The French presidential election was fundamental to the world order. The Western European power boasts the EU’s biggest army, the world’s largest exclusive economic zone, and nuclear arsenal while its troops are deployed to five continents. So far France has made modest efforts to contain Russia’s imperialist policy while senior French officials often praised cordial ties with the authorities in Moscow. Nevertheless, the Western European country has become a pillar of security for Central and Eastern European countries, including Poland, following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.read more
Out of a sudden, Germany’s governing parties plan to strip former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder of his office and staff after he maintained and defended his long-standing ties with Russia. He has come under increasing pressure from media outlets and other politicians, notably those of the CDU. Now they all suddenly found outrageous what had been known for years–––the German ex-leader used his reputation to stage lobby for Russian interests.
India buys the most Russian weapons in the world. According to SIPRI’s data, the country has bought $25 billion worth of military equipment in the last decade, which is four times more than what India spent on U.S.-made hardware. It is key to curb Russia-India cooperation that affects the Indian stance on the war in Ukraine.
With their attacks on the town of Popasna, Russian forces possibly seek to cut off the Severodonetsk-based Ukrainian battalion on the Donets River from the rest of the country. Perhaps the Russians would cut Ukrainian forces off between the cities of Severodonetsk and Lysychansk. But what is advantageous to Ukrainian is the geographical location of the northern wing, where the swampy valley of the Donets River is a major obstacle for Russian battalions.
The US military command is decisively responding to the mounting tensions in the South Pacific region. The US military confirms that it is planned to conduct maneuvers at the RAAF military base in the northern part of Western Australia this year.
The Middle East region is nowadays considered one of the least stable areas in the world. The main factor contributing to this state of affairs is the issue of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This conflict has not been resolved so far, despite the fact that in the 1990s a peace process was initiated. All mediation and negotiation attempts have stalled due to the complexity of the problem and the conditions that must be met by both sides for a lasting peace. Efforts to create a Palestinian state have continued, but successive conflicts between Palestine and Israel have hampered the peace process. Although both sides have repeatedly declared their willingness to resume peace talks, the criteria they set for each other result in the negotiations continuing to fail.
The Russian attack on Ukraine has been going on for three months now. Currently, the main area of fighting is the eastern part of the country. However, Ukrainian commanders must also bear in mind the western border. All through the so-called Transnistria, i.e. the Transnistrian Moldavian Republic. Approximately 1.5 thousand Russian soldiers are stationed in the internationally unrecognized separatist quasi-state, which inevitably may be alarming. There are many indications that their role should not be overestimated. A small number of troops and the outdated equipment used by them allow at best for subversive activities on a limited scale. However, it is worth being aware of their potential.
Over 2.5 million people have lost their lives due to the COVID-19 pandemic that triggered the worst economic crisis since the end of World War II. The cumulative loss in output relative to the pre-pandemic projected path will grow from $11 trillion over between 2020 and 2021 and next to $28 trillion until 2025. The total toll could be even higher if to acknowledge the hidden victims of COVID-19. The mass-scale losses forced the world’s mightiest countries, businesses, and research centers to make unprecedented efforts to develop an effective vaccine. As infection outbreaks tended to recur, bringing back restrictive measures, both people and officials realized that it was best to reach herd immunity with widespread vaccination campaigns.
The following article chronologically presents the trips abroad taken by Józef Piłsudski. The considerations concern the period of the partitions and the Second Republic of Poland. As a statesman, the prime minister and co-creator of independent Poland, he was bestowed with the highest honour by the authorities of different countries. According to the memoirs written in the epoch, Piłsudski seemed to like traveling and visiting places of interest.
The European Microstates: The Prospect of EU Membership in the Context of Association Agreement Negotiations
Currently, Malta is the smallest EU member state – both in terms of size and population. However, it may soon be replaced by another, even smaller one, since a number of countries in Western Europe have been willing to collaborate with the European Communities already for several decades now. Apart from Switzerland, such enclaves include Andorra, situated between Spain and France; Monaco, located on the French Riviera; Liechtenstein, established between Switzerland and Austria; and two territories in Italy – the Vatican City State and San Marino. Each of the relations between these microstates and the EU is different. It is likely that three of them would be revised soon.
The past two years appear to have brought a breakthrough in the relations between the European Union and the Western Balkans. Countries such as Albania and North Macedonia followed a policy in line with EU guidelines to start accession negotiations. Serbia and Kosovo are now in talks to achieve a future peace agreement which would allow them to break the deadlock with the EU. Securing a peace deal with Kosovo will pave Serbia’s way for EU accession talks while Kosovo could apply for a status of a candidate country.
