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Nation in the News

Nation in the News

TV and radio appearances by Nation writers and editors, big Nation announcements.

Stephen Cohen: A ‘High Noon’ Moment for Ukraine

Ukrainian army vehicle

A Ukrainian military vehicle is seen through a ruined building on the outskirts of the eastern Ukrainian town of Slaviansk in August 2014. (Reuters/Valentyn Ogirenko)

Is a federated state the only possibility for peace in Ukraine? The Nation’s Stephen Cohen thinks so, and he joined The John Batchelor Show on Tuesday to explain why.

On the show, Cohen and Batchelor discussed the latest developments in this month’s “Minsk II” negotiations. Cohen addressed NATO Deputy Commander Sir Adrian Bradshaw’s comment that the West should expect a Russia attack on a NATO member state, and also explained why he supports the current proposal for a Ukrainian federation. “I just don’t see why anyone who doesn’t have a primary agenda against Russia fails to understand that’s the only way to peace,” Cohen said.

—Abigail Savitch-Lew

Read Next: Why diplomacy is the only answer to Ukraine’s problems

Stephen Cohen on the Ukrainian Crisis: Why a New Cold War?

Stephen Cohen at Fairfield Anniversary

Is the ongoing, brutal fighting in eastern Ukraine our Cuban Missile Crisis? On Tuesday, February 5, Nation contributing editor Stephen Cohen delivered a keynote speech at Fairfield University expressing just how high he thinks the geopolitical stakes have been raised in this conflict.

“The Europeans are in full panic and want this ended,” Cohen explained. “But they think the train may have left the station…. I look at the audience and I see people who not only were not born at the time of the Cuban missile crisis, but who weren’t alive when the Soviet Union ended. But believe me when I tell you, in the Cuban missile crisis, the discussion was, ‘Are we all gonna die in nuclear war?’”

Hilary Weaver


Read Next: In Ukraine negotiations, the buck stops with Obama

Stephen Cohen: Minsk 2 May Be the Last Chance

Destroyed bus station in Donetsk

A member of the separatist armed forces stands guard at a Donetsk bus station destroyed by shelling. (Reuters/Maxim Shemetov)

Stephen Cohen, contributing editor at The Nation, joined The John Batchelor Show on Tuesday to talk about the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, and whether or not the recent Minsk 2 deal will succeed.

“For all of us who don’t want war with Russia,” Cohen said, “Minsk 2 may be the last chance.” He explained that the recently brokered deal has a lot of “moving parts,” some of which may fail. But Cohen emphasized that the most important part is the fragile cease-fire. “Without the ceasefire,” he said, “none of the other parts—political, economic and the rest—come into play.”

—Nadia Kanji


Read Next: Stephen Cohen on why Obama’s actions toward Kiev are crucial in the Ukraine crisis

Stephen Cohen: In Ukraine Negotiations, the Buck Stops With Obama

Burning residential block outside Donetsk

People carry their belongings past a burning residential block, caused by recent shelling, on the outskirts of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine on February 9, 2015. (Reuters/Maxim Shemetov)

During a visit to The John Batchelor Show on Tuesday, Stephen Cohen, contributing editor at The Nation, spoke about the role of the United States in the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine. Much of the conversation centered around the White House’s statement that “if Russia continues its aggressive actions in Ukraine…costs for Russia will rise.”

“My folks in Russia tell me that Putin heard those words and his advisers interpreted those words as a direct threat by the president of the United States to Putin,” Cohen said. “That of course, is not a good way to go about this. There’s a force struggle, primarily in Washington, as to whether or not to enact this plan to arm Kiev with American and NATO weapons.”

Cohen said that Obama’s actions will be crucial in the ongoing crisis; if he does not send weapons to Kiev, he will face accusations of appeasement.

“But in this force struggle that’s going on in Washington now—as Harry Truman says—the buck stops with Obama,” Cohen said.

