War in Ukraine – weekly update (18.03-24.03.2023)

Frontline Report The Russian offensive in Bakhmut has slowed down, with a record low of daily combat clashes recorded this week. This does not mean however, that the situation in the city has changed for the better. Russian forces continue to assault Bakhmut from several directions. In the north Wagner troops gradually advance through the metalworks and the industrial district. At the same time from the east Moscow’s soldiers continue to besiege the Ukrainian defensive lines located on the west bank of Bakhmutka river, with several assaults managing to secure small beachheads. These breakthroughs are instantaneously counter attacked by Ukrainians, in many cases successfully, however such operations only increase Ukrainian […]

PULASKI POLICY PAPER: Europe’s Hydrogen Strategy Failure. Negligible chances for extensive production of cost-effective green hydrogen in Europe (Piotr Przybyło)

Pulaski Policy Paper no 16, March 24, 2023 Introduction Following the invasion of Ukraine by Russia, the impetus for a rapid clean energy transition has never been stronger. This position was confirmed by the European Commission’s (EC) REPowerEU initiative, a plan to phase out Europe’s dependence on fossil fuels before 2030 and to increase the resilience of the EU energy system. The plan confirmed the commitment to achieve the European Green Deal’s long-term goal of making the EU climate-neutral by 2050 and to implement the Fit for 55 package presented in July 2021. Delivering on these objectives will require the EU to develop, implement and scale up innovative renewable energy […]

PULASKI POLICY PAPER: The Reason Behind Destabilisation of Moldova (Ihor Havrylyuk)

Pulaski Policy Paper no 15, March 22, 2023 The Republic of Moldova has received a significant amount of international media and experts’ attention in the past two months. The primary reason is the fear that Russian aggression against Ukraine might spill over into the republic to prevent it from drifting into the West. It is crucial to understand the scale of threats posed to Moldova by the Kremlin’s different scenarios as well as implications for the security situation in Ukraine. Factors that facilitate Kremlin’s hybrid war against Moldova Among all post-Soviet republics traditionally deemed by Russia as “near abroad,” Moldova is probably one of the most susceptible to Russian malign […]

War in Ukraine – weekly update (13.03-17.03.2023)

War in Ukraine – weekly update (11.03-17.03.2023) Frontline Report Despite the Russian assault Ukrainian forces continue to hold Bakhmut. Col. General Oleksandr Syrskyi stated that the situation in and around Bakhmut remains difficult, with Russian forces attacking from several directions simultaneously. The commitment to holding Bakhmut has once again been questioned, with US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin claiming that the city has no strategic value, and its stubborn defence only bleeds Ukrainian forces.[i] US officials have further tried to shift the focus of Ukrainian command from the defence of Bakhmut to a potential spring offensive, that would utilise the newly delivered western equipment to break though Russian lines. US officials […]

PULASKI POLICY PAPER: France new approach in Africa in the context of Russian hybrid operations (Witold Repetowicz)

Pulaski Policy Paper no 14, March 17, 2023 Partnership and solidarity instead of Francafrique On 27th of February President Emmanuel Macron announced a new approach in French policy on Africa, stressing an end of Francafrique. The new policy would be based on the logic of partnership and solidarity instead of logic of interventionism, aid and protectionism. Importantly, it means that France is going to withdraw its troops from combat missions in Africa, particularly from the restive Sahel region. They are supposed to be replaced by local troops and France instead will focus on contribution to military education in the region. Saying that Macron rejected the idea that France may compete […]

EXPERT’S COMMENTARY: The West needs a communication strategy about the war in Ukraine (Miłosz J. Cordes)

One year into Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the West is in need for a diversified strategy when discussing the conflict with its partners. Due to historical experiences, non-European and non-Western countries look at the Russian aggression differently. Supporting Ukraine thus means learning how communicate the consequences of the ongoing invasion in a language that would take into account addressees’ sensitivity. Such language is essential to assist Kyiv in winning the war and embarking on a path of successful and quick recovery. Introduction In a recent Pulaski Commentary, Sebastian Czub summarised Vladimir Putin’s address to the Federal Assembly, delivered on February 21st.[i] One can argue that the speech, apart from […]

