RUSSIAN FOREIGN POLICY AND ITS HUMANITARIAN CONSEQUENCES
The paper deals with problem of employing the representations of gender relations as a “soft power” resource in international arena. The authors examine how contemporary media discuss the issues whether the image of Russia as a bulwark of traditional values can be used as Russian “soft power” resource in the international arena. The image of Russia as the guardian of family and religious values plays a noticeable role in Russia’s identity politics. At the same time it meets criticism which points out that the idea of restoration of the traditional values, first, is archaic and aimed against gender equality and, second, serves as an element of propaganda and features as a part of the “proxy war” that Russia wages against the West.
The conflict in Ukraine and Russia's annexation of Crimea has undoubtedly been a pivotal moment for policy makers and military planners in Europe and beyond. Many analysts see an unexpected character in the conflict and expect negative reverberations and a long-lasting period of turbulence and uncertainty, the de-legitimation of international institutions and a declining role for global norms and rules. Did these events bring substantial correctives and modifications to the extant conceptualization of International Relations? Does the conflict significantly alter previous assumptions and foster a new academic vocabulary, or, does it confirm the validity of well-established schools of thought in international relations? Has the crisis in Ukraine confirmed the vitality and academic vigour of conventional concepts?
These questions are the starting points for this book covering conceptualisations from rationalist to reflectivist, and from quantitative to qualitative. Most contributors agree that many of the old concepts, such as multi-polarity, spheres of influence, sovereignty, or even containment, are still cognitively valid, yet believe the eruption of the crisis means that they are now used in different contexts and thus infused with different meanings. It is these multiple, conceptual languages that the volume puts at the centre of its analysis.
This text will be of great interest to students and scholars studying international relations, politics, and Russian and Ukrainian studies.
Realism- and geopolitics-inspired rhetoric was common currency in Russian foreign policy discourse throughout the 1990s. This led some commentators to adopt realism and geopolitics - realism’s more nationalist and strategic counterpart - as conceptual lenses for understanding Russian foreign policy. As a result, Russian foreign policy of the 2010s is still considered predominantly geopolitics-driven despite the fact that geopolitical vocabulary has virtually disappeared from foreign policy discourse while a desire to carve out spheres of influence have been officially pronounced utterly anachronistic and inappropriate, a “thing of the past”. Thus, a more nuanced interpretation views the rise of geopolitics in Russian post-Soviet foreign policy discourse as an attempt to tap into the symbolic and rhetorical power of geopolitics in order to reduce ontological insecurity brought about by the end of the Cold War. The chapter, therefore, advances a theoretical claim about the relevance of the constructivist and poststructuralist literature and very limited relevance of realism for understanding the twists and turns of Russian post-Soviet foreign policy. Methodologically, the chapter argues that an exploration of state identity rooted in the ontological security argument will benefit from employing discourse analysis. Empirically, the present study provides substantiation of the theoretical claim that the concept of hegemony captures well the historical trajectory of Russia’s relations with its ‘significant other’- Europe/the EU/the West – and provides important insights into the sources of Russia’s ontological insecurity in the 21st century.
The reader describes various aspects of the international position of Russia and its policy in the beginning of the 21st century. The general problems of international relations in the present-day polycentric world are discussed.
Russian strategy in the Middle East comprises several elements. First,Moscow is persistent in defending what it sees as its red lines in the region. Thus, Russia is against any military intervention not approved by the UN Security Council. It does not welcome forced regime change if it leads to the destruction of existing state mechanisms. The Kremlin is also concerned about any change of borders in the Middle East, and it is firmly against any dialogue with radical Islamists and jihadists. Moscow’s flexibility has enabled it to talk to different forces in the region and, if necessary, play the mediator’s role. However, Russia is respected by Syria’s regional opponents, such as Saudi Arabia and Qatar, for the stubbornness it demonstrates when defending its own red lines in the region. Accordingly, the Saudis and Qataris are compelled to take Russia’s point of view into account and retain some dialogue with the Kremlin.
Second, Russia seems to be trying to reclaim its Cold War role as acounterweight to the U.S. in the region. Yet, the Kremlin does not directly oppose Washington, but rather exploits the region’s pre-existing disappointment with the U.S. through practical moves, which contrast American and European behavior. Thus, the reluctance of Washington to protect Mubarak, compared with the Russian support provided to Assad,encourages regional powers to consider Moscow a more reliable partner.
Third, Moscow avoids using ideological rhetoric in its official dialogue with the countries of the region.Unlike in the former Soviet space,the Russian leadership does not impose its views either by force or by means of economic coercion. In dialogue with the countries and political groupings of the region, Moscow tries to focus on existing commonalities rather than differences and contradictions. In all cases, the Kremlin also remains extremely pragmatic. Russia does not raise the question of political freedoms in Iran and tries not to be critical of Israel’s policies in Palestine and Gaza in spite of its support for a two-state solution. Moscow tries to support a dialogue with all countries in the region without expressing obvious support for any particular state or coalition, and, so far, it has been partly successful in doing so.
Finally, in its economic efforts, the Kremlin focuses on those areas where it has market advantages: nuclear energy, oil and gas, petro-chemicals, space, weapons, and grain. At the same time, Russian business in the Middle East is based on the adage of “Chinese price for European quality.”Thus, price and reliability were the main reasons for interest from Middle Eastern countries in Russian nuclear technologies.
It was a diplomatic coalition of the 21st century and it was the diplomatic coalition. decade. What is the intersection between these phenomena? How to make a difference? Which factors could explain the BRICS and towards the group? Issues Examined are for These in Russia, the BRICS and the Disruption of Order of Global by Rachel Salzman.