—Hilary Weaver

Read Next: Stephen Cohen on why arming Ukraine is not the answer

Stephen Cohen: Arming Ukraine Is Not the Answer

Stephen F. Cohen on Politicking

On Tuesday, Stephen F. Cohen joined Larry King on Politicking to talk about Ukraine as the new Berlin in today’s burgeoning Cold War. Cohen noted that Obama’s openness to providing Ukraine with lethal defensive weapons in the amount of $1 billion a year is the wrong foreign policy move in a time when negotiation and debate should be the long-term preventive solution. "We are coming to a turning point," Cohen said. "Obama will now decide."

Khadija Elgarguri


Read Next: Why arming the Ukrainian government would be disastrous

Katrina vanden Heuvel: Diplomacy Is the Only Answer to Ukraine’s Problems

Katrina vanden Heuvel on Real Money with Ali Velshi

On Tuesday, Katrina vanden Heuvel joined Al Jazeera America’s Real Money with Ali Velshi to discuss possible solutions to ending Ukraine’s crisis. On the question of whether the United States should send weapons to Kiev, her answer was a resolute “No.” “What good purpose does sending weapons into that situation provide?” she asked. “It fuels what is a civil war which could become a proxy war, leading both countries, all countries maybe, into a dangerous position, maybe as dangerous as the Cuban missile crisis fifty-plus years ago.”

“There is no military solution,” she said. “And if there isn’t a diplomatic solution, you could also see the fracturing of alliances with Europe…. If Ukraine is to emerge as a stable country, with the possibility of democracy, it needs to be a bridge between the West and Russia.”

—Ava Kofman

Read Next: Katrina vanden Heuvel on Greece and the EU

Stephen Cohen: How Ukraine Became the Epicenter of the New Cold War

Stephen Cohen on Democracy Now

Stephen Cohen, contributing editor at The Nation, joined Democracy Now's War and Peace Report on Tuesday to discuss the latest developments in the Ukrainian conflict.

"We’re in a new Cold War with Russia. The epicenter of the new Cold War is not in Berlin,  but it’s right on Russia’s borders, so it’s much more dangerous…A political dispute in Ukraine became a Ukrainian civil war. Russia backed one side; the United States and NATO, the other. So it’s not only a new Cold War, it’s a proxy war," Cohen said in his opening remarks.

Cohen went on to convey his disappointment over the erosion of the September ceasefire and its impact on the local population. “Five million people live in this area of eastern Ukraine. They’ve lived there for centuries. Their grandfathers, their parents are buried there. Their children go to school there. That is their home. Where is the humanity of these people who are dying, now nearly 6,000 of them? A million have been turned into refugees. These are people there."

—Cole Delbyck


Read Next: Stephen Cohen on the all-out war in eastern Ukraine

Stephen Cohen: Eastern Ukraine Is in an All-Out War

2014 protest in Kiev

A scene after a 2014 protest in Kiev. (Reuters/Baz Ratner)

During a broadcast of The John Batchelor Show on Tuesday, Stephen Cohen, contributing editor at The Nation, expressed his grim concern about the ongoing Ukrainian-Russian conflict.

“John, I don't know if I've ever said this to you before, but every time you say, by way of greeting, ‘A very good evening to you,’ I keep hoping one day there will be a very good evening in this Ukrainian crisis because, this evening, the news is all terrible,” Cohen said as he began his remarks. Cohen expressed concern about the ongoing conflict and recent attacks in Mariupol, a city in southeast Ukraine. He said the tension might lead the United States and NATO to enter war with Russia.

“Now, I think it’s fair to say that all-out war has broken out in eastern Ukraine between the rebel armies, backed by Russia, and the Kiev armies, backed by the United States,” he said. “That’s what’s going on, into a certain extent of Europe. So, the question politically becomes who started the new fighting.”

