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Reasons: Why North Korea will Collapse in Not a Distant Future and What We Must be Concerned With

In the latter half of the twentieth century following the onslaught of World War II, the East Asian region has achieved an incredible degree of development in terms of the area’s both political and economic stature across the globe. There was, however, one exception amongst this list: North Korea. Commencing a dialogue concerning North Korea, however, is not a simple process as describing any other nation with failed economy and authoritarian rule, as it is –as most westerners are aware of – also a country that appears in global media the most, though usually as a menace to global security, not as another example of rapid economic development that much of East Asian region was blessed with. While most former communist nations –east or west alike– either enjoyed a successful transition or faded into obscurity, North Korea did not fall into neither scenario and now is one of the most talked-about nations in the world due to its dual face as both one of the most impoverished nations in the world after an economic breakdown that began following the demise of the Communist Bloc, and a threat to global security through its insistence to preserve its heavy armament and its insistence upon developing its controversial nuclear program. Now one question remains: why?

After the collapse of the Communist Bloc and the end of the Cold War in the wake of the 1990s, the world expected a new paradigm of global geopolitics where martial conflicts will be minimized and a good degree of stability across the world was to be assured. Nonetheless, after nearly two decades after the fall of what Ronald Reagan once described as the “Evil Empire,” the world is still prone to a series of disorders and crises in numerous regions, as seen in the crises in Middle East manifested by our prolonged and unsuccessful war effort in Iraq. One aspect we must pay attention to regarding these current conflicts, however, is that a large portion of the current geopolitical crises came as the aftermath of the events during the Cold War era, with notable instances being Iraq, Kosovo, and North Korea.

A study on North Korea is both very intriguing and disturbing, one of numerous reasons being a fact that it possesses perhaps the most bizarre brand of communism even when compared to its most rigid counterparts throughout the former Communist Bloc. As a former member of the Communist Bloc and still a very oppressive Stalinist regime, our subject North Korea must rank high amongst the list of countries whose nature as a threat to global security largely descended from the problems generated following the end of the Cold War. This, I believe, tells us that in order to achieve a full understanding of North Korea’s recent behaviors, the understanding of its history is crucial. With its economy failing miserably and most foreign governments unwilling to provide a substantial amount of aid, North Korea could be considered as a country that is now on the verge of collapse, which may –unfortunately– choose to end itself under the mayhem of nuclear or full-fledged warfare committed by its leadership faced with few alternative decisions. Faced with such concerns, there are a number of points I would like to address with regard to this extremely important issue in this essay. In this writing, indeed, I would like to address the reasons why North Korea is currently on the verge of collapse due to its own incompatibilities, the argument that will be backed by a thorough presentation the political history of North Korea to illuminate why North Korean leadership put itself in such position.

To begin with, North Korea, often dubbed by the mainstream media as the “Hermit Kingdom,” is a nation under an ironclad control of the ruling Korean Workers’ Party that is virtually shut out from any foreign influence. Though defining itself as a communist nation, North Korea’s ruling method could be seen as perverse and oppressive even from an orthodox Marxist’s standpoint. North Korea’s head of state, to take one example, is inherited directly from the country’s founder, Kim Il-Sung, a practice that is unprecedented in any country with past or present communist ruling experience. Furthermore, throughout its history, North Korea has openly devised its own brand of communist ideology in an attempt to justify its totalitarian rule, in what is known as the Juche ideology. In what seems to be a rather tenuous combination of the ideas from Chairman Mao and Il Duce, Kim Il-Sung, the architect of the Juche system, asserts that every communist polity shall be operated under the firm principle of self-reliance, even though North Korea itself largely depended upon the economic assistance from fellow communist nations to support its own economy.

The advent of Juche ideology also marked the practice of personality cult in North Korea, which forced its populace to worship a head of state like a monarch, which one may see as following the footsteps of the Imperial Japan during World War II, ironically the state North Korea condemns as its version of “Evil Empire” alongside the United States. In practice, the Juche idea largely served as a handy tool for North Korea’s leadership to justify its reign of terror, as it could demonize anyone that opposes policies imposed by the Kim Dynasty regime as an imperialistic, counterrevolutionary figure. The Juche ideology also served as a rationale behind North Korea’s intent to develop nuclear arms despite the opposition from Beijing, its reluctant ally, though one could point that Pyongyang’s attempt to arm itself with nuclear warheads is a mere attempt for the current leadership to survive, an aspect of the contemporary world politics surrounding North Korea that I will clearly show in the subsequent parts of this paper. The Juche theory, as we shall explore throughout this paper, would plague North Korea’s sustainability throughout the history of the Hermit Kingdom due to its nature as an ideology that was constructed without much expert knowledge in political economy and under a firm belief in self-reliance despite the necessity of mutual trade in order for a nation to achieve any respectable economic and technological growth.

Before further presenting the argument itself, however, let us cover the political history of North Korea in order to clarify where the Juche idea and North Korea’s current domestic and foreign policies came from. This, I believe, would strengthen the argument I intend to address in this paper, while also clarifying the Chinese mindset behind still seeing North Korea as somewhat of an ally despite the strained relationship between Beijing and Pyongyang with regard to numerous issues, most notably regarding North Korea’s intent to develop nuclear warheads despite the opposition from both China and its neighbors surrounding the East Asian region.

North Korea was established after World War II and the collapse of the Japanese Empire where the Soviet Union, alongside the United States and Great Britain, emerged as the victors of this massive global conflict. The Korean Peninsula, legally a Japanese territory during the war years, soon caught the interest of both Soviet Union and the west, as these newly-emerged superpowers needed a safeguard area where the influence by either nation was as dominant as other countries that already came under either American or Soviet interest. With this concern in his mind, the Soviet ruler Joseph Stalin addressed in Yalta Conference that should Soviet Union enter the war against Japan, it must consolidate what he called “buffer zones” in both Asia and Europe, with its buffer zone in Asia being the northern half of the Korean Peninsula. In the process, a compromise was made between Washington and Moscow to divide the Korean Peninsula in the parallel line of 38. The United States, vowing to consolidate the reconstruction effort in Japan, occupied Korea below the 38 line and eventually established Syngman Rhee, a rather obscure figure who hardly involved himself in Korean independence movement, as its head of state. At the same time, the Soviet Union appointed Kim Il-Sung, a former Soviet officer with some –if dubious– record of fighting against the Japanese, as the leader of the newly-launched communist state in the Korea above the 38 line. What we must notice in this process is that from its very beginning, North Korea –at least behind the eyes of Moscow or Beijing– was a nation whose main purpose is to serve as a buffer state behind its mother nation. This remains virtually unchanged to this day, though the circumstances surrounding the patronage from more influential states have changed over time, especially after the collapse of the Communist Bloc and a massive economic surge China enjoyed in recent years. This, I observe, is the most significant reason why Beijing retains its ties with the Hermit Kingdom despite the recent events, as a breakdown of the status quo in North Korea may lead to an establishment of a pro-western regime in the area, something China does not want to happen.

At the same time, one of Pyongyang’s rationales behind its attempt to maintain its massive –and costly– military and develop nuclear warheads is a technically ongoing war with South Korea, an issue that a number of far right-wingers in Seoul take advantage of as well. To understand this, one must obtain a clear picture of the aftermath of the Korean War, which left the two Koreas with an intense mutual hostility that lasts to this day. The Korean War is also important in one’s attempt to fully understand current North Korean politics, as it was the Korean War –and its unclear outcome– that helped Kim Il-Sung to cement his monopoly of power and thereby establishing a political atmosphere where he could practice his questionable brand of communism.

In several years following the birth of North Korea, Moscow –then controlled by Joseph Stalin– decided to provide Pyongyang with a substantial amount of war materials for potential warfare against the pro-American south, though Stalin himself acted largely upon an assumption that Washington is doing the same in the south and Kim Il-Sung will not provoke a full-scale war. The United States, by contrast, did not expect the Soviet Union to break the balance of power, thus leaving South Korea with only a handful of military units and dismal local military to defend itself. Shortly after its establishment, North Korea –partially inspired by a declaration made by Dean Acheson, the Secretary of State under Truman administration, that United States will not include South Korea as its new defense plan– engaged itself in what is now known as Korean War. Kim, aware of a fact that his army was in far superior condition compared to its southern counterpart, believed that he could end a war within a short period of time. After a rapid –and thus unforeseen– advance of North Korean army in the wake of the Korean War, both Moscow and Beijing had somewhat of an assumption that the western world will not intervene because of their supposed disregard of Korean Peninsula as an important geostrategic spot, and the lack of immediate manpower –after the demobilization of American troops following World War II– to oppose the rapidly advancing North Korean army. Seeing South Korea as a buffer zone to Japan, its newfound and extremely important ally in the postwar Asia, Washington thought otherwise. The United States, with an approval from the United Nations, thus intervened. The subsequent years of the war saw the Chinese entry to the war in rescue of Kim Il-Sung’s regime, and a rather stagnant warfare where neither Beijing nor Washington desired to make a substantial advance due to the fear of another world war and because of the fact that both China and the United States were content with the pre-war status quo, as both sides managed to assure the buffer zone for themselves to retain an acceptable degree of stability in the East Asian region.

The Korean War ended in 1953, with a very unclear result with borders similar to the pre-war level, only leaving an enormous degree of hostility between North and South Korea. From Pyongyang’s perspective, the war was a failure, as it did not succeed in its initial goal: The reunification of Korean Peninsula under the helm of Korean Workers’ Party. Thus, the unclear outcome of the war provided Kim Il-Sung an opportunity to purge the political opponents that he did not like or perceived as a threat. The history of North Korea after the Korean War, therefore, was noted with a series of purges towards Kim’s political rivals that cemented Kim’s dominance in what is called “Korean Workers’ Party,” now an agent of oppression towards its people whose status as the oppressor persists till today. The war, at the same time, provided the authoritarian rulers of both Koreas a rationale to exploit national security as an excuse to devise a more rigid, oppressive regime that bolstered their rule. While South Korea eventually managed to reinvent itself as a somewhat democratic nation due to drastically improved economy in recent decades, North Korea has retained the kind of political structure that is nearly exactly the same with the one Kim Il-Sung consolidated following the Korean War. The North Korean system, however, did not seem to be in danger until the 1970s when its economy still achieved a respectable amount of growth largely due to assistances made from Soviet Union and other nations in the Communist Bloc, the progress that was made under the conditions quite contrary from what the Juche principle insists. Thus, it was following the fall of communism and the end of foreign assistance when North Korea faced its most dire problems: The economic problems.

Throughout the Cold War years, the North Korean economy largely depended upon the military and economic assistance from Moscow and Beijing, a pattern that was largely similar in Pyongyang’s southern counterpart. Even during these years, however, North Korea’s opportunity to further take advantage of the situation was often hampered due to the presence of Juche ideology and the Pyongyang Politburo’s insistence to preserve the principle of “self-reliance” whenever possible. Amid this period emerged Deng Xiaoping in Beijing’s Politburo, who introduced open-door policies to many parts of China’s industries in an attempt to modernize the stagnant Chinese economy. While Deng’s policies proved immensely successful in China, they also brought in the new ideas that the Chinese populace was not able to reach in previous years, which resulted in some people questioning the legitimacy of the dominance of Chinese Communist Party as a whole.

