Borysfen Intel

New Aspects of the United States' Geopolitical Strategy

August 5, 2015
<p>New Aspects of the United States' Geopolitical Strategy</p>

1. Reasons for the transformation of the United States' geopolitical strategy

1. Reasons for the transformation of the United States' geopolitical strategy

2. Priority objects of concentration of the US geopolitical efforts

3. Peculiarities of the comprehensive strategy for US actions in different regions

   3.1.Asia-Pacific and South-East Asia

   3.2. Latin America and the Caribbean

   3.3. Middle East

   3.4. Post-Soviet Territories

 4. Conclusions

The Russian Federation's transition to actually a direct confrontation with the West over Russia's armed aggression against Ukraine, causes intensification and increased firmness and scale of the US foreign policy to contain V. Putin's regime. Today, such a policy of the USA gets a new geopolitical dimension and includes both, political — economic pressure on Russia, and targeted measures for the international isolation of the Kremlin.

The aim of this policy is to prevent creation, expansion and strengthening of anti-Western alliances and blocs, with the participation of the Russian Federation or headed by it (BRICS, SCO and the Eurasian Union, CSTO and so on), as well as breaking Russian plans for a possible “compensation” for Western sanctions through reorientation of the Kremlin's foreign economic relations to other countries.

In fact, these USA's measures are only an element of the large-scale strategy of international isolation of Russia in all spheres and directions that can be implemented including within the framework of the plan, such as the known to all Internet users “Anaconda Plan”. That is, according to a number of independent Western and Ukrainian experts, the United States is trying to isolate Russia, which should feel deeply what its shameless and cynical actions towards Ukraine will result in.

Note

“Anaconda Plan” — the long-term strategy of struggle against the Confederation, developed at the beginning of the American Civil War and providing for a  blockade of southern ports and the establishment of control over the Mississippi River. Like an anaconda, strangling its  prey, the numerous army and navy had  to stop the connection between the eastern and western parts of the Confederation, to capture the Mississippi, and to stifle the trading activity of the rebel states, dependent on the supply of industrial goods by sea.

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At the same time the United States as the leading center of power in the world is trying to maintain and strengthen its influence in important for it regions and countries that are subject to the Russian Federation's harassment.. First of all, it concerns the Central-Eastern and South-Eastern Europe, Asia- Pacific Region and South-East Asia, Middle East, Latin America and the Caribbean region, as well as the post-Soviet territories.

To achieve its goals, the USA uses new aspects of geopolitical strategy, which in today's environment virtually transform it into a comprehensive strategy of actions — from developing its own relations with Russian partners and providing them with all sorts of preferences, to the direct or indirect coercion of the leadership of individual countries and their businesses to refusal to cooperate with the Russian Federation. At this, the USA uses the whole available in the US arsenal of external influence, including Washington's international authority, trade and economic potential, investment and financial -credit resources, as well as military capabilities and mechanisms of sanctions.

 

2. Priority objects of concentration of the US geopolitical efforts

As part of the above-mentioned comprehensive strategy of actions, priority target objects of targeted efforts of the United States are the countries that are of decisive importance for the Russian Federation, and for the interests of the United States, namely:

 

in the Central-Eastern and South-Eastern Europe:

Poland whichis one of the main conductors of the USA's policy in Europe, most actively supports European and Euro-Atlantic prospects of Ukraine and at the same time is a land corridor to the Russian Kaliningrad enclave;

Romania is one of the main USA's military and political allies in the Black Sea region, actively supports European and Euro-Atlantic prospects of Moldova and Ukraine, and is standing in the way of the Kremlin's political and economic expansionist plans and projects in South-Eastern Europe (on Balkans included);

 

in the Asia-Pacific Region and Southeast Asia:

China — on the one hand, is the second center of power in the world and a potential rival to the United States, and on the other — Moscow considers it its main ally in confronting the Western world;

Indiais becoming a new regional center of power and traditionally maintains friendly relations with Russia;

Vietnam — which is considered by Moscow its historic sphere of influence in the Asia-Pacific region since the days of the former Soviet Union;

 

in Latin America and the Caribbean:

Cuba — as the former Soviet Union's main alley in the region, used by Moscow to bring Russia's presence (including military) closer to the United States;

Venezuela — as one of the biggest oil producers in the world, half of which is exported to the United States, as well as a country with political contradictions with the USA, and at the same time serving as a conductor for Russian interests in the region;

Brazil — as the leading country in the region that Russia is seeking to include in its sphere of influence, to counterbalance the USA's regional interests;

 

in the Middle East:

Iran — as Russia's country-partner in the region, as well as a country with an anti-American position and the ambitious plans relating to obtaining nuclear weapons and long-range missile systems;

Syria — as the Russian Federation's tool to counteract the USA's policy in the Middle East;

Egypt — as strategic partner of the United States and Russia in the Middle East in the political, economic and military-technical aspects, as well as in counteracting the spread of radical Islamism;

 

on former Soviet territories:

Belarus, Kazakhstan and Armenia — as Russia's main allies in Russia's integration associations on the territories of the former USSR;

Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Azerbaijan — as the countries which actively participate in Russia's Eurasian integration structures;

Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova — as a post-Soviet countries with a democratic and pro-European course.