Hilary Weaver


Read Next: Stephen Cohen on the continued divide in Europe

‘The Nation’ Magazine Names Kai Wright as Features Editor

Kai Wright

(Jedd Flanscha)

Contact: Caitlin Graf, The Nation, press [at] thenation.com, 212-209-5400

New York, NY —January 28, 2015—The Nation, America’s oldest weekly magazine of politics and culture, today announced the appointment of Kai Wright as features editor. In his new role, Wright will edit a wide range of features, investigative reports and editorials, help cultivate new talent and develop new digital ventures. His career has focused on issues of race and racial justice, inequality, labor, health and sexuality, and the magazine looks forward to ramping up its coverage in those areas and more. Wright begins March 2, 2015.

“Kai is an extraordinary writer and editor whose work is dedicated to exposing injustice, as well as to exploring the human capacity for resilience, hope and joy,” says Nation editor and publisher Katrina vanden Heuvel. “I can’t wait to read the pieces he will commission, and those he’ll write himself.”

“For the past 150 years, The Nation has stood for a basic value: our country must make real the promise of its founding documents. The magazine’s editors and writers have born witness to great crimes, hosted dialogues about radical solutions, and spoken truth to power,” adds Wright. “I owe the rights and liberties I have today to many of the people who contributed to that essential conversation, and I’m humbled by the chance to help guide the next 150 years of this work.”

A distinguished journalist and editor, Wright joins The Nation from Colorlines, which he led as its editorial director and editor-at-large, transforming the publication from a bimonthly print journal to a daily digital destination reaching 1 million readers a month. Most recently, he completed a special multimedia series there, examining inequality in the lives of black men, a subject he has also written perceptively about in our own pages. Indeed, Kai’s ties to The Nation run deep, having first written for the magazine in 2006. He is also a reporting fellow at the Investigative Fund at the Nation Institute.

Prior to Colorlines, Kai was senior writer at The Root, senior editor at City Limits, a copy editor at the New York Daily News, and a news reporter at The Washington Blade. He is the author of two books, the award-winning Drifting Toward Love: Black, Brown, Gay and Coming of Age on the Streets of New York and Soldiers of Freedom: An Illustrated History of African Americans in the Armed Forces. He is also the editor of The African American Experience: Black History and Culture Through Speeches, Letters, Editorials, Poems, Songs, and Stories.

Wright is a frequent commentator on the politics of race and inequality on National Public Radio, MSNBC and other national broadcast outlets; most recently, he reported a series on healthcare reform for WNYC News, NPR’s New York City affiliate.

Wright lives in Brooklyn, New York, and can be found on Twitter @kai_wright and on Instagram.

For booking requests or further information, please see contact information above.

About the magazine

Founded in 1865, The Nation is America’s oldest weekly magazine, serving as a critical, independent voice in American journalism and a platform for investigative reporting and spirited debate on issues of import to the progressive community. Through changing times and fashions, The Nation and TheNation.com offer consistently informed and inspired reporting and analysis of breaking news, politics, social issues and the arts—never faltering in our editorial commitment to what Nation Publisher Emeritus Victor Navasky has called “a dissenting, independent, trouble-making, idea-launching journal of critical opinion.”

Stephen Cohen: The European Union Remains Divided

Stephen Cohen on The Thom Hartmann Program

In a Skype chat during The Thom Hartmann Program on Monday, Stephen Cohen, a contributing editor at The Nation, spoke with Hartmann about the division in Europe and media’s role within this division, following the Greek elections and the ongoing Ukrainian-Russian conflict.

“It’s a kind of abyss in American-Russian relations at the moment,” Cohen said. “The European Union is deeply divided politically about what to do about the Ukrainian crisis.”

Cohen said the January 25 election results in Greece will further increase political tension in Europe.

“The austerity program, which is now under attack as a result of the Greek elections, is bringing pressure on Germany, which is now the political leader in Europe…. But the worse the crisis, or political challenge to the austerity program in Europe, which comes from Germany, the more Europe divides, and the more Europe divides, the more it divides in what to do about Russia because that too is an economic burden.”

Hilary Weaver

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