Policy Memo # 592
Gulnaz Sharafutdinova 07 May 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) The days of political promise the Russian liberal opposition enjoyed during 2011-12 when the “angry urbanites” protested against the regime, are long over. The Russian “progressive era” failed without even starting. Instead, the Kremlin undertook a conservative turn promoting the type of identity politics that enabled it to generate popular support for the country’s political leadership. The new, morality-driven identity...
Russia’s “Opposition at a Distance”: The Liberal, Anti-Putin, and Pro-Western Consortia Outside Russian Borders
Policy Memo # 591
Andrey Makarychev 01 May 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) Various Russian opposition groups operate outside of Russia articulating and promoting a normative type of political discourse grounded in values of freedom, democracy, and rule of law. These are entities established by Russian oppositional figures and organizations such as the Open Russia Foundation, Boris Nemtsov Foundation for Freedom, and the Free Russia Forum. They form patchworks and networks of individual strategies and...
Policy Memo # 590
Juliet Johnson, Benjamin Forest 23 Apr 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) Why do people fly the EU flag in post-Soviet countries that are not EU member states and will not become EU member states any time soon? Waving the EU flag may assert that a particular state belongs, or should belong, to the European community. But as the EU and Russia have increasingly clashed on the international stage, displaying the EU flag in Eurasia often carries an explicit anti-Russian message as well. While Ukraine...
Policy Memo # 589
Nigel Gould-Davies 17 Apr 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) The effects of Western sanctions on Russia have been much debated since they were first imposed in 2014. But their impact on Russia’s economic elites remains little studied. This should be remedied. From the start, sanctions have affected elites. But in 2018, major private owners of wealth and their businesses were directly targeted for the first time. The CAATSA-mandated “Kremlin report” included all 96 Russian business...
Policy Memo # 588
Robert Orttung, Katherine Weingartner 12 Apr 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) Arctic policy priorities under the Obama and Trump administrations, though similar in some ways, are marked by distinct differences driven by contrasting governance styles. These differences have been most pronounced in the area of energy production where some efforts have broken radically with policies of the past. Former President Barack Obama had a more holistic policymaking framework that gave equal attention to economic...
The Politics of Dual Citizenship in Post-Soviet States: Securing Political Goals Through Citizenship Rules
Policy Memo # 587
Oxana Shevel 11 Apr 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) The post-World War II era, and especially the post-Cold War era, has seen the global spread of dual citizenship. Not only have the number of de-facto dual citizens proliferated, but more and more states, starting with the West European democracies, have amended their legislation to explicitly recognize and allow dual and multiple citizenships. Situating post-Soviet states in this global pattern reveals some similarities...
Policy Memo # 586
Andrey Makarychev 29 Mar 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) In 2018, many former Soviet republics celebrated their anniversaries of independence gained by the collapse of the Russian empire one hundred years ago. These remembrance events gave these countries the opportunity to peer into their century-long experiences of autonomy, independence, and subsequent forceful inclusion into the Soviet Union. Over this time, they produced new narratives of political legitimacy and subjectivity,...
Policy Memo # 585
David Szakonyi 29 Mar 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) The use of sanctions to push Russia to change its foreign policy behavior has come under heated debate. Proponents argue that the sanctions policy pursued by the West has imposed sizeable costs on the Russian economy. Critics counter that Russia may not have incurred sufficient pain to pull back from its foreign policy adventurism. Broad macroeconomic overviews claim that sanctions have worsened the investment climate and...
Policy Memo # 584
Guzel Yusupova 26 Mar 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) Setting aside debates over how ethnocentric Russia’s contemporary nation-building strategy is and whether this strategy began before or after Putin, it is important to consider the effects of this strategy on Russian society. How is the increasingly ethnicized, Russian-centric form of ofﬁcial nationalism changing perceptions of what Russia is? I argue that the current social mobilization around language and border...
Policy Memo # 583
Anna Sanina 22 Mar 2019
(PONARS Eurasia Policy Memo) Patriotism in Russia is deeply rooted in the Soviet era and communist doctrines. It is the cornerstone of the country’s identity, national security, military manifestation, and the “openness” or “closeness” of its society to the world. Not surprisingly, the Russian leadership is regarded in the West as the most interested mover of patriotic trends—take for example the 2012 The New York Times headline “Putin, in Need of...
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