The crisis in Georgia bluntly revealed the failure by the United States and Russia to create a closer working relationship after the Cold War. Agreements like the START and Concentional Armed Forces in Europe treaties could help establish a new book of rules both countries can embrace.
Russia’s new strength and its waning dependence on Western financial institutions help explain the Kremlin’s rejection of a unipolar world dominated by the United States. Russia’s actions in Georgia follow through on what Putin has been saying for years–Russia will not allow Georgia or Ukraine to become a member of NATO.
As John McCain formally accepts his nomination for president, Russian coverage of the event and the campaign in general has been distanced and sometimes condescending. Instead, the Russian media has mainly been focused on the events in Georgia.
Putin may have succeeded Boris Yeltsin, but he decided to adopt the leadership style of Yury Andropov. This style is reflected in Russia’s current dealings with Georgia, which represent a major foreign policy shift for the country. However, these actions will prove to be harmful for Russia and will reignite its own current ethnic separatist movements.
Although U.S.-Russia relations have deteriorated, options for cooperation still exist. Particularly in the area of nuclear nonproliferation, collaboration is essential and may be the best way to ameliorate relations. Russia, the U.S., and Europe should start with negotiating the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), which will provide a starting point for brokering a new consensus.
Unlike what has recently been alleged, the world is not experiencing a new Cold War. Today’s chill in U.S.-Russia relations rests on Russia’s belief that what is good for the West is inherently bad for Russia. Jumping headlong into a confrontation would be a bad idea though for the West. Instead, Western leaders should show that we can gain more from partnership.
The Russia-Georgia conflict is a watershed for a new era in geopolitics. As America scrambles to react to the crisis, Russia will continue to challenge Western influence in the former Soviet space. In turn, both will turn to Europe, and Europe’s ability to defend its own interests will be the most severe test yet for the Union. All the while, China, Iran and others watch with keen interest.
As U.S.-Russia relations continue to sour over the Russia-Georgia conflict, it is unclear how the two nations will be able to rebuild their relationship. Although the conflict led to the current deterioration in relations, problems between the two countries were present before. Despite strong rhetoric from Washington, there is a need for an improved dialogue between the United States and Russia.
The search for a way for all parties in the Russia-Georgia conflict to sit down at the negotiating table is gradually beginning. There is real promise that an EU forum can establish an acceptable format and most likely, Russia is ready to make some concessions. Nevertheless, excessive pressure on Moscow will only strengthen its internal conservative forces and thus exacerbate its hard line stance.
Although in the short term the basis for a ceasefire has formed between Russia and Georgia, the conflict has entirely transformed the region. Russian peacekeepers can now no longer operate alone in the separatist regions. In addition, South Ossetia and Abkhazia cannot revert back to Georgia. Finally, the already deteriorating Russia-U.S. relationship will now face a new set of challenges.
A united Europe could play the pivotal peacemaker in the Russia-Georgia conflict, strengthening cooperation in the continent’s east. However, both unity and independent action on Europe’s part are unlikely. Therefore, the Russia policy of the next U.S. president will be essential for ensuring stability in the region.
Disarmament cooperation between Russia and the U.S. has stalled. Negotiations must be renewed, for inaction could revive an arms race.
There is perhaps no leader in the world more important to current world affairs but less known and understood than Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Supreme Leader of Iran. In a unique and timely new study Carnegie’s Karim Sadjadpour presents an in-depth political profile of Khamenei based on a careful reading of three decades' worth of his writings and speeches.
Lilia Shevtsova searches the histories of the Yeltsin and Putin regimes, exploring within them conventional truths and myths about Russia, paradoxes of Russian political development, and Russia’s role in the world.
This book sheds new light on our understanding of contemporary Russia, providing Western audiences with an insider’s explanation of how the country has arrived at its current position and how the United States and Europe can deal with it more productively.
With new found self-confidence, Russia’s recent foreign policy has taken on a combative tone, exemplified by Russian President Vladmir Putin’s speech in Munich—and U.S.-Russian relations have plummeted to their lowest level since the end of the Soviet-era.
While deterrence as a concept has always been paradoxical, it is poorly equipped to handle today’s most significant nuclear challenges: proliferation and terrorism. Nuclear arms control must move beyond the deadlock of deterrence.
Early hopes for a democratic transition in Central Asia after the fall of the Soviet Union were dashed, but new hope was raised as the global community re-engaged with Central Asia in the wake of 9/11. Martha Brill Olcott explains how the region squandered its "second chance," and what might happen next.
Highly touted in both Washington and Moscow as a "strategic partnership" in 2001, the relationship has drifted and the gap between glowing rhetoric and thin substance has grown. When major policy differences emerge, as over war in Iraq in 2002-2003 and recently over Ukraine, all too easily the U.S.-Russian relationship spirals into "crisis," and the threat of a "new Cold War" looms.