Less than an hour’s drive to the north is Tskhinvali, where fighting began after Georgian forces took the city following a night of heavy bombardment. Most houses had broken windows and were either pockmarked by bullets or gutted by shelling.
During NATO airstrikes, Serbian forces raged through the city, expelling Albanians and torching their homes and shops. Today, women and children are about the only ones who dare venture into the now Serb-dominated side of the river.
Based in Berlin and Moscow, I’ve reported from the rubble of the Soviet empire since 1996. I’ve written for Slate, BuzzFeed, nytimes.com, Bloomberg News, The Moscow Times and The Christian Science Monitor. I’m particularly interested in developing new journalism platforms.
It sounds like a vacuous Hollywood thriller: after police massacre protesters, a despised leader flees to a passive-aggressive ally who sends his army into the leaderless country. That’s reality in Ukraine today.
Click to read my dispatches for BuzzFeed and Slate.