Russia and the Arab Spring: supporting the counter-revolution

Dannreuther, R. 2015. Russia and the Arab Spring: supporting the counter-revolution. Journal of European Integration. 37 (1), pp. 77-94. doi:10.1080/07036337.2014.975990

TitleRussia and the Arab Spring: supporting the counter-revolution
AuthorsDannreuther, R.
Abstract

Russia’s response to the Arab Spring ranged from apprehension to deep anxiety and diverged significantly from the US and the EU responses. While initially
welcoming the popular demands for political reform in North Africa, the Russian reaction rapidly became more critical as a result of Western military intervention into Libya and the threat of the spread of Islamist extremism. It was these twin fears which prompted the Russian leadership to adopt an uncompromizing stance towards Syria. While geopolitical factors certainly played a role in driving Russian strategy, domestic political factors were also more significant. As the Russian leadership felt internally threatened by the growing opposition within the country, conflict in the
Middle East highlighted the perceived flaws of the imposition of Western liberal democracy and the virtues of Russia’s own model of state-managed political order.
There was, as such, a significant ideational and ideological dimension to the Russian response to the Arab Spring.

KeywordsRussia, Arab Spring, Syrian conflict, intervention, democracy
JournalJournal of European Integration
Journal citation37 (1), pp. 77-94
ISSN0703-6337
Year2015
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Accepted author manuscriptDannreuther_Jnl_European_Integration_2015.pdf
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1080/07036337.2014.975990
Web address (URL)http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/07036337.2014.975990
Publication dates
Published12 Dec 2014

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