A staunch Stalinist, Kim Il-Sung saw this kind of reform as both a betrayal to communist principles and making the country prone to potential domestic instabilities. To a certain extent, he was right. Soon after Deng’s policies became implemented, a series of domestic insurgencies in fellow communist nations that newly adopted open-door policies –with most notable example being People’s Republic of China as seen in the Tiananmen Incident of 1989– convinced Pyongyang to strengthen its grip in its isolationist policy at the peril of the country’s already fluctuating economy. While this helped North Korea to maintain its Stalinist rule in a short term, in a long term it furthered the ineffective nature of North Korean economy caused by an enormous military expenditure, poorly-planned economic policies, and Kim Il-Sung’s intent to keep his country more as self-reliant as possible to preserve his monopoly of power. Following the fall of the Soviet Union and the Communist Bloc by the year 1991, the North Korean economy started deteriorating due to the lack of foreign trade –which provided virtually all foreign capital in the nation besides a small amount sent from Chosen Soren, a pro-Pyongyang organization based in Japan that is suspected have taken part in abducting Japanese citizens into North Korea. This is during this time period where Kim Jong-Il, the son of Kim Il-Sung assumed power from his father then started imposing even more isolationist policy of his own in his attempt to preserve the political status quo. Within this light, North Korea’s desperation could be also seen in its hasty nuclear development, in an attempt to have both a deadly threat and a viable bargain weapon with the outside world without letting the North Korean populace to start questioning the legitimacy of the rigid Stalinist regime through outwards access.

Given the incompatible nature of North Korea’s regime we have observed thus far, one could naturally suggest that there is a vast array of reasons one could suggest why North Korea will collapse in not a distant future. One of such reasons is North Korea’s economic reality, which is barely sustaining itself by “unconditional” aids from China and South Korea. The lack of food resources and resulting famine is a serious concern in North Korea since early 1990s, while not a substantial improvement was made from Pyongyang’s Politburo. The leadership of North Korea, meanwhile, is more concerned in preserving its seat as an authoritarian ruler of the nation, as any substantial open-door policy –especially at this point– will immediately let the populace question the legitimacy of the communist leadership, thus creating an atmosphere where reversal of the status quo is possible in any occasions.

Hereby the current governance of North Korea faces a serious dilemma: whether to preserve the current system under the Juche ideology that has no chance of improving North Korea’s economic conditions while relying upon occasional aids provided by China and South Korea, or to impose an open-door policy to save North Korea from itself, a move that will put leaders of North Korea a severe crisis of legitimacy. One must also consider a fact that if the current dismal economic conditions become prolonged for a long period of time, there will be good potential where there will be inner conflict within North Korea to transform the leadership to one that is capable of resolving North Korea’s diplomatic status and economic difficulty at least to a certain extent.

Another major factor that could contribute to the downfall of current North Korean leadership is its diplomatic status where North Korea caused itself to be left with arguably no reliable allies. One could argue that as a communist nation, the Kim Dynasty might still have strong ties with its Chinese counterpart. This assumption, however, is misleading, as North Korea’s relationship with China has deteriorated over time due to a number of causes. One of those reasons is North Korea’s unwillingness to comply with what Beijing demands, especially in terms of its pursuit of nuclear weapon and military strength for aggressive warfare disregarding China’s warning not to do so. This, without a doubt, poses a serious threat to the neighboring countries of the communist rogue state, while also aggravating Beijing’s intent to utilize North Korea as its buffer zone without being a threat to China itself. After the North Korean nuclear experiment in October 2006, China was one of the first nations to condemn Pyongyang’s decision to engage in such attempts. With this in regard, the Pyongyang Politburo will have to be prepared to face China’s reluctance to help the Hermit Kingdom in case of conflict with the western world, especially when such problem was generated by North Korea’s ongoing nuclear problems.

Throughout this essay, we have observed the reasons why North Korea’s status quo will be put on the verge of collapse for a wide variety of reasons. One major factor, of course, would be a potential crisis of legitimacy once North Korea attempts to save itself from a seemingly endless economic downfall, which seems to hardly improve despite economic aids from China and South Korea. Pyongyang, therefore, is bound to be rather reluctant towards any kind of openness, while the continuation of the status quo –along with North Korea’s brinkmanship diplomacy– will further global pressure on North Korea and could result in a massive warfare that could be a major geopolitical catastrophe in the East Asian region. At the same time, one potential major factor during the collapse would be People’s Republic of China, as Beijing would like to preserve North Korea as its buffer zone against the mounting western pressures, as seen by Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan, all of which retain close ties to the United States. This, I believe, means that while the collapse of the current leadership in North Korea seems inevitable at some point, there shall be a considerable degree of mutual compromise between the two sides should there be peace and stability in the East Asian region, though possible aftermath like a rapid reunification of the peninsula may pose a colossal geopolitical catastrophe at the peril of the region’s stability.

January 5, 2009 Posted by | East Asia | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Sorry Portrait of Democracy in the Middle East

Upon the collapse of the Communist Bloc and the creation of a new world order accordingly, the United States -at least throughout the 90s and a good part of the subsequent decade- emerged as an unrivaled superpower across the globe in both economic and political terms. This, however, did not mark an easier time for an American policymaker as far as diplomatic issues were concerned. After the onslaught at the World Trade Center in 9/11, 2001, American foreign policy was somewhat preoccupied with preventing similar disaster through a mean of preemption with the greatest degree of focus given to the Middle East – where militant nationalism and anti-western sentiment remains prevalent.

Given the gravity of the present-day situation where the danger of terrorist attack is real, to ask whether we shall indeed wage a War on Terrorism seems to be out of question. Nevertheless, an inquiry concerning how we must conduct such endeavor remains valid. This is especially true with regard to the Bush Administration’s ideologically-driven policy to implant popular democracy throughout the region, something -at least by far- that generated outcomes that hampers, not strengthens our war effort in numerous instances, while also working to weaken our global stature through creating an impression that Washington attempts to intervene in a sovereign nation’s domestic affairs.

Historically, there have been zero instances throughout modern era where an implantation of popular democracy in a predominantly Muslim Middle Eastern nation -both inward and outward- resulted in that country’s prosperity and advancement in human rights. The relative progress in both economy and individual rights in Turkey, to take one example, was anchored only through the Kemalist doctrine that dominated Turkish politics form the country’s founding. Oddly enough, Kemalism in Turkey was implemented largely at the expense of mostly agrarian, traditional Muslim Turkish public through the presence of a benign Leviathan of military junta.

Take the example of the present-day Iraq. A part of the Ottoman Empire prior to the end of World War I, Iraq hardly possessed a sense of nationhood prior to the advent of Saddam Hussein in the early 1970s, whose Batthist regime ruthlessly subjugated any domestic grievance to the Sunni minority rule. George W. Bush’s decision to launch a general election in Iraq shortly before the U.S. Presidential Election of 2004 clearly helped the Dubya’s reelection attempt. By contrast, what we have -as Americans waging War on Terrorism- garnered as a result has been a borderline cleric state dominated by potentially pro-Tehran Shi’a majority that is hardly an asset in our struggle against various terrorist groups, who at the same time could take advantage of our presence in Iraq as a recruiting tool in their malicious cause amongst the region’s misguided youth.

The detrimental nature of popular democracy in the Middle East concerning our War on Terrorism is also vividly seen in Palestine, where Hamas –a known terrorist group funding suicide bombers– emerged victorious in a democratic election for Palestinian National Assembly in 2006. The rhetoric employed by Hamas, which includes a stringent allegiance to Sharia law and the destruction of the State of Israel, makes Yasser Arafat look like a Mother Theresa. A popular movement in Pakistan toppled Pervez Musharraf, our reliable and extremely important ally in War on Terrorism, leaving the country with a provisional government that could be hostile to U.S. interest in many respects. At the same time, the emergence of the so-called “Muslim Brotherhood” in Egypt could pose a serious instability or undesirable political upheaval in a country that is needed to root out militant Muslim extremists across the region.

An empirical study of modern history informs us that a relatively stable and negotiable Middle Eastern state is generated through either conservative governing structure –as seen in Saudi Arabia or United Arab Emirates– or a bold implementation of secularist politics often against the demand of the underprivileged, misguided public. While one could well argue that a vast array of Muslim extremism in the present was partially spawned by the West’s mishandling of a number of secular progressives of the region in the distant past (e.g. The West’s decision to topple a relatively civil, Sorbonne-educated Mosaddeq of Iran in 1953 that contributed to the 1979 Islamic thermidor of the country), a hasty implantation of democracy in the region as seen in the present-tense seems to have worsened, not alleviated the situation. Our struggle against terrorism could be won only thorough an immense degree of collaboration between moderate, negotiable nations forming a compelling phalanx against religious extremism that is detrimental to any reasonable state. And the introduction of democracy in the Middle East does not seem to strengthen such endeavor.

January 5, 2009 Posted by | Politics | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Caroline Kennedy – Politics of Change and the Democratic Establishment

I consider myself something of a moderate voter who voted for Obama past election. I did so mainly because I didn’t buy the presentation of McCain as a “maverick” after a series of manuavers -including the nomination of Sarah Palin as Vice Presidential candidate, something that looks more like a practical joke in retrospect- that seemed to be a gesture to appease groups with radical or inherently dangerous ideologies, a la evangelicals, remaining adherents of neoconservative foreign policy, and so forth. Nonetheless, shortly after Obama’s victory that undoubtedly marked a colossal degree of progress in American political history, I was rather appalled to see the Democratic establishment acting contrary to their platform of “change,” something many if not most Americans find necessary after years of debacle under the Bush Administration.

Enter Caroline Kennedy, one of quite a few remnants of political dynasties (e.g. Tafts, Kennedys, Bushs, Lodges, Rockefellers, Clintons) in American history. A heir apparent to the royal line of JFK and Jackie O, Kennedy boasts an enormous degree of connection and support amongst the establishment of the Democratic Party and a largely undistinguished career as an attorney. While Kennedy’s alleged incompatability is to a much lesser degree than her GOP counterpart in 2008 (You Know Who), the practice of appointing a rather obscure and yet unproven figure -who nevertheless is well-liked within party establishment- by a party that ran under the platform of change and reform, seems to be objectionable if not entirely abominable.

As a President-Elect in these challenging times, Barack Obama will have to not only combat opposition from the increasingly defensive Republicans (i.e. Richard Shelby of Alabama) but also with a horde of party loyalists and borderline radicals within the Democratic Party. While I will abstain from discussing other specific issues now for the sake of brevity, I’d say that the current Senate replacement issue and Caroline Kennedy’s run as an appointee (thus not a candidate) somewhat tells the American populace that should Obama be remembered as a FDR-esque figure who raised his nation from the verge of misery, he will have to confront his own party and its establishment as well as a broad omnibus of opposition that will emerge as a reaction to the President-Elect’s reform policies.

January 5, 2009 Posted by | United States | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

L’élévation de nations de BRIC et comment ceci remodèlera la géopolitique du monde dans un futur proche – et pourquoi les Etats-Unis doivent s’inquiéter

Cet essai est essentiellement une expansion d’un projet final que j’ai fait pour une classe j’ ai rentré une université ici aux Etats-Unis. Chacun aux Etats-Unis – parmi ceux qui prennent la peine d’être préoccupés par la stature de son pays dans un futur proche parlent de l’élévation de l’union ou de la République populaire de Chine européenne, par lequel les gens se rendent à peine compte de l’élévation d’un nouveau paradigme diplomatique parmi les nations l’établissement de Goldman-Sachs doublé comme BRIC- Brésil, Russie, Inde et Chine. Au centre d’une telle transformation était la Russie de Putin, dont l’influence dans ces nations est étonnamment haut due à sa possession abondante de pétrole – discutablement le monde plus parler-au sujet de la matière première ces dernières années. La transition de la Russie de sa tentative constante de devenir un membre d’une petite clique du monde occidental à sa forme courante de diplomatie, j’observe, étais au moins en partie accéléré par l’intention occidentale pour ne pas inclure la Russie dans son groupe suivant les indications de l’expansion continue de NATO* et de l’union européenne. Avec ceci à l’égard, je voudrais adresser dans cet essai comment ces nations ont formé un degré impressionnant de collaboration mutuelle au cours d’une période courte – la thèse de BRIC est venu dehors en 2003 – et comment une alliance de ces nations deviendrait une puissance formidable du monde dans pas un futur éloigné et deviendrait ainsi les contre-parties importantes contre la dominance courante des Etats-Unis dans le geo global contemporain – la politique – vraisemblablement plus ainsi que l’union européenne plutôt de fluctuation.

