Emil Avdaliani

The US Does Not Lose Much by Withdrawing from Afghanistan

| March 17, 2019

In December 2018, the Trump administration announced that its military will start withdrawing roughly 7,000 troops from Afghanistan in the coming months. Though the decision seems an abrupt shift in the US’s 17-year-old war in Afghanistan, it fits into the American grand strategy of keeping Eurasia divided.

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The End of “Europe from Lisbon to Vladivostok”

| March 8, 2019

The geopolitical divorce of Russia and Europe is not confined to the military or economic realms. Over the past several years, the differences have been ideological as well. A good example is the death of a once major political project, the “Economic Space from Lisbon to Vladivostok.”

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Russia’s Perpetual Quest for Military Modernization

| February 26, 2019

One of the cyclical patterns of Russian history is the country’s perpetual quest for military modernization. This quest was pursued by the Romanovs and the Soviets and continues in modern-day Russia. Military spending is always prioritized over essential economic and social reforms, hampering the country’s competitiveness on the world stage and paving the way for its weakening and eventual disintegration.

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Tehran-Moscow Cooperation Goes Beyond Syria

| January 24, 2019

The Syrian theater exemplifies Russo-Iranian cooperation, but there are other theaters in which Moscow and Tehran have cooperated for years. Their partnership in the South Caucasus and the energy-rich Caspian Sea area are examples of this trend. Taken together, these instances of Russo-Iranian cooperation fit into the pattern of “geopolitical chaos” across Eurasia in which Moscow and Tehran, as well as other regional powers, work together to challenge US dominance.

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Russia After the Ukraine Crisis: European, Asian, or Eurasian?

| January 11, 2019

As competition grows more intense between the US and China, Moscow must assess which side will do more to help it solve its problems across the former Soviet space. Moscow’s choice will affect Russia’s identification as European, Asian, or Eurasian.

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The Geopolitics of Ukraine’s Newly Independent Church

| December 11, 2018

The Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) is experiencing troubles in Ukraine. Areas once considered to be the uncontested territory of the Russian Patriarchate are now becoming autocephalous (independent), adding yet another dimension to the geopolitical challenges Russia is facing in the borderlands of the former Soviet space.

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At the Centenary of the End of WWI, Is the World Safer?

| November 29, 2018

Earlier this month, world leaders gathered in France to commemorate the centenary of the end of World War I, which ushered in a century of wars and ethnic cleansing. Though the commemoration served as a unifying moment for leaders, the world is as divided as it has been since the end of the Soviet Union.

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Russia Responds to Military Pressure, not Economic

| November 11, 2018

Russia has been subjected to numerous economic sanctions from Western countries that have tried to compel it to abandon its interventions across the former Soviet space. Although sanctions harm Russia’s economy and raise discontent among the population, they are unlikely to change Moscow’s behavior. Russia’s history shows that it is only military pressure that influences it to change.

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The Russian Perspective on the Downing of the IL-20

| October 22, 2018

The downing of a Russian air force plane by Syrian government forces was a predictable consequence of the overcrowding of the Syrian battleground. The Russians might genuinely be angry at what happened, but from a geopolitical perspective, they understand that Israel will not abstain from further military interventions in Syria when needed. Israel’s national interest is at stake, and Jerusalem will not allow Iran to increase its already substantial presence.

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China’s Naval Success and Its Grand Strategy

| September 28, 2018

US world power rests upon its ability to dominate the seas and the world’s commercial and military routes. Any power aspiring to a similar position goes against American geopolitical interests. China’s naval successes in the past decade or so therefore have far-reaching effects as the country is gradually becoming more experienced in military operations in far-flung regions across the globe.

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