 

In the context of the above-mentioned approach, the United States give priority to Russia's key partners and international organizations under its control, that are vitally important for it. First of all, it concerns China, Iran and Cuba, as well as the Eurasian Economic Union, which are considered by the Kremlin the basic foundation in realization of its strategic and regional interests.

In this regard, lately the most telling have been fundamental changes of the USA's policy towards these countries, namely: the transition to the strategic partnership with China; signing of the “International Six”'s agreement with Iran over its nuclear program, as well as the resumption of the USA's diplomatic relations with Cuba. Besides, the USA's consistent and purposeful policy of sanctions against Russia has actually destroyed the economic and trade cooperation in the format of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU).

To a large extent this has had a serious impact on Russia's international political and economic relations, as evidenced by the following:

Firstly, despite the support of Russia's position in the UN Security Council on specific issues, China supports the territorial integrity of Ukraine and flatly refuses to create with Russia any “anti-Western associations or blocs” both, on bilateral principles and within international and regional organizations. Moreover, China has actually supported Western sanctions against Russia in terms of Chinese banks' refusing to give loans to Russian companies, as well as the suspension for an indefinite term of the agreement on the construction of the gas pipeline “Altai” (or “Power of Siberia — 2”);

Secondly, the visible removal of tension around Iran has dealt a strategic blow to interests of Russia, which is threatened by the prospect of tangible financial losses as a result of further drop in world energy prices, increased competition in the European oil and gas market, depriving the Russian Federation the possibility of using for its own purposes contradictions between Iran and the West, as well as the loss of control over the transit of gas from the Caspian and Central Asian regions. Besides, due to the lifting of sanctions against Iran, Russia's western opponents have created a real opportunity for imposing on it an oil and gas embargo;

Thirdly, the resumption of diplomatic relations between Washington and Havana deprives Russia of the opportunity to use Cuba to strengthen its positions and increase its military presence in the Caribbean, as well as to conduct anti-American policy in this strategically important for the USA region;

Fourthly, undermining of the trade and economic component of the Eurasian Economic Union makes this organization weaker and definitely complicates Russia's ability to build on its base the Eurasian Union. At the same time, positions of the Collective Security Treaty Organization — CSTO (which includes the majority of the EAEU members) are getting weaker too.

That is, all the above-mentioned has negative effect on Russia's plans and significantly reduces its ability to “compensate” for the international political and economic sanctions, contributes to further weakening of the political position of the Kremlin, and gives a devastating blow to the trade and economic (mainly energy) interests of the Russian Federation. Taking into consideration all this, the United States continue coordinating and increasing measures for international isolation of V. Putin's regime, which directly dependent on features of the regions and countries — subjects to the Russia's power bids.

Taking into consideration all the above-said, let's look at the main peculiarities of the implementation of a comprehensive strategy for the US actions in certain regions.

 

3. Peculiarities of the comprehensive strategy for US actions in different regions

3.1. Asia-Pacific and South-East Asia

Given the geopolitical importance of China, the main US efforts to strengthen Russia's international isolation are aimed at forging partnerships with China and prevention of Beijing's taking a common with Russia anti-American position.

Thus, in recent years the United States have significantly activated cooperation with China in terms of formation of a new model of the bipolar world order on the principle: “superpower” — “new superpower”. At the same time the relations between the two countries are based on non-confrontation of the parties on strategically important issues in favor of seeking compromises and implementation of joint projects.

Today, the main platform for dialogue between the United States and China are the meetings and negotiations of their representatives on the highest state and other levels. In particular, extremely important was the meeting between President B. Obama and the PRC's President Xi Jinping in June 2013 in California, during which the parties agreed to establish a new type of relations between the two great states. These intentions were confirmed and fleshed out during the next meeting of the leaders of the USA and PRC in September 2013 within the framework of the G20 summit in St. Petersburg.

Further steps towards the establishment of a strategic partnership between the two world powers became the high-level negotiations in March 2014 at the Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague, as well as in November last year at the APEC summit in Beijing. For September 2015 is planned the next meeting between Barack Obama and Xi Jinping within the framework of the Chinese President's official visit to the United States and the UN General Assembly dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations Organization.