Déni :  Ce document a été traduit par un interprète automatique et je réellement ne parle pas ou n’écris pas français. Svp faites- moi savoir s’il y a des erreurs d’orthographe possibles de grammaire ou.

le *NATO a commencé comme alliance des nations non-communistes en Europe et Amérique du Nord afin d’essayer de contenir les militaires communistes derrière le rideau en fer. En date de 2008 – environ pendant deux décennies après que la fin de la guerre froide l’OTAN inclut une plus grande quantité d’Etats Membres et de puissance militaire que jamais.

Note : Cet essai a pu être sujet à une modification continue.

L’élévation de nations de BRIC et comment ceci remodèlera la géopolitique du monde dans un futur proche – et pourquoi les Etats-Unis doivent s’inquiéter

Pour presque la moitié par siècle suivant le lendemain de la deuxième guerre mondiale, l’hégémonie globale a été divisée entre deux factions : on était « le monde libre » mené par les Etats-Unis et l’empire britannique, [I] l’aile occidentale des puissances alliées victorieuses, alors qu’autre être le bloc communiste spearheaded par l’Union Soviétique et la Chine communiste. L’ordre du monde pendant qu’on le connaissait pendant l’ère de guerre froide, cependant, est passé par une quantité massive de changements après la panne du bloc communiste et finalement de l’Union Soviétique qui se sont produits entre 1989 et 1991. La fédération russe, une réincarnation non-communiste du RSFSR dans l’Union Soviétique, a assumé le rôle comme puissance importante du monde de ses contre-parties de bolchévique. Pour beaucoup de partie des années 90, la fédération russe nouveau-soutenue a essayé de recréer son image en tant que membre légitime du monde occidental. Certaines de telles tentatives ont été couronnées de succès jusqu’à un degré, comme vu dans l’entrée russe dans le groupe de sept (maintenant G8), qui a été au commencement censé pour être un forum des nations influentes dans le monde occidental.

En outre, beaucoup de politiciens russes ont commencé à se diriger que tandis que la Russie semblait frayer un chemin un rapport plus constructif avec l’ouest par sa participation à G8, le monde occidental en réalité a mis l’effort de monter une plus grande pression géopolitique en Russie, comme vu dans l’entrée d’anciennes nations communistes de bloc (par exemple. La Pologne, la République Tchèque, et les états baltiques pour appeler uns) en l’OTAN, une alliance militaire qui a été conçue comme contre-parties occidentales au pacte de Varsovie, qui a disparu ancien pendant presque deux décennies. Pour parer de telles pressions, la Russie a aligné avec la République populaire de Chine, un autre membre non-occidental Conseil de sécurité de Nations Unies le’. Au même temps, la dépendance économique de la Russie vers le monde occidental avec son industrie pétrolière bourgeonnante pourrait être allégée par le réalignement avec d’autres économies naissantes à travers le monde, aussi vividly vu dans une thèse récente de Goldman-Sachs connue sous le nom de BRIC (Brésil, Russie, Inde et RPC). Dans cet essai, en effet, je voudrais présenter le cours de la désillusion de la Russie de sa participation dans G8 et d’une tentative d’assimiler dans le monde occidental en général qu’eu comme conséquence l’élévation de Putin et « de la Russie forte » courante ordre du jour, et comment ceci pourrait avoir comme conséquence un réalignement diplomatique comme prévu thèse de BRIC par Goldman-Sachs la’, qui a projeté qu’une collaboration mutuelle entre ces états sera « inévitable » dans pas un futur éloigné.

Les initiatives pro-occidentales de la Russie ont pratiquement commencé par le changement de Yeltsin de la puissance en 1991. Beaucoup ont speculé qu’une telle coopération avec l’ouest était nécessaire, comme la Russie, autrefois la plus grande économie planifiée dans le monde, ont été maintenant obligés de se transformer en économie de marché de marché libre afin de survivre. Tandis que la réforme elle-même s’avérait être un fiasco, Yeltsin a essayé de mettre en application encore une autre politique qui renforcerait les cravates entre le monde occidental et la fédération russe, à savoir l’adhésion russe dans G8, alors connu sous le nom de groupe de sept. G7, comme cité précédemment, a été au commencement créé comme forum international entre les polities démocratiques industriels principaux du monde. Dorénavant, il a été regardé par beaucoup – parmi les politiciens- that occidentaux et russes qu’une telle transition accélérez l’effort russe de s’intégrer au monde occidental, tandis que l’alliance des puissances industrielles occidentales établies obtiendra une hégémonie undisputable au-dessus du monde suivant l’effondrement du bloc communiste. Néanmoins, l’échec des politiques économiques de Yeltsin qui a été en grande partie conçu par les économistes occidentaux a forcé beaucoup à reconsidérer si le lendemain d’une telle transition serait positif pour le futur de la Russie. De plus, le conflit d’intérêt entre la Russie et le monde occidental quant à beaucoup de questions géopolitiques entourant le globe a également joué un rôle important en incitant les chefs politiques russes pour tourner sceptique une autre de collaboration avec l’ouest. Un autre souci principal était le système politique de la Russie, que beaucoup d’occidentaux regardent comme quelque peu quasi-démocratique ou non démocratique du tout. Tandis que le monde occidental a été connu pour son alignement avec certains des dictateurs les plus détestés du monde dans des cas nécessaires, c’est clairement un obstacle pour que la Russie et l’ouest s’engage dans un degré respectable de collaboration mutuelle. Ces facteurs, j’observe, suis les causes principales de la fente récente entre la Russie et le monde occidental comme vu en années de Putin, car je montrerai clairement pendant cet article.

Avant d’adresser ce point, cependant, j’ai l’intention d’évaluer brièvement l’état de la fédération russe en années où il y avait un continuum d’effort en faveur du westernization de l’état russe. Ceci, j’observe, consoliderais notre arrangement du scepticisme certain de la Russie sur la coopération avec le monde occidental, offrant de ce fait une meilleure explication concernant pourquoi un réalignement diplomatique comme projeté par la thèse de BRIC pourrait se produire dans un futur proche.

À l’étape initiale de l’effondrement de l’Union Soviétique et de l’arrivée de la fédération russe, l’ouest a généralement cru qu’une transition rapide vers l’économie de marché de marché libre fonctionnerait pour la Russie, comme le faisait elle – ou semble travailler dans beaucoup d’anciens membres du bloc communiste, y compris la Pologne et la République Tchèque. Derrière ceci était la réalité de la politique occidentale alors, qui a grêlé le genre d’idéologie embrassé par Ronald Reagan et Margaret Thatcher comme alternative viable à une forme de démocratie sociale qui a duré pendant des décennies dans ces pays, plus populairement connu comme consensus d’après-guerre. Il pas, cependant, prix tellement bien en Russie pour un certain nombre de raisons. Pour la première sinon première raison, nous pourrions citer l’exécution précipitée de la « thérapie de choc  » néo-libéral-orientée dans la structure économique russe. Au cours de l’histoire moderne, il est devenu évident que l’implantation de la structure politique ou économique occidentale sans à préparation proportionnée à l’avance pourrait avoir comme conséquence une catastrophe totale en vue de le développement de la nation elle-même et le bien-être de ses citoyens, comme peut-être le plus vividly vu dans un vaste choix d’Etats africains qui sont devenus indépendants dans la dernière moitié du 20ème siècle. En dépit de s’avérer être la superpuissance politique et économique formidable pendant l’ère soviétique, la Russie était extrêmement encline de tels inconvénients de westernization rapide, comme avéré dans le désastre économique de cela s’est produit par la décennie sinistre des années 90. Un autre goulot d’étranglement principal était une division de travail dans l’ancienne Union Soviétique qui est devenue nulle et depuis la panne du dominion de bolchévique en 1991. Ceci s’est avéré à gauche être un désastre non seulement à d’anciennes Républiques soviétiques mineures, mais à beaucoup de régions dans la fédération russe, comme privatisation rapide de tels capitaux l’effondrement de la vaste foule de classe ouvrière du pays pratiquement non réprimée. Ceci, à leur tour, a eu comme conséquence la panne du marché de consommateurs potentiel dans l’économie de marché du marché nouvellement actionnée de la Russie, qui – avec l’effet toujours croissant de l’hyper-inflation a causé par la manipulation plutôt maladroite de Yeltsin’s sur le contrôle des prix Russie plongée dans une dépression économique sans précédent qui a infesté l’administration de Yeltsin jusqu’à sa fin.

En dépit de tels reculs, la Russie est restée comme puissance respectable du monde tout au long des années 90, peut-être dû à son vaste arsenal nucléaire de l’ère soviétique soutenue par son statut en tant qu’un des cinq membres permanents de l’U.N. Le Conseil de sécurité. Ainsi, il y avait des séries de tentatives de toiletter la Russie dans le groupe prestigieux de sept tout au long des années 90, le plus notamment par le Président uni Bill Clinton d’états. La fédération russe est allée bien à un membre officiel de G8 en 1997, qui – jusqu’à un degré a semblé montrer que la Russie était maintenant un membre d’un groupe exclusif de centrales électriques industrielles occidentales principales. Pour le monde occidental, l’entrée de la Russie dans G8 a signifié l’expansion de la sphère de l’influence de l’économie de marché de marché. Certains ont même speculé que l’inclusion de la Russie dans un groupe si exclusif mènerait à l’apparition des états unis comme superpuissance unique à travers le globe, car aucun autre membre de la nation n’a semblé ne posséder aucune chance d’éclipser les Etats-Unis, qui ont été grêlés en tant que chef « du monde libre » pendant une longue période, dans ses puissances militaires et économiques. [II] L’âge de la réconciliation entre la Russie et le monde occidental a fait défaut, cependant, pour plusieurs raisons. Sont ces raisons ce que j’ai l’intention de présenter dans la dernière partie de cet essai.

Derrière l’accès de la Russie à G8, il y avait plutôt une prétention de naïve sur la partie occidentale que Yeltsin et la fédération russe étaient un successeur démocratique du régime soviétique accablant, qui étaient, naturellement, tout à fait éloignée de la réalité. De l’autre côté de la pièce de monnaie, la Russie et ses chefs avaient prévu pour réaffirmer l’influence géopolitique de la Russie dans l’ère soviétique une fois que les affaires domestiques devenaient stabilisées. La Russie a dû également être prudente vers l’insurrection croissante dans ses propres frontières suivant l’indépendance de divers groupes ethniques après l’effondrement de l’Union Soviétique, comme vividly vu dans la crise de Chechenie qui a presque annihilé l’image de Yeltsin en tant que libérateur démocratique aux yeux de la foule occidentale. L’attitude sceptique de la fédération russe envers l’indépendance tchétchène et une guerre suivante, cependant condamnées par l’ouest, est quelque peu compréhensible du point de vue russe, car une réaction relâchée vers un tel mouvement a pu avoir eu comme conséquence une série de soulèvement violent à travers le pays qui pourrait avoir transformé ce désordre mineur en chaos complet. Réciproquement, la critique occidentale de la décision de la Russie pour faire une guerre contre Chechenie – qui, d’une perspective russe, pourrait être vu comme seul acte pour stabiliser la nation déjà de fluctuation a fait à beaucoup des Russes question son alignement avec l’ouest, car le monde occidental a maintenant semblé être une menace à la tranquilité domestique de la Russie, pas un associé digne de confiance pour la coexistence mutuelle et prospérité.

Un autre facteur principal qui a introduit beaucoup de politiciens russes dans le bord était l’expansion continue de l’OTAN, commençant en 1997 où l’OTAN a invité la République Tchèque, la Hongrie, et la Pologne [III]. Un fait notable sans compter qu’une expansion lui-même est que ces nations – le long avec les la plupart sinon tous les nouveaux membres suivants de l’OTAN étaient autrefois sous la sphère soviétique de l’influence, par lequel ces nations s’alignant avec les puissances occidentales aient pu également constituer une menace directe au statut de la Russie en tant que joueur important dans la politique du monde. Pendant de tels événements, une horde des politiciens russes autrefois pro-occidentaux est devenue de plus en plus sceptique de leurs vues, avec deux de qui étant le Président courant Vladimir Putin et le président désigné Dmitry Medvenev. Avec ceci à l’égard, on pourrait aussi bien arguer du fait que la reconstruction de Putin d’un état militaire en Russie a été basée sur la crainte et l’incertitude de la part de la foule russe concernant la stature de la Russie comme puissance globale du monde au 21ème siècle, un souci Putin et ses protégés dans la douma sont parvenus à adresser suivre leur élévation à la puissance environ il y a une décennie.

