Because the turbulent trajectory of Russia's foreign policy since the collapse of the Soviet Union echoes previous moments of social and political transformation, history offers a special vantage point from which to judge the current course of events. In this book, a mix of leading historians and political scientists examines the foreign policy of contemporary Russia over four centuries of history. The authors explain the impact of empire and its loss, the interweaving of domestic and foreign impulses, long-standing approaches to national security, and the effect of globalization over time. Contributors focus on the underlying patterns that have marked Russian foreign policy and that persist today. These patterns are driven by the country's political makeup, geographical circumstances, economic strivings, unsettled position in the larger international setting, and, above all, its tortured effort to resolve issues of national identity. The argument here is not that the Russia of Putin and his successors must remain trapped by these historical patterns but that history allows for an assessment of how much or how little has changed in Russia's approach to the outside world and creates a foundation for identifying what must change if Russia is to evolve. A truly unique collection, this volume utilizes history to shed crucial light on Russia's complex, occasionally inscrutable relationship with the world. In so doing, it raises the broader issue of the relationship of history to the study of contemporary foreign policy and how these two enterprises might be better joined.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union expectations were high in both Russia and the West that a 'new world order' was emerging in which Russia and the other former Soviet republics would join the Western community of nations. That has not occurred. In Russian Foreign Policy in the 21st Century a distinguished group of analysts from Russia, Europe and North America explains the reasons for this failure and assesses likely future developments in that relationship. The authors explore the importance of Western policies in the 1990s in 'nationalizing' Russian views of their interests; the commitment of President Putin to rebuilding Russia as a great power (beginning in former Soviet space); and the deterioration of Russian relations with the European Union and the United States during the first decade of the 21st century.
French and British Finance in the Service of Tsars and Commissars
Author: Jennifer Siegel
Publisher: Oxford University Press
From the late imperial period until 1922, the British and French made private and government loans to Russia, making it the foremost international debtor country in pre-World War I Europe. To finance the modernization of industry, the construction of public works projects, the building of railroads, and the development of the military-industrial complex, Russia's ministers of finance, municipal leaders, and nascent manufacturing class turned, time and time again, to foreign capital. From the forging of the Franco-Russian alliance onwards, Russia's needs were met, first and foremost, by France and Great Britain, its allies, and diplomatic partners in the developing Triple Entente. Russia's continued access to those ready lenders ensured that the empire of the Tsars would not be tempted away from its alliance and entente partners. This web of financial and political interdependence affected both foreign policy and domestic society in all three countries. The Russian state was so heavily indebted to its western creditors, rendering those western economies almost prisoners to this debt, that the debtor nation in many ways had the upper hand; the Russian government at times was actually able to dictate policy to its French and British counterparts. Those nations' investing classes-which, in France in particular, spanned not only the upper classes but the middle, rentier class, as well-had such a vast proportion of their savings wrapped up in Russian bonds that any default would have been catastrophic for their own economies. That default came not long after the Bolshevik Revolution brought to power a government who felt no responsibility, whatsoever, for the debts accrued by the tsars for the purpose of oppressing Russia's workers and peasants. The ensuing effect on allied morale, the Anglo-French relationship, and, ultimately, on international relations in the twentieth century, was grim and far-reaching. Jennifer Siegel narrates a classic tale of money and power in the modern era-an age of economic interconnectivity and great power interdependency-involving such figures as Lord Revelstoke, chairman of Baring Brothers, the British and French Rothschild cousins, and Sergei Witte, Russia's authoritative finance minister during much of this age of expansion. For Peace and Money highlights the importance of foreign capital in policymaking on the origins and conduct of World War I.
The Role of Ideas in Post-Soviet Russia's Conduct Towards the West
Author: Christian Thorun
Publisher: Palgrave MacMillan
Category: Political Science
Post-Soviet Russian foreign policy towards the West is characterized by ambiguity. While Moscow retreated from superpower status peacefully, its approach towards the West underwent significant change. It evolved from close cooperation with the West to an assertive defence of Russian interests coupled with confrontational rhetoric. This book takes stock and asks which patterns have emerged from 1992 to 2007. It argues that only by focusing both on external constraints and changes in the Russian leadership's foreign policy thinking can we explain major facets of Russia's conduct. In analysing Russian foreign policy the book develops an original analytical framework for foreign policy analysis, illustrates the evolution of the Russian leadership's foreign policy discourse, and unravels major threads in Russia's conduct in three case studies. The case studies encompass: Moscow's approaches towards NATO and its enlargement, its responses to the Balkan crisis, and its reaction to the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks.
