After a period of relative weakness and isolation during most of the 1990s, Russia is again appearing as a major security player in world politics. This book provides a comprehensive assessment of Russia's current security situation, addressing such questions as:
- What kind of player is Russia in the field of security?
- What is the essence of its security policy?
- What are the sources, capabilities and priorities of its security policy?
- What are the prospects for the future?
One important conclusion to emerge is that, while Russian foreign policy under Putin has become more pragmatic and responsive to both problems and opportunities, the growing lack of checks and balances in domestic politics makes political integration with the West difficult and gives the president great freedom in applying Russia's growing power abroad.
Jakob Hedenskog, researcher at the Swedish Defence Research Agency, has published extensively on Russia and the CIS, including The Ukrainian Dilemma: Relations with Russia and the West in the Context of the 2004 Presidential elections.
Vilhelm Konnander coordinated and edited the present volume for the NNSS. He currently works with Sodertorn University College, Sweden and his main interest are in Russian and Baltic Sea affairs.
Bertil Nygren, associate professor in political science at Stockholm University has published extensively on Russian domestic and foreign policy, including Putin I and Putin II: Results of the First Term and Prospects for the Second.
Ingmar Oldberg, deputy director of research at the Swedish Defence Research Agency, has published extensively on Russian foreign, regional and military affairs, including Reluctant Rapprochement: Russia and the Baltic States in the Context of NATO and EU Enlargements.
Christer Pursiainen, Senior Research Fellow at the Nordic Centre for Spatial Development in Stockholm is associate professor of international relations at the University of Helsinki.