Russia's election results are bad news for Putin for two reasons. Firstly United Russia did badly despite the election being biased in its favour, and secondly it shows that Putin can no longer rely on an apathetic population.
Learning to deal with a changing Russia under a familiar leader
The economic crisis has huge implications for EU foreign policy. There is less time for it, less money available, and Europe's ability to project soft power is in a coma.
Russia's foreign policy over the coming decade will bear the signature of Vladimir Putin, as Russia seeks new alliances and international clout. The price that Russia is likely to pay is international isolation
The European Union has a vital role to play in helping consolidate the transitions of the Arab Spring. But first they need to rethink their approach and develop a new foreign policy for the Southern neighbourhood: Enlargement lite will not work.
The EU's credibility is at stake over the sentencing of Yuliya Tymoshenko to seven years imprisonment. Unless there are signals from Kiev that the sentence will be reviewed or repealled, the EU must act.
It looks like Vladimir Putin is heading back towards the Russian presidency that he first took over in December 1999. Putin's politics have changed little since then, but Russia is now a very different place and the Russians themselves want very different things.
The upheavels in North Africa are further evidence that the EU's neighbourhood has fundamentally changed, both to the south and to the east. In response, the EU needs to develop a real foreign policy to deal with this increasingly competitive region.