Affirmative section consultation and cooperation through dialogue networks



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LINK: TRYING TO REFORM RUSSIA FROM THE TOP DOWN CREATES A NATIONALIST BACKLASH
TRYING TO ACHIEVE A "TOP DOWN" REVOLUTION IN RUSSIAN LIFE LEADS TO HUGE BACKLASH FROM CONSERVATIVE ELEMENTS
Victor Sergeyev, Moscow State Institute for International Relations, 1998; THE WILD EAST: Crime and lawlessness in post-communist Russia, p. 63 , acs-VT99

When political leaders initiate a revolution "from the top," that is, a "white revolution," they face a rather complicated dilemma Institutional borrowings are necessitated mostly by foreign-policy considerations, such as keeping the military balance with neighboring states or protecting national independence. At the same time, the borrowing of both new moral practices and the corresponding formal institutions is dangerous from the standpoint of domestic policy. Such borrowing encourages the consolidation of "traditionalist" conservatives, who owe their popularity not so much to the attractiveness of their program for the population but rather to the social expenses of the "structural" violence needed to implant new social institutions, together with new supporting moral practices, into traditional society. A "white revolution," unless it is based on an aggressive ideology ready to justify these very substantial social expenses, is usually confined to innovations in rather limited spheres-military buildup, scientific and technological innovations, and bureaucratization.


TOP DOWN REVOLUTIONS ONLY RESULT IN LONG TERM INSTABILITY
Victor Sergeyev, Moscow State Institute for International Relations, 1998; THE WILD EAST: Crime and lawlessness in post-communist Russia, p. 65 , acs-VT99

The nineteenth and twentieth centuries have produced many attempts to carry out "white" revolutions. Examples readily come to mind: Egypt and Thailand (then Slam) in the nineteenth century, Turkey after its defeat in World War 1, Iran after World War 11 and up to 1978, and numerous Arab countries in the 1950s and 1960s. Even a cursory comparison of these developments shows that "white" revolutions usually prove quite unstable, which is attributable not only to the gap between the elites that conduct these revolutions and the masses of the population that uphold traditions but also to the fact that the forces that instigate "white" revolutions usually have a rather vague idea of the real situation in their countries and even of the new order they hope to establish


WHEN "TOP DOWN" REVOLUTIONS FAIL, BACKLASH IS SERIOUS AND BRUTAL
Victor Sergeyev, Moscow State Institute for International Relations, 1998; THE WILD EAST: Crime and lawlessness in post-communist Russia, p. 67 , acs-VT99

A "black" revolution is usually a reaction to the inconsistency of a "white" revolution, coupled with its leaders' inadequate understanding of the real meaning of the transformations they are trying to produce (e.g., the reforms initiated by the Iranian Shah in the 1960s) or the utopian character of the social constructions introduced by a "white" revolution (e.g., the failure of "war communism" in Russia in 1921). The reaction of society to the virtual failure of a "white" revolution may be prompt, as in Iran in 1978, or delayed, as in the USSR in 1922-29, but the outcome is the same, namely, the return to fundamental traditional values, whatever the ideological decorations accompanying this return.


"TOP DOWN" REVOLUTION IS SEEN BY THE MASSES AS A CRIMINAL ACT, SO THEY TURN TO DANGEROUS TRADITIONALIST ELEMENTS
Victor Sergeyev, Moscow State Institute for International Relations, 1998; THE WILD EAST: Crime and lawlessness in post-communist Russia, p. 67 , acs-VT99

In the eyes of the masses, the elites that attempt to carry out a "white" revolution look like a group with criminal intent if the revolution fails. The newly established social institutions, and, most important, the moral practices that support them, are quickly outlawed and exterminated. Society does not merely return to its "prerevolutionary" state. All the evolving embryos of the new state, including the goals and methods of the recent transformation, are destroyed to please the "moral fundamentalism" of tradition. Society reverts not to the initial point of transformation but to a certain "ideal tradition," which never really existed and which is the same kind of social utopia as the dreams of the radical revolutionaries who failed to realize their plans precisely because they were utopian.