On le notera qu’un signe qui a prouvé que Yeltsin était à peine un démocrate libéral pourrait être vu dès 1993, quand il a dissous le Parlement démocratique-élu à la question ce qui est maintenant connu comme constitution de 1993, qui a prolongé de manière significative les droites d’un président, y compris les droites de dissoudre le Parlement – maintenant connu sous le nom de Douma d’état au besoin. Néanmoins, beaucoup ont cru que pendant que la Russie préservait quelques aspects de démocratie et est toujours une nation nouveau-soutenue, comme vu dans l’élection présidentielle de 1996, où Yeltsin s’est prouvé de nouveau en tant que chef démocratique quelque peu légitime par sa victoire dans l’élection. On pourrait également observer que peut-être certains des chefs occidentaux ont craint un potentiel pour un thermidor communiste s’il n’y avait pas aucun appui vers Yeltsin, en tant qu’adversaire le plus formidable de Yeltsin étaient alors le parti communiste de la fédération russe menée par Gennady Zyuganov. De plus, l’inclusion de la Russie dans ce qui a été autrefois vue à mesure qu’un consortium exclusivement dans le monde occidental ont discutablement augmenté la légitimité du groupe à mesure qu’un groupe des puissances économiques du monde et politiques principales, en tant qu’un journaliste russe indiqué dans une source récente. [iv] Même ce journaliste, cependant, convient sur un fait qu’il y a eu des séries de désaccords entre la Russie et pratiquement le reste de G8 concernant beaucoup sinon la plupart des questions géopolitiques à travers le monde. Cela inclut le déploiement des missiles stratégiques dans l’ancien alignement continu communiste d’états de bloc – de ce qui sont maintenant des membres de l’OTAN comme clairement vu dans le sommet récent de Bush-Putin à Sotchi, et de la Russie avec la République populaire de Chine – actuellement son allié plus digne de confiance [v] Conseil de sécurité à Nations Unies le’.

En attendant, la confiance mutuelle entre l’ouest et encore russe de fédération détériorés pendant la guerre de Kosovo de 1999. Le conflit dans Kosovo a éclaté d’un désordre interne dans l’ancienne Yougoslavie que beaucoup ont speculé ont été liés pour se produire à un certain point suivant l’effondrement du bloc communiste. Du moment de sa création, la Yougoslavie était une nation multi-ethnique plutôt instable qui a été liée par un chef charismatique pourtant impitoyable, Josip Broz Tito. Ainsi, après qu’une série d’événements qui ont vu un changement rapide d’ordre du monde spearheaded par la chute de l’Union Soviétique, la vieille Yougoslavie est devenue rapidement désagrégée, donnant naissance à un certain nombre de nation déclare cela refusé pour rester fidèle à l’état artificiel [vi] qui avait supporté des décennies de grief interne par la conduite de Tito et de la présence de l’influence soviétique. En dépit [vii] de l’agression serbe dans certains de ces pays qui ont persisté dans toute la moitié tôt des années 90, [viii] ces républiques ont fixé leur indépendance au cours de période relativement courte . Les minorités ethniques dans le royaume serbe restant, cependant, n’étaient pas comme chanceuses, car elles ont été maintenant mises sous une commande de fer-poing par le chef du reste de l’ancienne Yougoslavie, Slobodan Milosevic nationaliste serbe. Le conflit lui-même, cependant, n’a pas semblé tendre le rapport entre la Russie et le monde occidental jusqu’à l’OTAN, alliance militaire occidentale d’a principalement [IX ], décidée pour imposer l’action militaire à la République fédérée de la Yougoslavie. Le monde occidental – particulièrement les états unis ont regardé l’attaque comme justifiable, car l’opération militaire de l’OTAN a commencé seulement après que la crise humanitaire alléguée dans Kosovo est devenue évidente. Pour l’ouest, donc, son intervention était un effort d’arrêter un massacre à grande échelle commis par le régime serbe accablant, pas un réminiscent menaçant de l’impérialisme occidental sous le déguisement de la justice.

Les membres non-occidentaux du Conseil de sécurité des Nations Unies, cependant, ont regardé l’attaque comme exemple d’un affichage vif d’arrogance de puissance, car l’agression de l’OTAN a catégoriquement négligé la décision prise par le Conseil de sécurité pour ne pas intervenir. En outre, l’ancienne Yougoslavie était en grande partie sous la sphère soviétique de l’influence [x] jusqu’à l’effondrement du bloc communiste, par lequel une opération militaire de l’OTAN dans ce secteur ait signifié le statut de la Russie pendant qu’une puissance importante du monde flottait. Dans sa tentative d’adresser de tels soucis, Yeltsin clairement indiqué à la suite du conflit qu’il pourrait y a une guerre complète entre la Russie et l’ouest s’il y aura une agression de l’OTAN dans Kosovo. [XI] Tandis que ceci ne se produisait jamais, la Russie choisissait toujours de s’impliquer dans tout le conflit, assumant le rôle en tant que médiateur entre l’OTAN et les Serbes. La Russie a au commencement réalisé un certain succès dans Milosevic persuasif pour retirer des troupes de Kosovo, de ce fait assurant le métier extérieur à la zone de l’OTAN du secteur suivant le retrait serbe.

Néanmoins, le rapport entre Moscou et l’ouest a souffert de nouveau pendant le métier de Kosovo par les forces multinationales comprenant les troupes russes, car la commande de l’OTAN a essayé de commander tous les membres de la coalition comprenant les régions avec la garnison russe. Les troupes outragées et russes ont commencé à agir seule, même perturbant des opérations de l’OTAN s’assemble aux occasions multiples. [XII] La commande de l’OTAN, cependant, n’était pas disposée à abandonner exercer ses droites en tant que coordonnateur en chef du métier. En ce moment du temps, la fente entre Moscou et le monde occidental est devenue plus évidente que jamais, à un degré où la délégation russe dans G8 était en désaccord ouvrir avec le reste des Etats Membres concernant la question de Kosovo. [xiii] La Russie, qui a été opposée à l’intervention occidentale dans Kosovo dès le début, est devenue sévèrement contrariée avec l’ouest et a commencé à chercher une réponse alternative à sa politique étrangère. [xiv] Parmi une telle désillusion est venu Vladimir Putin, puis le premier ministre qui a assumé le rôle comme président de la fédération russe après la démission inattendue de Yeltsin dans le 31 décembre 1999. En tant que nouveau chef de la Russie, la plateforme en chef de Putin était « la Russie forte, » l’expression qui a reflété les retombées radioactives de la Russie avec le monde occidental et un signe pour un nouveau paradigme en termes de directions de Moscou dans ses politiques étrangères.

Sans compter que l’échec de la réforme économique néo-libéral-inspirée et des séries de crises diplomatiques, le discordance entre la Russie et le monde occidental tout au long des années 90 en grande partie dues à la vaste différence du système de valeur entre la conduite et peut-être le populeux de la fédération occidentale et russe, en dépit de la tentative russe de s’intégrer dans l’ouest établi et capitaliste. Peut-être, les contrastes les plus vifs ont été faits pendant le conflit dans Chechenie et Kosovo. Dans ces conflits, un des rationales principaux derrière les causes occidentales était « des droits de l’homme, » qui était jusqu’à un degré un souci valide. Il, cependant, n’a pas considéré ce qui pourrait se produire si la Russie ne faisait pas la sorte des décisions qu’elle a prises, particulièrement dans la crise tchétchène où la Russie pourrait avoir été désagrégée a fait choisir Moscou pour ne pas prendre un stand dur. [xv] En fait, Putin, avec sa position dure sur Chechenie, s’est avéré être plus compatible en courant une « guerre sur le terrorisme » une fois comparé à ses contre-parties dans le Pentagone, dont la tentative incroyablement chère et prolongée en Irak a à peine déposé n’importe quelle menace potentielle de terroriste aux Etats-Unis. Le cas semblable pourrait être fait sur la guerre dans Kosovo, où l’OTAN a décidé d’attaquer la Serbie d’une façon à peine multilatérale, un mouvement qui pourrait avoir provoqué la Russie dans une guerre par une perception directe de menace. Après ces années, il est devenu évident que la Russie et l’ouest n’adhèrent pas exactement au même genre de philosophie derrière son gouvernement, par lequel une nouvelle école de pensée qui différencierait la Russie de ses contre-parties occidentales soit devenue sous une forte demande. Une école de pensée est devenue immensément populaire pendant cette ère. Cette école de pensée s’est appelée Eurasianism, [xvi] qui a insisté sur le fait que la Russie n’était jamais une nation purement européenne, par lequel son identité comme nation soit tout à fait éloignée d’une norme occidentale. Une telle philosophie a joué un rôle important pour que la Russie cherche un nouvel alignement diplomatique sans compter que sa participation dans G8 et sa tentative non-ainsi-réussie tout au long des années 90 d’assimiler dans le monde occidental.

Il y avait, cependant, un certain nombre de problèmes à adresser avant que la Russie pourrait faire un réalignement diplomatique si à grande échelle. Un de tels problèmes était le manque d’associés potentiels sans compter que la République populaire de Chine et d’une poignée d’anciennes nations soviétiques. Le monde occidental mené par les Etats-Unis a été perçu pour être la superpuissance unique du nouvel ordre du monde alors, alors qu’une alliance se composait de la Russie juste et la Chine n’était pas pensée pour devenir les contre-parties formidables de l’alliance occidentale. Un autre souci principal a provenu de la structure de l’économie russe, dont l’exportation a fortement compté sur les matières premières, particulièrement huile. Ceci, à leur tour, a fait la personne à charge de la Russie légèrement économiquement vers l’ouest, car ces pays ont constitué la région où il y avait une quantité substantielle de marché de consommateurs qui a exigé une grande quantité de matières premières – huilez particulièrement pour satisfaire les demandes de son marché intérieur. En années récentes, cependant, la Russie était capable de se distancer du cercle occidental et de faire un certain degré du progrès en traitant en ami des pays en dehors de l’ouest. Comment est-ce que cela a pu se produire en dépit des obstacles indiqués ci-dessus dans une quantité de temps si courte ? Il y a une variété de réponses qui pourraient être offertes à cette question, pourtant celui des raisons de clef que ceci pourrait se produire était un paradigme relativement nouveau qui a été théorisé dans une thèse récente de Goldman-Sachs, généralement connu sous le nom de BRIC.

D’abord présenté en 2003, la thèse de BRIC argue du fait que le Brésil, la Russie, l’Inde, et la République populaire de Chine sont les centrales électriques économiques naissantes du monde, avec le Brésil et la Russie se spécialisant dans les ressources naturelles et l’Inde et la Chine ayant une expertise dans l’industrie. Cependant écarté par certains comme seule liste de pays avec la percée économique récente, il y a eu une quantité considérable de signes où le concept – et la collaboration mutuelle entre chaque état de BRIC est vraie. Et au centre d’un tel paradigme était Vladimir Putin, l’homme qui est également un architecte en chef du système russe courant dont les possibilités dans la plupart des supercedes de champs énormément son prédécesseur a menées par Boris Yeltsin. Tandis que nous discuterons cet aspect de la thèse de BRIC plus tard, laissez-nous évaluent brièvement les accomplissements économiques que ces pays ont faits pendant des années récentes.

