Assessing Russia’s doctrine of Realpolitik as strategic re-contouring of regional power -balance in the post-Soviet periphery
Keywords:Russia, Realpolitik, Crimea, Putin foreign policy, Eurasianism
The Ukraine conflict escalated in early 2014 and resulted in Russia’s annexation of Crimea. This illustrates a troublesome pattern in the region. The author claims that this most recent political crisis is in fact emblematic of Russian’s narrative for some time, as exemplified by the Russia-Georgian War, or Putin’s support of Moldavian separatists. The article attempts to conceptualize Russian “mingling” in the region in light of several relevant events such as the recent creation of the Eurasian Economic Union as well as the annexation of Crimea as a deliberate strategy that reflects a much larger pattern of potential destabilization and expansionism, which begun more than a decade ago. The argument will be analyzed through the prism of two theoretical perspectives, the redefined domino theory and Kohr’s power theory of social misery. Moreover, the article will place a particular emphasis on the increasing influence of the concept of Eurasianism on Russian geopolitics in recent years. The increasing regional vulnerabilities in light of Russia’s antagonistic policy of Realpolitik, stresses the need for a protracted dialogue about other potential security threats that could further destabilize the region. The article discusses recent events in Ukraine as an emblematic example of Russian geopolitical strategy as a potential warning for other sovereign States in the post-Soviet “near-abroad”.
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