LINK: INCREASED SOCIAL INEQUALITY FEEDS NATIONALIST FEELING
WIDENING INCOME GAP MERELY FUELS THE NEO COMMUNIST AND NATIONALIST MOVEMENTS
Grigory Yavlinsky; Russian economist and the leader of Yabloko, a democratic, reformist political party, Foreign Affairs, May, 1998 / June, 1998; Pg. 67, HEADLINE: Russia's Phony Capitalism acs-VT99

In real terms, government pensions and wages were cut to 40 percent or less of their original value, and the government still cannot collect enough taxes to cover these expenses. Tax receipts have fallen to less than 20 percent of the country's GDP. Meanwhile, external debt has skyrocketed, and domestic debt, which was next to nothing just a decade ago, has reached almost 15 percent of GDP. Servicing these debts, paid out to local bankers and foreign speculators at exorbitant interest rates, will take no less than 25 percent of total government expenditure in 1998. The current Russian market economy has created a handful of super-wealthy individuals while leaving the rest behind to struggle. It is no wonder that these economic policies resulted in some 250 communists and 50 ultranationalist Zhirinovskyites being elected to the 450-seat State Duma in 1995.


RISING SOCIAL INEQUALITY CREATES OPPORTUNITIES FOR AUTHORITARIAN FORCES TO GAIN CONTROL
Bertram Silverman & Murray Yanowitch, Profs. of Economics Hofstra Univ., 1997; NEW RICH, NEW POOR, NEW RUSSIA: Winners and losers on the Russian road to capitalism, p. 136 , acs-VT99

The frailty of labor peace suggests that the divisions between winners and losers continue to pose a threat to political and social stability. In a society where increasing numbers of Russians feel excluded from the process of change, the possibility of a social explosion cannot be ruled out. Not surprisingly, when Russians were asked in early 1996 whether "order or democracy was more important for Russia now," only 9 percent chose democracy. 15 In a period of devolution the desire for order is understandable, but under such circumstances people are more likely to be manipulated by groups seeking authoritarian solutions rather than democratic ones.


RISING ECONOMIC INEQUALITY INCREASES THE DANGER OF AN AUTHORITARIAN MOVE IN RUSSIA
Bertram Silverman & Murray Yanowitch, Profs. of Economics Hofstra Univ., 1997; NEW RICH, NEW POOR, NEW RUSSIA: Winners and losers on the Russian road to capitalism, p. 138 , acs-VT99

One factor, however, has not changed: the increasing divide between winners and losers in the transition to capitalism. Growing inequality and insecurity are the seeds of social disorder. The real battle for democracy in Russia is no longer between communism and capitalism. Russia's newly won freedoms are threatened by the growing divisions between winners and losers. Without greater attention to social democratic reforms, the specter of authoritarianism will continue to haunt Russia's fragile experiment with capitalism.


VARIOUS LINKS -- THINGS WHICH FEED RUSSIAN NATIONALISM
TRYING TO GET RUSSIA TO ADOPT FOREIGN "ADVANCED" PRACTICES ONLY RESULTS IN A BACKLASH TO PREVIOUS METHODS
Victor Sergeyev, Moscow State Institute for International Relations, 1998; THE WILD EAST: Crime and lawlessness in post-communist Russia, p. 57 , acs-VT99

Attempts to spur this process by designing new moral practices or borrowing them from "advanced" societies are possible, but their socially painful realization often ends in failure. In this event, a return to well-known and long-established moral practices emasculates the legislation and institutions that have been brought in to support "artificial" moral practices, which may lead to real tragedy not only for individuals but for entire social groups.


