№ 3 July/September 2009
  • No Lull in Sight

    There has been no traditional summertime lull in Russian politics this year. The breath of the crisis is felt everywhere. In Russia, it forces the government to take preventive measures – many analysts predict a hot autumn prone with social problems. But in the international arena, new opportunities are opening up, which Moscow does not want to miss.

  • An Exhausted Resource

    The Russian state itself became actually the only source for the modernization efforts. This is the major problem of modernization projects in authoritarian states: the government has to face social problems alone. Even with the tacit support from the public, it is difficult to address large-scale tasks in the absence of active civil society.

  • Is There a Demand for Modernization in Russia?

    The consumer adaptive individualism and mutual mistrust within elites, together with the specifics of “sovereign democracy,” are a major obstacle to a normal political withdrawal from the crisis through the establishment of effective parties or factions within the ruling party.

  • Russia’s Modernization: At Another Fork in the Road

    Solution to the problems of power and the destiny of modernization has been put off until the 2012 election, when the final choice of the parameters of future development could be determined by either Vladimir Putin’s return to the Kremlin or Dmitry Medvedev’s continued presidency.

  • How to Overcome the National Crisis


    The theory and history of international relations abounds in the misconception that the bigger a country, the greater its freedom of action. In reality, it is the other way around.

  • Energy Markets in a Turbulent Zone

    The anti-crisis strategy is universal for all sectors of the economy – the main emphasis is placed on reducing costs. This is particularly important for the Russian oil and gas industry. The short respite given by the ruble devaluation is drawing to a close.

  • Approaching the Far Away

    The presence of an influential and consolidated Russian community abroad meets Russia’s national interests. A community interwoven and integrated in the public and political life of the country where it lives – rather than an assimilated or marginalized one – could make up a full-fledged part of the global Russian world.

  • Russia and the U.S.: Reconfiguration, Not Resetting

    It would make sense for Moscow to offer its own package of ideas to Washington regarding the improvement of relations, and this package should be bigger than the one proposed by President Obama. The two countries must take a course towards a “big deal” based on the analysis of vital interests of the sides and their priority ranking. The parties should pledge respect for each other’s interests in the areas where these interests are truly vital, while making concessions on secondary issues.

  • Rethinking Security in “Greater Europe”

    The proposal to build a new European security architecture, which Russian President Dmitry Medvedev put forward in Berlin in June 2008 and which he followed up in November in Evian, was Moscow’s first attempt in 20 years to formulate a coherent foreign-policy vision.

  • Towards Legal Universalism

    The very idea of reviving the intergovernmental dialogue on security in Europe reflects the legal universalism of Russian politics that has been characteristic of this country throughout almost all of its history since Peter the Great and that is typical of Medvedev’s political style.

  • Labyrinths of the Arctic Policy

    The creation of a regional security system, such as a Baltic Union, would help to consolidate Russia’s positions in Northern Europe and in the Arctic, as this system could be a prototype for a new, co-operative security system in Europe.

  • The Return of Turkey

    The Georgian-Russian war became a momentous event as it caused other countries to revise Russia’s role in world politics, the practice of conflict management, and other factors. The war has produced a new situation, which requires a comprehensive analysis of the roles of other regional actors, above all Turkey.

  • The Fundamental Conflict

    If Israel annexes the Arab territories it occupied in 1967, it will soon cease to be a Jewish state as the ratio between the Jewish and Arab populations in it will inevitably change in favor of the latter due to its birth rates.

  • The Afghan Problem in the Regional Context

    Russia by no means is interested in a defeat of the international forces in Afghanistan, as it would create new security problems. But Moscow does not see prospects for a military victory. And if these prospects appeared, they would give a green light to “Greater Central Asia” infrastructure projects that would be economically disadvantageous for Russia.

  • The Post-Crisis World: Searching for a New Framework

    This century will be neither “American” nor “North Atlantic” – but neither the Americans nor the Europeans or the Russians are interested in seeing the 21st century becoming “Asian” and especially “Chinese.” Today as never before all of them need unity.

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Publisher's column

A new world order: A view from Russia

Since around 2017–2018, the world has been living through a period of progressive erosion, or collapse, of international orders inherited from the past. With the election of Donald Trump and the rapid increase of US containment of Russia and China—which is both a consequence of this gradual erosion and also represents deep internal and international contradictions—this process entered its apogee.

Editor's column

Will US pullout from Syria increase risk of conflict with Russia?

The announcement of the US pullout from Syria was received with caution in Moscow. Besides the security and political challenges it may bring about, the Trump decision could mean the end of a practical, relatively constructive US-Russian approach to conflict at flashpoints.

Keynes Goes Global: Anticipating the Global Slowdown

As the world economy shows mounting signs of deceleration and recessionary fears intensify across global markets, the world community is likely to focus increasingly on how to undertake an effective anti-crisis response.

A Kingdom divided against himself. Special edition

This is a special issue of Russia in Global Affairs, dedicated to this big topic. Thirty years after the end of the Cold War, euphoria over the triumph of liberal ideology, which is “omnipotent because it is true,” has given way to dark pessimism about the future and led to the loss of ideational and moral guidelines.

China: How Fragile Is the Giant?

China is Russia's most important and responsible partner in the international arena. The five years that have passed since the beginning of the fundamental complication of relations between Russia and the West have shown that despite prejudices and lack of trust at the grassroots level, relations between the two countries remain friendly.

Crisis in 21st Century Political Warfare

In order to gain a freer hand in exercising foreign policy and pursuing those objectives, which include practices such as regime change, the US and its allies needed to change the manner in which the rules and boundaries of international relations were conceived and applied.

The Syrian Crisis: A Thorny Path from War to Peace

The second decade of the 21st century began with a string of explosive protests in the Middle East and North Africa, which have destabilized not only the countries that saw violent regime change but the entire region. A way out of the profound systemic crisis is yet to be found.