The report reviews security situation at the border of Afghanistan and Tajikistan
Russia’s entire history is in its geography and no matter how huge its territory, it is still a kind of an “inbetween” space. Today’s Russia has all but completed its turn toward Asia. However, it remains to be seen how far-reaching and successful it will be, and in what specific areas it will evolve and what will be its content, benefits, and costs. Russia, remaining the country of the European civilization, is moving in the new world to a natural status of the great Eurasian Atlantic-Pacific power. The turn means not a "reversal" from Europe, but a pragmatic orientation to new opportunities, the adequate desire to fit with the modern world. Main directions and dimensions of such turn refer to the establishment of new internal conditions (organizational and legal) for the accelerated development of Siberia and the Far East, qualitative strengthening of the Russian presence in the Asia-Pacific region, and the gradual build-up of trade, economic and political ties with Asian countries, formation of the new Eurasian space for common development.
In 2012, the Valdai International Discussion Club presented its report “Toward the Great Ocean or the New Globalization of Russia” for the political and expert communities in Russia and abroad. The present report, “Toward the Great Ocean-2”, is a follow-up on the previous one; it has taken into account the experience gained in implementing some of the recommendations contained in the first report and results of its broad discussion.
The authors of the present report hold that the shift of the center of gravity and the pivot of Russia’s foreign and foreign-economic policies toward the Asia-Pacific region is a natural and top-priority response to the challenge faced by the country in the global and diverse world of the 21st century. We have been witnessing an unprecedentedly fast shift of the center of the world economy and politics to Asia. Asia’s economic growth has become a “locomotive” driving many economies in the world, which have reoriented themselves to the supply of raw materials and goods to China, India and Southeast Asian countries. None of the leading states in the contemporary world can claim a truly global status without a strong presence in the Pacific. Russia, too, can and must use opportunities opened by the “Asian century.”
The Valdai Discussion Club presents its new paper, “National Identity and Russia’s Future,” based on the discussions at the club’s 10th anniversary conference in September 2013 and subsequent work of the expert groups. The paper, written by the young scholars Anastasia Likhacheva and Igor Makarov of the National Research University – Higher School of Economics, attempts to answer the most fundamental of questions: Who are the Russians, and what does their future hold? Authors, who were overseen by Sergey Karaganov, Honorary President of the Council of Foreign and Defense Policy, lay out their views on Russia’s national identity in a way that transcends the traditional academic framework and leaves room for a free and wide-ranging discussion.
The analytical report “Russian elite-2020” is the first in a series of papers, prepared under the auspices of the Research Grants Program of the Foundation for Development and Support of the Valdai Discussion Club. This research project analyzes the values, mindset and ideological orientation of post-Soviet elites, as well as the factors that influence their formation and evolution. Based on the results of the analysis, authors composed a portrait of a typical representative of the Russian elite in the 2020s, and forecasted how elite values and attitudes will continue to evolve and what effect they will have on the Russian domestic and foreign policy