1. Introduction


The relationship between NATO and Russia constitutes a prominent feature of the post-Cold War world. Hostility between NATO and Russia has given way to reluctant rapprochement and cooperation: the cooperation was initiated with the Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security between NATO and the Russian Federation1, signed on 27 May 1997 in Paris. This agreement was born out of the immediate response to the end of the Cold War, namely the North Atlantic Cooperation Council (NACC) of 1991 and its successor organization the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) of 1997, as well as the Partnership for Peace (PfP) program, which Russia joined in June 1994. The emerging partnership was further strengthened by the establishment of the NATO-Russia Council (NRC)2 on 28 May 2002 at the Rome Summit. NATO and Russia declared themselves to be “equal partners” within areas of mutual interest such as the fight against terrorism, crisis management, arms control, missile defense, military-to-military cooperation and civil emergencies. The forward-looking nature of this Council is expressed in its declaration: “NATO-Russian Relations: A New Quality.”

This dissertation will assess how much of this ambitious agenda has actually materialized. It will furthermore analyze if this outcome is consistent with the hypothesis that a fruitful institutionalization of the relations between NATO and Russia has taken place. The euphoria that surrounded the signing of the cited documents has somewhat dissipated, and the question remains as to whether it has really created a new quality to cooperation. The qualitative outcome of the Founding Act, as well as the NRC, needs to be analyzed in order to assess trends of interaction that have led to either conflict or cooperation between the two actors. The period since 1997 can be seen as one of formal institutionalization of the relationship between NATO and Russia; therefore, the dissertation timeframe is 1997 to 20053. Among post-1997 events, two stand out for the way they have shaped international relations generally, and the relationship between NATO and Russia in particular. The first was Operation Allied Forces (OAF), or the war in Kosovo in 1999. A turning point in the way NATO understands its raison d’être, OAF came as a great shock to Russia, as its worst fears seemed to have been confirmed. The second event was the 11th of September 2001: arguably, the NRC was created as a result of the events of 9/11, as the fight against terrorism is a main focus of the new relation between Russia and NATO.4 These two events are generally seen as being exemplary of the opposites that this dissertation is seeking to analyze. However, a closer look reveals that the commonly-held belief about the impact these two events had needs to be analyzed more thoroughly. That Kosovo did have an impact on relations between Russia and NATO, and more generally, between Russia and “the West” is undeniably true. Nevertheless, looking at the actual NATO–Russia institutional structures that were in place before Kosovo, the question arises as to whether or not Kosovo was as crucial to NATO–Russia relations as is generally believed. It is possible that the pattern of conflict and cooperation presents itself differently from what general assumptions tell us. Tracing and analyzing these patterns – and establishing what this means in a more general context – is what this dissertation seeks to do.

The first chapter of this dissertation will introduce the research interest, namely what patterns of either conflict or cooperation are evident in NATO-Russia interaction since 1997. Specifically with regard to NATO and Russia, the systemic, as well as normative environment the two actors find themselves in has to be included in an analysis seeking answers to questions related to the material outcomes and developments of a given interaction. In order to do so, I will first provide an overview of the existing literature on NATO and Russia to identify current trends and focal points of interest to my dissertation. I will also put the existing relationship between the two actors within the historical context of the immediate post-Cold War era, outlining some basic foundations established during that time that continue to shape present-day interaction between NATO and Russia. I will then introduce the dissertation’s research questions, hypotheses and theoretical interest.

1.1.  Whither NATO?


The plethora of literature that concerns itself with issues in International Relations (IR) is an indicator of the dynamics of the field. Universally acknowledged truths of the Cold War were subject to new scrutiny after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Pawns on the “Grand Chessboard” of international politics, an image evoked by former US National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski,5 were once again set in motion, triggering a realignment of worldwide proportions. Among these realignments, the strategic positions assumed after 1990 by the former adversaries of the Cold War turned out to be quite different from what could have been expected. Russia, which emerged as the successor state of the Soviet Union, was left with the legacy of a lost war, and was weakened economically, politically and morally. More astonishingly, contrary to expectations and tenets of theories in IR, the “winner” of the Cold War did not disband. NATO not only survived the end of the Cold War – and with it, its raison d’être – but is today considered an effective alliance, if not the most effective.

An alliance is considered to be a largely utilitarian institution, or, in other words, an institution that is assessed according to its effectiveness. Different theories on alliance-formation and alliance–maintenance will be discussed in chapter 2. Suffice it to say here that an alleged axiom (“alliances do not outlive their purpose”) was disproven by the continued existence of NATO.6 This, in turn, prompted scholars to engage in a fresh debate on the nature and purpose of alliances. More specifically, attempts have been made to assess why NATO was different from previous alliances. The majority view on NATO during the 1990s is summarized in statement:

The governments of the United States, Canada, and the European members of NATO believe that continuation of the transatlantic alliance will serve their vital interests. But there is no consensus among or within NATO member states concerning the missions that the alliance should pursue in the period of history that follows the Cold War. There consequently is no consensus on how the North Atlantic Treaty Organization – the structure created to implement the Treaty’s goals under very different circumstances than those that obtain today – should be reformed to serve their interests in the future.7


This statement illustrates an important point: it touches upon the topical issue of the fate of an alliance that has outlived its purpose due to unforeseen developments in international relations. The past 15 years have aptly been referred to in IR literature as a “time of transition”. For NATO, this transition time was mainly characterized by three events: enlargement, the war in Kosovo and the aftermath of September 11th. All three events can be understood as being a result of transition, which is in itself a time where established patterns are questioned and redefined:

Instead of being confronted with a well-known and defined threat of a global conflict of the two competing social systems, the “new” NATO faces today a multiplicity of risks stemming from systemic transformation, national and ethnic revival and, last but not least, disappearance of the Soviet Union. Being confronted with the new realities NATO had to find new responses to the new challenges.8

These new challenges were partly met with – or, depending on personal assessments, aggravated by – two rounds of enlargement, in 1999 and in 2004.9 There is an abundance of literature dealing with the immediate challenges of the two rounds of enlargement, as well as potential long-term strategic shifts.10 While a study by Helga Haftendorn views NATO enlargement in a generally positive light11, others such as Jutta Koch examine the cost of enlargement and the possible strain that this might put on an already fragile Atlantic Alliance, where burden-sharing is often not defined in equal terms, reaching the conclusion that there still exists no price tag with regard to the two rounds of enlargement.12 


