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The Red Prince: Why Dmitry Medvedev is the Future of Russia.

Dmitry Medvedev speaks at the Kremlin in Moscow

Although Medvedev achieved marginal foreign-policy successes at best , such as the New START and Russia's WTO accession agreement, and had a positive image abroad, it cannot be said that he altered the course of Russia's post-Soviet foreign policy. Medvedev made little real progress in dismantling Cold War legacies and institutional cornerstones in Russia's relations with the West, and particularly its attitudes towards the US and NATO. According to the Alexander Nicoll of the International institute od Strategic Studies argues that Medvedev Putin capitalized on anti-American sentiment to boost his popularity during his presidential election campaign. Under Putin, building new relationships will be difficult, given the long-standing narrative, fuelled by Putin himself, depicting NATO as a conspiracy that seeks to exploit, undermine and encircle Russia.
One can also point out that under Medvedev, Russian foreign policy remained reactive: his only original initiative – the proposed Euro- Atlantic security treaty – was poorly executed and will leave no lasting legacy. Though he began the process of re-orienting Russia's policy towards Asia, progress was limited. Moscow will see the forthcoming Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Vladivostok as an opportunity to enhance its influence, and it is expected to increase oil exports to Asia.

The Russian Federation’s first goal is the reestablishment of a Russian foreign policy that is “assertively pragmatic“, this directly stems from what is the result of Russia’s collective insecurity due to the steady and undeterred decline in relevance. Russia is still coming to grips with its diminished position both economically and military. It seeks to maintain it's international self-esteem by acting as a “check and balance” to the West.. . Lavrov and Deputy Prime Minister and former Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov both explicitly rule out “Cold War” as a label for Russo-American relations, their subordinates are not so soothing. The Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Aleksandr’ Losyukov, speaking in Tehran, said that” Washington was using Korea and Iran’s proliferation as an issue to consolidate its global strategic position, i.e., invoking those two states to justify its missile defense program. If this issue cannot be resolved by diplomatic means, he warned, Russia will carry out a series of military acts to balance and establish security.” When you examine the foreign policy of Russian Federation Presidents Dmitry Medvedev and Vladimir Putin on an individual basis, scholar and foreign policy experts agree that by Putin is the most misunderstood of all Russian Leaders. Much like Khrushchev and Yeltsin. Putin’s foreign policy has been shaped by the era in which he ruled. Tasked with bringing economic and foreign policy reform to a struggling and internationally irrelevant Russia. Tsygankov on pg. 131 describes Putin as “ critical of past practices of over extending Russia’s foreign policy resources.” Then Tsygankov follows up with describing Putin as pragmatic and full of self-concentration on pg. 131. Tsygankov firmly establishes in Chapter 5 that Putin unlike Gorbachev was not eager to replicate Western social democratic or liberal values. Putin is quoted by Tsygankov as saying that Russia would never become a" 2nd edition of the U.S or Great Britain". Putin’s strong and focused foreign policy seeks to build alliances within its region to counter China, the US and EU. Russia has interjected itself in the Middle East as check on US influence.

The second foreign policy goal of the Russian Federation is securing the territorial integrity and stability of its vast Eurasian landmass. Since the fall of the Soviet Union Russia’s inability to maintain dominance and influence in its historical geographic sphere of influence posed a major problem in the 1990’s and posed it single most existential threat to the Russian Federations ability to rebuild its fractured national and international Identity. This was a result of the inability of the Soviet Union thus its eventual collapse. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Medvedev are well aware of Russia’s two most significant regional foreign policy weaknesses. The first weakness being the erosion of influence and interest in Central. Dmitri Trenin on page 5 Russia Reborn - Reimagining Moscow's Foreign Policy in the Foreign Affairs Journal published in Tuesday, November/December 2009 issue supports this argument of Russian reengagement when he states “Russia needs hard power, too, but the kind that addresses the challenges of the present, not the past. It needs a well-trained and well-equipped mobile army to deal with crises along its vast border, as well as a modern air force and a modern navy. In many cases, Russia will not be acting alone. It will need to master the mechanisms of military and security cooperation in Eurasia with its allies in the CSTO, its NATO partners, and its Asian neighbors, such as China, India, and Japan. “ The next traditional weakness come from Russia’s inability to produce economic productivity, more specifically Russia’s in ability to compete in Central Asia and the Balkan Region with China.

The third and most significant Russian foreign policy objective is reestablishing itself as viable alternative in international trade and finance. As mentioned in the previous paragraphs, Russia must institute polices that secure and progress its economic security as well its border integrity and political standing. Russians’ inability to produce economics prosperity is the single most significant danger to the Russian State. Tsygankov continues on page 35 to explain that this was recognized by leader such as Mikal Gorbachev and Boris Yeltsin. The Russian Federation goal is to emerge from the 1990’s with a quasi-free market economy where Russia is an exporter of goods and services other than their oil and military weapons. This will come with very strong regulation from its authoritarian government seeing as Russia does not want to lose social or fiscal control over its state.

Lets be frank about Demitry Medvedev and his tenure as in his current , has no authority, but he is the future of Russia … he inherited a much more stable and functional country than Putin from Yeltsin. While Putin’s authoritarian leadership gave Russia a direction out of its murky transitional path, corruption remained a concern during Medvedev’s term; Medvedev, and likewise Putin as prime minister, sought to fight corruption and strengthen the rule of law. Medvedev’s priority was to strengthen Russia through the dictatorship of law and legal nihilism. In terms of foreign policy, Medvedev continued Putin’s push for a globally recognized and important Russia.” It is with little doubt that Putin’s apprentice has what it takes to play on the world stage it is of little consequence until he gets the keys to the car….. for good.

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