On August 21, the Valdai Club held a presentation of its most recent report, titled “The Euro-Atlantic Security Formula: Stable Deterrence and Its Alternatives”.
The crisis in relations between Russia and the West, which aggravated after the developments in Ukraine, has reinvigorated NATO, bringing back its original purpose of deterring Russia. Russia’s policy of protecting its interests, articulated in 2008 and 2014, along with the programme of modernization of the country’s armed forces, are perceived as threats, which must be addressed by the bloc and the United States in particular.
The bloc’s determination is confirmed by decisions taken at its recent summits, which are aimed at increasing combat readiness and beefing up NATO troops in Europe for the first time in many years. The report authors assume that the trend of mutual deterrence is a negative, albeit inevitable element of the Russia-NATO relations in the long term.
Based on this, the report examines five scenarios of future relations between Moscow and the West. The scenarios of conflict and unstable deterrence are seen the least desirable, still probable. The scenarios of cooperation and diminishing deterrence are seen as the most desirable, but the least probable. Finally, stable deterrence is defined as a way to minimize damage, mitigate risks and increase predictability. Under the current political conditions, this scenario is realistic and feasible, even though it does not help solve the key problems of the Russia-West relations.
The report is the result of a situational analysis and a series of expert materials, prepared by leading Russian researchers.
The presentation will be attended by:
Prokhor Tebin, RIAC expert
Pavel Zolotaryov, Deputy director of the Institute for U.S. and Canada Studies at the Russian Academy of Sciences
Richard Weitz, Senior Fellow and Director of the Center for Military and Political Analysis at the Hudson Institute (via Skype).