LINK: WHEN PUBLIC OPINION BECOMES MORE ANTI-AMERICAN, IT FEEDS THE FIRES OF ULTRANATIONALISM AND CHAUVINISM IN RUSSIA -- ATTEMPTS TO CONTAIN RUSSIA BECOME COUNTERPRODUCTIVE
Gennady I. Chufrin and Harold H. Saunders; Russian Academy of Sciences and the Kettering Foundation, The Washington Quarterly, 1997 Autumn; Pg. 35, HEADLINE: The Politics of Conflict Prevention in Russia and the Near Abroad acs-VT99

Ultranationalistic and chauvinistic forces in Russia exploit the population's disenchantment with the West and have renewed suspicions about the West's ulterior motives. Yet, many conservatives in the United States inadvertently help these Russian forces in their anti-Western campaign. Acting on the assumption that the collapse of the Soviet Union came as a result of Western political and military pressure and not as a result of the USSR's internal contradictions, these conservatives remain locked in their Cold War mentality, which is reflected in their attempts to make or influence U.S. policy toward Russia and its Near Abroad. Their "containment of Russia" rhetoric does not go unnoticed in Russia; chauvinistic forces use such comments as incontestable proof of aggressive U.S. intentions.


LINK: NATO EXPANSION FORCES MODERATES TO JOIN WITH THE NATIONALIST HARD-LINERS
Thomas L. Friedman; International Herald Tribune, August 1, 1997, Pg. 8, HEADLINE: But What About the U.S.-Russian Relationship? acs-VT99

Third, Russia is now embarking on a major debate about how much to downsize its conventional armed forces, and ''NATO expansion will figure into every discussion and paper written on the military reform question.''

Hard-liners are already using it to embarrass advocates of sweeping reform. Even centrist Russian strategists now argue that with NATO expanding, and Russia's army shrinking, Russia will have to rely more heavily on nuclear deterrence and a doctrine of first use of nuclear weapons.
LINK: NATO EXPANSION INTO THE BALTICS WILL BE VERY DIFFERENT, AND WILL PROMOTE RUSSIAN AUTHORITARIAN NATIONALISM
John F. Harris, Washington Post Staff Writer, The Washington , May 04, 1998, Pg. A16, HEADLINE: After NATO Vote, Doubts on U.S.- Russia Rapport // acs-VT99

Dimitri K. Simes, a prominent Russian analyst at the Nixon Center for Peace and Freedom and a supporter of the first round of NATO expansion, said, "Once you start talking about the Balts, and to some extent Ukraine, it's a totally different story." NATO membership for these nations, he said, could lead Russia to "abandon its current moderation" and give leverage to those Russian leaders who are "more assertive, and more prepared to stand up to the United States. "


LINK: ACTION AGAINST THE SERBS WILL FUEL RUSSIAN NATIONALISM AND THREATEN RELATIONS WITH NATO
Paul J. Saunders, assistant director of the Nixon Center for Peace and Freedom, Newsday (New York, NY), August 20, 1997, Page A39, HEADLINE: IT'S NOT IN U.S. INTEREST TO BE WORLD COP acs-VT99

It is important to remember here the outburst of anti-Western sentiment in Russia following the initial NATO air strikes against the Serbs. The admittedly flawed NATO- Russia Founding Act would also be undermined and, as a result, we could be back at square one on NATO enlargement, with the added difficulty of genuine public opposition within Russia.


LINK: RUSSIAN QUESTION THE MOTIVES BEHIND OUR ASSISTANCE -- PATIENCE AND EMPATHY WOULD BE A BETTER POLICY
Richard Pipes; Professor of History, Emeritus, at Harvard University, Foreign Affairs, September, 1997 /October, 1997; Pg. 65, HEADLINE: Is Russia Still an Enemy? acs-VT99

Assistance of any kind, no matter how well-meaning, must take into account Russian people's suspicions of the motives behind it, irrational as these may be. Immense patience and empathy are required in dealing with Russia's halting progress toward democracy; failure to display them only helps anti-Western forces.


