Date of Award

Spring 4-2009

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor Degree



First Advisor

Ernst. F. Winter




Relations between east and west were relatively calm for many decades, if we don’t count the 1962 cold war crisis betweenU.S.and those days BRSS, the atmosphere was stable during this 47 years that passed. During this timeU.S.developed in every field against BRSS, dominating militarily and economically. The Europe, which due to its geographical position stands between two powers, was relatively prosperous and peaceful during these years. Much of the western oriented states faced integration toU.S.supported NATO and EU.Russiafelling itself expelled and sometimes opposite to this integration, found itself in difficult position by time. Its military and economy was not more than level of the middle European countries, and its nationalistic pride historically inherited almost vanished by time. The Russian decline gave the U.S. leaded western alliance a free space to expand and strength, in amount that expanding got just near the Russian territory and settled without any interference from old rival. This of course, was a big crack to the balance of power in the world, settled between BRSS the end of the cold war. While U.S. and NATO was bombing Russia’s Balkan satellite Serbia, over the Kosovo crisis, the Russians were in rush of electing a new president, from which they expected a lot.

In December 31, 1999 Vladimir Putin was elected new president ofRussia. Known a little to public opinion, except that he was a top ex-KGB agent who worked inDresdenGermany. He pledged to build Russia strong, and regain its influence like a world power. Mysterious Putin was a successful president and his mandate lasted for over 8 years, in which he managed to reform Russia entirely. In the beginning Putin centralized his state administration and nationalized economy, he also renationalized natural recourses and industry. He suppressed opposition and expelled the powerful individuals which were known as “oligarchs”, they were threat to his model of rule.

Facing condemnation from west as an anti democratic and totalitarian, Putin won his second elections in 2004, and pursued his own way of rule. His strong hand was felt inChechnyawhere he managed to displace Russian army out of barracks to fight Chechens rebels. His aggressive posture and effective use of natural recourses (oil, gas) like a political tool, gave Putin enormous political influence in EU and abroad.Russia’s first neighborhood countriesUkraineandGeorgiaand others who were aiming membership to western organizations were facing pressure and aggressiveness from uprising Russian bear. While worldwide oil and gas prices were climbing,Russiawas using its recourses as effective as possible. Its economy and military is growing and getting stronger, while meantime Putin gains popularity of over 70%, and is suppressing all inside opposition voices calling for democracy and human rights.

Seems like Russians liked Putin as a president, he pledged to fight all intense to weaken

Russiaand promised to regainRussia’s pride in international relations, reminding oldSoviet Uniondays. While Putinizm was flourishing in region, his popularity was hitting highest tops insideRussia. He restored order in military, increased its budget, minimized the role of oligarchs and sabotaged media that criticized his regime. Facing success in majority fields inside the country, Putin’s lack was appearing outside the Russian territory and its potential sphere of interest. As he promised to his citizens that he will expandRussia’s influence outside the state borders no mater circumstances. Some of this attempts, of course I am going to refer only chronologically, because it would take me a book to ride, if I refer all in details. And in order to stay objective I will not comment on facts. I will recall to some examples of international crisis like Kosovo one, where for Russians it was a god opportunity to test its new politics. Like the readers know, Russians displaced their military forces in Kosova without prior accordance with NATO alliance, causing tensions that brought NATO soldiers in possible clash to Russian forces in Airport Pristina, first time in history after the end of cold war.

Russiaalso pressuredUkrainein their presidential elections, giving full support of the pro Russian candidate. They developed special friendship with western opposes like:China,Venezuela,Bolivia, and lately withIran. Its posture regarding America’s missile protection shield in Poland and Czech Republic is another hot issue nowadays, having in mind Putin’s threat to station Russian missiles in border with Poland, and targeting them to US missile shield, we see the complexity of problem. And if we combine this problem with war and invasion in Georgia and recognition of Ossetia and Abkhazia, we see that Russia enters in direct conflict with NATO,s plans of expansion to these regions, creating unsorted problem in practices of international relations. In this context the states sovereignty and territorial integrity is protected under international law. While U.S. are trying to settle its missiles in European border, this last is seeking partnership and possible military agreement with Cuba, bringing fragility to balance of power settled by end of the cold war. This reminds me of something that happened in history.

Russia also plays key role in the energy market, performing policy of volatile prices, of oil and gas regarding EU needs, in such that these intends are seen as sabotage to all instruments who are trying to create stabile energy market. Sales of military arms to Washington opposes like Venezuela, Bolivia and Iran, this last by helping to create atomic enrichment centrals with Russian technology, and same time putting U.S. supported Israel in difficult position and threatened from this technology. All these struggles in spite of better days ofRussia, like a big and important factor in international political scene. Some will say that Russian approach isn’t a big problem and with more caution we won’t have troubles at all. But scientist find this Russian politics very imperialist and destructive, to a new age of globalization, and in the long run it may be far more dangerous than it appears nowadays. West fears of political elite that is controlled by Putin and its secret services, they installed a new model of rule in their country, some kind of modern communism, with high potentials of destruction in era of cooperation and mutual dependence for peace and reconciliation. I tried to give as much as possible information’s to the reader, with all touchable facts that support my thesis that “Russiaregained its political presence in the world politics” especially after Putin came to power. This presence is more destructive than constructive, but it’s not passive like in history. Due to the voluminous size of the events, I referred only to the most important ones and brought information as fact without commenting on its content, because I find this method more original and neutral. With hope that reader will find my analogical style, attractive and find assumptions needed to understand my thesis.

Even thou we western democrats don’t like it, the issue “isRussiaback like an important factor on international political scene”. Is occupying peoples opinion every day, and political scientist explains this Russian behavior as time passed, but very dangerous in current international relations. The problem is evolving in direction that one doesn’t know what will happen in future, and seeing from retrospective the future isn’t so bright. If you ask about my opinion, I will say yes, the Russia is struggling to hit back like in god old Soviet days, and with Putin it has a lot of success, quoting Mr. Robert Kagan,s comment to “Washington Post” who summarizes situation best.

“It is a war that Moscowhas been attempting to provoke for some time. The man who once called the collapse of the Soviet Union "the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the (20th) century" has reestablished a virtual czarist rule inRussia and is trying to restore the country to its once-dominant role inEurasia and the world. Armed with wealth from oil and gas; holding a near-monopoly over the energy supply to Europe; with a million soldiers, thousands of nuclear warheads and the world's third-largest military budget, Vladimir Putin believes that now is the time to make his move”.



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