The re-emergence of a ‘mirror image’ in West–Russia relations?

Original Article


This paper examines whether Cold War-style anxiety and paranoia have emerged in the West–Russia relationship since the onset of the Ukraine crisis in 2013. Although the idea that a New Cold War is emerging is repudiated, the possibility that anxiety and paranoia are developing in Eastern Europe is deemed worthy of examination. Using Bronfenbrenner’s ‘mirror image’ theory from the Cold War, the contemporary West–Russia relationship is evaluated through examining the foreign policy discourses of both sides. The evaluation demonstrates that anxiety and paranoia are evident in the relationship which, as during the Cold War, reduces the opportunity for compromise (over Ukraine and Syria) and potentially moves the relationship towards greater competition and conflict.


Ukraine crisis New Cold War Russian foreign policy Western liberal international order 


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Copyright information

© Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.National Centre for Research on EuropeUniversity of CanterburyChristchurchNew Zealand

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