LINK: RUSSIAN ELITES ARE VERY CONCERNED ABOUT RUSSIA’S LOSS OF INTERNATIONAL STATURE, AND YEARN TO BE POWERFUL AGAIN
Richard Pipes; Professor of History, Emeritus, at Harvard University, Foreign Affairs, September, 1997 /October, 1997; Pg. 65, HEADLINE: Is Russia Still an Enemy? acs-VT99

Russia is torn by contradictory pulls, one oriented inward, hence isolationist, the other imperialist. The population at large, preoccupied with physical survival, displays little interest in foreign policy, taking in stride the loss of empire and the world influence that went with it. People pine for normality, which they associate with life in the West as depicted in foreign films and television programs. Depoliticized, they are unresponsive to ideological appeals, although not averse to blaming all their troubles on foreigners. But for the ruling elite and much of the intelligentsia, accustomed to being regarded as citizens of a great power, the country's decline to Third World status has been traumatic. They are less concerned with low living standards than the loss of power and influence, perhaps because inwardly they doubt whether Russia can ever equal the West in anything else. Power and influence for them take the form of imperial splendor and military might second to none.


LINK: THE MORE WE FEAR RUSSIAN THREATS AGAINST OTHER STATES IN EUROPE, THE MORE WE INCREASE ITS LIKELIHOOD BY FOSTERING RUSSIAN NATIONALISM
Tony Barber, Business Day (South Africa), April 21, 1998; Pg. 13, HEADLINE: MOSCOW STILL REGARDS THE US WITH PRICKLY RESENTMENT , acs-VT99

Russia's view is that Nato's new members - the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland, all due to join next April - and other alliance hopefuls want membership as insurance against a possible resurgence of Soviet-style aggression. Moscow rejects this as an unjust aspersion on post-communist Russian foreign policy. Even Russian liberals say such fears in countries on Russia's western borders may turn out to be self-fulfilling prophecies, particularly if a nationalist-inclined politician such as Yuri Luzhkov, mayor of Moscow, were to replace Yeltsin as president.


LINK: INSULTS TO HONOR CAN BE AS IMPORTANT A CAUSE OF WAR AS NATIONAL INTERESTS
George Will, Washington Post Writers Group, The Chattanooga Times, May 26, 1998, Pg. A4, HEADLINE: Arms control fantasies acs-VT99

Remember, Kagan says, what Thucydides listed first among the three things that cause people to go to war: "honor, fear and interest." Liberal optimism about taming the world rests on the hope that fear can be assuaged and interests accommodated. But honor is a more volatile variable. Kagan says that if we understand the significance of honor to include deference, esteem, respect and prestige, it is an important motive of modern nations.

Kagan believes that considerations of material gain or even ambition for power itself frequently play a small role in bringing on war, and that "often some aspect of honor is decisive." Which is one reason why threats of material losses from economic sanctions are weak enforcements of arms controls and will be utterly futile against an India feeling its oats.
LINK: ATTEMPTS TO APPEASE NATIONALIST SENTIMENT IN RUSSIA ONLY ACCELERATE ITS POWER
Fred Hiatt, editorial page staff of The Washington Post, The Moscow Times, April 11, 1998, HEADLINE: Perils of Disengagement , acs-VT99

Some in the West seek to defuse such nationalist sentiment by deferring to it. They would derail or delay the expansion of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. They would pay court in Russia - as German Chancellor Helmut Kohl shamefully did last month - by suggesting that they sympathize with Russia in its Latvia dispute. They would give Russia a veto over Latvia's joining the European Union by suggesting, as Kohl and others have, that border disputes with Russia should be disqualifying.