The second event that shaped NATO’s phase of transition was the war in Kosovo, Operation Allied Forces, in 1999. Timothy Garton Ash notes that the “war in Kosovo was the last European war of the twentieth century, and NATO’s first.”13 Not only did NATO decide for the first time in its history to use force against a sovereign state for humanitarian reasons, but it also redefined the concept of NATO “out-of-area” missions, setting a precedent for future operations. NATO involvement in Kosovo was met with staunch opposition from the Yugoslav government, and was therefore generally perceived to set an example for an intervention undertaken by a third party against a sovereign state. This triggered responses, especially on the part of the Russians, that were an indicator of the fragile state of affairs in international relations after the end of the Cold War.14

Arguably, both Kosovo and the two rounds of enlargement were events that illustrated the state of international politics within the parameters of the post-Cold War era. The event that has largely been assessed as the definitive end to the 15 year period since the fall of the Berlin wall, and the third defining event for NATO after enlargement and Kosovo, was the attacks of 9/11 and the ensuing war on terror. The conflict with global terrorism made it evident that existing structures and modes of conflict resolution were inadequate and had to be rethought. Ironically, it was the very action undertaken by NATO as a reaction to the new challenge that openly demonstrated that the tools at NATO's disposition had become inadequate. Article V was invoked for the first time in history15 on 12 September 2001, and was then almost immediately sidelined by the US in the ensuing war in Afghanistan, thereby questioning NATO’s traditional modus operandi. Instead of calling upon NATO’s capabilities, the US opted for a pick-and-choose approach, taking on board equipment or troops from member states most suitable for fighting Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF).16 Opinion about what this means specifically for the future of NATO, and “Western cooperation” generally, differs widely. Tom Landsford concludes that 9/11 was an opportunity and a wake-up call for NATO to measure up to its commitments in a post-Cold War world by streamlining its capabilities in order to be better equipped for global challenges.17 Others, like Klaus Wiesmann, contend that it might already be too late for this, and that the US, as the only remaining superpower, has already made up its mind to “go it alone” for the sake of efficiency.18 It is, however, generally agreed upon that the NATO's modus operandi cannot be the same as it was during the Cold War, lending new credibility – albeit in a limited way – to the premise that “no alliance has ever survived victory.”19

A partial answer to the question of NATO’s future was given by events that occurred in the aftermath of 9/11. As has already been mentioned, the US did not call upon NATO after the Alliance had invoked Article V. At the time, this was interpreted by some analysts as proof that NATO had indeed become an obsolete organization. However, the events following 9/11 should be interpreted in a less fatalistic way as far as NATO’s existence is concerned. One could argue that the US’ decision to not call upon the Alliance was the hour of birth of the “new NATO”. Simply expanding “old NATO” in order to catch up with international developments would no longer suffice, especially since enlargement creates unnecessary friction with third states, in particular Russia:


If NATO cannot be restructured as an organization dedicated to conflict resolution, then it is still important to recognize the dangers of limited expansion. The threat that this alliance would pose to the international system greatly outweighs any benefits [of limited expansion.]. Alliance research would suggest, then, that any pacifying role for NATO has long since passed unless major changes are implemented.20

Arguably, the “major changes” Douglas Gibler refers to became visible – though they had been worked on for some time before – with the war on terror. The need for structural change within NATO, though already evident after the end of the Cold War, suddenly became even more urgent with the challenges that the fight against terror would pose.

One might even argue that compared to other institutions, NATO adapted rather well to the structural changes of the 1990s.21 John Duffield contends that “Although born of the Cold War, the alliance has been adapted to address many of the new security challenges faced by its member states.”22 In order to be able to deal with new threats and the security challenges of the post Cold-War world, such as terrorism, more flexible and streamlined capabilities were needed than those designed to fight a nuclear war between two superpowers. This process of reform began as early as 1993 with the launch of the Combined Joint Task Force (CJTF), which was designed as a multinational and multi-service task force, task-organised and formed for the full range of the Alliance's military missions.23 Furthermore, the launch of the Defense Capabilities Initiative (DCI) at the 1999 Washington Summit represented one of the most concerted efforts to transform an international organization ever: “the Alliance has examined areas where improvements in capabilities would make a significant contribution towards meeting the challenges of the future. The aim has been to develop a common assessment of requirements for the full range of Alliance missions.”24 The DCI was refocused at the 2002 Prague Summit, adopting a three-pronged approach to improving its defense capabilities: first, the launch of the Prague Capabilities Commitment (PCC)25, second, the creation of the NATO Response Force (NRF)26 and third, the streamlining of the military command structure.27 NATO also adopted a military concept for defense against terrorism and initiated a new missile defense feasibility study.


The general need seen by NATO to transform the Alliance after the end of the Cold War gained absolute prominence after the attacks on 9/11: here, the outcome of the Prague Summit is testimony to this fact. Thus, it would be incorrect to state that NATO has not undergone structural changes in an effort to adapt to the changed international environment. The pertinent question, then, is whether these changes are adequate. Some developments, such as the refusal of individual member states to actually commit to the Prague Capabilities Commitment, might suggest that the changes are of a cosmetic nature. Others, such as the increasing number of missions that NATO is taking on, are sending more positive signals. Acknowledging NATO’s important transformation, the question is if and how this transformation has influenced the way the Alliance interacts with Russia and vice-versa.

1.2. Russia and its position vis-à-vis NATO

No other country has been more affected by NATO than Russia, on a political, military, and psychological level. Even before the start of the Cold War, Russia’s very own self-definition and self-understanding had been rooted in the fact that it is not a part of the Western community. Moves to integrate Russia into western European structures are plentiful, and extend from efforts of Peter the First and Catherine the Great in the 18th century28, to foreign policy orientations under Boris Yeltsin and Vladimir Putin. A puzzling ambivalence can be observed between the desire to be considered a part of that Western community and value system on the one hand and a proud self-depiction of Russia as a country apart in the community of nations on the other. This ambiguity lies at the heart of many issues that need to be taken into consideration when analyzing the peculiar relationship between Russia and the West in the form of individual states or organizations.

The extraordinary and unique situation of the Soviet Union during the Cold War further exacerbated the “Russian problem”. On the one hand, the Soviet Union assumed the role of one of the world’s two superpowers, whose actions, along with those of the United States determined much of the fate of the planet. On the other hand, Russia’s marginalization within the international system was further solidified. The Soviet empire, which consisted of its component republics as well as satellite states turned out to not be a stable system. Being put on the defensive – whether by historic trends or intentionally by the West – is a Russian perception of events whose importance should not be underestimated. This marginalization was obscured by perceptions of power and bipolarity during the Cold War, but became all the more visible with the end of the Cold War, when the successor state of the Soviet empire found itself with few allies and a legacy of having been on the “wrong” side of the ideological divide for 40 years. The disintegration of the Soviet system continues to lie at the heart of many problems and challenges that shape Russian internal and foreign politics until this day.