At the same time the practice continues of holding annual meetings of the US-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue (launched in 2008) and high-level consultations on interpersonal exchanges (organized in 2009). The next negotiations in these formats were held in June this year. The sides pointed out the stable development of bilateral relations between the USA and PRC and their mutual interest in developing a new model of relations between the two countries. They also stated the significant progress in trade and economic, investment and cultural spheres.

Besides, since the beginning of 2015 the cooperation between the USA and China in the military sphere has become active. This is evidenced by the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Limited Conflicts M. Vickers' meeting with the Deputy Chairman of the Central Military Commission of the PRC — Defence Minister Phan Chanlung in January this year in Beijing, as well as meetings of representatives of the Defense Ministries of both countries within the framework of negotiations on the Defense Policy in February this year in Washington.

The parties reached an agreement on expansion of ties between the armed forces of the United States and China, and agreed on a program of joint activities and mechanisms for conflict prevention. The American side expressed respect for China's key interests and the issues that concern China. They also confirmed the plans for joint trainings, in particular, for naval trainings “RIMPAC-2015”.

According to leading Western political scientists, all this contributes to addressing problems and contradictions between the USA and PRC, which relate to Taiwan and Tibet, Washington's interfering into China's territorial disputes with neighboring countries in the South China and East China Seas, and mutual accusations of cyber espionage. Given this, there is the possibility of Washington's refusal to consider China as a potential enemy of the USA, as defined in the new Military Doctrine of the United States (promulgated on July 1, 2015).

The development of the strategic partnership between the USA and PRC has a direct impact on the relations between China and Russia, which are becoming more ephemeral. Thus, despite Moscow's unprecedented efforts to obtain Beijing's support in solving Russia's economic and political problems, China continues to be guided solely by its own national interests and “is not hurrying to help” the Russian Federation.

The Kremlin's hopes to increase the volume of trade with China as counteracting the USA and EU's policy of sanctions have not come true either. Against the backdrop of the dynamic development of China's trade and economic cooperation with the USA and the European Union (as China's main trade partners in this area), lately we can see a rapid fall in trade between China and Russia (since the beginning of this year it has decreased by 40%).

Moreover, China is using the situation to carry out large-scale economic and demographic expansion in the East of the Russian Federation. At this, Moscow has to indulge such Beijing's actions, passing over to it Russia's resources and territories (in the form of rent), as well as agreeing to the Chinese citizens' uncontrolled migration into Russia. (For more detail, see the "Borysfen Intel"'s publication: “Russia-China: “The Crimea Is OURS", Siberia and the Far East — Are YOURS”).

China has a low profile in its relations with Russia in the political sphere. Thus, demonstrating a common position with Moscow in the UN Security Council on a number of important for the Kremlin issues (in particular with regard to Syria and Iran), Beijing supports the territorial integrity of Ukraine and speaks against any Kremlin's plans to transform the BRICS and the SCO into anti-Western organizations.

In fact, all this is a result of the new US policy toward China, which has already led to the fact that China is more interested in its Western partners and does not want to spoil its relations with the USA and the EU in favor of Moscow's interests.

 

Taking into consideration India's growing role in the region of Southeast Asia, and particularities of its relations with Russia, as part of its geopolitical plans, Washington is focusing on establishing a global strategic partnership (strategic dialogue) with Delhi.

The rapprochement of the USA and India began in 2008 as part of the consent of the American side to provide assistance in the development of India's nuclear power industry (after the termination of such cooperation as a result of creation and testing of nuclear weapons by India). However, real cooperation between the two countries got very much activated only in 2010 — after US President Barack Obama's official visit to India. At this, the USA-Indian relations have been positioned as a “crucial partnership of the 21st century”.

As part of further development of relations between the USA and India, the format of such a partnership has been supplemented by a number of new components, including the expansion of trade-economic and military-technical cooperation between the parties. Besides, the United States have supported India's desire to get a new international status of the Indian state through Delhi's becoming a permanent member of the UN Security Council.

Since the beginning of the armed aggression against Ukraine, the United States have given new impetus to the process of rapprochement with India, which is regarded worldwide as a Washington's purposeful policy to increase V. Putin's regime's international isolation. The proof of this was B. Obama's second visit to India in January 2015. The parties consolidated the already achieved results of cooperation between the two countries, and reached new agreements.

In particular, they signed a new bilateral agreement in military-technical sphere, simplifying the transfer of the US military technologies to India, as well as allowing the joint production of armaments and military equipment (including jet engines, supporting systems for aircraft carriers, military transport aircrafts, and UAVs). Besides, a decision was made on the United States' constructing a nuclear power plant in India.

These achievements have allowed Washington in some ways to overtake Moscow in cooperation with New Delhi and to start a stable and consistent process of gradual ousting Russia from the economic, political and security spheres of its interaction with Delhi. Thus, in recent years the volume of the USA's bilateral trade with India has reached 100 billion US dollars (is planned to increase to 500 billion US dollars), while that between Russia and India makes only 15 billion US dollars. Besides, the USA is already ahead of Russia in the Indian arms market.

