Russian Roulette: Ukraine and NATO Membership

By Ciobanu, Ileana | Harvard International Review, Spring 1998 | Go to article overview

Russian Roulette: Ukraine and NATO Membership


Ciobanu, Ileana, Harvard International Review


In the summer of 1997, a Russian official warned that the West was playing a game of "Russian roulette" by considering the expansion of NATO into the Commonwealth of Independent States. He was especially concerned about the possibility that NATO would offer membership to Ukraine. While some observers in the West may consider this reaction irrational, Russian concern over the expansion of the North Atlantic alliance follows naturally from its close geographical proximity to Ukraine.

To understand the Russian anxiety more fully, three important elements must be taken into account: the changing role of NATO, the fledgling post-Cold War Russian-Ukrainian relationship, and the meaning of Ukraine's possible admittance into NATO for Russia.

NATO was originally set up to defend the "free" countries of the West from the communist countries of the East. The fall of communism rendered NATO's prime directive irrelevant. Desiring to maintain NATO as an organization, the United States has led the campaign to redefine the alliance's mission. This new role includes conflict resolution and confidence building within Europe, among other tasks. Part of this strategy includes extension of NATO membership to former communist states.

The redefinition of NATO has occurred as Russia and Ukraine have reevaluated their relations with one another. Three main issues have colored this post-Cold War construct. First, both Russia and Ukraine claim ownership of the strategically situated port at Sevastopol on the Crimean Peninsula in Ukraine, where Russia maintains its Black Sea Fleet. Second, Ukraine owes Russia an enormous energy debt, and it is not clear how this debt will be repaid. Third, and perhaps most crucial to the world at large, is the presence in Ukraine of nuclear missiles placed there by the Soviet Union.

Bilateral relations were initially quite tepid as government officials from both countries failed to bring concessions to the bargaining table. However, temporary agreements made over the summer have now made both countries better off, at least temporarily. Under the new Russo-Ukrainian Partnership Treaty, Russia will forgive almost the entire Ukrainian energy debt in exchange for control of most of Sevastopol's port for the next 20 years. Ukraine is also receiving economic aid from Russia and the United States in return for ceding control of its nuclear missiles to international agencies. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Russian Roulette: Ukraine and NATO Membership
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.