The Czech Republic has the highest per-capita GDP among former eastern bloc countries.
Given Canada's proximity to the United States, we tend to take our peace and security for granted.
This comfortable distance from most of the world's violence has also led us to underestimate how useful Canada might be in defusing threats elsewhere using an item some people overlook as leverage: energy.
Napoleon famously cautioned against interfering with an enemy making a mistake. So why is the West interfering with Vladimir Putins massive mistake in Crimea? More puzzling is the Wests unstated goal of legitimizing Putins Crimea grab.
Putins mistake? Some in the media are lionizing Putin as a strategic genius, running circles around the West. Yet, Putin could have gotten Crimea with a please-and-thank-you and looked like a humanitarian hero. Instead, hes viewed as a threatening thug, with long-term negative consequences for Russia.