Trump plans to increase the U.S. nuclear potential and doubts the New START's usefulness. How should Russia react?

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Foreign Affairs: Analysis

05 december 2016

Are Norms Liberal?

Ilya Ivanov Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, RIAC expert


In his extremely interesting and thought-provoking article, Andrey Kortunov identifies the three main components of the “liberal world order”: rationality, normativity and openness. While in my opinion, not a single manifestation of human activity, especially one as complicated and intricate as international relations, can be reduced to one or two ‘overarching theories,’ whether it be liberalism, realism or the Big Mac Index, one question in particular arises upon reading Mr. Kortunov’s article: What makes normativity inherent to liberalism? Are norms liberal?

02 december 2016

Russia and NATO in the Baltic

Ivan Timofeev PhD in Political Science, Director of Programs at Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC), RIAC Member, Head of "Contemporary State" program at Valdai Discussion Club


The Baltic of today is a most intricate area for Russia-NATO interaction. Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, all of them members of the alliance, serve as its frontier zone in direct contact with its Eastern neighbor. The Ukraine events have drawn the Russia-NATO relationship into a deep systemic crisis, with Moscow seen by Brussels as the key security challenge, which implies that its containment has become an inherent component in their bilateral activities. The Russian view is symmetric, the only difference being in the fact that NATO and prospects for its expansion had been seen as a challenge long before the Ukraine predicament.

01 december 2016

Jiri Valenta: Deal-maker Trump Will Likely Choose Persuasion


In the time of international challenges, the collaboration between Russia and US become even more important. Many experts express concerns over Trump policies and his possibility to address key international agenda issues such as protracted conflicts in Syria and Ukraine. In an interview with RIAC Director General Dr. Andrey Kortunov, Dr. Jiri Valenta, CFR member, reflects on what made the victory of Donald Trump possible and shares his perspective on US – Russian rapprochement under President Trump, cooperation on security matters as well as relations between the leaders of Russia and the US.

29 november 2016

Dual Containment: Trump’s Foreign Policy Dilemmas

Ivan Timofeev PhD in Political Science, Director of Programs at Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC), RIAC Member, Head of "Contemporary State" program at Valdai Discussion Club


Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election has generated an enormous amount of speculation about the future of US foreign policy. Indeed, the campaign rhetoric of the president-elect featured a large number of high-profile statements. Clearly, his real policy should and will be characterized by much greater restraint and caution. Ultimately, the president does not make decisions all by himself. He is constrained by Congress. His opinion is filtered through the sieve of intelligence agencies, the government, the interests of US companies and, to some extent, even overseas allies. Provocative behavior is to be expected from Donald Trump. However, public politics and actual politics are two fundamentally different things.

24 november 2016

Gazprom Gaining Ground in Europe

Viktor Katona Oil Supply Specialist at MOL Group, RIAC expert


Gazprom seems to be serious in its intention to smooth out differences with the European Commission. After breakdown of the «South Stream» pipeline project, «North Stream-1» multi-year obstructionism, and numerous attempts by Brussels to deprive the Russian gas giant of a competitive advantage in prevent its dominance, events in recent months might boost new projects of the Russian export monopolist in Europe.

23 november 2016

Natalia Gandurina: The Decline of Print Media Should Stop


Amidst the development of Internet technologies and the economic downturn, more and more media are going online and becoming web-based. Does this trend testify to the decline of print media? Natalya Gandurina, Vice President of ARTCOM Media Group (Forbes, L'Officiel, OK!, GEO) shared with RIAC Website Editor Maria Smekalova her views on why print magazines continue to sell, what should be published on the Internet, and why we need ratings.

23 november 2016

Russia and the European Union in the Baltic Sea Region

Vladislav Vorotnikov North European and Baltic Studies Center at the MGIMO University

Igor Yurgens President of the All-Russian Insurers Association, Member of the Board of the Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs

Ivan Timofeev PhD in Political Science, Director of Programs at Russian International Affairs Council (RIAC), RIAC Member, Head of "Contemporary State" program at Valdai Discussion Club

Sergey Kulik INSOR Director for International Development


Expert assessments of Russia’s cooperation with the countries in the Baltic Sea Region, and with the Baltic States in particular, traditionally focus on bilateral relations. At the same time, they tend to overlook the membership of these countries in the European Union, with all the attendant obligations in terms of implementing common decisions. In analysing the interaction of these countries with Russia, experts usually mention the European Union within the context of energy policy, with a recent emphasis on the sanctions regime and on Russia’s countermeasures. The fact that the political voice of the countries in the Baltic Sea Region in forming and implementing the common EU policy has noticeably strengthened on the back of the Ukrainian crisis, while at the same time taking on undertones that are unfavourable to Moscow, is worth taking into consideration.

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