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  • Author: Aram Terzyan
  • Publication Date: 11-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Liberty and International Affairs
  • Institution: Institute for Research and European Studies (IRES)
  • Abstract: Despite the growing body of research on authoritarian regimes, few studies address the issues of their legitimization through exaggerating external threats and constructing enemy images. Targeting the gap in the literature, this article explores the discursive strategies of ‘evilization’ and demonization of the ‘other’, with a focus on their implications for legitimating and sustaining the authoritarian regimes in post-Soviet space. Examining the cases of Russia and Azerbaijan, the qualitative, comparative analysis presented in this article uncovers a series of essential similarities between the regimes’ legitimization strategies. Findings suggest that there has been a strong tendency in both Russian and Azerbaijani discourses to ‘externalize’ major problems facing the countries and scapegoat ‘evil forces’ as their main causes. Frequent appeals to the external threats have been accompanied by a heightened emphasis on the necessity of strong presidential power, with ‘strongmen’ that are capable of withstanding the enemies’ conspiracies. Remarkably, one of the core similarities between the two regimes is their unstoppable drive towards monarchical presidencies.
  • Topic: Power Politics, Bilateral Relations, Authoritarianism, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Russia, Eurasia, Azerbaijan
  • Author: Ekaterine Lomia
  • Publication Date: 08-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Liberty and International Affairs
  • Institution: Institute for Research and European Studies (IRES)
  • Abstract: For more than twenty-eight years, following the disintegration of the Soviet Union, Russian-Georgian relations have been a substantial ground for mutual confrontation, sharp dispute, and a lack of trust. Continuous tensions and disagreements have adversely affected efforts to achieve a proper balance in bilateral relations between the neighboring countries and resulted in a number of direct and indirect confrontations. Whilst the Russian president seeks to restore Russia’s great power status, regain its past glory and control strategically important regions of the former Soviet space, Georgia, from the very first day of independence, tries to maintain its sovereignty and territorial integrity, develop modern state institutions, strengthen democratic values and integrate into the Euro-Atlantic structures. The paper aims to study Moscow’s current foreign policy strategy towards Georgia following the ‘Rose revolution’ and argues that Russia’s military intervention in Georgia, in August 2008, was a clear illustration of classical realism used by a great power in the XXI century. Russia actively uses hybrid warfare and regularly employs economic leverage on Georgia to eventually achieve its political ends in the Caucasus region.
  • Topic: Bilateral Relations, Geopolitics, Economy, Annexation
  • Political Geography: Russia, Eurasia, Georgia
  • Author: Jaesoo Park
  • Publication Date: 08-2020
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Liberty and International Affairs
  • Institution: Institute for Research and European Studies (IRES)
  • Abstract: Myanmar has crafted a neutral foreign policy since its colonial years to avoid leaning too much on any foreign power, but a spiraling political crisis at home is pushing it toward China as a buffer against international outrage. Myanmar faces charges of genocide against the Rohingya. China has backed Myanmar in the UN. In fact, China is in a similar situation. China is grappling with international criticism over the perceived repression of ethnic Uighur people. Myanmar is exposed to various words and loud in the international community. So Myanmar wants to improve relations with China and is turning into an active cooperative attitude as a strategy to secure a friendly army. This paper shows how the diplomatic relations between Myanmar and China are changing, and how Myanmar’s foreign strategy toward China is approaching. Also, this article analyzes the outlook of diplomatic relations and the implications of the current situation.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Human Rights, Bilateral Relations, Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), Rohingya
  • Political Geography: China, Myanmar, Indo-Pacific
  • Author: Bama Andika Putra
  • Publication Date: 09-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Liberty and International Affairs
  • Institution: Institute for Research and European Studies (IRES)
  • Abstract: The US faces many dilemmas in facing an XXI century China. The recent crisis that has occurred in the South China Sea and issues related to the trade war between the two global powers have significantly divided the positions of both states in world affairs. The US policy of engagement and coercion, forcing China into the US liberal order has shown slow progress. Therefore, it is critical to re-evaluate the US foreign policy strategy in facing an XXI century China, which shows discontent towards the values that are promoted by the US. This paper critically analyzes the US foreign policy approach to China, provides key elements of its success, and concludes the major issues faced throughout the process of interacting with the modern global superpower known as China.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Bilateral Relations, Liberalism, Integration
  • Political Geography: United States, China
  • Author: Fatih Mehmet Sayin, Murat Doğan
  • Publication Date: 10-2017
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Liberty and International Affairs
  • Institution: Institute for Research and European Studies (IRES)
  • Abstract: Georgia and Turkey have become important partners in the Caucasus region after the independence of Georgia in 1991. Two countries preferred to follow pro-West policies in their foreign policy against the Russian factor. They have geopolitical importance and geostrategic location for Russia throughout history. This article analyzes the foreign policies of Georgia and Turkey and examines the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Crude Oil Pipeline as a common foreign policy between them. The paper found out that this kind of project between Georgia and Turkey would make them important actors rising from the regional level to the global level in the future.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Oil, History, Bilateral Relations, Geopolitics
  • Political Geography: Russia, Turkey, Caucasus, Georgia, Mediterranean