President Vladimir Putin's decision to intervene in Syria marked a major turning point in Russian foreign policy in 2015. Over the last 15 years, Putin has increasingly relied on the use of military power to achieve his domestic and foreign-policy objectives, starting with the invasion of Chechnya in 1999, then of Georgia in 2008, and then of Ukraine in 2014. Putin's Syria gambit was the logical, if dramatic, next step in Russia's increasingly aggressive foreign policy.
What determined Russia's national interests and grand strategy in the first decade after the Cold War? This article uses aspirational constructivism, which combines social psychology with constructivism, to answer this question. Central to aspirational constructivism are the roles that the past self and in-groups, and their perceived effectiveness play in the selection of a national identity and the definition of national interests.
Political and economic transition is often blamed for Russia’s 40% surge in deaths between 1990 and 1994 (the “Russian Mortality Crisis”). Highlighting that increases in mortality occurred primarily among alcohol- related causes and among working-age men (the heaviest drinkers), this paper investigates a different explanation: the demise of the 1985-1988 Gorbachev Anti-Alcohol Campaign. We use archival sources to build a new oblast-year data set spanning 1970-2000 and find that:
Prisons of the former Soviet Union (FSU) have high rates of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) and are thought to drive general population tuberculosis (TB) epidemics. Effective prison case detection, though employing more expensive technologies, may reduce long-term treatment costs and slow MDR-TB transmission.
Background: Prisons of the former Soviet Union (FSU) have high rates of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) and are thought to drive general population tuberculosis (TB) epidemics. Effective prison case detection, though employing more expensive technologies, may reduce long-term treatment costs and slow MDR-TB transmission.
Judging from some of the titles of recent books on Russia—for example, Richard Sakwa's The Crisis of Russian Democracy, Gulnaz Sharafutdinova's Political Consequences of Crony Capitalism inside Russia, and Tom Remington's The Politics of Inequality in Russia—all is not well 20 years after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Corruption abounds, and state institutions are weak where they should be strong or strong where they should be weak.
This is a magisterial new account of the day-to-day practice of Russian criminal justice in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. Nancy Kollmann contrasts Russian written law with its pragmatic application by local judges, arguing that this combination of formal law and legal institutions with informal, flexible practice contributed to the country's social and political stability. She also places Russian developments in the broader context of early modern European state-building strategies of governance and legal practice.
Since 1991, there have been two major phases in Russian history, corresponding roughly to the decades of the 1990s and the 2000s. Under President Boris Yeltsin (1991-1999), Russia attempted a rapid transition to a market economy and liberal democracy. Economic “shock therapy,” the transition from a planned and centralized economy to a privatized market economy in one leap, proved to be traumatic for most of the population of the Russian Federation. On the positive side, these initial years of post-Soviet Russia saw the creation of a new system of laws, a dramatic rise in political
The Soviet Union advocated a conception of human rights different from the notion of rights prevalent in the West. Western legal theory emphasized the so-called “negative” rights: that is, rights of individuals against the government. The Soviet system, on the other hand, emphasized that society as a whole, rather than individuals, were the beneficiaries of “positive” rights: that is, rights from the government.
Political and economic transition is often blamed for Russia’s 40% surge in deaths between 1990 and 1994. Highlighting that increases in mortality occurred primarily among alcohol-related causes and among working-age men (the heaviest drinkers), this paper investigates an alternative explanation: the demise of the 1985-1988 Gorbachev Anti-Alcohol Campaign.
When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, Ukraine had the world’s third largest nuclear arsenal on its territory. When Ukrainian-Russian negotiations on removing these weapons from Ukraine appeared to break down in September 1993, the U.S. government engaged in a trilateral process with Ukraine and Russia. The result was the Trilateral Statement, signed in January 1994, under which Ukraine agreed to transfer the nuclear warheads to Russia for elimination.
As Russia and the United States reduce their nuclear arsenals, their relationship has undergone a complex transformation toward cooperation and partnership mixed with suspicion and rivalry, writes Pavel Podvig in a new paper. "The focus of Russia’s nuclear policy, however, has remained essentially unchanged."