Russia’s much-anticipated Foreign Policy Concept has finally been released. And while the latest version does not contain anything revolutionary, it does provide insight into how Russia’s leadership sees the world.
Normalizing relations with Georgia is simple for Russia, which only has to ease entry and import restrictions and to show that it is open to cooperation.
U.S. President Barack Obama's re-election in November generated hope for progress in U.S.-Russian relations. Only two months later, not a trace of that hope remains.
The only issue that seriously divides Russia and Israel is Iran and its nuclear program.
Maintaining a balance between the Euro-Atlantic vector and the Asian-Pacific vector of Russian foreign policy should not be a game of U-turns one way or the other, but should rather be characterized by flexibility and readiness to adapt to a rapidly changing world.
The independence of Russia’s foreign policy is our achievement, gained over the preceding centuries of historical development and through the experience of the last 20 years. Russia simply cannot exist as a subordinate country of a world leader.
Twenty years ago, on November 6, 1992, newly-elected US President Bill Clinton phoned his Russian counterpart Boris Yeltsin.
Just as the Soviet invasion and occupation of Afghanistan vitiated many of the achievements made by Soviet foreign policy toward the Middle East from the 1950s through the 1970s, Moscow’s strong support for the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria threatens to negate the achievements of Putin’s foreign policy.
Russia is ready to take into account possible negative effects of its military-technical cooperation with foreign countries and may enter into secret deals, but it will always react highly negatively to direct pressure. This policy is entirely in the interests of the Russian defense industry and Russia as a state.
Russia will have a chance, if it quits the existing institutions before they crash down to ruin it. In that case it will be able to give an example for other countries of the world to follow. But that will happen only if Russia’s internal political collapse will occur before the global crash.
The gravitation towards the Soviet past has not only psychological but also social causes, linked with the interests of a considerable part of the ruling elite. In actual fact, there is the same Soviet elite of the Brezhnev time, which has rid itself of the party and ideological control that restrained their desire for unbridled wealth.
Direct benefits from participation in integration projects with Russia most often outweigh “birds in the bush,” promised “at the end of a long journey,” after the aspirant has fulfilled an endless and arbitrarily changed list of conditions.
Sooner or later the international agenda will include the possibility for re-orienting Russian foreign policy from servicing the interests of the state to lobbying for the positions of specific economic and political players.
The degree of accord among the economic, political, and religious elites over national ideology is even more significant in today’s world. A well-functioning and attractive state model secures a place for a country in the global competition of values.
The current developments in the world can best be described by the word ‘uncertainty.’
The U.S. faces an increasingly complex international environment, and the candidates do voters a disservice by failing to articulate their foreign policy visions.
The issues of integration in the post-Soviet space are likely to be at the top of the political agenda this season.
America’s influence on the world is now stronger than ever, but its dependence on other countries has also grown.
When Dmitry Medvedev visited the Kuril Islands, first as president and then as prime minister, international commentators denounced Russia for its tactless conduct and imperial ambitions, as Japan considers these islands its Northern Territories.
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has met with Vladimir Putin often and known him for a long time, has visited Moscow.
The macro changes in the world economy and politics, developments in the Greater Middle East, and actions (or inaction) by old great powers make further plunging of the region into conflicts almost inevitable.
Dmitry Medvedev has visited the Kuril Islands again, this time as prime minister.
The Chinese military calls for a transfer from the passive policy of deterring the U.S. to an active course and closest cooperation with Moscow. Russia’s foreign policy is regarded as a positive example of defending national interests and independent opinion.
Georgia was the first sovereign state to recognize the genocide against the Circassians. However, the recognition did not occur all of a sudden; certain steps were made back in the 1990s by parliaments of the North Caucasian republics.
There seem to be three main ingredients of Russian–Chinese relationship. The balancing of U.S. power has taken place mainly in the UN, through votes or threats of vetoes, often on issues of interference in the internal affairs of other nations. The other two ingredients, energy and arms sales, seem less stable.
Beijing, Washington and Moscow should seize all opportunities for cooperation, increase strategic mutual trust, and jointly seek new paths to peaceful coexistence and cooperation that is beneficial for all.
The much needed reforms of the Russian political system, although creating extra problems when being implemented, can contribute to greater resistibility to external challenges in the long term. Such reforms do not guarantee Moscow’s success in foreign policy, but they will certainly ease the risks stemming from internal political polarization.
The turbulent political season in Russia has not brought about dramatic changes in the system, yet it has demonstrated that stagnation should be least expected in the country and that, therefore, its foreign policy will change, as well – especially as the situation in the world keeps everyone in alert and ready for anything.
The joint statement released by presidents Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama after their meeting in Los Cabos, Mexico, is a masterpiece of diplomatic correctness.
Discussions of Russian foreign policy typically boil down to one question: will the pro-Western or anti-Western tendency prevail?
At a roundtable event in Moscow, top experts debated the “hypocritical” and “insincere” foreign policies of both Russia and the West in the post-Cold War era.
Vladimir Putin has mentioned several times that the collapse of the Soviet Union was a geopolitical mistake. Although these words were often interpreted as his desire to constitute that country, there is little reason to believe this.
The April 16 referendum will focus on power distribution rather than institution building. In other words, the organizers saw it as an opportunity to expand the President’s powers and allow him to rule longer. In their turn, Turks perceived it as an institutional choice to contribute to the development of the state.
If the larger picture defies prediction, the immediate future is scarcely more transparent. In the U.S. case, the known unknowns are numerous. They begin with the question of how much deck furniture Trump is willing to overturn in order to pursue an “America First” strategy.
In the wake of the For Fair Elections protest movement in Russia in 2011-2012, the Kremlin initiated a new strategy of state-society relations that was aimed at diminishing the propensity for protest in the next election cycle.
Belarus’ traditional structural dependence on Russia is increasing, and Minsk’s freedom of maneuver continues to shrink.