This kind of appeasement does Russia's democrats no favor. Every country, no matter how small, has the right to plot its own course. If Primakov and Luzhkov can make gains in the West by threatening Russia's weaker neighbors, they will only do it more. Russians who favor civilized, equitable relations will be weakened.
LINK: OUTSIDE INVOLVEMENT IN RUSSIA'S FAR EAST ANGERS RUSSIAN HARD-LINERS
Jennifer Anderson, Intl. Institute for Strategic Studies, December, 1997; THE LIMITS OF SINO-RUSSIAN STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP, Adelphi Paper 315; p. 50 , acs-VT99

More recently, Russian conservatives have been concerned by Japanese and US economic and political interest in the region. Tokyo initially directed economic aid to the Central Asian republics in preference to Russia. The US has made clear its commitment to Central Asian sovereignty, free exploitation of Caspian Sea resources and security links, including Central Asia's participation in NATO's Partnership for Peace (PFP) programme. Kyrgyzstan embraced PFP to counter Russian pressure, while Kazakstan developed contacts with the US military, such as a 1997 arrangement for US P-30 Orion aircraft to undertake aerial surveys for the Kazak government. The Russian nationalist press speaks conspiratorially of US infiltration in the area, even suggesting that the Voice of America radio station has used Kazakstan and Kyrgyzstan as a base for broadcasts into China.


LINK: US ATTEMPTS TO USE RUSSIA TO COUNTER BALANCE CHINA INFLAMES RADICAL RUSSIAN NATIONALISM
Jennifer Anderson, Intl. Institute for Strategic Studies, December, 1997; THE LIMITS OF SINO-RUSSIAN STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP, Adelphi Paper 315; p. 76 , acs-VT99

It is important to recognise the largely benign outcome of the present relationship for three reasons. First, debate over Russia's role as a counter-balance to China only inflames nationalist and anti-US sentiment in Russia. Conservatives portray their country as caught between allegiance to the US on the one hand and to China on the other. Western appeals for caution over future Chinese action against Taiwan or in the South China Sea are viewed as a 'trap' to force Moscow to act as a 'second front' against Beijing. Many Russians suspect that those who criticise Russia's overtures to China do so to undermine the limited but profitable, relationship with Beijing.


STRONGER NATIONALIST FORCES WILL CO-OPT THE YELTSIN REGIME

[CO-OPTATION VERSION]


YELTSIN IS LOSING CONTROL OF FOREIGN POLICY. HE IS BEING PUSHED TO BE MORE NATIONALISTIC
The Economist, February 14, 1998, ]SECTION: World Politics and Current Affairs-, EUROPE; Pg. 49. HEADLINE: Russia's part-time president \\ jan]VT99

Nor is it only Russia's economy that needs new management. In foreign policy too, Mr Yeltsin has lost his balance. He used to be the dominant figure in a double-act with Yevgeny Primakov, the foreign minister. Mr Yeltsin would charm the West, while Mr Primakov devilled among the old Soviet client-states. In recent diplomacy towards Iraq, however, Mr Primakov seems to have persuaded his boss that it is Bill Clinton, not Saddam Hussein, who poses the bigger danger to world peace. Last week Mr Yeltsin said Mr Clinton "might trigger off a world war". This week he said that "attempts by some countries ... to assume a role of leader are unrealistic and even dangerous. " Much more of this, and Russia will have a cool welcome from the G7 group of big industrialised countries when Mr Yeltsin takes his seat at the Birmingham summit this spring.

YELTSIN'S POLITICAL POWERS ARE FAILING HIM. HE WILL CHANGE HIS POLICIES IF HE IS UNDER ENOUGH PRESSURE TO DO SO
The Economist, February 14, 1998, ]SECTION: World Politics and Current Affairs-, EUROPE; Pg. 49. HEADLINE: Russia's part-time president \\ jan]VT99

And increasingly, Mr Yeltsin's political powers seem to be failing him too. He is no longer the master of any game save that of shuffling his ministers and advisers with disruptive frequency. His lack of commitment and clarity in economic policy has helped condemn Russia to a recession far longer and deeper than that of most other transitional economics. Even now, Mr Yeltsin seems to view declarations of intent as an acceptable substitute for action. Last month he presented his government with a 12-point economic programme of dizzying banality, seemingly the work of his Kremlin advisers. Last week he proclaimed without warning a quite different, and much tougher, agenda urged on him by Anatoly Chubais, the leading, reformer in the government. And next week, when Mr Yeltsin is due to give his annual policy address to parliament? It will depend on who has his ear, or on the severity of the crisis to be managed.


