Catherine the Great to Vladimir the Cunning: The Ever Present Realism in Russian Foreign Policy
“Realism in Russian Foreign Policy: The Crimean Case”, being published by Center for Land Warfare Studies Journal, Summer 2014 Issue
4 Pages Posted: 1 Sep 2014 Last revised: 16 Mar 2016
Date Written: August 31, 2014
The Crimean crisis marks a pivotal point in the relations between Russia and the West. The revolution in Ukraine, and the subsequent events that unfolded at a breakneck pace, including the annexation of Crimea by Russia, throws up a lot of questions, the answers to which will have massive impact on the foreign policy and interstate relations in future. It also throws up some broad patterns. The crisis is a worrying return to a trend of land annexation by a Great power on a pretext, a trend which was thought long dead and gone. It is also a validation and ultimate proof of the return of Great power Russia, which was increasingly evident since the Munich Conference of 2007. It brings back the debate on the concepts of “Perception and Resolve” in foreign policy. And perhaps most importantly, it serves as a vindication of Realists over Liberals, Constructivists and other paradigms of International Relations, and validates the often discussed idea that State interests triumph over every other aspect.
Keywords: Russia, Realism, Crimea, Ukraine, Foreign policy
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