Russian Imperialism Revisited: From Disengagement to Hegemony

1st Edition

Domitilla Sagramoso

March 13, 2020 Forthcoming
Reference - 416 Pages - 3 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9780415562270 - CAT# Y105352
Series: Contemporary Security Studies


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This book examines the nature of Russia’s relations with the former Soviet states (FSS), in particular with countries which formed the Commonwealth of Independent States, and seeks to assess whether there has been a resurgence of imperialism since the collapse of the USSR.

The book sets out to determine whether Russian leaders have attempted to restore a sphere of influence over the former Soviet republics or whether Russia’s policies reflect a genuine desire to establish normal state-to-state relations with the new states. It adopts a comprehensive approach, analysing Russia’s policies towards the FSS across a broad range of areas: energy, trade and investment; military assistance, security provision and peacekeeping; conflict management, political support, and alliance formation. While not denying the Kremlin’s assertive role in the FSS, this book challenges the assumption that Russia has always intended to restore a sphere of influence over its ‘Near Abroad’. Rather, it argues that Russia’s policies are much more complex, multi-faceted, and often incoherent. In essence, they generally reflect a combination of legitimate state interests, enduring Soviet legacies, and genuine concerns over events unfolding along Russia’s borders. This book also shows that, at times, great-power nostalgia and a real difficulty with discarding Russia’s imperial legacy shapes Russia’s behaviour towards the FSS.

This book will be of great interest to students of Russian politics and foreign policy, east European politics, and International Relations in general.

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