Russia’s marginalization in the post-Cold War international system has been exacerbated by the psychological and political shock of losing “empire” status. This has been observed by many experts on Russia, among them Heinz Timmermann, who speaks of a “phantom pain” Russia feels as a result of the disintegration of the Soviet Union29. Adding to that pain, as well as causing humiliation, is the perception of having lost the Cold War and the ensuing loss of importance in international politics. Only a few people perceived the end of the Soviet Union to be an inevitable consequence of historical developments and a chance for a better future for Russia. A notable proponent of this view is Sergei Medvedev who calls the 1990s a “catastrophe that wasn’t” for Russia. Medvedev concedes that Russia was indeed deprived of its geopolitical importance when the bipolar system collapsed. However, he puts forward the notion that Russia significantly advanced its cooperation efforts with the West during the 1990s, which resulted in “Russia [remaining] anchored in a cooperative framework at the margin of Western institutions.”30 Conversely, according to Timmermann, this further aggravated the views of sections of the Russian population because some perceived the relative loss of power and status of the Russian Federation as a transitional status quo that would subside when more appropriate leaders were once again in power. Largely a consequence of “leftover” imperial thinking, this mindset played an important role in the years following the collapse of the Soviet Union.31

The state of the Russian Federation in the years immediately after the disintegration of the Soviet Union could be summed up with the following words: decline – economically as well as politically; instability; lack of direction, to the point of national trauma. Whereas some other states emerged from the post-Soviet disorder with a clear orientation towards the future, there was no concept of realignment in order to adjust to the new political environment for the Russian Federation. While the former Soviet satellite states immediately began orienting themselves to Europe and the transatlantic Alliance, the status of Russia as the “loser” of the Cold War could not be defined so quickly. Even though the late Soviet leadership under Mikhail Gorbachev, as well as the Yeltsin administration made frequent use of a vocabulary that suggested that Russia would from now on be part of the European concert of nations, in reality Russia found itself marginalized and with few remaining allies, as mentioned above. Whereas Central and Eastern Europe quickly and without hesitation turned away from the former Soviet empire, euphoric hopes for the close integration of Russia into Euro-Atlantic structures were not only voiced by Russia’s leaders, but also by leaders of western European states and by the US leadership.

It is important to note that the sense of euphoria present in the interactions between Russia and the West immediately after the collapse of the Soviet Union, which continued well into the early 1990s was soon replaced by a more somber, and some say, more realistic attitude as far as relations between Russia and “the West” were concerned. According to Stephen White,


[t]he Russian president and his government moved from a ‘naïve Westernism’ that had assumed a basic community of interests to a vigorous defence of what they took to be the Russian national interest … But if Russia still ‘mattered’, there was no disguising the fact that it had lost almost a quarter of the territory …, and almost half the population … This meant, unavoidably, that Russia’s place in the world order was a very different one from that of its Soviet predecessor: weaker, and often marginal.32

The idea of “naïve Westernism” on the Russian side is picked up in many analyses related to Russia and the West's “relationship” dilemma after the end of the bipolar stand-off. In a very thorough analysis of three important documents published by the Russian government – the Foreign Policy Concept of 1993, the National Security Concept of 1997 and the Foreign Policy Concept of 2000 – Alla Kassianova traces the change in attitude toward foreign policy and Russia’s place in the world over the course of seven years.33 The most poignant observation concerns the sense of Russian disillusionment over the way that the much-heralded Russian arrival in the European political, cultural and security community had in fact failed to materialize. Whereas the 1993 document uncompromisingly sees Russia’s future as being with the West in every aspect, the 2000 document reflects a change of assessment of the possibility of that happening, and a return to the traditional way of viewing Russia as a country apart from the rest of the world resurfaced, complete with a new threat assessment to the security of the Russian Federation.34

As of the mid-1990s, a foreign and defence policy realignment in Russia away from pro-Westernism, and back to a more traditional view of Russia’s place in the world took place. This has resulted in a positioning of Russia against the “West” that is much more multi-layered, and more difficult to understand and assess. The outcome of Russia’s realignment in international relations is two-fold: first, it put an end to the rhetoric of the years immediately after the end of the Cold War, which was limited to viewing relations between Russia and the West in light of what the desired outcome was, rather than in light of what the actual components of this inherently difficult relationship were and how they affected politics in the early 1990s. The hope that decades of conflict would transform into seamless cooperation turned out to be unrealistic. Second, predictability and stability in terms of planning significantly decreased as Russia transformed itself from an ally to an unpredictable force to be reckoned with.35 Conversely, in the late 90s it was not uncommon to call for Russian admittance to western political and security structures such as NATO and the EU. James Baker for instance openly rallied support for a NATO enlargement that would extend through Eastern Europe all the way to Russia, interestingly arguing that if Russia were to not join the North Atlantic Alliance then the alliance would risk becoming obsolete and “the most successful alliance in history is destined to follow the threat that created it into the dustbin of history.”36 Implicitly, Baker suggested that the Cold War would only truly end when Russia joined the organization that was set up to out of the need to defend the West from it. Arguably, this assessment of the international order after the end of the Cold War in itself explains why Russia did not in fact join NATO, as the inevitable message to Russians was that they had indeed lost the Cold War and therefore had no choice but to join the winners.


This is picked up in an article by Ivan Safranchuk, who states that by 1993-1994 it had become obvious to the Russians that the West was “taking advantage of Russia’s weakness”, while at the same time neglecting President Yeltsin’s “world leader ambitions.”37 While clearly stating that Russia’s self-perception as a superpower creates problems, Safranchuk’s article nevertheless stresses the fact that, however unjustified Russian dreams of superpower might have been they nevertheless continue to be firmly lodged in the minds of the Russians themselves. As Safranchuk points out, “NATO’s survival beyond the Cold War was regarded in Russia as the major factor of imbalance and inequality in its relation with the individual members of NATO, the United States in particular.”38 Clearly, the fact that NATO in itself triggers a more emotional response from the Russian side than any other Western institution or individual country also plays a big role in this dilemma. This is an issue that will be discussed in greater detail later on, as there clearly is a hierarchy of importance of “Western institutions and countries” as far as Russian perceptions are concerned.

Even so, many observers have subsequently noted a general trend towards a new orientation of Russia, which can best be described as wanting to finish the “post-Cold War era”. A key aspect of this new Russian foreign policy orientation, coinciding with the Putin presidency, is that Russia has begun to realistically assess its power potential in international relations. This assessment centers on the premise that Russia views the United States as the only remaining superpower and that at present it is not able to act as a counterweight to the United States. In other words, “Russia accepts the dominance of the United States because it is believed that there is no opportunity of shaking off America’s hegemony at the moment. For this reason, Vladimir Putin continues to pursue his pragmatic policy of ‘strategic partnership with Washington…”39 It is important to understand that Russia’s place in the world is seen differently by Russia itself than it is in the West, and that debates around the subject differ in content and style. Though this might seem simplistic, it can not be reiterated often enough, as Western scholarship – in the tradition of Cold War-research – very often analyzes Russia from an outsider's perspective; the distinction between Western perception of events in Russia and the actual events that take place often gets blurred.

