This course will survey the main issues in the history of Soviet relations with the foreign world, as well as the new foreign policies of Russia, the other Soviet successor states, and the Central and East European states (in particular Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Romania, and Slovakia). The first part of the course explores topics such as the tensions between the pursuit of revolution abroad and state-building at home as sources of Soviet foreign policy, Soviet behavior in the Cold War, the links between domestic reform and foreign policy initiatives in the perestroika period, and the effects of the demise of the Soviet empire on the international system. The second part of the course analyzes the international behavior of Russia and the other former Soviet and former Soviet-bloc states in the post-Communist period. We will discuss how these states' foreign policies have adapted to the challenges of real independence and of a changed international system. As examples we will discuss the role of interest groups in foreign policy-making in the post-Soviet period, alternative forms of political and economic integration within the Commonwealth of Independent States, and the challenges of integration into Western politico-economic (EU) and security (NATO) structures faced by the Central and East European states.
In analyzing these countries' current foreign policies, we will pay particular attention to the legacy of 74 years of Soviet power on their current policies and attitudes vis-a-vis other former Soviet republics and Central-East European states, and the West.
Balmaceda, Margarita M. Dr., "Russian and Eastern European Foreign Relations" (2012). Diplomacy Syllabi. 214.