Russia and the European Union in the geopolitics of paranoia


The G-7 meeting was held in Canada in June 2018.It demonstrates the tension within the liberal world order.We can see the challenges. Be it cracks in cross-Atlantic relationships.The formation of war, trade barriers and trade protectionism. Including no consensus among member countries. Especially the United States. With the remaining members Some people see this meeting as a G-6 + 1 conference.But another important issue that could be negated is the proposal of US President Donald Trump. Russia's proposal to resume membership of the G-7 / G-8 group again when Russia was expelled after the crisis in Ukraine / Crimea in 2014, but most members disagreed with that offer.Still, President Vladimir Putin of Russia I came out to praise Trump. We are pleased to meet with Trump in the near future. If US leaders are ready.

In case you are wondering, ask yourself: Why the relationship between Russia and the European Union has come to this point? What is the distrust between Russia and the European Union? And where did that come from?

Many people consider the Crimea / Crimea in 2014 to be a significant sign. Or even look at that. This is the reason for the dependence between Russia and the European Union. But in fact. We can say that. The Ukrainian / Crimean crisis was only a result of the distrust between the two political parties, which took some time. At least a decade.

But the author looked at another angle. The distrust between Russia and the European Union comes from the basic differences between the two powers. Both in terms of value and identity in world politics. This leads to a gap of awareness and benefits. Bilateral relations continue into the current distrust of geopolitics.

From trust to distrust.

In the Cold War The geopolitics of suspicion propels relations between the Soviet Union and Europe. This is due to differences in ideology and political economy. Although there may be some relaxation in international tension at some point. But it was not until the arrival of Mikhail Gorbachev in the mid-1980s that Russia and the West and Europe began to rebuild their international trust. This is evident from the change in Russian discourse on Europe.

Gorbachev calls Europe as 'Common European Home' (ie, the European Commonwealth). The 'European powers' want to be part of the European Community.

Later in the post-Cold War period. The identity of Russia as part of this Europe. It establishes or establishes Russia's foreign policy strategy and national strategy to build good relations with other European countries as well as regional integration. At the very least in the early days of President Boris Yeltsin, Russia came up with the proposal that Russia would apply for membership of the European Union.

In the early 1990s, the trust between Russia and the European Union gradually improved. Developed by frequent meetings and meetings between Russian and European leaders. Until Russia and the European Union reached a partnership and cooperation agreement (PCA) in 1994, which focused on mutual dependence. Yeltsin has said that "Russia will be a loyal partner. Trust and trust. "

However, international events such as Crisis in the Balkans Especially in the Kosovo War in 1999, relations between Russia and the West were not as smooth. The values and benefits of the two powers differ significantly.

In view of the Russian leader The Kosovo War represents a failure to honor the promises of Western and Western leaders in the United States and Europe, who have pledged to consult with Russia. Before any military operations. Russia also considers that the military intervention, but only one or more parties of the Western world. Not being mandated by the United Nations Security Council. It also aims to change the political state of another state.

Relations between Russia and Europe seemed to be stagnant in the late 1990s. Yet when Vladimir Putin stepped up to become a full Russian leader in 2000, Putin continued to focus on Europe and the European Union. As he said Russia is a Western power. There are significant benefits to other countries in Europe, such as energy and trade.

In2003, Russia and the European Union established the Permanent Partnership Council (PPC) as a forum for international consultation. And the concept. 'Four Common Spaces' are areas of economic co-operation. Common Space for Freedom Stability and justice External Security Area And research areas. Education and Culture.

Putin has also established a good personal relationship with many European leaders, such as Gerhard Schröder of Germany, Silvio Berlusconi of Italy, and Nicolas Sarkozy of France. Schröder is still a close friend of Putin. It plays a vital role in the Russian energy sector. He also chairs Rosneft's board of directors and Nord Stream AG, which exports energy to Europe via the Baltic Sea Pipeline.

In the early days. Putin has collaborated with Europe and the United States. In the war on terror, support for Western terrorism in Afghanistan. However, the definition of terrorism between Russia and the West has a significant difference, for Russia. Terrorism refers to non-state terrorist groups. Does not include state sponsored terrorism. Russia did not explicitly agree to the change of political regime by an external state to intervene in the other state. And change the internal political system of that state. Or change the leader of the state.