The brutal suppression of the protests in support of Alexei Navalny and his earlier arrest have symbolically begun a new chapter in the history of Putin’s Russia. Only the use of force and repression allow the regime to continue its existence. As a result of last year’s events, Vladimir Putin realized that he will not gain the support of the majority of Russians again. This is the end of democracy in Russia, even the sham one, but also the beginning of the end of Putin’s rule.
Joe Biden’s assumption of the US presidency following the outgoing President Donald Trump’s leadership heralds changes in the policy of the largest Western power. This article aims to analyze the impact of the changing of the guard in Washington on the European Union and its geopolitical, economic, and political consequences. America would like to mobilize European allies to a common containment of China, and will also refer to collective transatlantic values to a greater extent. In the latter case, the influence of the new administration on integration processes may turn out to be particularly pernicious.
Central Europe in 2021: The 30th Anniversary of the Visegrad Group. The Year of Opportunities and Challenges
At first glance, the year 2021 may seem very promising for Central European countries, many of which came through the COVID-19 pandemic with fewer losses than most Western European states – especially taking into account their unemployment rate or GDP decline. What is more, the previous year ended with a relatively strong signal of the further development of the Three Seas Initiative (a project of twelve Central European countries located along the Baltic Sea, the Adriatic Sea, and the Black Sea), strengthening its intergovernmental and executive qualities. On top of that, the new members’ contributions in the region enlarged the Three Seas Initiative Investment Fund (TSIIF), and the US announced its first financial input.
The fate of the Nord Stream 2 project is doubtful, and it is gradually becoming a litmus test of relations between the US and Germany.
Mass protests in Belarus, the smoldering Russo-Ukrainian war, erosion of the power system in Russia, the war between two Eastern Partnership countries – Azerbaijan and Armenia, the frozen conflict in Transnistria, the evolving situation in Moldova, the meandering of Turkey’s policy towards Russia, the USA, NATO and the EU, the election-related political crisis in the US, and the yet unknown vectors of the foreign policy of Joe Biden’s administration, the third crisis in a row in the European Union – after this in the Eurozone, (2008–13) and those related to immigration (2015–16), and currently to the COVID-19 pandemic (2020–2021), the political twists and turns it is facing in connection with the elections in the Netherlands (March 17, 2021) and in the three largest EU member states: Germany (September 26, 2021), France, and Italy (2022), as well as possible early elections in the fourth largest EU country, Spain, torn by all the EU crises and Catalan separatism… These are examples of factors, which make it necessary for the countries located on the eastern flank of NATO and the European Union to prepare for possible bad scenarios and demonstrate their ability to face them. What potential do they have and what could they do to, if not integrate, then coordinate their potential; to what extent should they do it and in what directions? What structures for such integration do already exist, and to what degree are they advanced? What is the main challenge for these countries, and what constitutes a mere shortcoming in resisting these negative scenarios?
The reforms of the judiciary in Poland after 2015 are usually explained as an attack on the rule of law and the erosion of democracy. Meanwhile, it can be viewed from the other side as the final farewell to the circular political contract, on the basis of which the so-called third power was removed from the process of constitutional transformation.
In 2020, the European Commission adopted the so called European Green Deal to face imminent challenges related to climate change. This ambitious goal to transform into a more efficient and green economy has been also a very important aspect of the Polish economic transformation.
The development of the situation and the state of security in the Indo-Pacific is the main determinant of the future of the world and the distribution of power between two competing superpowers. This research paper covers the United States’ position in Indo-Pacific waters, its response to the growing interference of the People’s Republic of China, and Australia’s stabilizing role in the region. The text presents the genesis of the presence of the American Navy in the Indian and Pacific Oceans, the causes and effects of the increased activity of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army in the South China Sea region. The study also indicates the response of the anti-Chinese alliance countries in this region, among which the expansion of the field of allied cooperation and the militarily strengthened Australia are to play a key role.
The Warsaw Institute stands in solidarity with Ukraine, which was attacked by the regime of Vladimir Putin. As an organization, we condemn any signs of escalation of the conflict on the part of the Russian Federation and support the territorial integrity of the Ukrainian state.
The Role and Influence of The People’s Republic of China on Visegrad Group Countries – SPECIAL REPORT
A special report prepared by the Warsaw Institute is available in the form of a multimedia file on the Institute’s website. It summarizes all the articles related to the subject of the role and influence of the People’s Republic of China on Visegrad Group countries and places this issue in a broader geopolitical context.