Les cas où les nations de BRIC se sont prouvées que les économies naissantes du monde pourraient le plus clair être montrées dans le secteur privé, car la thèse de BRIC elle-même a été développée dans Wall Street, pas Capitol Hill. Le groupe britannique de télécommunications, [xvii] par exemple, souligne le potentiel de ces pays en termes de leurs possibilités de s’ajuster dans le progrès technologique sur un plus grand degré que des nations établies, tout en montrant l’intérêt avide en travaillant avec ces nations en tant qu’élément de l’entreprise de la compagnie. [xviii] Externaliser récent des sociétés de technologie de l’information vers l’Inde doit se ranger haut parmi des cas réels où les nations de BRIC ont commencé à jouer un rôle énorme dans l’économie globale, comme une partie incroyablement grande d’entreprises privées des nations développées s’est assemblée en l’Inde recherchant un efficace, pourtant dans la main d’oeuvre plus accessible. Externaliser des industries, le plus notamment dans le domaine de la technologie de l’information, bourgeonne également en Russie à un certain degré. [xix]

Le développement rapide de ces nations, cependant, apportées dans la nécessité pour qu’ elles trouvent des sources pour à quantité proportionnée de ressources naturelles pour soutenir leur croissance économique récente, sur avec laquelle leurs investisseurs occidentaux ne sont pas toujours si bien disposés. Un exemple récent d’un tel acte coopératif entre les nations de BRIC était un effort commun fait par Oil de la Chine National Petroleum Corporation et de l’Inde de la Chine et Gas Corporation Naturel dans leur offre pour obtenir une valeur $573 millions des gisements de pétrole autrefois possédés par une société au Canada, un Etat Membre de G8, en décembre 2005. [xx] À un calendrier semblable, le Président russe Vladimir Putin a mis en avant l’effort de cimenter la coopération entre les états de BRIC pendant la nationalisation de Yukos, le plus grand producteur de pétrole en Russie, par les capitaux de offre de la compagnie ancienne les états, particulièrement en Chine et en Inde du camarade BRIC. [xxi] Du point de vue russe, la construction d’une telle alliance aidera le pays non seulement dans des moyens économiques, mais en termes de la stature politique de la Russie à travers le globe aussi bien, comme la Russie est dans le grand besoin de trouver un groupe d’alliés formidables pour parer la perte de l’ancien bloc communiste et la pression de support de l’alliance politique occidentale toujours croissante spearheaded par l’OTAN. Les autres nations de BRIC, sur l’autre main, ont besoin de ressources naturelles une huile de La pour soutenir leurs industries à croissance rapide. Dans une ère où beaucoup observent qu’il y a une concurrence tendue entre les pays recherchant les ressources naturelles, un rapport amical avec la Russie servirait de billet à ces nations pour éviter le futur manque de tels a besoin. Même les Etats-Unis – qui produisent une quantité considérable de pétrole par lui-même et n’ont pas eu ainsi le beaucoup des problèmes dans la commande de prix du gaz ont récemment éprouvé un désastre renversant en assurant assez de quantité d’huile pour stabiliser ses prix sur le marché intérieur. Avec ceci à l’égard, la possession de la Russie de la vaste quantité d’huile – une des ressources principales du 21ème siècle en termes d’ affaires économiques et politiques pourrait faire à la Russie un joueur principal dans coordinating un ordre du jour politique collectif par les nations de BRIC, car ceci ferait les autres états dans la thèse de BRIC pour compter sur la Russie en termes d’huile sans pression ou concurrence de l’ouest, alors que la Russie, à leur tour, reçoivent l’appui de ces nations en termes de vaste choix de questions géopolitiques au sujet des intérêts de la Russie.

De nous pourrions observer des événements ci-dessus, la réalisation d’une entité quelque peu politique entre les pays dans la thèse de BRIC est déjà dedans progrès. Avant que nous nous déplacions dessus à la conclusion, cependant, nous laissions sous peu évaluez les raisons géopolitiques pour lesquelles cette alliance persistera pendant une longue période. Sans compter que le raisonnement économique derrière les accords politiques et économiques nous avons observé, là sommes quelques raisons fondamentales pour lesquelles une alliance entre les nations de BRIC sera encore solidifiée comme le temps continue. Un facteur principal que nous regarderons l’excédent est le statut politique de la Russie et de la République populaire de Chine, qui semblent maintenant avoir le but commun dans leur tentative d’empêcher une pleine hégémonie de géopolitique globale par le cercle occidental. [xxii] Ce, comme j’ai cité précédemment, est particulièrement vrai dans le cas de la Russie, en raison du marginalization évident de la Russie de G8 et de sa réduction indéniable de la sphère de l’influence suivant l’effondrement du bloc communiste. Même du point de vue chinois, Pékin se rendrait compte de la nécessité de se soutenir de sa croissance rapide qui a a duré pendant des décennies, avec une des premières priorités fixant une grande quantité de ressources naturelles comprenant le pétrole. L’effort de la Chine de rencontrer de tels buts pourrait être vu également en sa collaboration avec l’Inde dans leur acquisition commune des capitaux syriens d’huile, qui ont également cimenté l’intervention de l’Inde dans le processus de collaboration entre les quatre nations mentionnées dans la thèse de BRIC. La Chine a également besoin d’une alliance politique voisine faisant face à un groupe de nations pro-Américaines entourant lui, y compris le Japon, la Corée du Sud et le Taiwan. De plus, les géopolitiques – laissez la vaste ligne de la seule Chine de la production des produits manufacturés dans nos vies journalières la quantité de tensions entre la Chine et l’ouest est montant jour après jour, comme vu dans des Jeux Olympiques d’été de Pékin, où beaucoup d’occidentaux – comprenant le chancelier allemand relativement conservateur Angela Merkel- ont ouvrir refusé de célébrer un olympique tenu dans ce qu’elles perçoivent comme régime rigide et accablant. Tandis que le Brésil et l’Inde n’ont pas beaucoup de leur intérêt directement en jeu dans ces questions, ils n’ont été jamais traités en tant que membre à part entière du cercle établi des nations industrialisées, par lequel la réalisation d’une alliance entre les nations de BRIC soit bonne pour leur intérêt aussi bien, besoin donné ces pays’ de fournisseur digne de confiance des ressources naturelles et de l’incapacité d’aller bien à un véritable membre de l’établissement occidental.

Après que l’effondrement de son ancienne incarnation l’Union Soviétique, la fédération russe soit passé par une série de reculs et de rétablissements en termes de sa force économique et stature politique à travers le globe, avec la majeure partie du déclin venant pendant les années de Yeltsin et un degré étonnant de rétablissement se produisant sous la conduite de Putin. En ses premières années, la Russie a essayé d’aller bien à un membre légitime du club des nations industrialisées occidentales comme vu dans sa participation dans G8, qui a semblé consolider la nouvelle image de la Russie comme successeur démocratique de l’ancienne Union Soviétique. Il y avait, cependant, un vaste choix d’obstacles de cette façon que ni la Russie ni l’ouest ne pourrait percevoir au début qui a finalement condamné à l’effort russe de joindre le rang occidental. Les facteurs principaux derrière cet échec ont inclus le désaccord de l’intérêt entre Moscou et ses contre-parties occidentales en termes de questions géopolitiques comme vu dans l’expansion de l’OTAN et de la guerre de Kosovo, le fiasco malheureux de la réforme économique occidental-conseillée pendant les années de Yeltsin, la méfiance russe vers l’ouest après la réaction occidentale vers la crise tchétchène, et un énorme espace des valeurs entre le côté deux en termes de philosophie politique [xxiii]. Vrai, Russie, à un certain degré, soyez parvenu à exercer son influence dans G8 en tant que seule [xxiv] délégation non-occidentale dans ce qui était autrefois un club des nations occidentales développées. La pression croissante par l’OTAN de jamais-extension et le discordance continu avec l’ouest, cependant, la Russie obligée de rechercher un décalage diplomatique important pour équilibrer le statu quo et – à une récupération d’ampleur sa stature comme état de successeur de l’union soviétique. D’abord édité en 2003, la thèse de BRIC par l’établissement de Goldman-Sachs dans 2003 a offert à la Russie un modèle clair sur quel genre de réalignement si il fait ensuite au-dessus d’une décennie de désillusion à partir de la diplomatie infortunée avec le monde occidental. C’est un raisonnement populaire parmi le cercle conservateur occidental pour prendre l’exemple de Nelville Chamberlain et d’Adolf Hitler à l’affichage comment l’apaisement vers un despote ne fonctionne pas. Du point de vue russe, en effet, l’attitude amicale de Moscou en ce qui concerne l’ouest pendant les années 90 pourrait être vue comme Chamberlain de leurs propres, tandis que Putin étant leur Winston Churchill- avec Churchill étant le chef courageux des Britanniques qui ont repoussé et ont défait la machine nazie et Putin de guerre le sauveur du Russe pourrait de la pression de support de l’impérialisme occidental. La thèse de BRIC a projeté que la Russie et le Brésil seront les fournisseurs en chef de matière première tandis que la Chine et l’Inde dominant l’industrie, qui a prouvé incroyablement précis en comparaison avec des événements réels récents. Tandis que la réalisation de la collaboration mutuelle entre les nations dans la thèse de BRIC est toujours un événement continu, il y a eu un immense degré de progrès en termes d’un sens de collaboration mutuelle entre ces nations, comme vu joint-en offrant des capitaux syriens d’huile par les sociétés chinoises et indiennes et la volonté de Putin de redistribuer les gisements de pétrole du Yukos ancien aux nations du camarade BRIC.

En date de loin, le réalignement de la Russie avec les pays énumérés dans la thèse de BRIC est devenu réalisé à un degré incroyable au cours d’une période courte, même bien que la thèse a été éditée seulement en 2003. On doit rappeler lui/elle-même que, cependant, la transition diplomatique de la Russie avec les nations de BRIC est un phénomène très récent qui ne devrait pas être à la hâte jugé en ce moment du temps, car j’écris cet essai seulement cinq ans après que le phénomène de BRIC a commencé. Tandis qu’il reste peu clair [xxv] ce qui serait le futur de la collaboration mutuelle courante entre les nations dans la thèse de BRIC, je projette que le lien courant entre les nations dans la thèse de BRIC persistera, car ces nations auront besoin de l’un l’autre de s’établir comme puissance formidable du monde en dehors de du monde occidental, qui continue à essayer d’augmenter sa sphère d’influence au-dessus du monde à ce jour. En années premières de son histoire, la fédération russe a souffert de son conflit avec l’OTAN et du monde occidental comme totalité. Donné une telle lutte, il serait difficile de croire si la Russie ne recherchait pas un allié alternatif près de ceci, car la Russie n’a jamais laissé sa glissière géopolitique d’influence quand il y a une option pour empêcher tels de se produire, à savoir un alignement formidable en dehors du monde occidental qui semble maintenant être dans la prise de la Russie. La réalisation d’une alliance entre les nations de BRIC constituera une menace sérieuse à la dominance des Etats-Unis et de l’OTAN dans la dynamique geopolitic courante du monde, qui à leur tour forcera les Etats-Unis à repenser sa position diplomatique courante qui est demeurée en grande partie sans changement depuis la fin de la guerre froide et la création du nouvel ordre du monde en conséquence.

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[I] Quoique je ne voie rien « libre » au sujet des Etats-Unis méridionaux en vertu des lois de corneille de Jim et des sujets coloniaux de l’empire britannique, particulièrement quand ils ne sont pas Anglo-Saxon (voyez également : Guerres irlandaises de l’indépendance).

[II] Au moins jusqu’à la solidification de l’union européenne et à l’élévation de la République populaire de Chine. Les Etats-Unis maintenant devront de nouveau confronter un adversaire formidable – ou deux de sa taille dans un futur pas très éloigné.

[III] Ce qui sont d’anciens membres du pacte maintenant-ancien de Varsovie.

[iv] Lukyanov, Fyodor. Les temps de Moscou, 06/06, 2007. Adhésion de G8 comme exercice dans la légitimité.

