Some think Vladimir Putin actively sought to get Donald Trump elected. If so, the Kremlin remains on a roll. Pro-Russia candidates won presidential elections in Eastern Europe over the weekend in Moldova (Igor Dodon) and Bulgaria (Rumen Radev), reports the AP. The resulting coverage sees some clear trends emerging:
- "The two elections illustrate growing cracks in the European Union cement that helped reshape Central and Eastern Europe after the downfall of Soviet Union," observes the Wall Street Journal in an analysis.
- "There’s a sense in Europe, after the Brexit vote and Mr. Trump’s win, that there’s more turbulence ahead. Far-right presidential candidates and parties are expected to do well in upcoming elections in Austria, the Netherlands and France. The results of Sunday’s elections in Bulgaria and Moldova will only feed the impression of a status quo that is crumbling fast." See the Globe and Mail.
- "These recent victories could represent a significant gain in Russia's political capital," per an analysis at the International Business Times headlined "Is Russia More Powerful Than the US?" Trump has called NATO "obsolete," it notes, and both Radev and Dodon want closer ties with Moscow.
- Bulgaria and Moldova are poor nations with little to lose, observes a post at the Centre for Global Research. "By forging closer ties with the (Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union) and its five member states—Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Armenia—both Moldova and Bulgaria could see a significant boost to their economies. Why? Simply because all of these nations share a common (Soviet) industrial architecture that once formed a single production and supply chain with uniform rules and regulations."
- A pro-Russia party in Estonia is poised to gain power, too, according to Reuters.
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