The Dilemmas of a Four-Headed Russian Eagle for the EU: Russia as Conflict Instigator, Mediator, Saviour and Perpetuator
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Through the use of a metaphor of a four-headed eagle, this chapter argues that the multiple ways by which the Russian Federation engages with Europe, including both with other post-Soviet states and with the European Union, identify the core challenges for dealing with Moscow. Russian foreign policy operates on bases that wrong-foot the EU and attempt to oblige the Union to accept both values and practices that are anathema to it. The chapter simultaneously recognises that EU-Russian relations have been particularly exacerbated by the EU’s Eastern Partnership, which unintentionally but nevertheless powerfully signalled to Moscow that the EU had itself become an aggressor. The chapter argues that the EU must still export its value system and that doing so will be in its, and wider Europe’s, long-term interests.
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