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“Russia as Gas Station”

In the spirit of Senator McCain’s classically grumpy quote today via CNN | State of the Union “Russia is a gas station masquerading as a country” a quick survey of recent, high-profile news desk cartography capturing the developing, uncertain geopolitical status of Crimea…

The NY Times features a series of reference and thematic maps, and – to McCain’s point – a handsome pipeline (Gazprom, essentially) network map centered to Ukraine:

[ NY Times ]

The preceding map was sourced in part to East European Gas Analysis, interestingly based in PA, USA. The EEGA map below is a smaller scale version focused on the larger region; the resulting gas line features are simplified over those shown in the previous NY Times map.

[ EEGA ]

The Washington Post features its own series of reference and thematic maps; the following is an interesting, if slightly odd, multi-variable thematic of Russian Language predominance coupled with military base qualifications (not sure exactly or ideally how these are supposed to relate to each other, if at all):

[ The Washington Post ]

Finally National Geographic has a historical overview of the geopolitical ebb and flow of Crimea across centuries. This series is a nice accompaniment to Robert Kaplan’s piece for Forbes entitled Crimea: The Revenge Of Geography? In classic National Geographic style, restrained and handsome, spoken with authority: