European security system: scenarios of development and institutional responses

Fecha de publicación:
Pavel Podlesny

Nowadays we see three main variants of transformation of the European security system

1. The process of its evolution, on the one hand, would be relatively slow, but, on the other, the situation in the East evidently would worsen very quickly. Events in Yugoslavia demonstrated that insufficient activity and ineffectiveness of international institutions at the beginning of the crisis ruin any possibility to control the situation. Drift of Russia towards Yugoslavian scenario (sharpening of ethnic and territorial problems in Southern Russia and Tatar Region, escalation of conflicts in the region of the CIS, involvement of Russia in these conflicts) could be pulled up only on its initial stages. If the international community fails to establish working mechanisms for coping with the CIS problems, it would mean the collapse of the whole system of international crisis management, which turned out to be incapable to control the European situation. Serious danger of growing inadequacy of European security structures is being connected not only with possible worsening of the situation in the East of Europe, but also with certain increase of instability in the West. Failures of European institutions in crisis management or trend towards self-isolation from Eastern conflicts on behalf of NATO and EC/WEU will force some Western countries (especially Germany and France) to look for their own instruments of crisis management and promotion of national interests. But this will mean a slackening of Western security institutions, and, after all, will stimulate the process of re-nationalisation of security policy. That’s why Russia is deeply interested in maintaining and stregthening western institutions as stabilyzing elements in the European security system, even though Russia itself in short-term perspective will hardly have any chance to enter those institutions.