This is especially true when the unit of analysis concerns the relation between Russia and the West itself. Andrei Tsygankov and Pavel Tsygankov provide insightful feedback, pointing out that


[f]or a long time, international relations have been developing as an excessively West-centric and pro-Western branch of research. As many scholars pointed out, IR theory all too often reflects political, ideological, and epistemological biases of Western, particularly American, civilization. As a result, a perception has arisen throughout the world that Western International Relations theory – and Western social science in general – is nothing but a sophisticated ideology and a set of conceptual tools that serve to justify Western global hegemony.40

According to the authors, this is especially true in the area of IR, which in Russia has been understudied, in part due to the ideological confines that the communist dictatorship put on the subject, as well as on social sciences in general. Whether Western influence over the field of IR is as prominent as Tsygankov and Tsygankov suggest is of course open for discussion. Their allegation, if proven to be correct, would indeed challenge commonly-held beliefs in international theory and call for a re-evaluation taking into consideration non-Western points of view. Such an undertaking is, however, beyond the scope of this dissertation. The argument presented by Tsygankov and Tsygankov should not be viewed as an invitation to call into question the basis of IR theory. It should, however, remind scholars that the same event can be evaluated very differently by different actors. Keeping this in mind can provide scholars with an understanding of seemingly paradoxical actions on the part of the Russians.

Useful insights into the debate on IR and the part Russia has played in it since the collapse of the Soviet Union can be found in Tatyana Shakleyina’s and Aleksei Boguratov’s article “The Russian realist school of international relations.”41 In their article, they discuss the different branches of realist theory that are used in the debate on international relations scholarship. The realist school takes a prominent place in Russian political theory and has served as the basis for policy implementation ever since the mid-1990s. The main difference between the realist school and the liberal school in Russian political theory, according to Shakleyina and Boguratov, is that “while Russian liberals view democratic institutions and norms as the pillar of the world order, realists put emphasis on power centers, poles, using this perspective to describe the forming international system.”42 While this statement is valid in the wider theoretical IR context, the term “pole” is of particular importance. The concept of a uni-, bi- or indeed multipolar world continues to shape the way international relations are assessed in Russia, and consequently, how Russia should position itself in the international system. Views expressed by scholars in the realist tradition differ widely. They range from advocating a Sino-Russian axis against the US to supporting an alliance with Western countries, which would include relationships with both the US and Western Europe.43 However, most realists agree that “foreign policy strategy must be based upon national interests and on the state’s resolution in defending Russia’s national interests in relations with the outside world.”44 Furthermore, according to the authors, most realists do not trust the US and point at incidences when the US has violated the concepts of multilateral action and of national sovereignty, relying instead on an excessive use of force in order to further their interests.

1.3. What prospects for Russia and NATO?


The positions mentioned are important in so far as they offer an insight into the realignment of power vectors. On the “grand chessboard” of international politics and security issues, Russia has and, to a certain extent, continues to define itself vis-à-vis the West. This maxim now has to be broken down into its component parts in order to get to the heart of this thesis’ research question. The disappearance of bipolarity as the underlying security structure caught Russia – and the rest of the world – off guard. Though it is impossible to assess with hindsight whether or not the state of bipolarity was the guarantor for peace that it was generally perceived to be, the important issue to keep in mind is that the “chessboard” of international relations turned out to be much more multi-layered and complicated when compared to security structures of the Cold War. This applies especially to the ever-important issue of balance of power, which shifted from a perceived equality of two superpowers to a state of gross imbalance. This new situation was perceived differently, with assessments ranging from euphoria that the world community now had a chance of uniting under democratic principles to uneasiness about the inherent danger in unchecked unipolar power – even before the US had risen from its status of Cold War winner to world hegemon.

No other symbol of this imbalance is more poignant than the continued existence of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, established in 1949 to meet the rising security threat posed by the Soviet Union. This completes the cycle with regard to the opening remarks of this chapter. The relationship that has emerged between the former adversaries of the Cold War, namely between the Russian Federation and NATO – as the most prominent symbol of the Cold War “West” – offers a plethora of insights with regard to a wider set of questions pertaining to IR. Expectations and predictions about this relationship have apparently been either validated or universally repudiated, depending on who is asked. For example, the 2002 RAND White Paper entitled “NATO and Russia: Bridge-building for the 21st century”45, concedes that it is in both actors’ mutual interest to “forge a new relationship based on a genuine partnership that can help to provide lasting security for all nations in Eurasia and can hasten Russia’s integration into the family of democratic, market-oriented nations.”46 Among those goals, the authors mention the intent to fully take into consideration the interests of all European states, including those of Central Europe, creating new mechanisms for discussion and resolution of ‘inevitable’ differences, and the pursuit of a practical agenda of common tasks, in Europe or beyond.47 This bears witness to the often nurtured wish that NATO and Russia would emerge from the chaos of the immediate post-Cold War era as partners. However, this positiveness is subsequently dampened in the introductory paragraph about the group’s findings on the actual state of the art with regard to the relationship of NATO and Russia. The RAND working group concedes that outcome of this relationship has, to an extent, been successful. However, “Russia has been disappointed at what it sees to be NATO’s unwillingness sufficiently to coordinate with Russia and to take its interests into account prior to making decisions…”48 Assessments such as these are not uncommon.

