On May 9—the Victory Day—the majority of top-level visitors will come to Moscow from the non-Western countries. Russia’s quest for acceptance in or by the West is finally over, and its foreign policy will require a new identity and new orientation.
The Sino-Russian entente—with its unstated, but transparent goal of reducing U.S. global dominance—is easily the most important result of the Ukraine crisis and the preceding deterioration of Russian-Western relations. The West needs to take this seriously.
President Putin’s decision to lift the ban on the transfer of the S-300 air defense system to Iran signals a new departure for Moscow’s policy in the Middle East.
To avoid a dangerous meltdown in Ukraine, the West must lean hard on Kiev in support of economic and political reform.
Russia is tilting toward China in the face of political and economic pressure from the United States and Europe. This does not presage a new Sino-Russian bloc, but the epoch of post-communist Russia’s integration with the West is over.
There is little reason to believe that the Russian middle class will react to the ongoing financial and economic crisis with protests or renewed calls for change. Instead, it seems almost certain that it will opt for strategies of survival and perseverance.
The prospect of a comprehensive nuclear agreement with Iran in the next few months, if executed rigorously and embedded in wider strategies for regional order and global nuclear order, can be a significant turning point.
Russia’s “pivot to Asia” is meeting with a number of challenges, such as bureaucratic inertia, lack of workable ideas, and high levels of corruption. However, there are ways of dealing with all of them.
The Western approach to Russia is predicated on the supposition that continued pressure on the country will cause Vladimir Putin’s regime to make concessions or even crumble. However, this is far from the truth.
It would be advisable for the presidents of Russia and the United States to make joint decisions to abandon the concept of launch-on-warning strikes based on the information provided by early-warning systems as well as refrain from conducting the respective exercises of the countries’ strategic nuclear forces.
Putin stated that the Russian leadership was ready to use nuclear forces in the days of the Crimean annexation, bringing back the old threat of nuclear war.
Russia should give the green light to the establishment of an SCO Development Bank where China takes dominant positions in the authorized capital and management bodies. In exchange, Moscow could coordinate investment principles on terms that would be most favorable to itself and its partners.
What happens to an authoritarian country that’s left without its leader and the founder of the regime?
The nuclear arms control regime is unraveling. An aggressive search for new formats, concepts, and methods is urgently needed to adapt the system to changed realities.
A discussion about the heated politics of the Iran talks, Putin, and past U.S. secretaries of state.
The perpetrators of violence have staked their claim to power, or at least a more active role in formulating the regime’s identity and methods. If we are to assume that the president is not directly linked to Nemtsov’s murder, it seems that someone else wants to push Putin in a more decisive and punitive direction.
Despite numerous statements declaring Russia’s “pivot to Asia,” the country still faces challenges connecting the goals of the government with the needs of foreign investors.
The risk of a failure to reach a comprehensive deal with Iran is growing. However, a gradualist approach is the most realistic option for solving the nuclear issue.
There is little chance of moving U.S.-Russian relations out of the current crisis, due to fundamental differences in how both nations view the world. The best people can hope for is that the more dangerous path will not be taken.
Decomposition of “Russia” into many players provides clues to some aspects of the relationship between Moscow and Beijing. While the most important decisions are made by Putin himself, the views and interests of other players may influence the final policy.
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