When Kazakhstan Turned Off the Internet

Did a Five-Day Crackdown and Flood of Misinformation Send a Message to Activists or Ignite a Movement for Political Reform?

This was no ordinary internet blackout. For five days, the ninth largest country in the world was a black box.

On the evening of January 5, 2022, we set our respective alarms for 5:30 a.m. We wanted to get the earliest possible updates from our colleagues in Kazakhstan, who had been chronicling three days of demonstrations as they spread from the western oil-producing city of Zhanaozen to other urban centers across the Central Asian nation. Early morning on the East Coast was already late afternoon in Kazakhstan, yet when we woke …

What’s New About Neo-Nationalism, Anyway? | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

What’s New About Neo-Nationalism, Anyway?

Autocrats Are Ancient. But Globalization, Migration, and Technology Are Giving Them Fresh Power

Led by a new breed of demagogues and autocrats, neo-nationalism describes the emergence, and in some cases revival, of extreme right-wing nationalist movements and governments. And throughout the world, the …

A Letter From Kyiv, Where Reality Is Being Papered Over | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

A Letter From Kyiv, Where Reality Is Being Papered Over

In Ukraine’s Capital, the COVID-Era Accentuates, and Hides, Big Divides

Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital and the seventh-most populous city in all of Europe, is governed by a strange combination of a Soviet and a post-Soviet mentality. Many have no trust in …

It’s 2020. Do You Know Who Your Government Is Serving? | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

It’s 2020. Do You Know Who Your Government Is Serving?

America Has Been Conflating Politics and Business for Years—And if We’re Not Careful, We Could Go the Way of Post-Soviet Eastern Europe

In broad daylight, dozens of masked police and plain-clothed strongmen burst into the foyer of the swanky Sofiyskiy Fitness Club. It was May 25, 2017, and the posh gym—located in …

UCLA Political Scientist Richard D. Anderson

People Don’t Realize How Circumspect Putin Is

Richard D. Anderson has been a professor of political science at UCLA since 1989 and is the author of multiple books, including Discourse, Dictators and Democrats: Russia’s Place in a …

How Concentration Camp Prisoners Found Comfort in Imaginary Feasts

From Ravensbrück to Mao's Labor Camps, Inmates Recited Family Recipes to Preserve Their Humanity

When the Soviet Union sent Dmitri Likhachev to an offshore detention camp in February 1928, the Russian scholar was crammed onto a train car with other prisoners and handed a …