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[LINK] “The plot to overthrow… Montenegro?”

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Leah McLaren in MacLean’s reports on the alleged Russian conspiracy to overthrown the government of Montenegro. This is, well.

Last weekend in Britain, the Sunday Telegraph trumped the weekend papers with a seismic front page splash. “Russia plotted to overthrow Montenegro’s government by assassinating Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic last year, according to senior Whitehall sources,” the headline blared.

According to the story, unnamed sources had revealed that last October the Montenegrin government had intercepted an election day coup plot to stage a mass murder in the country’s parliament that would take down the Montenegrin Prime Minister with it. Serbian nationals had planned to sneak into the parliament and open fire on the crowd of politicians while dressed in police uniform making it look like the local constabulary had turning on the government. Subsequently, the plan was to install a pro-Russian government.

This news in itself is not actually that surprising, since there were in fact a series of arrests in Montenegro last October but at the time the conspiracy was blamed on Serb paramilitaries and Russian nationalists who have long sought to steer Montenegro off its long-held pro-Western course. The Whitehall sources, however, alleged that the plot was in fact directed by Russian intelligence officers with the support of Vladimir Putin himself. The aim? An attempt to sabotage the country’s plan to join NATO—which is still on course to happen later this year.

The startling allegation emerged last week as Russia’s foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, tore into NATO, dismissing it as a “Cold War institution” in his speech at an international security conference in Munich.

Written by Randy McDonald

February 22, 2017 at 6:15 pm

[BLOG] Some Friday links

  • blogTO notes that TTC tunnels will get WiFi in 2018.
  • Border Thinking’s Laura Augustín shares some of Edvard Munch’s brothel paintings.
  • Centauri Dreams looks at the latest science on fast radio bursts.
  • Dangerous Minds shares some of the sexy covers of Yugoslavian computer magazine Računari.
  • Dead Things looks at the latest research into dinosaur eggs.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze links to a paper suggesting that a high surface magnetic field in a red giant star indicates a recent swallowing of a planet.
  • Language Log shares an ad for a portable smog mask from China.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money takes issue with the idea of NAFTA being of general benefit to Mexico.
  • Torontoist looks at the history of Toronto General Hospital.
  • Window on Eurasia is skeptical about an American proposal for Ukraine, and suggests Ossetian reunification within Russia is the next annexation likely to be made by Russia.

[BLOG] Some Sunday links

  • Bad Astronomy reports on the astounding scientific illiteracy of Trump advisor Anthony Scaramucci.
  • blogTO compiles a list of the best tobagganing hills in Toronto.
  • Citizen Science Salon looks at what we can do in the redwood forests.
  • The Dragon’s Gaze notes a gap in the disk of TW Hydrae.
  • Imageo notes that 2016 is the warmest year in the records.
  • Joe. My. God. notes that a pride parade protected by police went off in Montenegro.
  • Language Hat shares the story of Lazer Lederhendler, a son of Holocaust survivors in Montréal who became one of the leading translators into English of Québec literature.
  • Language Log looks at the distant origins of Japanese terms for “dog.”
  • Marginal Revolution notes the rising popularity of Vladimir Putin on the American right.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer looks at the links between Russia and the “Calexit” movement.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy celebrates Saturnalia.
  • Window on Eurasia looks at Russia’s use of genetics to disentangle the Tatar peoples and argues that the definition of Russians and Ukrainians as fraternal is dangerous to the latter.

[BLOG] Some Sunday links

  • Dangerous Minds notes a Brazilian artist who has gotten some controversy over turning religious figurines into superheroes.
  • The Dragon’s Tales notes that in the last five years, Japan’s population has shrunk by one million.
  • Joe. My. God. notes an Indonesian parliamentarian who has called for homosexuals to be put to death.
  • Language Hat looks at the multilingualism of medieval Europe.
  • Language Log notes tablets which have problems displaying Chinese documents.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money notes Donald Trump as a con artist.
  • The Map Room Blog considers if transit maps are too complicated for users.
  • Marginal Revolution notes declining labour force participation among middle-aged maps.
  • pollotenchegg looks at demographic changes in 2015 over Ukraine.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer wonders if Trump would wreck the relationship with Mexico and looks at the relatively moderate nature of his claims on his website, suggesting mockery is the best response to Trump.
  • Window on Eurasia notes Ukrainian claims that Russia is creating military units staffed by Ukrainian citizens, and notes reports on an ethnic clash between members of a military unit in Chechnya.
  • The Financial Times‘ The World notes the awkward position of Serbs and Albanians in Kosovo, the first wanting to join Serbia and the second wanting access to the European Union.

[BLOG] Some Friday links

  • blogTO notes that all TTC streetcars will support Presto by the end of the year.
  • Crooked Timber continues its examination of Piketty’s thoughts on inequality and social justice.
  • The Dragon’s Tales reports on German surveillance of Germany’s allies.
  • Joe. My. God. notes the support of the Pope for the anti-gay marriage movement in Slovenia.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money notes the fundamental economic problems with law school.
  • Marginal Revolution notes that genetic testing may be coming to the business floor.
  • The Russian Demographics Blog maps population change in Poland over 2002-2011.
  • Strange Maps shares a map predicting the liklelihood of white Christmases in the continental United States.
  • Torontoist notes the need not to forget non-heterosexual Syrian refugees.
  • Window on Eurasia looks at continued Russian emigration from Tuva.

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

  • The Big Picture shares photos from the commemoration in France of the terrorist attacks.
  • Centauri Dreams looks, literally, at the atmosphères of hot Jupiters.
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  • The Dragon’s Gaze links to a report on a model of solar system evolution suggesting the terrestrial planets had to form after Jupiter and Saturn.
  • The Dragon’s Tales notes one report suggesting a vegetarian diet is worse for the environment.
  • Joe. My. God. notes the voting in Slovenia for repealing same-sex marriage has begun.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money notes the peculiar partial transparency of the US-Mexican border.
  • The Power and the Money’s Noel Maurer notes the creation of a European border and coast guard.
  • Seriously Science reports on a study suggesting straight women would rather get dating advice from gay men than from other women.
  • Window on Eurasia suggests the slow-motion disintegration of the Soviet Union is continuing.

[LINK] “Former Yugoslav States, Albania Vow to Step Up Drive to Join EU”

Bloomberg’s Jasmina Kuzmanovic and Gordana Filipovic report on the renewed push in the western Balkans for European Union membership. Certainly it’s not as if the western Balkans have any other future.

Former Yugoslav republics and neighboring Albania vowed to resuscitate their drive for European Union integration after the migrant crisis rocked the region and created the worst political rifts between Balkan states since the civil wars of the 1990s.

The heads of state for EU members Croatia and Slovenia and EU outsiders Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia, Kosovo and Albania signed a joint commitment to strengthening the stability and prosperity of the region. They also aim to strengthen ties to the U.S. and seek an expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization deeper into the Balkans.

[. . .]

The western Balkans has been stretched by the flood of hundreds of thousands of migrants escaping the violence in Syria as well as refugees from as far away as Afghanistan and Northern Africa. Slovenia and Croatia strained their EU ties after Slovenia declared its intention to build fencing along the two countries’ shared border. The dispute is being echoed across the EU as governments grapple with a crisis on a scale not seen since the 1940s.

Written by Randy McDonald

November 26, 2015 at 3:02 pm