Finally, avid nay-sayers to NATO continue to represent an important force in Russia. One of the most prominent, the Chairman of the Presidium of the Council on Foreign and Defence Policy, Sergei Karaganov argued continuously throughout the 1990s that NATO was diametrically opposed to Russian interests. Concerning enlargement he wrote in 1995 that “NATO's plans for expansion mean a potential new Yalta, a potential new split of Europe, even if less severe than before. By accepting the rules of the game, which are being forced on her ... Russia will lose. And Europe will lose, too.”49 During the early 2000s, Karaganov adjusted his views on NATO–Russia relations, arguing for a transformation of NATO that would make Russian membership an option – in which case Russia and NATO might be able to work together in order to tackle new, post-Cold War threats.50 Still, Karaganov remained sceptical about the prospects of NATO–Russia cooperation. He is also doubtful whether Russia and NATO would ever reach the financial and military capabilities that are needed for “genuine cooperation.”51 Though his recent works have shifted the focus away from NATO as a danger to Russian interests and instead point to a series of new threats that have gained in prominence, Karaganov continues to see Russian interests threatened by different sides.52


In summary, enthusiasm about Russia joining NATO faded around 1996-1997 and was never resurrected in the same way. Since then, a certain amount of “working pragmatism” has appeared. For example, the issue of NATO enlargement and how it might affect Russia was taken very seriously on both sides. Interestingly, many Western, and particularly US analysts cautioned against NATO enlargement during the late 1990s precisely because it was feared that this would aggravate Russia at a time that should be used as a unique opportunity to build up a lasting partnership with Russia.53 At the other end of the spectrum there were those who strongly advocated Russian membership in NATO, albeit with one important distinction: Russian membership in NATO would be equivalent to redefining the status quo of the Atlantic Alliance. For example, Ira Straus argues in favour of NATO’s expansion, not only to Eastern Europe, but ultimately, to include Russia as well. He points out that

[t]he standard argument against having Russia in NATO is that NATO is an anti-Russian alliance. Therefore, NATO plus Russia equals zero … [but] what is NATO? Is NATO essentially an anti-Russian alliance? I would argue that it is not. Certainly its main business in the first 40 years of its existence was to defend against Soviet power. NATO, however, is not just the institution formed in 1949 and defined by its functional activity up to 1989…54

However, this line of argumentation did not prevail. Towards the end of the 1990s, several developments such as the above-mentioned Russian foreign policy realignment and OAF55 terminated debates about membership – instead, recognizing that Russia would not become a member of NATO, efforts were undertaken to establish partnership schemes instead – these partnership schemes represent the research interest of this dissertation.

1.4. Research questions


Using these assessments as a starting point, this dissertation will seek answers to the following research questions: firstly, regarding to developments between 1997 and 2005: can we speak of conflict or cooperation between NATO and Russia since their dialogue has officially been institutionalized? How have the players defined their political priorities and how does this affect their relationship? Are both players still following the Cold War logic of a zero-sum game or are there gains for both sides? What processes of negotiation were necessary in order for Russia to accept a Western presence in a region that Russia has considered for centuries to be its sphere of influence? Who is the proactive; who the reactive party; or is it a balanced relationship? And finally, what were the defining moments of this “strategic” partnership? Are agreements reached mostly in an ad-hoc manner or are there certain patterns that advanced or hindered cooperation?

For analytical purposes, the quality of the NATO–Russia relationship is thus considered the dependent variable; variations on the dependent variable are noticeable alterations of the relationship’s quality such as joint exercises or contents of PJC/NRC meetings. Events that have influenced the relationship, or the independent variables, are fourfold: Firstly, the two basic treaties on NATO–Russia relations, the Founding Act and the NRC statement respectively, will serve as independent variables. Secondly, two key events of the late 1990s and the early 2000s will serve as additional independent variables: the war in Kosovo and 9/11, as well as their aftermath. All four variables are crucially important to the way NATO–Russia relations have developed, and therefore need to be placed at the heart of this dissertation. In order to assess the quality of relations between NATO and Russia since the implementation of the 1997 Founding Act, a specific aspect of this relationship must be examined. If areas of cooperation or conflict can be identified within this relationship, they will yield important insights regarding the independent variables. Developments within the NATO-Russia framework, such as the joint peacekeeping activities in the Balkans, as well as more recent ones, such as Russia’s decision to participate in NATO’s Operation Active Endeavour, will serve as points of reference for analysis. However, the main test case in chapter 4 will consist of a case study that analyzes the relationship between NATO and Russia since 1997 by focusing on an area that lies outside of the well-studied main focus of NATO-Russia cooperation.

1.5. Case study

The area to be examined is Central Asia. The influence of both actors – Russia and NATO – on this region will be examined in order to draw general conclusions about the relationship in itself. Central Asia is of particular interest as it lies at a geographical as well as a geopolitical fault line.56 One might argue that whereas Russia’s presence and interest in the region is well defined for historical reasons, NATO’s is far less defined and obvious. However, this is only party true. Even though Central Asia is geographically more removed from Europe and thus also from NATO than for instance Ukraine, the region is not excluded from partnership schemes that NATO designed with regard to the “post-Soviet space”. For instance, all Central Asia states were part of the NACC and are at present members of the EAPC; moreover, diverse PfP partnerships have been extended to individual Central Asian states. This suggests that NATO is not disengaged from Central Asia. My case study consists of a dual analysis: firstly NATO’s engagement in Central Asia, assessing the content of partnership schemes, and secondly, comparing those partnership schemes with Russian engagement in the region.


Bridging two continents, the region has been a point of contention for centuries. Over time, countries such as Iran, Turkey, China, as well as of course the Soviet Union and its successor state, the Russian Federation have intervened in the region. As far as “out-of-area” players are concerned, NATO, the US and the EU have demonstrated interest in Central Asia, though to varying degrees. Historically of great interest to imperial powers such as Great Britain and Russia, but also to neighboring states, Central Asia has in particular gained importance over the last 10 years – a period that roughly coincides with the focus of this research. Of particular interest is the diversified and multi-faceted interplay of politics, security, and economics in Central Asia. In line with the afore mentioned century-old habit of showing presence in this strategically important region, different players are getting involved in different ways. There is an intricate web of policy-making emanating from NATO, US and the EU; at the same time, it is also obvious that Russia still considers the region to be its “backyard” and consequently also has specific interests that do not necessarily correspond with NATO’s, the US’ or the EU’s. Additionally, alliances that have been forged within the area itself, such as the Collective Security Treaty Organization and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization add to the multiplicity of forces that are part of the political and security landscape of Central Asia. Thus, it is necessary to distinguish between the multiple players: as mentioned above, security and policy structures emanating from NATO, Russia, the US and the EU intertwine with each other. Taking NATO’s involvement as a starting point – and linking it to the policies of the actors mentioned before – this dissertation will seek to assess how NATO has “advanced” into a territory formerly associated with the Soviet Union, and to what extent this is a matter of concern for Russia.

Finally, the choice of case of study is also the result of a process of elimination. There is a certain linear logic with regard to the former Soviet states and their post-Cold War alignment. This alignment took place during the mid-1990s in the case of Central and Eastern Europe and the Baltic states and is therefore no longer a matter for analysis. Similarly, the more southern “fringes” of the Soviet empire, namely Ukraine and the Caucasian republics have to some extent also indicated preferences for alignment with European and transatlantic structures. Thus, Central Asia represents the last area of ambivalence where alignment preferences are concerned and is therefore well-suited as an object of analysis.

