Interesting but incomplete – Carnegie

September 2, 2014

This blog has some good friends within Carnegie, and especially so within Carnegie Moscow – in fact some of its members have publicly dedicated articles to this blog in the past – rather humbling it should be noted.

However, this Carnegie article, whilst making some reasonable points for debate, also seemingly deliberately, missing a crucial and important point.

That point being, you can lead a horse to water – or at least not stand in its way – but you cannot make it drink.

There is no mention, not even a hint, that the Kremlin elite – particularly currently – has absolutely no desire to join any such major international institutional frameworks.  Quite the opposite, for years it has been systematically setting up its own alternatives within which it sits at the very core and in positions of dominance.

There is a seemingly inherent “self-exclusion” gene within any Kremlin leadership.

Those international institutional frameworks that The Kremlin has seen any benefit from joining, Council of Europe, WTO etc, it has joined.  Apart from that the message for decades has been very, very clear – and is currently not only explicit, but actively projected.  That message is that Russia has always been, is, and will remain – uniquely different.

It would appear, that the many scholars who were once at Carnegie Moscow, the likes of Shevtsova, Lippan and Petrov, and who “got it” when it came to the Kremlin/Russian perception of its own “uniqueness”, have been replaced by some whom it choose to ignore such a fundamental and blatantly obvious position.

That is not to trash the above article out of hand, but that Kremlin position undoubtedly has direct effects upon the outcomes it describes.

Nevertheless, do read Carnegie Moscow – good friend Balazs Jarabik always has some well formed and thoughtful things to say when he publishes there.


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