Vrai, cet auteur semble rester silencieux en ce qui concerne la structure politique de la Russie, pourtant il offre un point valide concernant quels aspects ont attiré la Russie pour joindre G8, ou quels mérites ancien G7 a dû inviter la Russie dans son adhésion.

[v] Bien qu’historiquement, ces deux souvent n’aient pas obtenu le long (voyez également : Sino-Soviétique dédoublé).

[vi] « L’état artificiel, » je crois, suis une limite très appropriée pour décrire l’ancienne Yougoslavie. Le royaume de la Yougoslavie, le prédécesseur à ses contre-parties communistes, a été formé à la hâte comme fusion de la partie sud-Slave de l’empire tombé de l’Autriche-Hongrie et des royaumes autrefois indépendants de la Serbie et du Montenegro. Le terme « Yougoslavie » signifie la « nation des Slaves méridionaux (Yugo [sud] – Slavia). Le sentiment casserole-Slave chez (je n’ai pas aimé avec la Russie, ainsi je crois que cette notion de casserole-Slavism est appropriée) les Slaves méridionaux doit se ranger haut parmi cette unification plutôt effilée, en tant que fondateurs de cette nation infortunée – essentiellement une poignée d’intelligentsia noble n’a jamais vu une série de conflits entre (ou nous disent, « Yugoslavic ») les appartenances ethniques slaves du sud venant après la création du pays.

[vii] En ce moment, un pays toujours connu sous le nom de la « Yougoslavie » a simplement compris les territoires de la Serbie et du Montenegro.

[viii] Comme vu dans la guerre bosnienne et la guerre croate de l’indépendance (tous les deux durés labourent 1995).

[IX] Principalement, pas entièrement. La République Tchèque, la Hongrie et la Pologne, qui sont à peine « occidentales » dans ses moyens traditionnels, sont allées bien à des membres de l’OTAN dans le sillage des bombardements occidentaux de la Serbie et du Montenegro.

[x] Bien que la Yougoslavie n’ait pas participé au pacte de Varsovie et ait été hésitante en jouant un rôle substantiel dans le COMECON, une organisation économique des états communistes.

[XI] Yeltsin avertit de la guerre mondiale possible au-dessus de Kosovo, CNN, 9 avril 1999.

http://www.cnn.com/WORLD/europe/9904/09/kosovo.diplomacy.02/

[XII] Karon, élégant. Puissamment fâchée, Moscou trace une ligne dans la boue, magazine de TEMPS, 14 juin 1999.

[xiii] Ceci, j’observe, a été un modèle régulier pendant des années maintenant. Aucune merveille beaucoup ne choisissent d’appeler G8 « groupe de sept et la Russie » à la place.

[xiv] Kosovo reste pour être une pomme de terre chaude quant aux relations entre la Russie et l’ouest à ce jour. Le 17 février 2008, Kosovo a déclaré son indépendance de Serbie, une réclamation qui a été identifiée par tous les membres de G8 mais de la Russie. La Russie, la Chine et beaucoup de nations alignées avec ces deux n’identifient pas l’indépendance de Kosovo à ce jour (5/1, 2008).

[xv] Pas qu’il est justifiable pour les troupes russes et les organismes paramilitaires tchétchènes de pro-Moscou dans quelques actes inhumains ils avez engagé le po.

[xvi] Ou « Néo–Eurasianism, » pour être plus précis.

[xvii] Autrefois connu comme British Telecom. Le nom de compagnie a changé suivre un procédé de privatisation en 1984.

[xviii] Le groupe britannique de télécommunication, BRICs conduit par l’innovation.

http://www.btplc.com/Innovation/Mobility/bric/index.htm

Note : En raison de la nature récente des questions de BRIC, la base de données d’Internet s’est avérée être la source la plus fiable concernant les nouvelles qui sont liées à cette matière. À mineurs je n’emploie pas Wikipedia. J

[xix] IL de la Russie perche, Outsourcing-Russia/Russoft.org. http://www.russoft.org/docs/?doc=1295

[xx] Basu, Indrajit. Les affaires de la Chine, Asie chronomètrent en ligne, http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China_Business/GL22Cb06.html

[xxi] Chadda, Sudhir. Putin mène l’alliance de BRIC (Brésil, Russie, Inde, Chine) et les jeux huilent la carte d’atout – quelques capitaux russes d’huile de Yukos pour la Chine et l’Inde, Inde quotidienne, 4 janvier 2005, http://www.indiadaily.com/editorial/01-04f-05.asp.

[xxii] Ou ancien G7, si vous.

[xxiii] Par exemple, l’occidental met la priorité dans des droits de l’homme et véritable démocratie, tandis que les politiciens russes – parfois correctement crus que si une telle pratique a lieu dans le contexte russe de poteau-Soviétique, la fédération pourrait se casser à part tout à fait. A eu Moscou étée molle sur l’insurrection tchétchène, pour des exemples, là n’était aucune garantie si d’autres minorités ethniques dans la Russie pourraient lancer un désordre semblable dans de nombreux secteurs dans les frontières russes.

[xxiv] Tandis que le Japon n’est pas techniquement occidental, sa partie 52 régnante année-droite est conforme à la grande majorité de décisions prises par d’autres membres occidentaux de G8 dans la plupart des occasions.

[xxv] Une raison pour laquelle je préfère pourrait excédent.

 

December 30, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The BRIC thesis: how these nations are becoming a formidable world power and why the United States should care

This essay is essentially an expansion of a final project I did for a class I took in a college here in the United States. Everyone in the United States -amongst those who bother to be concerned about his country’s stature in a near future- talks about the rise of European Union or People’s Republic of China, whereby people hardly are aware of the rise of a new diplomatic paradigm amongst the nations the Goldman-Sachs institution dubbed as BRIC- Brazil, Russia, India and China. On the center of such transformation was Putin’s Russia, whose influence within these nations is surprisingly high due to its abundant possession of petroleum -arguably the world’s most talked-about raw material in recent years. Russia’s transition from its constant attempt to become a member of a small clique of the western world to its current form of diplomacy, I observe, was at least in part accelerated by the western intent not to include Russia in its group as shown in the ongoing expansion of NATO* and the European Union. While I do intend to remain anonymous throughout this blog, I’d like to address in this essay how these nations have formed an impressive degree of mutual collaboration within a short period of time -the BRIC thesis came out in 2003- and how an alliance of these nations would become a formidable world power in not a distant future and thus become a major counterpart against the current dominance of the United States in the contemporary global geopolitics- presumably more so than the rather fluctuating European Union.

*NATO began as an alliance of non-Communist Nations in Europe and North America in an attempt to contain the communist military behind the Iron Curtain. As of 2008 –about two decades after the end of the Cold War– the NATO includes a greater amount of member states and military power than ever.

Note: This essay could be subject to an ongoing modification.

 

The Rise of BRIC Nations and How This Will Reshape World’s Geopolitics in a Near Future – And Why the United States Must Care

For almost half a century following the aftermath of the World War II, the global hegemony was divided between two factions: one was the “free world” led by the United States and the British Empire,[i] the western wing of the victorious Allied Powers, while the other being the Communist Bloc spearheaded by the Soviet Union and Communist China. The world order as it was known during the Cold War era, however, went through a massive amount of changes after the breakdown of the Communist Bloc and ultimately the Soviet Union that occurred between 1989 and 1991. The Russian Federation, a non-communist reincarnation of the RSFSR within the Soviet Union, assumed the role as a major world power from its Bolshevik counterpart. For much part of the 1990s, the newly-born Russian Federation attempted to recreate its image as a legitimate member of the western world. Some of such attempts proved successful to an extent, as seen in the Russian entry in the Group of Seven (now G8), which was initially meant to be a forum of influential nations within the western world.

Furthermore, many Russian politicians started pointing that while Russia seemed to pioneer a more constructive relationship with the west through its participation in the G8, the western world in reality put effort to mount a greater geopolitical pressure to Russia, as seen in the entry of former Communist Bloc nations (e.g. Poland, Czech Republic, and the Baltic States to name a few) into NATO, a military alliance that was designed as the western counterpart to the Warsaw Pact, which went defunct for nearly two decades. To counter such pressures, Russia has aligned with the People’s Republic of China, another non-western member of the United Nations’ Security Council. At the same time, Russia’s economic dependence towards the western world with its burgeoning oil industry could be alleviated through realignment with other emerging economies across the world, as vividly seen in a recent Goldman-Sachs thesis known as BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and the PRC). In this essay, indeed, I would like to present the course of Russia’s disillusion from its involvement in G8 and an attempt to assimilate in the western world in general -that resulted in the rise of Putin and current “Strong Russia” agenda, and how this could result in a diplomatic realignment as predicted by Goldman-Sachs’ BRIC thesis, which projected that a mutual collaboration between these states will be “inevitable” in not a distant future.

Russia’s pro-western initiatives practically began with Yeltsin’s takeover of power in 1991. Many speculated that such cooperation with the west was necessary, as Russia, formerly the largest command economy in the world, was now obliged to transform itself into a free market economy in order to survive. While the reform itself proved to be a fiasco, Yeltsin attempted to implement yet another policy that would strengthen the ties between the western world and the Russian Federation, namely the Russian membership in the G8, then known as the Group of Seven. The G7, as mentioned earlier, was initially created as an international forum between the world’s major industrial democratic polities. Henceforth, it was viewed by many –amongst both western and Russian politicians– that such a transition would accelerate the Russian effort to integrate itself into the western world, whereas the alliance of established western industrial powers will obtain an undisputable hegemony over the world following the collapse of the Communist Bloc. Nonetheless, the failure of Yeltsin’s economic policies that was largely designed by western economists forced many to reconsider whether the aftermath of such transition would be positive for Russia’s future. Further, the conflict of interest between Russia and the western world with regards to many geopolitical issues surrounding the globe also played a major role in making Russian political leaders to turn skeptical of a further collaboration with the west. Another major concern was Russia’s political system, which many westerners view as somewhat quasi-democratic or not democratic at all. While the western world has been known for its alignment with some of the world’s most loathed dictators in necessary cases, this clearly is an obstacle for Russia and the west to engage in a respectable degree of mutual collaboration. These factors, I observe, are the main causes of the recent split between Russia and the western world as seen in the Putin years, as I will clearly show during the course of this paper.

            Before addressing this point, however, I intend to briefly assess the state of the Russian Federation in the years where there was a continuum of endeavor in favor of the westernization of the Russian state. This, I observe, would consolidate our understanding of Russia’s eventual skepticism on cooperation with the western world, thereby offering a better explanation regarding why a diplomatic realignment as projected by the BRIC thesis could occur in a near future.

In the initial stage of the collapse of the Soviet Union and the advent of the Russian Federation, the west generally believed that a rapid transition towards free market economy would work for Russia, as it did –or seemed to– work in many former members of the Communist Bloc, including Poland and Czech Republic. Behind this was the reality of western politics at the time, which hailed the kind of ideology embraced by Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher as a viable alternative to a form of social democracy that lasted for decades in these countries, more popularly known as the Postwar Consensus. It did not, however, fare so well in Russia for a number of reasons. For the first if not foremost reason, we could cite the hasty implementation of neoliberal-oriented “Shock Therapy” into the Russian economic structure. Throughout the course of modern history, it became apparent that the implantation of western political or economic structure without adequate preparation beforehand could result in an utter catastrophe in regard to both the development of the nation itself and the well-being of its citizens, as perhaps most vividly seen in a vast array of African states that became independent in the latter half of the 20th Century. Despite proving itself to be a formidable political and economic superpower during the Soviet era, Russia was extremely prone to such drawbacks from rapid westernization, as proved in the economic disaster of that happened through the grim decade of 1990s. Another major bottleneck was a division of labor within the former Soviet Union that became null and void since the breakdown of the Bolshevik dominion in 1991. This proved to be a disaster to not only minor former Soviet Republics, but to many regions in the Russian Federation, as the rapid privatization of such assets left the collapse of the country’s vast working class populace virtually unchecked. This, in turn, resulted in the breakdown of the potential consumer market in Russia’s newly operated market economy, which –with the ever-growing effect of hyperinflation caused by Yeltsin’s rather clumsy handling on price control– plunged Russia into an unprecedented economic depression that plagued the Yeltsin Administration till its very end.