1.6. Hypotheses

The first hypothesis constitutes an answer to the main research question of the dissertation: Are NATO-Russia relations characterized by either conflict of cooperation? Hypothesis 1 states that even though the Cold War antagonism has disappeared, cooperation is not an accurate assessment either. In fact, I claim that the zero-sum concept has not entirely lost its validity as far as NATO and Russia are concerned. By tracing developments since the late 1997, a pattern of “irritation” rather than friendship and cooperation can be discerned. The term “irritation” is used to describe an interaction that is one step below conflict, but also quite removed from cooperation. Results yielded from interviews, textual analysis and secondary sources will be used to first reconstruct the main points of interaction between NATO and Russia, in order to put forward an analysis that will test Hypothesis 1. Many analysts claim that NATO-Russia interactions can be reconstructed in accordance with clearly defined developments that were intercepted by outside events such as NATO enlargement, the Kosovo crisis or 9/11. According to these analysts, NATO air strikes against Kosovo and the ensuing feud over the war accounted for an escalation of conflict between the two actors. While it is certainly not wrong to look at this incident per se in order to analyze the broader issue, I claim that it was not the event itself, but rather the surrounding circumstances and structures around NATO and Russia that account for their behavior. Furthermore, it is my assertion that NATO and Russia are caught up in a dynamic situation of a perceived balance of power asymmetry that is neither about actual power nor about actual threat, but rather about residual Cold War tensions that are immanent in the way both actors perceive each other, as well as in the structures in which they interact.


Hypothesis 2 is concerned with a more theoretical aspect. Implicit in the debate about NATO’s role in a post-Cold War world is the question of NATO as a “value community”. The preamble of the North Atlantic Treaty states:

The Parties to this Treaty reaffirm their faith in the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations and their desire to live in peace with all peoples and all governments. They are determined to safeguard the freedom, common heritage and civilisation of their peoples, founded on the principles of democracy, individual liberty and the rule of law. They seek to promote stability and well-being in the North Atlantic area. They are resolved to unite their efforts for collective defence and for the preservation of peace and security. They therefore agree to this North Atlantic Treaty…57 

This implies that NATO, since its creation, was meant to be more than a mere defense organization. It could legitimately be referred to as an organization consisting of member states bound together by a set of shared beliefs and values. Norm convergence and the creation of a common identity have also played an important role throughout the two rounds of enlargement. This dissertation seeks to analyze, among other issues, if a convergence of norms and ideas has also taken place where NATO and Russia are concerned. Regarding this issue, my second hypothesis claims that neither realism nor constructivism per se explain why Russia and NATO interact as they do. NATO-Russia interaction is neither defined by norm convergence nor by constant vying for power; though both occur on a regular basis. Chapter 2 will analyze the merits and shortcomings of both theoretical approaches with regard to NATO-Russia interaction.

1.7. Theory and methodology


The theoretical interest of the dissertation lies in the problem of actors within the international system and their capabilities for influencing outcomes in international relations There are several theoretical branches that will be used in order to be able to draw some general conclusions. First of all, a general remark needs to be made about the choices of theory: since the research interest lies explicitly in the macro-sphere of political science (great powers, the international system, power distribution etc.), it correspondingly makes sense to employ macro-level theories.

Firstly, as the title of the dissertation indicates, power structures in international relations will be analyzed in light of the outcomes for a particular actor. Classical literature in IR suggests that power structures, or even power struggles, are the sine qua non of interaction between what is considered to be the main unit of analysis, namely the state. With regard to Russia, this is certainly the case, in NATO’s case, the issue is somewhat more difficult, as the fact that NATO as an actor is not a nation-state, but an international institution, already precludes an orthodox application of realist theory.58 While this has to be taken into consideration in an analysis that draws on realist theoretical thought, this project will put forward the idea that NATO, though not a nation-state, also defines its interests in a power-maximizing manner, along the lines of a realist argument. This is especially true where Russia and the issues to be discussed in the case study are concerned. Both classical realism and neo-realism and associated authors such as Richard Grieco, Stephen Walt and Kenneth Waltz focus on power in international relations.

Secondly, the effect that the end of bipolarity has had on the international system has been discussed in length in IR theory. While some authors conclude that in an environment that is still sustained by power politics, bipolarity is more conducive to peace than either unipolarity or multipolarity59, and thus are skeptical about the viability of the post-Cold War world, others stress the importance of shared norms and values that have become increasingly more important in a world that is, as they view it, no longer defined by solely by power maximization.60 As mentioned above, Hypothesis 2 already puts forward, or rather questions a theoretical implication that aims to deconstruct some core tenets of “classical” IR theory. The main charge leveled at the dominant school of theory, realism, is that it not only failed to predict the end of the Cold War, but also has been unable to come up with a convincing explanation as to why the Soviet Union collapsed. It is therefore imperative to shift the focus away from power politics towards a new explanatory factor that would account for change in the international system. This factor, they argue, is a convergence of values and norms, which accounts for the possibility of circumventing the problem of stagnation in international politics. If we speak about NATO as a value community, this approach to international relations theory is indeed of importance. To what extent the constructivist approach is useful when it is applied to NATO and Russia will be discussed in detail in chapter 2.


Thus, a combined realist-constructivist theoretical approach will be used to seek to provide answers to the following questions: do Russia and NATO cooperate? Why? What are the outcomes of this cooperation? Some elements implicit in constructivism, namely the ever-increasing political as well as social ties between states and the impact of that interdependence on international politics, as put forward by Robert Keohane and Joseph Nye61, have to be taken into consideration to a certain extent, as it is impossible to deny that IR has become much more interconnected and intricate over the past decades. However, in order for the analysis to stay within reasonable limits, I have chosen to focus mainly on the realist and the constructivist approaches.62

As mentioned above, this research will largely be carried out at the macro-level. First and foremost, the two basic documents that serve as a starting point for this dissertation are the above-mentioned Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security between NATO and the Russian Federation and the NRC Statement. In addition to secondary literature, special consideration will be given to the analysis of primary documents, in particular PJC and NRC meeting minutes, summits of heads of state and government, official speeches, as well as strategy papers such as the Russian Foreign Policy Concept. Also, interviews with experts and policy-makers in Moscow as well as in the NATO headquarters in Brussels serve as empirical underpinning.63 Of particular importance for empirical research are online sources such as the NATO document archive. Newspaper articles, online news sources and conference contributions (papers and speeches), will serve as additional sources.

