(International relations) – Balancing tools of power but not participating in an arms race with the West is a challenge that is not easy to solve for Russia.
Mixed voices …
At the end of December 2020, Russian President Vladimir Putin emphasized that the proportion of modern Russian weapons in the nuclear deterrent forces will be close to 90% by 2021. Addressing at the annual meeting of the Ministry of Defense Russia, Mr. Putin stated: “The current deadlock is completely unacceptable.” He demanded that “for the nuclear deterrent, we must achieve a degree of modernization” of 88.3% by 2021.
President Putin further noted that the proportion of modern equipment in joint forces will reach nearly 76% by 2024. According to the Russian leader, the country has developed a trio of powerful nuclear forces and has achieved to a level of nuclear deterrence enough to ensure the security of Russia.
|President V. Putin met with the Russian Ministry of Defense on December 21, 2020|
Meanwhile, the project of Dògg gas pipeline North flow II (Nord Stream 2) from Russia to Europe is being completed despite all efforts to prevent from the US side. There are many opinions that Russia “won” in this energy confrontation.
However, expert Andrei Kortunov – General Director of the RIAC International Affairs Council – said that Russia is a nuclear superpower, but the role of the nuclear factor at the level of great power relations will certainly change. after the Russia-US nuclear agreement collapsed. There is also no signal on the prospect of renewing the New START Treaty.
Military power is an effective tool for Russia and the world has seen it in Syria. However, this year is the fifth year Russia has intervened in this Middle Eastern country and recently, some Russian leaders said that the campaign in Syria was nearing completion, but the victory seemed to be getting further away. .
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According to Kortunov, Russia is a member of many international organizations, especially with a veto power at the United Nations Security Council (UN Security Council).
Russia has significant leverage in several international markets, but these are not decisive markets for the future of the world economy. Oil and gas diplomacy is increasingly weak, but when it comes to financial diplomacy, technology diplomacy and production line, Russia’s role in these areas is not as strong as expected.
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Kortunov explains further that foreign policy instruments can be visualized as a triangle, where the first corner is a political-military tool, the second is an economic and technological tool, the third corner is social and human. Ideally, in order for the middle foreign policy toolkit to be balanced, an equilateral triangle must be created.
However, Russia has a “bias” towards military-political tools, which is explained by many historical, geopolitical and other reasons. This is not the result of any mistake or misunderstanding of Russian interests, but this bias will make it more and more difficult to implement Russia’s foreign policies.
Find a way to solve the balance problem …
Professor Evstafiev, Department of Integrated Communications at the Dmitry School of Advanced Economics, also argues that the end of Russian energy diplomacy is inevitable and will have immediate and long-term consequences on national policy. room and security of Russia.
Accordingly, Russia’s strengthening of international influence cannot be effective without the solution to a series of socio-economic problems of the country and to overcome the gaps in the economy. But on the contrary, the fix of these gaps can only be done in favorable external conditions, requiring the use of external resources, not the mobilization of domestic resources.
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Therefore, this professor assessed, ensuring the balance between increasing international influence with domestic economic development will be the main difficulty for Russia’s foreign policy. In addition, the world context forces Russia to reconsider its approach to energy security, international energy markets and the political-military realm.
Russian experts believe that the unipolarity of the world order will inevitably be replaced. The present world order is a remnant of unipolarity. This order may continue for a while, but will eventually come to an end. However, the multipolar order has not been fully developed.
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When forecasting the prospects for strategic stability, the Russian expert said that in the next 5-7 years, those who will come to power in the military-political leadership in the US and Russia are those who have no concept. about nuclear deterrence and nuclear weapons in general is abstract concept to them. Drones will prevail.
These people have different perspectives on life and death, war and peace, which means they have no political and psychological restraints that are the most important component of a political deterrent strategy. military during the Cold War.
How to strike a balance between a desire to use tools of military power in foreign policy but not participating in the costly arms race with stronger Western opponents is clearly a challenge that is not easy to solve for Russia.