            Despite such setbacks, Russia remained as a respectable world power throughout the 1990s, perhaps owing to its vast nuclear arsenal from the Soviet era bolstered by its status as one of the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council. Thus, there was a series of attempts to groom Russia into the prestigious Group of Seven throughout the 1990s, most notably by the United States President Bill Clinton. The Russian Federation became an official member of the G8 in 1997, which –to an extent– seemed to prove that Russia was now a member of an exclusive group of major western industrial powerhouses. For the western world, Russia’s entry into the G8 meant the expansion of the sphere of influence of the market economy. Some even speculated that the inclusion of Russia into such an exclusive group would lead to the emergence of the United States as a sole superpower across the globe, as no other member of the nation did not seem to possess any chance to eclipse the United States, which was hailed as the leader of the “free world” for a long period of time, in its military and economic powers.[ii] The age of reconciliation between Russia and the western world fell short, however, for several reasons. These reasons are what I intend to present in the latter part of this essay.

Behind the Russia’s admittance to the G8, there was a rather naïve assumption on the western part that Yeltsin and the Russian Federation was a democratic successor of the oppressive Soviet regime, which was, of course, quite distant from reality. On the other side of the coin, Russia and its leaders had intended to reassert Russia’s geopolitical influence in the Soviet era once domestic affairs became stabilized. Russia also had to be cautious towards the growing insurgency within its own borders following the independence of various ethnic groups after the collapse of the Soviet Union, as vividly seen in the Chechnya crisis that nearly annihilated Yeltsin’s image as a democratic liberator in the eyes of the western populace. The Russian Federation’s skeptical attitude towards the Chechen independence and a subsequent war, though condemned by the west, is somewhat understandable from Russian standpoint, as a lax reaction towards such movement may have resulted in a series of violent uprising across the country that could have transformed this minor disorder into a full-scale chaos. Conversely, the western criticism of Russia’s decision to wage a war against Chechnya –which, from a Russian perspective, could be seen as a mere act to stabilize the already fluctuating nation– made many Russians question its alignment with the west, as the western world now seemed to be a threat to Russia’s domestic tranquility, not a reliable partner for mutual coexistence and prosperity.

Another major factor that brought many Russian politicians into the brink was the ongoing expansion of the NATO, beginning in 1997 when the NATO invited Czech Republic, Hungary, and Poland[iii]. A notable fact besides an expansion itself is that these nations –along with most if not all of the subsequent new members of the NATO– were formerly under the Soviet sphere of influence, whereby these nations aligning themselves with the western powers could also pose a direct threat to Russia’s status as a major player in the world politics. During the course of such events, a horde of formerly pro-western Russian politicians became increasingly skeptical of their views, with two of whom being the current President Vladimir Putin and the President-elect Dmitry Medvenev. With this in regard, one could as well argue that Putin’s reconstruction of a military state in Russia was based upon fear and uncertainty on the part of the Russian populace regarding Russia’s stature as a global world power in the 21st Century, a concern Putin and his proteges in the Duma did manage to address following their rise to power about a decade ago.

It shall be noted that a sign which showed that Yeltsin was hardly a liberal democrat could be seen as early as 1993, when he dissolved the democratically-elected Parliament to issue what is now known as the Constitution of 1993, which significantly extended the rights of a president, including the rights to dissolve the Parliament –now known as the State Duma– if necessary. Nonetheless, many believed that as Russia still preserved some aspects of democracy and is a newly-born nation, as seen in the Presidential Election of 1996, where Yeltsin once again proved himself as a somewhat legitimate democratic leader through his victory in the election. One could also observe that perhaps some of the western leaders feared a potential for a Communist thermidor if there was not any support towards Yeltsin, as the most formidable opponent of Yeltsin at the time was the Communist Party of the Russian Federation led by Gennady Zyuganov. Further, the inclusion of Russia in what was formerly seen as a consortium exclusively within the western world have arguably increased the group’s legitimacy as a group of the world’s major economic and political powers, as one Russian journalist stated in a recent source.[iv] Even this journalist, however, agrees on a fact that there has been a series of disagreements between Russia and practically the rest of the G8 regarding many if not most geopolitical issues across the world. That includes the deployment of strategic missiles in former Communist Bloc states –of which are now members of the NATO– as clearly seen in the recent Bush-Putin summit in Sochi, and Russia’s continuing alignment with People’s Republic of China –currently its most reliable ally–[v] in the United Nations’ Security Council.

In the meantime, the mutual trust between the west and the Russian Federation further deteriorated during the Kosovo War of 1999. The conflict in Kosovo erupted from an internal disorder within the former Yugoslavia that many speculated was bound to happen at some point following the collapse of the Communist Bloc. From the moment of its creation, Yugoslavia was a rather unstable multiethnic nation that was held together by a charismatic yet ruthless leader, Josip Broz Tito. Thus, after a series of events that saw a rapid change in world order spearheaded by the fall of the Soviet Union, the old Yugoslavia became rapidly disintegrated, giving birth to a number of nation states that refused to remain loyal to the artificial state[vi] that had endured decades of internal grievance through Tito’s leadership and the presence of Soviet influence. Despite the Serbian[vii] aggression in some of these countries that persisted throughout the early half of the 1990s,[viii] these republics secured their independence within relatively short period of time. The ethnic minorities within the remaining Serbian realm, however, were not as fortunate, as they were now put under an iron-fist control by the leader of the remnant of the former Yugoslavia, a Serbian nationalist Slobodan Milosevic. The conflict itself, however, did not seem to strain the relationship between Russia and the western world until NATO, a predominantly[ix] western military alliance, decided to impose military action on the Federated Republic of Yugoslavia. The western world –especially the United States– viewed the attack as justifiable, as the NATO military operation began only after the alleged humanitarian crisis in Kosovo became apparent. For the west, therefore, its intervention was an endeavor to stop a large-scale massacre committed by the oppressive Serbian regime, not a menacing reminiscent of western imperialism under the disguise of justice.

The non-western members of the United Nations Security Council, however, viewed the attack as an example of a vivid display of arrogance of power, as the NATO’s aggression flatly disregarded the decision made by the Security Council not to intervene. In addition, the former Yugoslavia was largely under the Soviet sphere of influence[x] till the collapse of the Communist Bloc, whereby a NATO military operation in this area meant Russia’s status as a major world power was fluctuating. In his attempt to address such concerns, Yeltsin clearly stated in the wake of the conflict that there could be a full-scale war between Russia and the west if there shall be a NATO aggression in Kosovo.[xi] While this never happened, Russia still chose to involve itself throughout the conflict, assuming the role as a mediator between the NATO and the Serbs. Russia initially achieved some success in convincing Milosevic to withdraw troops from Kosovo, thus ensuring non-NATO occupation of the area following the Serbian withdrawal.

Nonetheless, the relationship between Moscow and the west once again suffered during the occupation of Kosovo by multinational forces including Russian troops, as the NATO command attempted to control all members of the coalition including the regions with Russian garrison. Outraged, Russian troops started acting on its own, even disrupting operations of NATO troops on multiple occasions.[xii] The NATO command, however, was not willing to give up exercising its rights as a chief coordinator of the occupation. At this point of time, the split between Moscow and the western world became more obvious than ever, to a degree where Russian delegation in G8 openly disagreed with the rest of the member states regarding the Kosovo issue.[xiii] Russia, which was opposed to the western intervention in Kosovo from the very beginning, became severely disgruntled with the west and started seeking an alternative answer to its foreign policy.[xiv] Amid such disillusion came Vladimir Putin, then the Prime Minister who assumed the role as President of the Russian Federation after Yeltsin’s unexpected resignation in December 31, 1999. As the new leader of Russia, Putin’s chief platform was “strong Russia,” the phrase that reflected Russia’s fallout with the western world and a sign for a new paradigm in terms of Moscow’s directions in its foreign policies.

Besides the failure of neoliberal-inspired economic reform and a series of diplomatic crises, the discordance between Russia and the western world throughout the 1990s largely owed to the vast difference of value system between the leadership and perhaps the populous of the west and the Russian Federation, despite the Russian attempt to integrate itself into the established, capitalistic west. Perhaps, the most vivid contrasts were made during the conflict in Chechnya and Kosovo.  In these conflicts, one of the main rationales behind the western causes was “human rights,” which was to an extent a valid concern. It did not, however, consider what could happen if Russia did not make the kind of decisions it made, especially in the Chechen crisis where Russia could have been disintegrated had Moscow chosen not to take a tough stand.[xv] As a matter of fact, Putin, with his tough stance on Chechnya, proved himself to be more compatible in running a “War on Terrorism” when compared to his counterparts in Pentagon, whose incredibly expensive and prolonged attempt in Iraq hardly put down any potential terrorist threat to the United States. Similar case could be made on the war in Kosovo, where the NATO decided to attack Serbia in a hardly multilateral manner, a move that could have provoked Russia into a war by a direct perception of threat. After these years, it became apparent that Russia and the west do not exactly adhere to the same kind of philosophy behind its governance, whereby a new school of thought that would differentiate Russia from its western counterparts became under a heavy demand. One school of thought became immensely popular during this era. This school of thought was called Eurasianism,[xvi] which insisted that Russia never was a purely European nation, whereby its identity as a nation is quite distant from a western standard. Such philosophy played a major role for Russia to seek a new diplomatic alignment besides its involvement in the G8 and its not-so-successful attempt throughout the 1990s to assimilate in the western world.

There were, however, a number of problems to be addressed before Russia could make such a large-scale diplomatic realignment. One of such problems was the lack of potential partners besides People’s Republic of China and a handful of former Soviet nations. The western world led by the United States was perceived to be the sole superpower of the new world order at the time, while an alliance consisted of just Russia and China was not thought to become a formidable counterpart of the western alliance. Another major concern stemmed from the structure of Russian economy, whose export heavily relied upon raw materials, especially oil. This, in turn, made Russia somewhat economically dependent towards the west, as these countries constituted the region where there was a substantial amount of consumer market that required a large amount of raw materials –especially oil– to meet the demands from its domestic market. In recent years, however, Russia was capable of distancing itself from the western circle and making a certain degree of progress in befriending countries outside the west. How could that happen despite the obstacles stated above in such a short amount of time? There is a variety of answers that could be offered to this question, yet the one of the key reasons this could happen was a relatively new paradigm that was theorized in a recent Goldman-Sachs thesis, commonly known as BRIC.

First introduced in 2003, the BRIC thesis argues that Brazil, Russia, India, and the People’s Republic of China are the world’s emerging economic powerhouses, with Brazil and Russia specializing in natural resources and India and China having an expertise in manufacturing industry. Though dismissed by some as a mere list of countries with recent economic breakthrough, there have been a considerable amount of signs where the concept –and mutual collaboration between each BRIC state– is real. And on the center of such paradigm was Vladimir Putin, the man who also is a chief architect of the current Russian system whose capabilities in most fields vastly supercedes its predecessor led by Boris Yeltsin. While we will discuss this aspect of the BRIC thesis subsequently, let us briefly assess the economic achievements these countries have made during recent years.