1.8. Dissertation structure

The dissertation will be structured as follows: chapter 2 will put the research interest within a theoretical framework. Concepts such as power-seeking, balance of power, alliance-formation on the one hand; and convergence of norms and values and the establishment of a common identity and language on the other hand, will be defined and placed in a context that can be used to prove or disprove the hypotheses. Those concepts will serve to qualify NATO-Russia cooperation, and how that cooperation has evolved in the specified timeframe. Chapter 3 will outline the main developments in Russia-NATO relations since 1997 and subsequently assess, with the help of key dates, whether outcomes indicate that cooperation or, conversely, conflict has taken place. Chapter 4 will then apply the results yielded in chapter 3 to a case study. In the final chapter the results will be summarized and perspectives offered for future interaction between NATO and Russia.

Fußnoten und Endnoten

1  Founding Act on Mutual Relations, Cooperation and Security between NATO and the Russian Federation, Paris, 27th May 1997, NATO Basic Texts: www.nato.int/docu/basictxt/fndact-a.htm [last accessed on 13 January 2006].

2  NATO-Russia Council: NRC Statement, http://www.nato.int/docu/basictxt/b020528e.htm, [last accessed on 7 February 2006].

3  1997-2005 thus constitutes the timeframe of this dissertation, however, where needed, reference will be made to events taking place outside this timeframe; though only in a complementary fashion.

4  According to most sources, a second reason for the establishment of the NRC was the upcoming second wave of NATO enlargement in March 2004 that opened up the alliance to seven Central and East European countries. In return for a Russian policy of no obstruction to this enlargement, a bilateral and exclusive relationship was offered.

5  Brzezinski, Zbigniew: “The grand chessboard”, New York: Basic Books, 1997.

6  It is of course debatable whether the statement “alliances do not outlive their purpose” is empirically true or not. Arguably, the UN has outlived its purpose as well, yet it still exists. However, alliances created for the purpose of collective defense are indeed sparse. The collapse of the Warsaw Pact made NATO’s survival all the more extraordinary.

7  Sloan, Stanley: “NATO’s future: beyond collective defense”, Washington DC: Congressional Research Report Service, Foreword, 1995, Foreword.

8  Stryken, Christian-Marius: “NATO enlargement – promoting social stability or strategic balance?”, Oslo: Norwegian Institute of International Affairs, Report # 223, 1997, pp. 1-28, p.8.

9  In the first round of enlargement, Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary joined NATO on March 12, 1999. NATO admitted Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia on March 29, 2004.

10  E.g. Asmus, Ronald, Kruger, Richard and Larrabee, F. Stephen: “What will NATO enlargement cost?”, in: Survival, vol. 38, #3, 1997, pp. 5-26.

11  Haftendorn, Helga: “Eine neue NATO?”, Berlin: Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, 2004.

12  Koch, Jutta: “Kosten der NATO-Osterweiterung: Nur eine amerikanische Debatte?”, in: Wissenschaft und Frieden, vol. 2, Münster University, 1997.

13  Garton Ash, Timothy “Kosovo: was it worth it?”, in: New York Review of Books, #47, 14.-21. September, 2000, pp. 50-60, p.50.

14  Reports by decision-makers of the war in Kosovo include Clark, Wesley: “Waging modern war”, New York: Public Affairs, 2001. Analyses regarding the conflict are plentiful: e.g. Booth, Ken (ed.): “The Kosovo tragedy: the human rights dimensions”, London: Frank Cass, 2001, or Reuter, Jens and Clewig, Konrad (ed.): “Der Kosovo Konflikt: Ursachen, Verlauf und Perspektiven”, Klagenfurt: Wieser Verlag, 2000, as well as Wheeler, Nicolas: “Saving strangers: humanitarian intervention in international society”, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. The predecessor to the Kosovo war, namely the war in Bosnia has been analyzed thoroughly by Holbrooke, Richard: “To end a war”, New York: Random House, 1998.

15 Article V of the North Atlantic Treaty states that “The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America shall be considered an attack against them all and consequently they agree that, if such an armed attack occurs, each of them, in exercise of the right of individual or collective self-defence recognised by Article 51 of the Charter of the United Nations, will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area. Any such armed attack and all measures taken as a result thereof shall immediately be reported to the Security Council. Such measures shall be terminated when the Security Council has taken the measures necessary to restore and maintain international peace and security.”, http://www.nato.int/docu/basictxt/treaty.htm, [last accessed on 13 September 2005].

16  Operation Enduring Freedom is the US-led invasion of Afghanistan that started in October 2001 as a response to the terrorist attacks of 9/11.

17  See Landsford, Tom: “All for one: Terrorism, NATO and the US”, London: Ashgate, 2002.

18  Wiesmann, Klaus: “Die vielleicht letzte Chance der NATO”, Berlin: Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, 2003.

19  Landsford, 2002.

20  Gibler, Douglas: “East or further east?”, in: Journal of Peace Research, vol. 36, #6, 1999, pp. 627-637, p. 636.

21  See for example Haftendorn, Helga: “Das Ende der alten NATO”, in: Internationale Politik, vol. 57, #4, pp. 49-54.

22  Duffield, John: Power rules: the evolution of NATO’s conventional force posture”, Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1995.

23  The Combined Joint Task Force (CJTF) Concept, NATO Handbook, http://www.nato.int/docu/
handbook/2001/hb1204.htm, [last accessed on 12 April 2006].

24  Improving NATO’s operational capabilities, http://www.nato.int/issues/capabilities/index.html, [last accessed on 27 April 2006].

25  The PCC is an “effort to improve and develop new military capabilities for modern warfare in a high threat environment. Individual Allies have made firm and specific political commitments to improve their capabilities in the areas of chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear defence; intelligence, surveillance, and target acquisition; air-to-ground surveillance; command, control and communications; combat effectiveness, including precision guided munitions and suppression of enemy air defences; strategic air and sea lift; air-to-air refuelling; and deployable combat support and combat service support units”, Prague Summit Declaration, 21 November 2002, http://www.nato.int/docu/pr/2002/p02-127e.htm, [last accessed on 27 April 2006]. The PCC also advocates greater interoperability with EU forces.

26  NRF builds on the concept of the CJTF: “a permanently available multinational joint force at very high readiness, consisting of land, air and sea components, as well as various specialist functions”, Prague Summit Declaration, 21 November 2002, http://www.nato.int/docu/pr/2002/p02-127e.htm, [last accessed on 27 April 2006].

27  A commitment to establishing “leaner, more efficient, effective and deployable command structure, with a view to meeting the operational requirements for the full range of Alliance missions.” Command posts were reduced to two: one central strategic command for operations, Allied Command Operations (ACO) in Mons, Belgium; and one strategic command for transformation, Allied Command Transformation (ACT), in Norfolk, USA, Prague Summit Declaration, 21 November 2002, http://www.nato.int/docu/pr/2002/p02-127e.htm, [last accessed on 27 April 2006].

