February 2012 Survey of Developments in U.S.-Russia Relations
In February 2012, the influence of the presidential elections in Russia, held on March 4, 2012, on Russian-American relations reached its climax. The election campaign of the Prime Minister Vladimir Putin made a special emphasis on the idea of the revival of Russia as a great power, the restoration of its military power and the strengthening of Russia’s foreign policy independence. In the eyes of most of Russia’s political elite, this primarily involves maintaining a strategic balance with the U.S. and a stiff opposition to Washington on issues not coinciding with Russia’s interests, including interference in the affairs of other states, Russia included.
Human rights advocacy has evolved into a legitimate foreign policy priority of the contemporary United States. The values and beliefs behind this concern are endorsed by a variety of American NGOs. The paper looks at American human rights advocacy and its impact on foreign policy decision-making. Human rights groups constitute a powerful independent lobby sector, whose success must be attributed to the unique nature of the American political culture. The article analyses the industrys specific characteristics and offers a classification of NGOs based on their mission, activities and lobbying profile.
The chapter explores the foreign policy priorities of China and Russia with regard to the following sub-questions: Are China and Russia driven by ideology or by pragmatism? How much weight does ‘hard power’ carry versus ‘soft power’ in the strategic policy formulation of both countries? How do they strive to uphold their insistence on respect for sovereignty while their economic power increasingly relies on international interdependence?
The Russian agenda for relations with the United States is very modest and largely retrospective. The agenda lacks new possible areas of cooperation (e.g. building closer security cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region), which could make the relations between the two countries more sustainable. The same is true of the joint agenda for the next six months, as reflected in the joint statement made by President Putin and U.S. President Obama following their meeting in Los Cabos on June 18th. The word “partnership,” in view of relations between Russia and the U.S., was not mentioned at all.
After the end of the Cold War and the establishment of a unipolar international order, many scholars came to the conclusion that “balancing” as an instrument of state policy has disappeared. This research proves the opposite. First, it undertakes theoretical analysis of the “balancing dilemma” and defines the system of independent variables which can guarantee the absence of balancing. Second, the system is tested against empirical observations concentrating upon international developments since the September 2001. Research reveals that the current unipole could satisfy only part of non-balancing conditions, which is why a policy of balancing by a secondary power became observable. Third, the case of balancing (Russian foreign policy during and after the August 2008 Russia-Georgian conflict) is investigated. Fourth, the consequences of balancing are explored.
Over the past almost two years, the U.S.-Russia relations have markedly improved. The “reset” of relations proposed by the Barack Obama administration has been a success. The threat of a retreat to a systemic confrontation has almost disappeared. Many of the conflicts between the two countries have been either resolved or, for the most part, reduced to a “smoldering” state. Both Russia and the United States display pragmatism by lowering the importance of persisting conflicts over the benefits of cooperation. For the first time in the post-Soviet period, the U.S. has partially revised its position on Russia-related issues and its interests with regard to Russia for the sake of getting Moscow’s support in matters of interest to Washington. Unlike the previous rounds, the current improvement of the U.S.-Russia relations rests on a more solid foundation – namely, a clear and pragmatic understanding by the parties of their interests and of the importance of constructive mutual relations for their implementation.
The article deals with the processes of building the information society and security in the CIS in accordance with modern conditions. The main objective is to review existing mechanisms for the formation of a common information space in the Eurasian region, regarded as one of the essential aspects of international integration. The theoretical significance of the work is to determine the main controls of the regional information infrastructure, improved by the development of communication features in a rapid process.The practical component consists in determining the future policies of the region under consideration in building the information society. The study authors used historical-descriptive approach and factual analysis of events having to do with drawing the contours of today's global information society in the regional refraction.
The main result is the fact that the development of information and communication technologies, and network resources leads to increased threats of destabilization of the socio-political situation in view of the emergence of multiple centers that generate the ideological and psychological background. Keeping focused information policy can not be conceived without the collective participation of States in the first place, members of the group leaders of integration - Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan. Currently, only produced a comprehensive approach to security in the information field in the Eurasian region, but the events in the world, largely thanks to modern technology, make the search for an exit strategy with a much higher speed. The article contributes to the science of international relations, engaging in interdisciplinary thinking that is associated with a transition period in the development of society. A study of current conditions in their relation to the current socio-political patterns of the authors leads to conclusions about the need for cooperation with the network centers of power in the modern information environment, the formation of alternative models of networking, especially in innovation and scientific and technical areas of information policy, and expanding the integration of the field in this region on the information content.