Clash of definitions on anti-terrorism between Russia and the West Apparently during the Iraq war in 2003, which Putin opposed. And look at this war as a change in the internal political system. Non-terrorism by non-state groups.

The geopolitics of paranoia began to emerge. The skepticism and diminished trust in the Western world intensified during the colored revolutions in Russia's 'backyard', including Georgia (2003), Ukraine (2004) and Kyrgyzstan (2005), respectively. This is the extension of the power of the Western world and the export of democracy in areas where Russia is considered an area of ​​influence. Or at a later time, Dmitry Medvedev called Russia's 'privileged area'.

Although Russia's distrust of the United States is important, the European Union, as a normative power, promotes democracy. Human rights and free market It began to face tensions with Russia. It is also a great power to protect the sovereignty of the state. It does not support military intervention to change the political system of other states. Including anti-humanitarian intervention. Can say that. If Russia was still in the Westphalian World Order, Europe would seem to have moved from that mess to the post-Westphalian world. (Post-Westphalian World Order)

The lack of trust between Russia and the European Union, which began to emerge in 2004, is due to the difference between the values of the monarchy, the identity and the interests of the two superpowers in world politics.

One of the most important issues in the relations between Russia and the European Union. Deprived to not trust each other. It is a common neighborhood, which is between Russia and the European Union, Central Europe, Eastern Europe. And the Commonwealth of Independent States. The Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) is Russia's 'backyard'.

On the one hand, the European Union has started the process of enlarging its membership in the region. Since 2004, the European Union has announced its policy towards European Neighborhood Policy (NEP) to "develop a zone of prosperity and neighborliness. Good ", which the EU has. "Close and peaceful cooperation"

In 2009, the European Union responded to requests from various states in the region, such as Georgia and Ukraine, who wanted to apply for membership of the European Union. The proposed multilateral mechanism is called The Eastern Partnership (EaP), which allows these states to reach Association Agreements, as well as the Deep Free Trade Agreements (DCFTAs) with the Union. Europe can say that. EU Eastern Partnership Policy It is a mechanism for integrating with neighboring countries. Without being a member of the European Union.

On the other side Russia looks at enlargement of EU membership with somewhat paranoid eyes. Russia considers that the European Union wants a power / geopolitical competition in areas where Russia considers its 'zone of influence' and is skeptical of the European Union's patriarchal identity. It will promote free markets, democracy and human rights. Russia looks at exports, democracy and political change in many cases. The Orange Revolution in Ukraine as 'conspiracy of the western world'

Sergey Lavrov, Russia's foreign minister, said: "We will hear from [the European Union] that this is not an attempt to create a new sphere of influence. "And we want to believe what we hear from Brussel about the Eastern Partnership," but "the opinions are different. On this initiative, "Russia has to consider the proposal of the European Union. "Carefully"

In view of Russia the problem with neighbors is that Russia wants to establish an 'influence zone' in the former Soviet Union. And aims for the EU, including the United States. Recognize that status of Russia. We can say that. For Russia Problems in relations with the western world. The Western world does not accept or respect the Russian superpower. Including the special status of Russia in the Commonwealth of Independent States.

In 2005, Putin said: The collapse of the Soviet Union was Although geopolitical tragedy of the 20th century, although at present Russia is not intended to revive the Soviet empire. But Russia wants to be a regional superpower with power and influence over its neighbors. Or at least no desire for external powers to intervene or determine the economic fate of Russia's 'backyard'.

On the one hand, Russia tries to integrate various states. Commonwealth of Independent States Under the program called Eurasian Economic Union, Ukraine is at the heart of integrating political economy and security in the Eurasian region. When Ukraine chose to turn to the Western world, so it was a great dissatisfaction with Russia. Some scholars propose that the big problem came from Russia's inability to recognize Ukraine as an independent state. And still look that Ukraine is part of Russia. In the past decade, more and more such discourses have risen.

