Setting up spheres of influence in countries that have real capacity to support its interests abroad currently undergoing major structural change . If by the end of the Cold War concept of security was synonymous with the size and capacity of the military arsenal operative , today the focus is on the symbiotic relationship between economic and social . In these new conditions , those who really matter to global geopolitical gear unit should be mandatory competitive in these areas . Inability to adapt to new realities condemns stagnation and regression in indoor and diminish the prestige and influence abroad. See the case of Russia .
Response reactions in the last weeks of the Russian Federation to the European Union and the states in the immediate vicinity , embargoes imposed on certain categories of products ( for Moldova – come to Lithuania and the Netherlands – dairy products to Belarus – meat pork to Ukraine – sweets and consumer goods ) is an indicator of Russia’s reduced capacity to present itself as a viable alternative for the states included in the Eastern Partnership .
How it all started ?
After the collapse of the Soviet Union , its legal heir , Russia has experienced a continuous restriction of its sphere of influence in the former Soviet republics and neighboring states. Its place was taken by Japan in the Far East , China in Central Asia, the U.S. Middle East , part of Turkey on the Black Sea and the European Union in the area of Central and Eastern Europe.
What happens now ?
In late November , Moldova and Ukraine will sign a Free Trade Agreement with the EU and Comprehensive summit in Vilnius. Initialling the agreement would mean de facto classification of the two former Soviet republics towards European integration , the liberalization of access to the common market.
Why are the two major countries for Russia ?
Given that the Kremlin has announced plans to create the Eurasian Union , Ukraine is the centerpiece that would ensure the future of this construction Europeanness . Without Ukraine , the union would rather be Asian . Also , Ukraine is physically the last bastion territorial borders of Russia , although there is currently no imminent military attack on the European side of Russia. Meanwhile, you can no longer talk about spheres of power if a country is able to influence the course of life in its immediate vicinity.
On the other hand, though much smaller bridgehead Moldova is necessary to ensure the future relationship with the South Slavs . Loss of Moldova, especially Ukraine , would be an extremely hard blow to the prestige and the attempts of the Russian imperial restoration .
I do not understand Russian ?
Traditional mechanisms of influence and control , based on military power and total economic dependence of smaller states , gradually fell into disuse . The Russian state was created over several centuries through territorial expansion based on military force . Throughout its history, Russia has presented the views from positions of power , be it the relationship with France Napoleon, Hitler ‘s Germany , Ukraine ‘s Yushchenko and Georgia ‘s Saakashvili . Putin regime continues the same way of approaching international relations , whether referring to dialogue ” sensitive ” in recent years with the U.S. or embargoes and veiled threats like ” Be careful not to freeze in winter ” to the smaller states . What escapes them is that Russia does not propose anything in return and cultivating a more hostile rather than a predictable partner .
Russia does not like to remain first violin in Eastern Europe as long as its aggressive actions are meant to destroy and not to build. EU gives more than it receives , at least at this stage of the negotiations. Under these conditions , the orientation of the former satellites of Moscow Provest is natural .
Moreover, Russia’s present actions can cause the opposite of the intended results. Although short, undoubtedly import restrictions may be serious blow to the fragile economies of small states , on the other hand, these losses can be offset by the liberalization of access to the European market .
They also can be a catalyst for European integration by modifying the current majority opinion to the detriment of Russia within these states.
In the event that the short and medium term there will be no major geopolitical impact unforeseen event , Eastern Europe will be increasingly integrated into the European Economic Area . This integration will recalibrate itself attract political power relations of these territories. The great loser of this process will be Russia. The current approach of “all or nothing” without chanasian,ging the rules of the game, will almost inevitably lead to unsatisfactory results for Russia. Embargoes are only present some short-term destabilizing attempts , around signing the Association Agreement with the EU in Moldova and Ukraine . If elites of these countries will have the necessary maturity to handle these situations , mobilizing companies they run around European ideals , then the integration process, designed for the long haul will not have to be interrupted by aggression and constraints.