No Place for Russia: European Security Institutions Since 1989

Aleksei Zakharov is Visiting Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi. Click here for detailed profile
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  • March 2019
    Book Review

    The dissolution of the Soviet Union, conflicts in former Soviet republics and in the Balkans, the war in Afghanistan and Iraq, the Arab Spring and the crisis in Syria, the war in Georgia and the confrontation in Ukraine—the last three decades have seen a series of events which affected the European security agenda. Since 1989, Russia has been participating in European affairs as a member of several forums and has been a party to multiple agreements. However, it has never been an integral part of the European community while its views on many important issues have been often overlooked and neglected. In the 1990s, it was the perceived weakness which prevented its North American and European partners to consider Moscow’s position seriously. In the late 2000s as Russia became stronger, it turned into an impediment to Europe’s security and unity. Broadly, in the past 30 years Russia’s role in European security affairs has undergone three stages of development. From being the prospective partner throughout the 1990s and to an ad-hoc partner with no rights during the 2000s, and finally, after futile attempts to find common ground, a challenge (if not a threat), post-Ukraine.