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Category: Intermarium

Shifts of FDI – a lesson for Ukraine?

The role of foreign direct investment, or FDI, as an accelerator of economic growth of the receiving, i.e. the host, country is difficult to dispute (although, as there are always exceptions to every rule). These benefits include the increase in the level of investment, higher wages, transfer of technology, transfer of know-how, etc. Therefore, it is in the best interest of a country to attract such investments. This is especially true for developing economies. One of the reasons is because it is much more efficient to buy or receive new technologies than to develop them on your own.

In order to attract FDI, the economy has to first satisfy several conditions. These conditions depend on the reason for an investor to be interested in the host economy. Generally, in the literature on FDI, there are four main reasons: searching for new markets, searching for resources, searching for strategic assets and searching for efficiency. The last one involves such aspects as low-cost labour.

July 6, 2017 - Tomasz M. Napiórkowski

For Russia, the war has never ended

Every year on May 9th, nostalgic people from the post-Soviet republics can feel like Soviet citizens again. The slogans and posters from the Second World War inspire them just like “make America great again” has inspired Donald Trump’s voters.

In 2014 rhetoric from the Second World War was successfully used to portray the Ukrainian-Russian conflict. Ukrainian soldiers who were trying to defend their own bases in Crimea were called “fascists”. Today, Donbas separatists associate themselves with the Red Army soldiers who were fighting against Nazi Germany. During the so called Immortal Regiment March in Donetsk, people were carrying portraits of killed separatists as well as the portraits of real participants of the Second World War. This concept is a powerful message, it helps to gather Russian people around the state and its “strong leader”, and even go to war against “fascist regimes” in neighbouring countries. The Second World War’s history can be a good example for the construction of a new reality. Facts as well as borders become flexible in times of hybrid war in the Intermarium region.

July 6, 2017 - Nataliia Steblyna

Intermarium vs the Three Seas Initiative

The Intermarium strategy was developed in Poland as a political doctrine at the turn of the 20th century. It was an attempt to answer the general question on how to rebuild a sovereign Polish state and how to secure its future. The concept was innovative even if the purpose was not. The Poles alone, and Poland as a sole actor, wouldn’t be able to achieve such a goal. Poland’s enemies, especially Russia, were considered the main obstacle to independence and excessively powerful. The authors of the Intermarium strategy, Józef Piłsudski and his closest associates of the Polish Socialist Party, discovered the potential of nationalistic aspirations of other nations living within the Russian state. The idea was simple: to initiate a national revolt in a suitable moment and split Russia along national divisions. In such a way both major Polish goals would be fulfilled: independence and a secure future. Russia, if pushed from Europe and stripped of its conquest, would be annihilated as an empire and no longer pose a threat to the newly established states.

July 6, 2017 - Daria Nałęcz

Intermarium – A view from Germany

The concept of Intermarium was developed and promoted by former Polish President Józef Piłsudski between the First and Second World Wars. The main reason behind it was to keep out Russian imperialism through the co-operation of several Central and Eastern European states and was also important in opposing German influence. In contemporary times, several Eastern European politicians have been bringing up the idea of an Intermarium anew. What does this mean for Germany? Would it bring more security for Ukraine or other countries in the so-called “grey zone” between Europe and Russia?

July 6, 2017 - Jan Menzer

Relations between Visegrad and the UK in a post-Brexit Europe

In the wake of the Brexit vote, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán called for a reconfiguration of EU governance that prioritises the role of member states over institutions, arguing that democracy can “only be reinforced through the member states”. Orbán’s appeal comes at a time when eastern and central European states are testing their capacity to play a more decisive role in Europe through a number of new and reinvigorated alliances such as the Three Seas Initiative, based on the concept of Intermarium, and the Visegrad Group (V4) that brings together the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia in an effort to maximise their influence within the EU and the wider region by adopting joint positions on key policy issues.

July 6, 2017 - Simon Massey

Sovietisation and post-Soviet development in the Intermarium

Careful observation of Central and Eastern European history points to the fact that the two decades between the end of the First World War and the Munich Conference were critical for nation-state formation in that region due to the collapse of the two imperial hegemons – the Austro-Hungarian Empire and Tsarist Russia. In 1938 Germany and the Soviet Union, however, began to polarise the region once again. The state formation experience was, nevertheless, extremely valuable. This became apparent during the second 20-year (1989-2009) period of great “thawing,” after the USRR weakened and ultimately collapsed.

July 6, 2017 - Michał Kuź

Why great national ideas end up on the backstage of regional politics

In the post-Versailles era, Polish leader Józef Piłsudski proposed to the authorities of Ukraine, Lithuania and Belarus to forge an Intermarium union for the survival of their states. Piłsudski risked and pushed forward an intellectual speculation on how to strengthen subjectivity and sovereignty of the “young” states in games between major powers. From the perspective of time, this speculation can hardly be defined as a real-life success.

July 6, 2017 - Ostap Kushnir

Trimarium is not Intermarium

With US President Donald Trump’s visit in Poland, the brand of the Three Seas Initiative gained international reputation. In Poland where the roots of the initiative began, the Three Seas or – as one can Latinise it, Trimarium – initiative is often confused with the historical project of Intermarium, intuitively understood by many. Not only journalists but also politicians and even public officials contribute to the confusion. Well, they are wrong.

July 6, 2017 - Dariusz Góra-Szopiński

How to embed Ukraine? The idea of an Intermarium coalition in East-Central Europe

Neither the European Union nor NATO will any time soon be able to fill the security vacuum they have left with their hesitant policies in the grey zones of Eastern Europe and the Southern Caucasus. Both organisations have, in the past, amply demonstrated their inadequacy as strategically thinking and geopolitically resolute actors. Against this background, some post-Soviet politicians, diplomats and intellectuals are starting to discuss alternative options to, at least partially, increase their countries’ security. The most prominent among these concepts is the creation of a so-called “Intermarium coalition”.

July 6, 2017 - Kostiantyn Fedorenko and Andreas Umland

Warsaw debates Intermarium

It was appropriate enough that Warsaw should host a conference on the theme of Intermarium, the idea being primarily of Polish origin and promoted heavily by Polish interwar leader Józef Piłsudski, who believed that rebuilding Polish independence was not the sole action of one country and that is was in the interests of a chain of independent states to pool their aspirations. His fears for the nations standing alone, sandwiched between Germany and Russia were, as it turned out, entirely justified – in the area which became Timothy Snyder’s Bloodlands. If Intermarium for the 20th century was a Poland-centred concept, Intermarium for the 21st century would be a Ukraine-focused enterprise. For Ukraine now, as for Poland then, this is a question of the country’s survival as a state. As keynote speaker Andreas Umland of the Institute for Euro-Atlantic Co-operation in Kyiv elaborated, Ukraine is also uniquely significant in the Baltic-Black Sea region as events there have an effect beyond the non-EU/NATO, the so-called “grey zone”. The difficulty at present of evaluating the concept is that the Intermarium, at this stage, is no more than an idea.

July 6, 2017 - Jonathan Hibberd

Intermarium in the 21st century

On July 6-7 2017, Lazarski Unviersity in Warsaw organised and hosted a conference titled: “Intermarium in the 21st Century: Visions, Architectures and Feasibilities”. This international gathering brought together Central and Eastern European scholars to examine the diversity of interpretations of the Intermarium concept and assess chances for its various configurations to come into being. The conference focused on the nature of Intermarium as well as debated the feasibility of its geographic, political, economic, cultural and security dimensions.

July 5, 2017 - New Eastern Europe

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