YELTSIN CANNOT IGNORE THE NATIONALIST PARLIAMENT. HE WILL BOW TO THEIR PRESSURES
JAMES MEEK, March 10, 1998 [The Guardian (London). SECTION: The Guardian Foreign Page; Pg. 13. HEADLINE: Moscow sees world through eastern eyes \\ jan]VT99

The row, early last week, prompted the kind of solidarity Moscow showed in respect of Iraq. Gone are the days when a pro-Western foreign ministry and presidency ignored Russia's nationalist parliament.

The ultra-nationalist parliamentary faction leader Vladimir Zhirinovsky kicked off with a noisy protest in the Duma. Mr Primakov picked up the ball and passed it to Mr Chemomyrdin, who touched it down in the Kremlin.

Western Europe and the US look like facing the same Russian unanimity on the latest Yugoslav crisis. The chance of keeping Moscow behind sanctions, let alone military action, is slim.


RUSSIAN MINISTRY OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS IS A BASTION OF OLD SOVIET THOUGHT, AND WILL ACT UP IF YELTSIN WEAKENS
Leon Aron, resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, The Weekly Standard, April 20, 1998: Pg. 23, HEADLINE: THE REMARKABLE RISE OF DEMOCRATIC RUSSIA , acs-VT99

Any worsening of Yeltsin's health will increase the influence of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the diplomatic corps -- perhaps the most recalcitrant institutional relic of the past and a class whose fall from the pinnacle of Soviet society, in both material comfort and prestige, can be likened only to that of the military. Predictably, Russian diplomats' zeal to defend the reformist regime has often been less than overwhelming.


STRONGER NATIONALIST FORCES WILL COUP

[COUP VERSION]


RUSSIAN MILITARY COUP IS VERY LIKELY -- 60% OF RUSSIAN MILITARY EXPERTS AGREE
Katrina vanden Heuvel, The Nation, August 11, 1997; Pg. 24; HEADLINE: The other Russia: Moscow glitters, the economy collapses, the army rumbles. acs-VT99

In a recent survey, 60 percent of Russian experts on military affairs responded that a coup, mutiny or complete disintegration of the army is likely within eighteen months. Indeed, several ranking political figures remarked privately that by comparative political science criteria, the Russian military should have taken power two or three years ago.


RUSSIA HAS SHOWN A SERIOUS INABILITY TO CONTROL ITS ADVENTURESOME MILITARY
Stephen Blank, Professor of Research at the Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College, Heritage Foundation Reports, April 6, 1998 Pg. 9, HEADLINE: REFLECTIONS ON RUSSIA AND NATO ENLARGEMENT acs-VT99

Nowhere is this more visible than in the failure to institute effective civilian, democratic controls over the armed forces. As a result of this failure, during the crucial years of 1992 -- 1994 Russia undid Moldova's integrity, launched coups in Azerbaijan, dismembered Georgia and allowed Abkhazia to break away, transferred billions of dollars to Armenia in violation of its own Tashkent Collective Security treaty with the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), invaded Chechnya despite signing Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) declarations prohibiting such activities five days earlier, failed to democratize control over the military, and waged intermittent economic warfare against the CIS's other members, especially in energy policy. The absence of control over the military and the willingness to defy Europe in pursuit of diminished sovereignty for the CIS bespeak Russia's failed democratic transition.

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