The Misguided Search for the Political

Book Review

Nick J. Sciullo

The Misguided Search for the Political

In The Misguided Search for the Political, Lois McNay argues that radical democracy suffers from a reliance on abstractions that echo the criticism radical democrats make of traditional liberal democrats.  While radical democracy is often theorized as a critique of the immaterial focus of liberal democracy, it too suffers from the inability to adequately account for the materiality of inequality.  McNay’s book is provocative, readable, and a worthwhile addition to the libraries of political…

Muslims in Putin’s Russia: Discourse on Identity, Politics, and Security

Book Review

Renat Bekkin

Muslims in Putin’s Russia: Discourse on Identity, Politics, and Security

The times when readers in the West learned about Islam in Russia from the books of Sovietologist Alexander Bennigsen, who for objective reasons could not have access to many important sources, have passed away. Over the last couple of decades, many studies giving an idea of the forms of existence of Islam and the life of Russian Muslims in 19-20 centuries have appeared. These are the works written by R. Geraci [Geraci 2001], E. Campbell [Campbell 2015], R. Crews [Crews 2009] and other authors.…

The Arab Spring Five Years Later: Toward Greater Inclusiveness (Volume 1)

Book Review

Nikola Zukalová

The Arab Spring Five Years Later: Toward Greater Inclusiveness (Volume 1)

Since the so-called Arab Spring began in 2011, the selection of Arab countries (re: Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen, Jordan, Morocco) and their international partners concentrated mostly on political and identity issues, neglecting the importance of economics, which indirectly triggered the current fluctuating situations in these countries. Following the 2011 uprisings the democratisation of Arab countries did not go as anticipated. Instead, a new phase of instability began, raising serious regional and…

Editor's Desk

Mitchell Belfer

The European Parliament’s Resolutionary War

With Europe tying itself in knots over the twin problems of Brexit and the cresting wave of populism, EU foreign affairs are undoubtedly playing second fiddle to internal matters at preset. The danger of such a state of affairs is that important gains made in democratizing foreign policy are squandered. And that the vacuum is filled by an assortment of narrow interests that do not necessarily reflect wider European values or strategic interests. Concerns over a democratic deficit in foreign…

Issue 12:2

Vinay Kaura

China's South Asia Policy under Xi Jinping: India's Strategic Concerns

China has always been interested in enlarging its economic and political influence in South Asian geopolitics. Several factors are responsible for China’s long-lasting interest in the region. China’s policy towards South Asia has been a combination of unique bilateral relationships, characterised by economic opportunities, territorial disputes, security challenges, containing Indian power and resisting American influence. China is containing India’s influence and power by strengthening…

Issue 12:2

Kingsley Emeka Ezemenaka, Chijioke Egwu Ekumaoko

Nigerian state and Fulani-Herdsmen conflicts in Nigeria

This article examines President Muhammadu Buhari's role in the long-running conflict between Fulani herdsmen and farmers in Nigeria. Having attained the rank of fourth-deadliest terrorist group in the world, the attacks of Fulani herdsmen on Nigerian farmers and vice versa are gaining international coverage, but commanding too little internal investigation. Using qualitative and quantitative methodological approaches, this article reveals that the conflict between the farmers and Fulani…

Issue 12:2

Vladimir Remmer

Lessons from Occupy Diraz: The Role of Velayati Twelver Activism in the Bahraini Occupy Space Movement.

A social movement exists in space. The relation between a social movement and space offers unique perspective into that social movement itself. Several dimensions of that relation can be observed in Occupy Diraz. It occupied a space that symbolised the movement's grievances; by occupying a space continuously, day and night, it shaded the light to a chasm that separated Shiite and Sunni members of society and offered a pole of attraction to those who identified with grievances and interests of…

Issue 12:2

Jiří Jelínek

The European Public Prosecutor’s Office as a New Form of Institutional Judicial Cooperation among EU Member States

This article will discuss Council Regulation (EU) 2017/1939 of 12 October 2017 on the establishment of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office. This project is a significant demonstration of the unification of European criminal law and the redirection from the traditional judicial cooperation among individual EU member states on the path toward a unified and controlled investigation of criminal offences against the financial interests of the EU throughout the whole European Union. Initially,…

Issue 12:2

Tomáš Kaválek, Miroslav Mareš

PKK’s Friends and Foes in the Middle East since 1999

This article illustrates the Kurdistan Workers’ Party’s (PKK) relationship with regional actors since 1999. The PKK maintains relations with Iran, Syria, Russia, Iraq, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan and the US. On the other hand, the PKK has strained relations with Turkey, the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) in Iraq, and rebel groups in Syria. At the same time, PKK’s affiliate in Syria has received military support from the US and European support since October 2015. It is argued that the…

Issue 12:2

Lesіa Dorosh, Olha Ivasechko

The Problem of Reform of the UN Security Council Permanent Members' Veto Right in the Context of Armed Conflict in the East of Ukraine

It is reviewed activities of the United Nations Security Council as a guarantor of international peace and security with powers to influence infringers of the international law. It is stated that at the beginning of the 21st century, the UN Security Council was powerless to perform its functions and duties to safeguard international peace and security, as well as to resolve a number of large-scale armed conflicts. Therefore, the need to find mechanisms of the UN Security Council reform in order…

Issue 12:2

James Peterson

President Obama’s Pivot towards Asia and the American Presidential Transition of 2017

American foreign policy has vacillated between Asia and Europe for over a century.  During World War I, the involvement was entirely in Europe, and President Wilson’s focus in his Fourteen Points was on incorporation of East and Central Europe into a democratic framework.  There was a twin focus on Europe and Asia during World War II, but the event that precipitated American entry into the war was an attack from Japan on Pearl Harbor.  During the second half of the 1940s, the focus was entirely…

