Russia’s Far East under the Ax

Posted: October 10, 2013 at 3:53 pm, Last Updated: October 10, 2013 at 4:06 pm

By Aaron Beitman Russia is home to nearly 25% of the world’s forests, while forested ecosystems constitute about 47% of the country’s territory.  Estimates of export revenue from Russian forest products, excluding furniture, exceeded $6 billion dollars in 2011.  In light of Russia’s enduring corruption and organized crime problems, it may be unsurprising that the […]

The Causes of Crime in Russia Today

Posted: October 8, 2013 at 5:19 pm, Last Updated: October 10, 2013 at 4:04 pm

By Aaron Beitman In a recent article, Vitaly Nomokonov, a valued TraCCC partner and head of the Vladivostok Center for Research on Organized Crime, examines the question of why crime is so pervasive in contemporary Russia.  Broadly speaking, Nomokonov argues that high levels of criminality in Russia are closely tied to what may be referred […]

Youth Organized Crime in Russia

Posted: August 27, 2013 at 6:05 pm, Last Updated: August 27, 2013 at 6:17 pm

By Aaron Beitman Like many dimensions of the criminal world, youth criminal groups have often been given romantic treatment in popular media depictions. American movies such as “The Outsiders,” “The Warriors,” and “Rebel Without a Cause” exemplify this romanticism. Of course, Stanley Kubrick’s masterpiece, “A Clockwork Orange,” does exactly the opposite, showing scenes of grotesque, […]

Addressing the Problem of Labor Exploitation of Foreign Migrant Children in Russia

Posted: August 21, 2013 at 7:44 pm, Last Updated: August 27, 2013 at 6:09 pm

By Aaron Beitman A combination of factors, including demographic decline and a lack of employment opportunities in neighboring countries, has led to increased illegal migration into Russia.  In recent years, scholars have observed this phenomenon has been characterized by greater numbers of female and child migrants.  Once in Russia, however, many illegal migrants are marginalized […]

Bringing the State Back: How to Deal with Powerful Non-State Actors

Posted: August 13, 2013 at 2:54 pm, Last Updated: August 13, 2013 at 3:07 pm

By Nazia Hussain An International Crisis Group report[1] on the rising salience of vigilante militias in Mexico that are fast becoming a part of the national security landscape, posited that the authority of the state of Mexico is at stake as non-state actors disburse quick justice through parts of the country. The report recommended that […]

Bankruptcy Fraud in Russia

Posted: July 22, 2013 at 5:48 pm, Last Updated: July 22, 2013 at 6:02 pm

By Aaron Beitman Under the advice of Western experts, Russian officials in the immediate post-Soviet period embarked on a “shock-therapy” program aimed at stimulating market development.  Despite the best intentions of most of the actors involved, the early Russian experience with economic liberalism was particularly tumultuous.  Looking back on Russia’s transition to a market economy, […]

Criminal Trading on Russia’s Securities Markets

Posted: May 21, 2013 at 7:44 pm, Last Updated: May 28, 2013 at 6:31 pm

by Aaron Beitman The ever increasing integration of national economies into the global economic system has meant that one country’s problems often present serious challenges for other countries.  The U.S. housing finance crisis and subsequent global economic meltdown is a recent and obvious case of this.  While national maladies can and do quickly become international […]

Human Trafficking in our Backyard

Posted: May 16, 2013 at 7:53 pm, Last Updated: May 28, 2013 at 6:32 pm

by Judy Deane Human Trafficking in our Backyard was the title of a forum organized by a Northern Virginia Congressman and two Virginia state delegates, which offered a sobering look at sex trafficking in the Northern Virginia region, an area covering five of the ten richest counties in the US, according to the latest Forbes […]

The Sabah Crisis

Posted: April 24, 2013 at 8:21 pm, Last Updated: May 28, 2013 at 6:32 pm

by Andrew Guth On February 12, 2013 approximately 200 followers of Sulu Sultan Jamalul Kiram III landed in Lahad Datu in the province of Sabah, Malaysia (Global Times, 2013; GMA News, 2013b). Sulu is a small island that lies between North Borneo, Malaysia and Mindanao, Philippines, and while the island is officially part of the […]

Poaching and Organized Crime in Russia

Posted: April 10, 2013 at 5:00 pm, Last Updated: April 11, 2013 at 5:03 pm

by Aaron Beitman A recent story in the New York Times described how African elephants may soon face extinction as poachers hunt them down with automatic weapons, GPS tracking devices, and Land Rovers.  Seeking to satisfy seemingly insatiable Chinese demand for ivory, poachers attack elephant herds with murderous viciousness, hacking out ivory tusks from mortally […]