But the other side. Russia is seeking to preserve its former status. "Conflicts are frozen in the region, such as Transnistria, Nagorno-Karabakh, Abkhazia, South Ossetia, Donetsk or Luhansk, etc. But in the past decade, Russia launches aggressive foreign policy In some cases it relies. 'Hybrid war' to maintain the status quo in its 'backyard'

In general, the hybrid war is a military coup. With non-military factors to achieve certain strategic objectives. By the way, different. Since the use of special forces. News war Cyber ​​war Intelligence espionage Threatening to use economic threats (such as threatening to cut off energy exports). Including political interventions, such as the seizure of important government offices. In addition, direct military intervention also appears to be the case of a war between Russia and Georgia. Or some of you called. 'Five-Day War' in August 2008or war cases in eastern Ukraine from 2014onwards.

Looking at the development of relations between Russia and the EU since two decades. (Since the signing of the partnership and cooperation agreement in 1994 until 2014), we can say that Russia's perspective on the EU is gradually changing from a worldview of mutual dependence. To the worldview of geopolitics that focuses on power struggles and paranoia. Trust among leaders has not elevated to international institutional trust. The differences in value and prestige are structural constraints that make Russia and the European Union unreliable, as they did in the early post-Cold War period.

Relations between Russia and Europe After the crisis, Ukraine / Crimea: the last straw?

The Crimea / Ukraine Crisis in 2014 marked a significant boost to the relationship between the two superpowers.

In view of Russia Last straw in the Ukrainian crisis Is falling from the power of Viktor Yanukovych in February 2014, which Russia considers the government of Yanukovych to be a politically elected government. And look at the Euromaidan protesters as "the fast-rising", backed by the West. Russia has criticized the European Union for granting a new government immediately.

The main reason for the protests against the government of Yanukovych comes from the fact that it was a neighborly affair, that is, a major political rally at the Independence Square in Kiev. Starting from the anti-government Yanukovych refused to sign a cooperation agreement with the European Union But back to agreement with Russia.

To say that. This crisis has made Ukraine fall under the trap of a geopolitical game between the West and Russia.

The lack of trust between the European Union and Russia has intensified the tension. When Russian military intervention in Eastern Ukraine, whether Donetsk and Luhansk, as well as the referendum of the Crimea, became part of Russia. The West responded with economic sanctions against Russia. And the Russian expulsion from being a member of the G-8 until the present.

Tensions in Russia-EU relations continue. And it does not seem to end in the near future. The lack of mutual trust was also fueled by the intensely popular power of the Putin regime. The dominant power in Russian politics. Management of the anti-Putin party. Freedom of the press Including human rights abuses. Became accusations that the European Union has criticized the Putin regime.

Moreover, the negative image of Russia also makes the distrust of Europe less likely to diminish. It is alleged that Russia has been implicated in the election process in several countries (such as the United States), the assassination of the former Russian secret police. Or even the accusations of increasing the strength or 'pill' of Russian athletes in the past Olympic competition, etc.


Today's politics seems to be based on the geopolitics of paranoia. It is a liberal world. Trump phenomenon the weakness of the democratic system the formation of a rightist, populist or authoritarian regime. Trade protectionism and various.

The geopolitics of distrust is not conducive to establishing international trust. Although we may see efforts to adjust the relationship on the Korean peninsula. But the process of building trust and international cooperation is still fragile. And also need time.

A bilateral relationship is significant for the maintenance and enhancement of world order. Like Russia, with the European Union. It is a case study that reiterates the international reality mentioned above. More is an exception. Interdependence does not arise from one crisis. But it comes from the deep differences between the two superpowers. In terms of value Prayer and Identity As well as the benefits that form and multiply since the Cold War.

Major crises such as the Crimea / Crimea It's just a reflection of the difference. And the more reluctance to stretch out.

In addition, the crisis and tensions in Russia-EU relations. On the one hand, Russia intends to establish its own supremacy regime over international incidents. region and seek international recognition over the influence zone in its 'backyard', while the European Union is promoting another international order. The liberal and liberal politician. Including human rights.


The clash between these different discrepancies. It is still a structural factor that drives the geopolitics of paranoia. And it is a limitation in the relations between Russia and the European Union in the near future.