The disintegration of Soviet Union in 1991, led to five new countries gaining independence in Central Asia. The Muslims, a predominant majority in the region, had faced religious suppression under the rule of the communist. Thus, began an era where Islam was practiced with larger freedom. However, the governance of most of these states was with the autocratic leaders who had grown under the influence of communism. Therefore, it was but natural for them to soon impose religious restrictions. This close tussle in almost all these newly raised states, led to emergence of some radical groups. Over the years, the influence of such groups has spread to the extent of posing a threat to the stability of country like China. A foothold for radical groups in China is a possibility as its western province of Xinjiang has historical links with Central Asia and was part of Turkistan. Today Xinjiang due to its ethnic violence between the Uyghur Muslims and the Han Chinese is acknowledged to be quite volatile. The link of Uyghur's with Central Asia has further compounded China problem. Apart from the extremists, China is also concerned regarding the growing American presence within the region of Central Asia. To negate the American influence and restrain any turbulence on its western province supported by the extremist of Central Asia, there is a need for China to review its external and internal policies which will steer it towards a more politically and economically stable nation. Failing to addresses such simmering issues the nation will be trapped within the folds of 'THE INVISIBLE WALL OF CHINA'.
North Korea’s foreign policy behavior has long intrigued scholars, puzzled laymen, frustrated negotiators, and aggravated policy-makers. This book brings together the work of ten of the world’s foremost scholars and leading experts on North Korea to critically analyze the key factors and issues that are shaping North Korea’s foreign policy behavior and its future direction. Witnessing the rapid changes in North Korea’s foreign policy environment, the contributors to this volume examine the implications for Pyongyang’s foreign policy of the domestic challenges posed by the changing national identity and ideology, people’s exiting of the country, economic stagnation, and the military-first politics. They also offer insight into the impact of various external challenges on North Korea’s foreign policy, such as China ‘rising,’ multilateralism, and leadership changes in the United States and South Korea, and asses Pyongyang’s strategies for coping with these challenges.
This book provides a multi-level analysis of international security in the South Caucasus. Using an expanded and adapted version of Regional Security Complex Theory, it studies both material conditions and discourses of insecurity in its assessment of the region's possible transition towards a more peaceable future.
After two terms as president of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin handed over to his hand-picked successor Dmitri Medvedev on 7 May 2008, and became prime minister. As president, Putin moved swiftly and effectively to overcome the chaotic legacy of his predecessor, post-Soviet Russia’s first president Boris Yeltsin. Focusing on rebuilding the authority of the Russian state, and taking advantage of the rise in world prices of the country’s main asset – oil and natural gas – Putin won unassailable popularity at home and caused apprehension around the world, particularly in Russia’s immediate neighbourhood. His methods of rule caused anxiety among liberals and democrats inside Russia and abroad. The legacy of Putin’s presidency poses challenges that demand interpretation. He has not departed from the Russian or the world political scene, and the need to understand and come to terms with Putin’s Russia has not diminished. These essays by an international team of authors are based on presentations to a working conference held in Naples, Italy, in May 2008, supplemented by contributions from authors who were not present at the conference, in order to present a wider selection of views and interpretations of the Putin phenomenon. This book was published as a special issue of Communist Studies and Transition Politics.
This book offers an assessment of the naval policies of emerging naval powers, and the implications for maritime security relations and the global maritime order. Since the end of the Cold War, China, Japan, India and Russia have begun to challenge the status quo with the acquisition of advanced naval capabilities. The emergence of rising naval powers is a cause for concern, as the potential for great power instability is exacerbated by the multiple maritime territorial disputes among new and established naval powers. This work explores the underlying sources of maritime ambition through an analysis of various historical cases of naval expansionism. It analyses both the sources and dynamics of international naval competition, and looks at the ways in which maritime stability and the widespread benefits of international commerce and maritime resource extraction can be sustained through the twenty-first century. This book will be of much interest to students of naval power, Asian security and politics, strategic studies, security studies and IR in general.