Being Friends with Transnistria: Emotional Politics via State Awards

By Andreas Pacher | 18 February 2017

By exclusively targeting foreign citizens, the Transnistrian “Order of Friendship” is confined to a limited scope: The tiny republic enjoys recognition only by a few Russian-backed breakaway regions. The recipients therefore consist of disputed leaders from Abkhazia and South Ossetia, some Russian politicians with influential NGOs, and a Soviet-era singer whose connection with the Donbass placed him on the EU’s list of sanctioned people. The political logic revealed in the government’s implicit criteria for “awardworthiness” is that of a narrow understanding of diplomacy.

China and Poland: Economic Cooperation Under the 16+1 Formula

By Yao Le | 1 February 2017

Why do China and Poland view each other as significant partners under the 16+1 formula? Based on a comparative analysis of the two countries’ respective goals and expectations, this article will put forth possible explanations, and point towards options the Chinese government could address to promote the Sino-Polish cooperation a step further.

Good Old American Guest: The Persistent Value of Transatlantic Relations for Europe in Today’s Multipolar World

By Niklas Luksch | 21 December 2016

Despite the widely discussed transatlantic rift, strong transatlantic relations continue to be of military, economic and strategic importance for Europe. Europe remains dependent on US security guarantees even as their value appears to cease for the other side. It has much to lose, but only limited capacity to act on its own in an increasingly multipolar world. Yet, an American withdrawal from the Old Continent, and consequently, a weakened Europe ultimately are two sides of the same coin.

Does the Turkish Stream Fuel the “Anti-Visegrad Alliance”?

By Andreas Pacher | 3 October 2016

Russia and Turkey agreed to build the Turkish Stream natural gas pipeline in August 2016. This is beneficial for Bulgaria’s and Greece’s ambitions to become regional gas hubs, even more so when potential supplies of LNG, shale gas, and natural gas from Azerbaijan are taken into account. Despite the V4’s contrasting stakes in energy policy (which does not want to “lose” Ukraine), talks about an Graeco-Bulgarian "Anti-Visegrad Alliance" are exaggerated. 

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