PULASKI COMMENTARY: Iran-Saudi Arabia agreement: what it might mean for the Middle East (Robert Czulda)

A surprising decision to re-establish diplomatic ties between two arch-rivals – the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia – could potentially alter a security landscape in the Middle East. However, significant challenges remain, and they will ultimately determine a fate of the agreement. Their deep and structural nature makes it difficult to be optimistic. If any bilateral relations decisively influence a situation in the Middle East, undoubtedly they are those between Saudi Arabia and Iran – two regional powers whose interests extend far beyond their own borders. Both states pursue an active policy in the region, seeking to increase their influence. Mutual animosities between these states […]

War in Ukraine – weekly update (6.03-10.03.2023)

War in Ukraine – weekly update (04.03-10.03.2023)   Frontline Report In Bakhmut Russian forces continue to press Ukrainian lines and the situation remains very difficult, despite that Ukrainian command has officially declared that the defence of the city will continue.[i] Several western experts have doubted the importance of Bakhmut, stating that the city has little to no strategic value, while at the same time draining Ukrainian forces.[ii] Commander of Ukraine’s Ground Forces, Col. General Oleksandr Syrskyi stated that the importance of Bakhmut is increasing as each day the city holds it allows Ukraine to prepare reserves and prepare for future offensive operations while at the same time bleeding Russian forces.[iii] […]

EXPERT’S COMMENTARY: Is the ruling party’s name the only element remaining of Georgia’s European and transatlantic dreams? (Robert Pszczel)

I was very excited about the invitation from the Polish Embassy in Tbilisi to attend a special conference in Georgia to mark the tragic anniversary of the new, full-size invasion of Ukraine by Russia. The gathering on 24 February, hosted by the respected Rondeli Foundation (the Georgian Foundation for Strategic and International Studies) and supported by the Ukrainian Embassy, turned out to be well-attended event, bringing together diplomats, experts and media. Even Georgian President, Salome Zourabichvili, made a brief appearance. Debates reflected strong unity of views on the international consequences of the war and confrontation started by the Putin regime. This palpable sense of solidarity with Ukrainians was not only […]

PULASKI POLICY PAPER: Deliveries of Western aircraft for Ukraine – potential challenges and options (Robert Czulda)

Pulaski Policy Paper no 13, March 10, 2023 Ukraine is pressing its international partners to begin delivering multirole aircraft. Although such discussions have been ongoing for some time and some MiG-29s were reportedly handed over by Poland, this plan – at least when it comes to Western aircraft – remains unlikely. There is a lack of political will, and concerns related to such move cannot be ignored. Nonetheless, NATO and EU member states still have several options to support Ukraine’s aviation. According to Kyiv, there is a need for at least 200 multirole aircraft. [1] It is an undeniable fact that new aircraft would support Ukraine’s aerial capabilities, which are […]

PULASKI COMMENTARY: The Baltic Resolve: Estonia’s 2023 Parliamentary Election, its consequences, and the influence on the war in Ukraine (Sebastian Czub)

The 2023 Estonian Parliamentary Elections have come to an end. Victory was claimed by the Reform Party, under the leadership of current Prime Minister Kaja Kallas. The ruling party scored 31.2%  of all votes, thus securing 37 out 101 seats of the Estonian parliament.[i] The second place went to the Conservative People’s Party of Estonia (EKRE), with 16.1%  of votes and 17 seats. The third largest group in the new parliament will be the Estonian Centre Party, which managed to secure 15.3%  of votes and 16 seats. The most surprising result however is the rise of Estonia 200,  with an astounding 13.3%  of votes and 13 seats. In the 2019 […]

War in Ukraine – weekly update (25.02-03.03.2023)

Frontline report – Bakhmut focus The battle for Bakhmut seems to be entering its final stages. Over the last week the Russian forces launched a large coordinated offensive along the entire line of contact in the region. The attack was facilitated by a large-scale bombardment of the entire city and the key towns surrounding it. The Russians used standard shell artillery, rocket artillery, as well as aircraft and even the highly valuable and destructive TOS-1 heavy flamethrower systems which launch salvos of thermobaric rockets. The barrage suppressed and destroyed Ukrainian positions, through which Russian assault groups broke through. At the same time Russian forces launched simultaneous assault along the entire […]