28  Figes, Orlando: “Natasha’s dance. A cultural history of Russia”, New York: Picador, 2002, chapter 1. For a comprehensive overview of Russian history see Stökl, Günther: “Russische Geschichte”, Stuttgart: Kröner, 1983.

29  Timmermann, Heinz: “Die Verarbeitung des Ende des Sowjetimperiums im heutigen russischen Bewusstsein”, paper presented at the conference “Transformationen der Erinnerungskulturen?”, Forschungsinstitut Arbeit, Bildung, Partizipation (FIAB)/ Stiftung zur Aufarbeitung der SED-Diktatur, Recklinghausen, 23 February 2005.

30  Medvedev, Sergei (ed.): “Russia and the West at the millennium: global imperatives and domestic policies”, Garmisch-Partenkirchen: George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies, 2003.

31  Ibid.

32  White, Stephen: “Russia’s new politics: the management of a post-communist society”, Cambridge: University of Cambridge Press, 2002, p. 250.

33  Kassianova, Alla: “Ist Russland noch westorientiert? Die Entwicklung der Staatsidentität in den Diskursen über die Außen- und Sicherheitspolitik”, in: Osteuropa: Zeitschrift für Gegenwartsfragen des Ostens, 2001, pp.1199-1218.

34  Ibid.

35  It is largely axiomatic to consider Russian foreign policy in the 1990s “unpredictable”. An author who differs from this majority viewpoint is Toft, Peter: “The stability of Russia’s grand strategy“, Kopenhagen: Kobenhavns Universitet, Institut for Statskundskab, 2004. In his paper, Toft argues that contrary to the majority of research conducted in the field of Russian foreign policy of the 1990s, Russia’s foreign policy is by no means incoherent or unpredictable, but on the contrary in fact displays a number of durable patterns that add up to a coherent policy whose main objective is to salvage as much as possible in terms of Russian influence on world politics. According to Toft, the seemingly incoherent Russian approach to foreign policy stem from variations in the security dilemma after the end of the Cold War. Western powers can assess Russian behavior by asking the question: “How is a declining great power likely to respond to its strategic situation?”

36  Baker, James A.: “Russia in NATO?”, The Washington Quarterly, vol. 4, 2002, pp. 95–103.

37  Safranchuk, Ivan: “Russia and NATO: Looking beyond expansion”, in: Valasek, Thomas and Hitchens, Theresa (eds.): “Growing pains: the debate on the next round of NATO enlargement”, Washington DC: CDI, 2002, pp. 77-88.

38  Ibid, p. 78.

39  Manutscharjan, Aschot: “Die Putin-Doktrin; Eine Neuausrichtung der russischen Sicherheitspolitik”, in: KAS Auslandsinformationen vol. 2, #4, Berlin: Kondrad Adenauer Stiftung, 2004, pp. 4-34, p. 5.

40  Tsygankov, Andrei and Tsygankov, Pavel: “New directions in Russian international studies: pluralization, westernization, and isolationism”, in: Communist and post-communist studies, vol. 37, March 2004, pp.1-17, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=MImg&_imagekey=B6VGF-4BJ20KY-3-1&_cdi=6037&_user=964000&_orig=browse&_coverDate=03%2F31%2F2004&_sk=999629998&view=c&wchp=dGLbVlbzSkWb&md5=7478e0b5f93ca05be2cc11e8f03c06ad&ie=/sdarticle.pdf [last accessed on 20 July 2005].

41  Shakleyina, Tatyana and Bogaturov, Aleksei: “The Russian realist school of international relations”, in: communist and post-communist studies, vol. 37, March 2004, pp. 37-51, 2004, http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=MImg&_imagekey=B6VGF-4BP3KJ2-1-1&_cdi=6037&_user=964000&_orig=browse&_coverDate=03%2F31%2F2004&_sk=999629998&view=c&wchp=dGLbVzz-zSkWb&md5=69a10cb503f050feca1ed5bd46d31f93&ie=/sdarticle.pdf [last accessed on 20 July 2005].

42  Ibid, p.38.

43  Ibid, p.42.

44  Ibid.

45  Hunter, Robert, Rogov, Sergey and Oliker, Olga: “NATO and Russia: bridge-building for the 21st century. Report of the working group on NATO – Russia relations”, Santa Monica: RAND, 2002.

46  Ibid, p. 3.

47  Ibid.

48  Ibid.

49  Karaganov, Sergei: “The threat of another defeat”, in: Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 3 February 1995, published by NATO, http://www.nato.int/docu/review/1995/9502-6.htm , [last accessed on 2 May 2006].

50  Karaganov, Sergei: “Russia should form a normal relationship with the West”, Interview in Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 6 March 2002, published by the Center for Defence Information, Russia Weekly, Washington DC, www.cdi.org/Russia/196-10.cfm, [last accessed on 2 May 2006].

51  Ibid.

52  Karaganov, Sergei: “New contours of the world order”, in: Russia in Global Affairs, vol. 3, #4, Moscow, October-December 2005, http://eng.globalaffairs.ru/numbers/13/963.html [last accessed on 2 May 2006].

53  See for example Frye, Alton: “The new NATO and relations with Russia”, in: The Journal of Strategic Studies, 2000, vol. 23, #3, pp. 92-111.

54  Straus, Ira: “Russia in NATO: the fourth generation”, in: Thompson, Kenneth (ed.): “NATO and the changing world order – an appraisal by scholars and policymakers”, Lanham: University Press of America, 1996, pp. 139-159, p.140.

55  See Fedorov, Yuri and Nygren, Bertil: “Russia and NATO”, Stockholm: Swedish National Defence College, 2000.

56  Oliker, Olga and Sznaya, Thomas: “Faultines of Conflict in Central Asia and the South Caucasus. Implications for the US Army”, Santa Monica: RAND Arroyo Center, 2003.

57  The North Atlantic Treaty, http://www.nato.int/docu/basictxt/treaty.htm, [last accessed on 13 September 2005].

58  See chapter 2 for a solution to this methodological issue.

59  Mearsheimer, John: “The tragedy of great power politics”, New York: Norton and Company, 2001.

60  This is a core principle of social constructivism. One of the most influential publications is Alexander Wendt’s “Social theory of international politics”, Cambridge, University of Cambridge Press, 1999. Other insightful publications include Finnemore, Martha: “National interests in international society”, Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1996 and Katzenstein, Peter: “The culture of national security: norms and identity in world politics”, New York: Columbia University Press, 1996.

61  Keohane, Robert and Nye, Joseph: “Power and interdependence. World politics in transition”, New York: Longman, 2001.

62  See chapter 2 for a detailed argument of why institutionalism is not included in this analysis.

63  Where appropriate, comparative interviews were held with policy-makers at the European Commission.

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