Media Advisory: Expert on Russia and Ukraine available for interview

Posted: Thursday, 17 July 2014

A Troy University professor believes that regardless of who shot down Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 over the Ukraine on Thursday, the incident may prove to be a "game changer" in the region's ongoing confrontation.

Dr. Michael O. Slobodchikoff, an expert on Russia and Ukraine, specializes in relations between Russia and the former Soviet states, international conflict and peace, and comparative politics, and has offered his insights into the recent Ukrainian developments as an analyst for BBC World News and Voice of Russia Radio.

Some of his observations of the current incident:

  • If separatists shot down the airliner, any sympathy they had garnered at the hands of strong Ukrainian government tactics will erode on the world's radar.
  • Separatists have argued they don't have a weapon capable of reaching an airliner's altitude, but if it's proven they do, Russia could find itself in a precarious position for supplying advanced weaponry to the separatists.
  • It's plausible the Ukrainian military could have tragically mistook the airliner for a plane headed to Russia that could have aided separatists.
  • While it's too early for any definitive assessments, the incident could force the European Union to add more sanctions against Russia, prompting a Russian response and an escalation in the conflict.

He is the author of Strategic Cooperation: Overcoming the Barriers of Global Anarchy, and is currently writing another book : Building Hegemonic Order Russia's Way: Rules, Stability and Predictability in the Post-Soviet Space. Dr. Slobodchikoff is available for on-camera interviews on the Troy Campus, via Skype or a visit to a network affiliate in Montgomery, Ala. To view a video of Dr. Slobodchikoff speaking about Ukraine and Crimea, visit http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JoyoNA3hqWM and to see his BBC interviews visit http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHaP920-Ze8ikhBAj4EHhFQ.

To schedule an interview with Dr. Slobodchikoff, contact the University Relations Office at 334-670-3196, or contact Clif Lusk (clusk@troy.edu) or Matt Clower (mclower@troy.edu) via email. Clif can be reached by cell phone at 334-268-9982.