Ukraine, Europe, football and authoritarian drift

War minus the shooting: Russia vs Poland at Euro 2012

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‘War minus the shooting’ was George Orwell’s definition of sport, unpleasantly brought once more to mind during the recent battles between Russian and Polish football fans. There is a long history of animosity over sporting events between the two countries, but there could be a way forward, says Zygmunt Dzieciolowski

Ukraine today: a guide for digging deeper

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When in 2007 Ukraine was given the privilege of co-hosting the Euro 2012 games, the tournament was seen as a unique opportunity to unite the country, improve infrastructure and set in train European reforms. Everything that has happened since has deviated from that script. Today, the world’s media routinely portray a country in democratic crisis; Andrew Wilson’s take, which delves a bit deeper, concludes that things are, in fact, even worse.

Yanukovych, the luxury residence and the money trail that leads to London

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European leaders’ decision to boycott Ukraine’s Euro 2012 has highlighted the role of Yanukovych as the new black sheep of Europe. Yet Yanukovych made his own own ‘European choice’  long ago  – it is in there that he squirrels away his family’s fortune, writes Sergii Leshchenko

The West on Ukraine: when ‘anti-racism’ becomes xenophobia

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Condemnation in the British media of racist incidents in Ukraine has moved on from concern into hysteria, says Anton Shekhovtsov. Not only unfair, it does little to encourage those trying to push a progressive agenda within the country.

Ukraine's justice deficit

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As the 2012 European Football Championship approaches, co-host Ukraine has been hitting global headlines for its treatment of former PM Yulia Tymoshenko. Carolyn Forstein argues, however, that international attention should be more focused on a systemic shortcoming of the judicial system — the non-enforcement of court judgments — which threatens the credibility of the European Court of Human Rights itself.

Ukraine: the logic of Absurdistan

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While the rest of the world is embracing new forms of civil activism, Ukrainians, who were once responsible for one of history’s most symbolic and peaceful revolutions, are staying at home. With the country in severe economic difficulty and the Yanukovych government winding back all but the most trivial of Orange reforms, there is no shortage of reasons to protest. So what is keeping Ukrainians from the streets? asks Nataliya Gumenyuk

Conservation protests in Kyiv: a civic re-awakening?

Disillusioned by the failure of the post-Orange Revolution coalition, Ukrainian civil society has so far appeared unable to resist the Yanukovych regime’s regression into authoritarianism. But starting with a burgeoning conservation movement, is Ukraine now following in Russia’s footsteps, asks Yegor Vasylyev? 

Ukraine's Euro 2012? We’ll do it our way!

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Recent press coverage of Ukraine has been extremely negative. Now, as the European Football Championships get under way, a Ukrainian writer gives a bird's eye view of the state of affairs across the country. Not a pretty picture, thinks Yuriy Andrukhovych

Football & politics: the legacy of Euro 2012 in Ukraine

Ahead of the Euro 2012 football championships, media attention on political scandal and excessive profiteering has undermined Ukrainian attempts to raise prestige in the eyes of the world. Janek Lasocki and Łukasz Jasina wonder if the hosts will eventually be able to defy critics and secure a positive legacy from the tournament.

Are European calls for Euro 2012 boycott meaningless?

The recent mistreatment of former Ukrainian prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko has caused European leaders to call for a boycott of Euro-2012. This is all very well, but the championship will go ahead and President Yanukovych isn’t bothered by empty threats. He would be if they were backed up by deeds, says Valery Kalnysh 

Ukraine's Euro-2012: life as an economic miracle

Feted by everyone from politicians to prostitutes, the prospect of co-hosting the Euro 2012 football championships has become something of a substitute national idea for Ukraine. Such a pity, therefore, that it has done nothing to heal the population's deep divisions, or rein in an increasingly corrupt, authoritarian regime.

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