Category Archive: Observations

Quips and quibbles from Edward Lucas

May 27

More jokes, please

Jokes helped make communism collapse. “Anekdoty” as they were termed, helped dispel the climate of fear and highlighted the backwardness and stagnation that were the hallmark of central planning and the police state. The best ones were about people like Brezhnev; few found Stalin a good subject for humour.

May 27

Slovakia Hungary

Giving passports to these Hungarians, who now number around 2m, appeases the radical right in Hungary and also signals to other countries that the Magyar minorities have a protector. That does not matter much in places such as Serbia, Slovenia or Austria, where Magyars live happily alongside their fellow-citizens. But it is potentially explosive in Slovakia…

May 20

Important announcement

I have also been made International Editor, starting in September. However I will continue to write on the east European region for the print edition of the Economist, as well as running a new blog called Eastern Approaches.

May 17

Estonia after the Euro

Just in case anyone is interested, here is a video of me and Toomas Hendrik Ilves discussing Estonia after the euro. Part two is here and part three here

May 07

My election take

Yet for all that the uncertainty is welcome, because it brings the chance of a change in Britain’s outdated electoral system. This no longer delivers the one thing it is supposed to deliver: a clear result.

Apr 30

Rewriting the map of Europe


The European map is outdated and illogical. Here’s how it should look

People who find their neighbours tiresome can move to another neighbourhood, whereas countries can’t. But suppose they could. Rejigging the map of Europe would make life more logical and friendlier.