The cases where the BRIC nations proved themselves the world’s emerging economies could be most clearly shown in the private sector, as the BRIC thesis itself was developed in Wall Street, not the Capitol Hill. The British Telecommunications Group,[xvii] for instance, emphasizes the potential of these countries in terms of their capability to adjust themselves in technological progress to a greater degree than established nations, while showing avid interest in working with these nations as part of the company’s venture.[xviii] The recent outsourcing of information technology firms to India must rank high among actual cases where the BRIC nations started playing a huge role in global economy, as an incredibly large portion of private enterprises from developed nations flocked into India looking for an effective, yet more affordable manpower. Outsourcing industries, most notably in the field of information technology, is also burgeoning in Russia to a limited degree.[xix]

The rapid development of these nations, however, brought in the necessity for them to find sources for adequate amount of natural resources to sustain their recent economic growth, on which their western investors are not always so sympathetic with.  A recent example of such cooperative act between the BRIC nations was a joint effort made by China’s China National Petroleum Corporation and India’s Oil and Natural Gas Corporation in their bid to obtain a $573 million worth of oilfields formerly owned by a firm in Canada, a member state of the G8, in December 2005.[xx] At a similar timescale, the Russian president Vladimir Putin put forth endeavor to cement the cooperation between BRIC states during the nationalization of Yukos, the largest oil producer in Russia, through offering assets from the defunct company to the fellow BRIC states, especially China and India.[xxi] From the Russian standpoint, the construction of such alliance will help the country not only in economic means, but in terms of Russia’s political stature across the globe as well, as Russia is in dire need of finding a group of formidable allies to counter the loss of the former Communist Bloc and the mounting pressure from the ever-growing western political alliance spearheaded by NATO. The other BRIC nations, on the other hand, need natural resources a la oil to sustain their fast-growing industries. In an era where many observe that there is a tense competition between countries looking for natural resources, an amicable relationship with Russia would serve as a ticket for these nations to avoid future shortage of such needs. Even the United States -which produces a sizable amount of petroleum by itself and thus did not have much problems in gas price control- has lately experienced a stunning disaster in ensuring enough amount of oil to stabilize its prices in domestic market. With this in regard, Russia’s possession of vast amount of oil –one of the key resources of the 21st century in terms of economic and political bargains– could make Russia a key player in coordinating a collective political agenda by the BRIC nations, as this would make the other states in the BRIC thesis to rely upon Russia in terms of oil without pressure or competition from the west, while Russia, in turn, receive support from these nations in terms of a vast array of geopolitical issues concerning Russia’s interests.

From we could observe from the events above, the realization of a somewhat political entity between the countries in the BRIC thesis is already in progress. Before we move on to conclusion, however, let us shortly assess the geopolitical reasons why this alliance will persist for a long period of time. Besides the economic rationale behind the political and economic agreements we have observed, there are some fundamental reasons why an alliance between BRIC nations will be further solidified as time goes on. One major factor we shall look over is the political status of Russia and the People’s Republic of China, who now seem to have common goal in their attempt to prevent a full hegemony of global geopolitics by the western circle.[xxii] This, as I mentioned earlier, is especially true in Russia’s case, because of Russia’s visible marginalization from the G8 and its undeniable reduction in sphere of influence following the collapse of the Communist Bloc. Even from the Chinese standpoint, Beijing would be aware of the need to sustain itself from its rapid growth that has lasted for decades, with one of the top priorities being securing a large amount of natural resources including petroleum. China’s effort to meet such goals could be seen also in its collaboration with India in their joint acquisition of Syrian oil assets, which also cemented India’s involvement in the collaborative process between the four nations mentioned in the BRIC thesis. China also is in need of a neighboring political alliance facing a group of pro-American nations surrounding it, including Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. Further, the geopolitical -let alone China’s vast line of production of manufactured goods in our everyday lives- the amount of tensions between China and the west is soaring day after day, as seen in Summer Olympics of Beijing, where many westerners -including the relatively conservative German chancellor Angela Merkel- have openly refused to celebrate an Olympic held in what they perceive as a rigid, oppressive polity. While Brazil and India do not have much of their self-interest directly at stake in these issues, they were never treated as a full member of the established circle of industrialized nations, whereby the realization of an alliance between the BRIC nations will be good for their self-interest as well, given these countries’ need for a reliable supplier of natural resources and inability to become a full-fledged member of the western establishment.

After the collapse of its former incarnation the Soviet Union, the Russian Federation has gone through a series of setbacks and recoveries in terms of both its economic strength and political stature across the globe, with most of decline coming during the Yeltsin Years and a surprising degree of recovery occuring under Putin’s leadership. In its early years, Russia tried to become a legitimate member of the club of western industrialized nations as seen in its involvement in the G8, which seemed to consolidate Russia’s new image as a democratic successor of the former Soviet Union. There was, however, a vast array of obstacles in this way that neither Russia nor the west could perceive at the beginning that ultimately doomed the Russian effort to join the western rank. The major factors behind this failure included the clash of self-interest between Moscow and its western counterpart in terms of geopolitical issues as seen in the expansion of NATO and Kosovo War, the miserable fiasco of western-advised economic reform during the Yeltsin years, the Russian distrust towards the west after the western reaction towards the Chechen crisis, and an enormous gap of values between the two side in terms of political philosophy[xxiii]. True, Russia, to a certain degree, did manage to exert its influence in the G8 as the only non-western[xxiv] delegation in what was formerly a club of developed western nations. The increasing pressure by the ever-expanding NATO and the continuing discordance with the west, however, obliged Russia to search for a major diplomatic shift to balance the status quo and –to an extent– reclaim its stature as a successor state of the Soviet Union. First published in 2003, the BRIC thesis by the Goldman-Sachs institution in 2003 offered Russia a clear blueprint on what kind of realignment should it make after over a decade of disillusion from the ill-fated diplomacy with the western world. It’s a popular rationale amongst the western conservative circle to take the example of Nelville Chamberlain and Adolf Hitler to display how appeasement towards a bully does not work. From the Russian standpoint, indeed, Moscow’s friendly approach towards the west during the 1990s could be seen as the Chamberlain of their own, whilst Putin being their Winston Churchill- with Churchill being the fearless leader of the Britons who repelled and defeated the Nazi war machine and Putin the savior of the Russian might from the mounting pressure of western imperialism. The BRIC thesis projected that Russia and Brazil will be chief raw material providers while China and India dominating the manufacturing industry, which proved incredibly accurate when compared with recent actual events. While the realization of mutual collaboration between the nations in the BRIC thesis is still an ongoing event, there has been an immense degree of progress in terms of a sense of mutual collaboration between these nations, as seen in joint-bidding of Syrian oil assets by Chinese and Indian firms and Putin’s willingness to redistribute the oil fields from the defunct Yukos to the fellow BRIC nations.

As of far, Russia’s realignment with the countries listed in the BRIC thesis became realized to an incredible degree within a short period of time, even though the thesis was published only in 2003. One must remind him/herself that, however, Russia’s diplomatic transition with the BRIC nations is a very recent phenomenon that shouldn’t be hastily judged at this point of time, as I write this essay only five years after the BRIC phenomenon began. While it remains unclear[xxv] what the future of the current mutual collaboration between the nations in the BRIC thesis would be, I project that the current bond between the nations in the BRIC thesis will persist, as these nations will be in need of each other to establish themselves as a formidable world power outside of the western world, which continues to attempt to expand its sphere of influence over the world to this day. In the earlier years of its history, the Russian Federation suffered from its conflict with NATO and the western world as a whole. Given such struggle, it would be hard to believe if Russia was not looking for an alternative ally beside this, as Russia would never let its geopolitical influence slide when there is an option to prevent such from happening, namely a formidable alignment outside the western world that now seems to be in Russia’s grasp. The realization of an alliance between the BRIC nations will pose a serious threat to the dominance of the United States and NATO in the world’s current geopolitic dynamics, which in turn will force the United States to rethink its current diplomatic stance that has remained largely unchanged since the end of the Cold War and the creation of new world order accordingly.

 

 

 

           


[i] Even though I see nothing “free” about Southern United States under Jim Crow laws and colonial subjects of the British Empire, especially when they’re not Anglo-Saxon (See Also: Irish Independence Wars).

[ii] At least until the solidification of the European Union and the rise of People’s Republic of China. The United States now will have to once again confront a formidable opponent –or two– of its size in a not very distant future.

[iii] All of which are former members of the now-defunct Warsaw Pact.

[iv] Lukyanov, Fyodor. The Moscow Times, 06/06, 2007.  G8 Membership as an Exercise in Legitimacy.

True, this writer seems to remain silent with regard to Russia’s political structure, yet he does offer a valid point regarding what aspects attracted Russia to join the G8, or what merits the former G7 had to invite Russia into its membership.

[v] Although historically, these two often did not get along (See Also: Sino-Soviet Split).

[vi] The “artificial state,” I believe, is a very appropriate term to describe the former Yugoslavia. The Kingdom of Yugoslavia, the predecessor to its communist counterpart, was hastily formed as a merger of the south-Slavic part of the fallen Austria-Hungary Empire and the formerly independent kingdoms of Serbia and Montenegro. The term “Yugoslavia” means “nation of southern Slavs (Yugo [south]-Slavia). The pan-Slavic sentiment within (I didn’t fancy with Russia, so I do believe this notion of pan-Slavism is appropriate) southern Slavs must rank high among this rather tenuous unification, as the founders of this ill-fated nation –essentially a handful of noble intelligentsia– never saw a series of conflicts between the south Slavic (or shall we say, “Yugoslavic”) ethnicities coming after the country’s creation.

[vii] At this point, a country still known as “Yugoslavia” merely consisted of the territories of Serbia and Montenegro.

[viii] As seen in the Bosnian War and Croatian War of Independence (both lasted till 1995).

[ix] Predominantly, not entirely. Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland, which are hardly “western” in its traditional means, became members of NATO in the wake of the western bombings of Serbia and Montenegro.

[x] Though Yugoslavia did not take part in Warsaw Pact and was hesitant in playing a substantial role in COMECON, an economic organization of communist states.

[xi] Yeltsin warns of possible world war over Kosovo, CNN, April 9, 1999.

http://www.cnn.com/WORLD/europe/9904/09/kosovo.diplomacy.02/

[xii] Karon, Tony. Mightily Miffed, Moscow Draws a Line in the Mud, TIME Magazine, June 14, 1999.

[xiii] This, I observe, has been a regular pattern for years now. No wonder many choose to call G8 “Group of Seven and Russia” instead.

[xiv] Kosovo remains to be a hot potato with regards to relations between Russia and the west to this day. On February 17, 2008, Kosovo declared its independence from Serbia, a plea that was recognized by all members of the G8 but Russia. Russia, China and many nations aligned with these two do not recognize the independence of Kosovo to this day (5/1, 2008).

[xv] Not that it is justifiable for Russian troops and pro-Moscow Chechen paramilitary organizations in some inhumane acts they did engage in.

[xvi] Or “Neo-Eurasianism,” to be more precise.

[xvii] Formerly known as British Telecom. The company name changed following a privatization process in 1984.

[xviii] The British Telecommunication Group, BRICs driven by innovation.

http://www.btplc.com/Innovation/Mobility/bric/index.htm

Note: Due to the recent nature of BRIC issues, the internet database proved to be the most reliable source regarding news that is related to this topic. At least I don’t use Wikipedia. J

[xix] Russia’s IT Boom, Outsourcing-Russia/Russoft.org. http://www.russoft.org/docs/?doc=1295

[xx] Basu, Indrajit. China Business, Asia Times Online, http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China_Business/GL22Cb06.html

[xxi] Chadda, Sudhir. Putin leads BRIC alliance (Brazil, Russia, India, China) and plays oil trump card – some Russian Yukos oil assets for China and India, India Daily, January 4, 2005, http://www.indiadaily.com/editorial/01-04f-05.asp.

[xxii] Or the former G7, if you would.

[xxiii] For instance, the western puts priority in human rights and full-fledged democracy, whilst Russian politicians –sometimes correctly– believed that if such practice takes place in the post-Soviet Russian context, the Federation could break apart altogether.  Had Moscow been soft on Chechen insurgency, for instances, there was no guarantee whether other ethnic minorities within Russia could launch a similar disorder in numerous areas within Russian borders.

[xxiv] While Japan is not technically western, its 52-year-straight ruling party agrees with vast majority of decisions made by other western members of the G8 in most occasions.

[xxv] One reason why I prefer could over would.

May 21, 2008 Posted by | East Asia, Europe, Politics | 1 Comment

   

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