This book focuses on the Western difficulties in interpreting Russia. It begins with by reflecting on some of the problems that are set in the foundations of Russia's post-Cold War relationship with the West. The book points to problems that emerge from linguistic and historical 'interpretation'. It looks at the impact of Russia's decline as a political priority for the West since the end of the Cold War and the practical impact this has had. It then reflects on the rising influence, especially, but not only, in public policy and media circles, of 'transitionology' as the main lens through which developments in Russia were interpreted. The book then examines the evolution of the West's relationship with Russia since the end of the Cold War, focusing particularly on the NATO-Russia relationship. It focuses on the chronological development of relations and the emergence of strategic dissonance from 2003. The book also looks at Russian domestic politics, particularly the Western belief in and search for a particular kind of change in Russia, a transition to democracy. It continues the exploration of domestic politics, but turns to address the theme of 'Putinology', the focus on Putin as the central figure in Russian politics.
developments in Russia were interpreted.
Finally, it sketches out a series of problems such as the prevalence of
‘Putinology’ and historical analogies.
Chapter 2 examines the evolution of
the West’s relationship with Russia since the end of the Cold
War, focusing particularly on the NATO–Russiarelationship. Practical cooperation has taken place and a deep and wide
stated that, of
all NATO’s partnerships, the NATO–Russiarelationship was
the most ‘burdened by misperceptions, mistrust and diverging
political agendas’. 7 Despite
the effort that went into ‘resets’ or
‘reloads’ of Russia’s relations with the West, this
has remained the case.
Both sides have numerous complaints about the other.
Secretary General, Lord
Robertson, 22 November 2001. Website reference www.nato.int/docu/speech/2001/s011122b.htm .
A New Quality in the NATO–RussiaRelationship.
Speech by NATO Secretary General, Lord Robertson at the Diplomatic
Academy, 22 November 2001. Website reference www.nato.int/docu/speech/2001/s011122a.htm .