Editor's Desk

Mitchell Belfer

Understanding the Yemen Tragedy through Iranian Behaviour

The ebbing war against Daesh may preoccupy European security thinking, but it is the triple tragedy unfolding in Yemen — the humanitarian tragedy, the socio-economic tragedy and the geopolitical tragedy — that contains the potential to unwind what is left of the Middle Eastern order. Located along the strategic south-western corner of the Arabian Peninsula, where the Strait of Mandeb straddles the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea, and heading northward towards the Nejaz, Yemen is cursed by its…

Energy Security

Book Review

Sabit Ibrahim Akca

Energy Security

Increasing dependence of modern societies on energy resources has pushed energy security to the top of the international agenda, turning it into an indispensable means of preserving and advancing economic prosperity. This prosperity, however, is not divided equally among states and the role of multi-billion dollar modern energy systems in controlling energy resources is overwhelming, becoming a root cause of unjust and corrupt social, economic, and political relations. Energy Security, as…

The Sunni Tragedy in the Middle East: Northern Lebanon from al-Qaeda to ISIS

Book Review

Wouter Jansen

The Sunni Tragedy in the Middle East: Northern Lebanon from al-Qaeda to ISIS

In The Sunni Tragedy in the Middle East: Northern Lebanon from al-Qaeda to ISIS, Bernard Rougier provides a very detailed and well-structured account of different historical events, including the Lebanese civil war and the struggle between Lebanon and Syria from the early 1960s until the 1990s, when Northern Lebanon served as the battleground between the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) and the Syrian regime. Rougier divided his book in multiple chapters, each focusing on a specific…

The Islamic State: A Brief Introduction

Book Review

Maged Srour

The Islamic State: A Brief Introduction

In mid-2014, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared the establishment of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in a move to turn the terrorist group into a territorial entity—a state with borders and, importantly, recognition. The combined weight of local and international efforts limited, retracted and has — by now — overwhelmed ISIS (as a state) and sent the group hurling to the far-flung ‘provinces’ of the Islamic State. Charles Lister’s work (2015) The Islamic State – A Brief Introduction,…

Issue 12:1

Ivana Miková

East Asian Economic Regionalism: Cooperation for Economic Development or Power Interests?

The rush for trade liberalisation has been a prominent feature of international trade since the late 1980s. Mainly developing and newly industrialised countries followed this trade policy as a tool for economic development. East Asian countries are signatories to almost 80 trade agreements. Nearly half of them have been concluded with states within the area. However, economic cooperation is equally active with the rest of the world, which makes East Asia the second most economically integrated…

Issue 12:1

Vladimír Naxera

The West, Globalisation and Pussy Riot: Portrayals of Russia and Eurasia’s Enemies in the Work of Aleksandr G. Dugin

Geopolitics in post-Soviet Russia has become not only a respected scientific field, but also a tool of practical policy and to a certain degree a new ideology, which in the 1990s helped to fill the normative vacuum that arose due to the collapse of communism. Aleksandr G. Dugin holds an exclusive position among modern Russian geopoliticians. He is the author of a wide range of geopolitical publications and is a publicly influential intellectual who has long been a figure among the elite of…

Issue 12:1

Piotr Lis

Fatality Sensitivity: Factors Shaping British, Polish and Australian Public Opinion on the 2003 Iraq War

This paper investigates fatality sensitivity of public opinion in coalition countries that participate in war efforts but are not a leading force. The analysis is based on opinion polls measuring public attitudes towards the involvement in the Iraq war of three countries: the United Kingdom, Poland and Australia. Overall, the data does not provide clear evidence of sensitivity to soldier deaths, which were relatively infrequent, but the war opposition appears to increase in response to…

Issue 12:1

Martin Riegl, Bohumil Doboš

Geopolitics of Secession: Post-Soviet De Facto States and Russian Geopolitical Strategy

While the bipolar Cold War system in Europe was characterized by a stability of borders, the end of the Cold War brought into the former Soviet bloc a wave of more or less successful attempts of secession. In our article we point out that unrecognized entities in the proximity of Russia are not genuine attempts to establish full-fledged members of the international community but rather a deliberate reaction to a changing geopolitical situation in Europe. We argue that Russia´s approach towards…

Issue 12:1

Nsemba Edward Lenshie

Political Economy of Ungoverned Space and Crude Oil Security Challenges in Nigeria’s Niger Delta

After the discovery of crude oil at Oloibiri in 1956, the government of Nigeria shifted concentration from agriculture. As crude oil production expanded with colossal effects on the environment in the Niger Delta, it created an ungoverned space which  militants exploited to direct their agression at the multinational oil companies and the Nigerian state. Among other issues, this article investigates the interface between disenchanted ethnic inhabitants of the Niger Delta and the government of…

Issue 12:1

Artem Patalakh

On the Possible Foreign Policy of the Post-Putin Russia: The Case of Alexei Navalny’s Viewpoints on Foreign Affairs

The study delves into the foreign policy plans of Alexei Navalny, the Russian politician who is currently commonly regarded as the most prominent opposition leader and the sole plausible alternative to Vladimir Putin. Drawing on his interviews, public speeches, media publications and electoral manifestos, the author analyses his foreign policy views alongside three topics: Russia’s policies towards disputed lands and states in the post-Soviet area (Crimea, Donbas, Abkhazia, South Ossetia,…

2018 - Volume 12, Issue 2