Unlike in the Cold War, the current Russia-United States confrontation is asymmetrical, which carries different dangers. Cooperation will remain limited and Barack Obama’s successor will most likely take a harsher stance on Russia.
Vladimir Putin’s decision to pardon Nadezhda Savchenko was a purely pragmatic one. Left with no viable alternatives to freeing the Ukrainian pilot, Putin was forced to make a concession that may not sit well with the Russian population, which has come to see Savchenko as a symbol of the “Kiev junta.”
Pakistan cannot replace or even influence Russia’s strategic partnership with India. India will always play a very special role in Russia's foreign policy and Russia is very much interested in keeping the strategic level of its ties with India.
Some Russian experts are predicting that the current Russian regime will last another ten years. Change is inevitable, but no one can forecast what form it will take. In the short term, the trend is for inertia and no change.
Russia’s unpredictability means there is a lack of clarity on the direction the country will take after 2018. Is NATO membership really crucial for Finland and Sweden in the long term if Russia follows the best-case scenario, or even if it enters a state of inertia?
Twenty years after Russia was first declared a partner of ASEAN, its economic role in Southeast Asia is still limited. Moscow’s position in the region is largely guided by its strong relationships with Vietnam and China.
After an uncharacteristically friendly Japanese-Russian high-level meeting in Sochi, there is speculation about new efforts to solve the two countries’ dispute over the Kuril Islands.
The RBC media group had developed a distinctive line in investigative fact-based journalism, which was much more dangerous to the authorities than radical opinions. It could no longer be tolerated by the Kremlin or supported even by its liberal oligarch owner.
Despite Kiev’s official rhetoric, the national consensus on integration with the EU is increasingly fragile. Pro-Russian forces are reasserting themselves in the southeast, while ultra-right activists are campaigning against the European Union in the west. On top of that, the current pro-European government has no real achievements to boast of.
It did not need the intervention of the Kremlin for Russia's liberal opposition alliance to fall apart. A clash of personalities and ambitions looks to have doomed the alliance before the parliamentary election campaign has even got underway.
Uzbek President Islam Karimov has begun to make an issue of getting Uzbek migrant workers to return home from Russia. He wants political control. But the current situation, where migrants send millions of dollars in remittances and provide cheap labor in Russia, suits everybody.
New freight routes through Kazakhstan have fundamentally altered the logistics of Eurasian commerce. If Russia wants to retain its stake in transcontinental shipping and transport, it must develop its logistics infrastructure in the Far East to accommodate goods moving westward from East Asia.
The past two years have shown that in order to reliably end the fighting, an essential condition for the implementation of the Minsk agreements is a full-scale peacekeeping mission under the mandate of the UN Security Council with the use of military contingents of OSCE countries, equipped with armored vehicles, artillery, helicopters, and drones.
Russia has generally been a static autocracy throughout its history, rejecting the dynamic popular activism of Mao’s China or revolutionary China. The hybrid war in the Donbas was the occasion for a flirtation with extreme politics led from below. But the Kremlin has reverted to the norm, sensing the danger of giving its most loyal supporters too much power.
It will be nearly impossible for Russia to revive its economy through state investment in infrastructure alone. Conservative estimates suggest that Russia would have to invest 15 percent of its GDP in infrastructure annually for many years to have a significant effect on the economy.
This week, Kevin Rudd, president of the Asia Society Policy Institute and former Australian prime minister, will be visiting Moscow. Speaking at the Carnegie Moscow Center on February 18, 2016, Kevin Rudd outlined Chinese foreign policy under Xi Jinping. In a new article written exclusively for Carnegie.ru, he articulates his vision for Russia’s possible role in Asia.
The future of Sino-Russian finance cooperation is difficult to predict, as is the trajectory of these two large countries. If the current fundamentals are still there we may expect to see deepening partnership.
Two years after the Kremlin’s rift with the West, Moscow’s hopes that a new business relationship with Asia would make up for Russia’s losses have not materialized. President Putin and other members of the elite did not commit themselves strongly to the idea of a “pivot to Asia.” Only certain parts of the private sector have benefited.
Unlike Russia, China has succeeded in creating a sports industry that is more than a prestige project: it has the potential to accelerate China’s international integration and to cultivate national unity and a shared passion for the game among China’s growing middle class.
The Iranian nuclear deal may have created a useful precedent for Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty member states to strengthen the global nuclear nonproliferation system.
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