Journal of International Relations, European, Economic and Social Studies
program (PfP) and was even a party to a permanent Joint Council with NATO (Rontoyanni 2002). Moreover, when the UN-declared no-fly zone over Bosnia and the arms embargo on former Yugoslavia was imposed, the Yeltsin government was engaged to exert pressure on Belgrade in order to stop the bloodshed in Sarajevo in 1994 (Miller and Kagan 1997). In sum, Moscow was willing to join Europe in Europe’s terms, which were clearly not always to its liking. But, Europe was shutting the door. Time and again, final resolutions on the future of Europe occurred without consultation with Moscow, starting from the Dayton agreements. Time and again, during the 1990s Russian objections were raised against territorial revisionism and the consolidation of a, so called, ”Euro-Atlantic” security architecture. And Moscow’s objections were well founded. It should be remembered that the Euro-Atlantic architecture was an offspring of the Cold War, that is, an alliance whose foundational principle was best encapsulated in the words of the first NATO Secretary General, Lord Ismay, who famously stated that the organization’s goal was “to keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down.” Following the end of the Cold War, the emergence of the USA as the sole superpower, the re-unification of Germany, the expansion of the EU in the Baltic States and Central Eastern Europe, combined with the tendency to exclude Moscow from the negotiating table, Lord Ismay’s dictum was now revised: from Moscow’s point of view, the consolidation of a Euro-Atlantic architecture meant keeping Russia both down and out. Thus for most of the 1990s Russia used its Cold War inheritance, namely its preeminence in the UN Security Council, attempting to safeguard its traditional veto in global governance. But, during the 1990s, Russian objections were met in Brussels with a condescending manner: as Moscow was experiencing traumatic confrontations in the Caucasus, as the former superpower came close to an economic meltdown, Moscow could do nothing more than protest NATO expansion – in a parallel course with the EU – in Central Eastern Europe and the Baltic States. Moreover, Moscow’s repeated objections against “humanitarian intervention” in 1999 were simply inconsequential. By all accounts, Russia appeared as a second-rate power of no particular consequence in the Balkans, the Caucasus, the Caspian Basin and, perhaps, beyond.
Turkey on the European doorstep
Published on Feb 16, 2012
A Publication based on the International Conference organised at the European Parliament/Brussels by Dr. ELENI THEOCHAROUS, Member of the Eu...