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Brinkmanship: Moscow’s Proxies against Brussels

Proxies are often skilled at exploiting people's dissatisfaction with the government and the majority in order to obtain power. The belligerent power attempts to increase suspicion by putting their cards behind the head of secessionist movements that is promoting a nasty narrative. Such narratives attract international media attention, and the hands of the nation-state are entangled in the web of international standards as a result.

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Assaulting proxies within weak social contract states, great power intervenes into the strategic periphery of competitive power. Great powers can intervene by projecting their political ideologies, or they can employ a secessionist narrative based on sectarian or ethnic identity with the. group to gain influence over the situation. It is practiced in order to bring the state to its knees. As a result of the turmoil that follows the breakdown of a political framework, failed states have an impact that extends beyond their borders.

When it comes to international organizations, and specifically with intergovernmental organizations, governments that are bonded together inside such a regional organization are vulnerable to such sabotage by the opposing state. In most cases, integration processes are performed in order to harmonize the economic interests of member countries. For regional powers, bonds, on the other hand, can be troublesome since they render them subject to nations with incompetent governments and a deteriorating justice system. These weaknesses are used by aggressive countries in order to force their competitors to the negotiation table, where they will be in a strong position.

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Understanding the perspective of Brinkmanship

It is possible to study this argument via the perspective of Brinkmanship, which is used to describe big power interactions when actors attempt to avoid direct confrontation. As states build policies based on cost-benefit analyses, open confrontation has the potential to wreak irreparable harm, which is why major powers have shied away from this traditional method. The Soviet Union interfered in Cuba in order to challenge American security; as a result, this move was pawned for the purpose of keeping Cubans free of American intervention; in addition, the United States will remove its nuclear weapons from Turkey and Greece.

Proxies are often skilled at exploiting people’s dissatisfaction with the government and the majority in order to obtain power. The belligerent power attempts to increase suspicion by putting their cards behind the head of secessionist movements that is promoting a nasty narrative. Such narratives attract international media attention, and the hands of the nation-state are entangled in the web of international standards as a result. In the same way that narratives and perception influence individual behavior, such narratives can inflame hatred and prejudice among minorities, tearing apart the social fabric in the process.

It is the power struggle between great powers that will be detrimental in directing global politics in the future, as proposed by Huntington, as the world has moved from ideational competition to civilizational competition. This time around, however, the interaction between titans will be different than usual. Because of interdependence and the huge development of armaments, major powers are unlikely to engage in all-out conflict (posing the threat of annihilation). These are the two most important causes that will put a stop to any future prospects of a battle between the big nations for hegemony. While fighting in the Cold War and following it, both powers used proxies all over the world to try to outwit and outpower their adversary.

Because of the prospect of Mutually Assured Destruction and the globalization of the economy, the post-Cold War world will be comparable to the Cold War world in terms of the power struggle among big countries. Using proxies against one another, Russia and NATO are attempting to consolidate their dominion over the Eurasian region.

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Governments appease aggressive nations in order to avert a confrontation. This was one of the most important conflict management strategies that were put into effect. Although appeasement has a variety of effects, its implementation continues to present policymakers with a conundrum of contradictions. Observing and evaluating historical events that occurred when appeasement failed, it was possible to come to the conclusion that appeasement will not work if the leading power has expansionist impulses. If the benign power perceives that the balance of power has shifted in favor of the aggressor, it will soothe the aggressor.

The warring state will develop imperialist inclinations as it accrues power 

As a result, appeasement merely serves to boost the confidence of the aggressor, who can sense the terror of its adversary. It follows that the arrogance of aggressive governments will grow even more, as they will continue to expand until they are faced. Appeasement has not acted as a conflict management approach, but rather as a tactic when the balance of power has shifted in favor of the aggressor, allowing the state to continue its pursuit of territorial expansion. As a result, it is possible to argue that appeasement is a sign of weakness that leads to bellicose jingoism on both sides.

This lens can be applied to the Kazakhstan situation because western countries positioned their troops behind the demonstrators, while Russia supported the Kazakh president and his government in Astana. Although Moscow considers the West’s actions to be belligerent, it rejects the claim. When Crimea was taken by Russia, the EU and NATO stood silent, giving Moscow reason to be confident in its actions. However, following Moscow’s intervention in Ukraine, Europe became alarmed and requested that Russia abstain from continuing its westward march. Putin, with the assistance of ethnic Russians, was successful in initiating military conflict in the Donetsk region.

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Europe has labeled it “imperialism,” and some have speculated that Putin is attempting to resurrect the Russian empire. Things, on the other hand, will be under control now that CSTO troops have invaded Kazakhstan’s capital and taken control of critical infrastructure. This demonstrates that Putin has had success in firefighting, but it does not imply that he will always be successful in controlling similar flames.

 

The writer has graduated from NUML, Islamabad, with a bachelor’s in IR.  Currently, he is working as a research associate affiliated with a Professor at NUML. The views expressed in the article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Global Village Space