Main power-based actions in certain geographical area. On the

Main Part

 

EU and Geopolitics

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So geopolitics is anything that has to do with
institution-driven actions or power-based actions in certain geographical area.
On the other hand the narrower term geostrategy means that certain actors such
as states or international organisation like NATO and EU have specific
interests in specific areas with specific planning. That said we can refer to
these cases as a country or an organisation having specific interests in a
certain geographical area like for example Eastern Europe, meaning that
geostrategic interests can form a certain foreign policy towards a geographical
area or foreign policy of a country/organisation can use geostrategy as tool of
practicing foreign policy. Also having more allies can serve as a diplomatic
tool.

Regarding hybrid warfare, in this case there is no
common accepted definition, as with terrorism, yet it is safe to state that it
has to do with more unconventional practices that can threaten a country in
many levels. Hybrid warfare practices can include sending viruses to certain
services or cyber attacks, all the more reason to deepen the cooperation
between the armies and of course the intelligence services.

As also mentioned above regional/international
cooperation between different actors can be useful when the security dimension
is concerned yet there is always more to that in the International Relations.
That said diplomacy plays a significant role in negotiations and in general the
inter-state relations, however as it is evident from the world’s history
diplomacy can not always solve our problems. A nice way of defining the
diplomacy, so it can become evident just how important diplomacy is a tool of
foreign policy is provided by the Oxford Handbook of Diplomacy: “The management
of international relations by negotiation; the method by which these relations
are adjusted and managed by ambassadors and envoys”.  (Cooper Andrew, 2013)1

 

There I would also address to two very important
concepts in International Relations and the theory of war and of course
possibly in other disciplines as terms can apply to different occasions, which
are the “use of force” and the “threat of using force”.

 

In other words in this case this important issue, the
threat of using force and in general security concerns is what can drive a
region to develop a significant partnership with another region so it can
ensure that issue that are of vital importance can be solved. Cases like this
can be for example that neighbour countries include Russia, which many analysts
claim it becomes more aggressive as time progresses because it becomes apparent
that Russia can not develop in the same rate as USA and also some may claim
that Russia is trying to restore its former glory as well as its Prestige.
Other threats can include terrorism spread from other regions such as the
Middle-East, as the Syrian Civil War evolved to so much more, for example a
field of display of power on behalf of different actor who try to expand their
sphere of influence. Also the recent Gulf diplomatic crisis is worth mentioning
since it becomes more and more evident that in the globalised world a crisis
can be easily fuelled as it can also spread as long as security issues are
concerned.

Proxy war is a strong analytical tool in the case of
Crimea, as I mentioned above. At the very list proxy war can happen in the
borders of a certain state but can also expand to other states as well with a
“great potential”. The civil wars in Syria and Yemen can also serve as
examples. Elaborating further on this concept proxy war can be classified into
the umbrella term of hybrid warfare and certainly power projection. This is
also the main difference between the concepts and the practices behind the
concepts of soft power and display power. While soft power refers to peaceful
means of a state’s or organization’s foreign policy like diplomacy, culture,
linguistic aspects and religious practices, display of power is much more
aggressive way for an actor to promote its interests.

Another parameter is the levels of design an act and
its goals as time is progressing. Usually analysts and scholars tend to
distinguish between the tactical and the strategical level. Plainly speaking
tactical level can be used as a method of describing a design or an act short-
term to medium term while the strategical level can refer to long term design
of a foreign policy in general or specific design for a certain geographical
area. So the question remains: is annexation of Crimea a tactical or
strategical move on Russia’s behalf? Follow up questions can include “if it is
a tactical move, can the West do something to reverse it?” If so, is the West
willing to take significant action or is it better to leave the current
situation as it is?

Some of these questions can be rhetorical in nature
yet some of them can hide a deeper meaning worth noting on our behalf.
Certainly one of these questions is whether the annexation was a tactical or
strategical move on Russia behalf considering the fact that so far we know that
Putin’s Russia doesn’t do anything randomly and does not leave anything in
chance.

 

1   Cooper Andrew (2013).  The Oxford Handbook of Modern Diplomacy,
Oxford, Oxford University press, p3