response to the Ukraine crisis signals that German foreign policy is entering a very new era.

Steven A. Cook

Watching Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan resort to increasingly authoritarian measures in recent months, many observers have called on President Abdullah Gul to step in. But that is unlikely to happen.

Lukas Kaelin

Earlier this year, Swiss voted to amend their constitution so that the government could regulate immigration from neighboring European countries. If Bern follows through, the days of unrestricted labor movement -- a requirement for Switzerland’s continued bilateral relationship with the European Union -- will be over.

Halil Karaveli

Last week, Erdogan banned Twitter to try to prevent the spread of recordings of incriminating conversations between him and members of his family and inner circle. By exposing the prime minister’s abuses of power, the dirty dealings of the Gülenists (Erdogan's foes and likely purveyors of the recordings), and the weakness of the opposition, the scandal raises doubts about the future of Turkish democracy.

Pawel Swieboda

Warsaw has quietly developed a special relationship with Kiev. In part, that's because Poland has much to gain from a further expansion of the EU into eastern Europe. But there is a missionary zeal in Polish diplomacy that exceeds a purely rational calculation of economic interests.

Brenda Shaffer

Officials have proposed speeding up U.S. natural gas exports to Europe to help shield the continent from the Ukraine crisis, which could disrupt Russian gas deliveries to the region. But Ukraine is not Europe's biggest problem. More troubling are its unhelpful energy policies and insufficient pipeline system, which prevent it from using the extra gas it already has.

Mitchell A. Orenstein

For a long time, France and Germany have had the most say over Europe's trajectory. But as the EU tries to move eastward, including to places like Ukraine, it is Germany and Russia that will decide who is in and who is out -- and under what terms.

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