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Germany

How The 'Conservatism' Of COVID Favors The Nuclear Family

In Germany and elsewhere, social distancing rules mean that people who don't fit the heterosexual, two-parent-household mold, aren't getting a fair deal.

European governments' decisions have favored traditional family units over people living alone
European governments' decisions have favored traditional family units over people living alone
Boris Pofalla

-OpEd-

BERLIN — After work, there is now a simple choice: pop into a shopping center or maybe a visit a DIY store? Coronavirus has turned city slickers into suburbanites. People who were used to the hustle and bustle now find themselves eating at home every night and spending their evenings on the sofa rather than in bars or art-house cinemas. The pandemic seems to be the great equalizer.

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Geopolitics

The Days After: What Would Happen If Putin Opts For A Tactical Nuclear Strike

The risk of the Kremlin launching a tactical nuclear weapon on Ukraine is small but not impossible. The Western response would itself set off a counter-response, which might contain or spiral to the worst-case scenario.

An anti-nuclear activist impersonates Vladimir Putin at a rally in Berlin.

Yves Bourdillon

-Analysis-

PARISVladimir Putin could “go nuclear” in Ukraine. Yes, this expression, which metaphorically means “taking the extreme, drastic action,” is now literally considered a possibility as well. Cornered and humiliated by a now plausible military defeat, experts say the Kremlin could launch a tactical nuclear bomb on a Ukrainian site in a desperate attempt to turn the tables.

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In any case, this is what Putin — who put Russia's nuclear forces on alert just after the start of the invasion in late February — is aiming to achieve: to terrorize populations in Western countries to push their leaders to let go of Ukraine.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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