 

The United States do not ignore Russia's other potential partners in the Asia-Pacific and South-East Asia, in particular Vietnam, which Moscow also has considered its historic sphere of influence in the Asia-Pacific region since the days of the former Soviet Union. In this regard, in pursuit of its goals in the Vietnamese direction, Washington is trying to overcome the negative consequences of the USA's war in Vietnam in 1960s-1970s, by assisting in the economic development of the country and strengthening its security.

Thus, the United States' being interested in strengthening cooperation with Vietnam was demonstrated by the US Secretary of State John Kerry during his visit to Hanoi in December 2013. The result of the talks was the two countries' coming out onto a new level of relations in the format of the USA-Vietnam dialogue on political, security and defense issues.

In particular, at the end of the next meeting in this format in January 2015, it was agreed to strengthen the actions of the USA in promoting Vietnam's accession to the Agreement on the Trans-Pacific Partnership by the end of 2015. During the negotiations of the Vietnamese leader Nguyen Phu Trong with US President Barack Obama in July this year, were confirmed intentions to maximize the promotion of common interests in political, economic (including investment), security and humanitarian spheres.

At the same time, the United States is firmly against the possibility of Russia's using Vietnam's military infrastructure. Thus, in early 2015 the United States put forward a formal protest to Vietnam due to the fact that the latter had granted permission to Russia which allows Russian warplanes to use the Vietnamese airbase “Kamran”. At this, Washington connected Hanoi's position in this issue with the prospects of further development of relations between the USA and Vietnam.

 

3.2. Latin America and the Caribbean

The USA's main attention in Latin America is paid to the resumption of positive dynamics of development of relations with Brazil, which got cooled in the early 2010s due to the reorientation of the latter's priority to cooperation with the countries of Mercosur (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela). Besides, the relations between Washington and Brazil were spoiled by the political scandal in 2013, associated with the fact of exposing of the fact of the US intelligence agencies' listening to telephone conversations of representatives of the Brazilian government (the then President of Brazil canceled her planned visit to the United States).

This was used by Russia to strengthen its influence on Brazil (both at the bilateral level and within the framework of the BRICS), which caused opposition from the United States. Thus, at the end of 2014 — the beginning of 2015, the United States resorted to a series of measures to establish links with Brazil, including by giving preference to the Brazilian business and the expansion of trade between the two countries.

In its turn, the leadership of Brazil also expressed its being interested in renewing and deepening the partnership with the United States, resulting in aggravated problems in the Mercosur and in actual failing of the Russian-Brazilian cooperation in trade and economic sphere. Thus, due to the worsening of the financial and economic situation in Russia because of the international sanctions, during the first quarter of 2015 Brazilian exports to Russia fell by more than 25%. At this, indicative remain the volumes of annual trade turnover between Brazil and Russia — about 6.8 billion US dollars, and between Brazil and the United States — about 74 billion US dollars.

Taking this into consideration, since the beginning of 2015, bilateral contacts between the United States and Brazil have been growing actively. In particular, in this respect, the most important was the forum of top managers of leading companies of the USA and Brazil, as well as the meetings of Defense Ministers. Especially important was the meeting of the President of Brazil Dilma Ruseff with the President of the USA B. Obama at the end of June this year, which was held under the motto of restarting bilateral relations. Following the talks, they signed documents on cooperation between the two countries in trade, economic, investment, infrastructure, military-technical, scientific, space and other spheres. According to general estimates, this will help the resumption of confidence between the United States and Brazil, which is extremely important for both sides.

Against this background, we can see further cooling of Brazil's attitude to Russia and its integration initiatives. In particular, Brazil has refrained from ratifying the initiated by Russia Agreement on creation of the New Development Bank and the Treaty on establishing a pool of conventional foreign exchange reserves of member countries of the BRICS.

 

At the same time, to strengthen its influence in the Caribbean and to prevent strengthening of Russia's positions in the region, the United States has changed its attitude towards Cuba in terms of establishing constructive cooperation between the two countries after more than 50-year hiatus due to the Cuban missile crisis. Thus, in early 2015, the US President B. Obama declared Washington's new policy towards Havana and called on the US Congress to consider the abolition of the trade embargo against Cuba and its exclusion from the list of states- sponsors of terrorism.

As part of the practical implementation of the above-mentioned course, in January this year, Havana was visited by the delegation of the US Congress and the American Trade Mission to discuss with Cuba's leadership possible resumption of US-Cuban relations. The USA's proposal was widely supported by the Cuban side, which is interested in receiving foreign investments to carry out reforms in the country and in resumption of access to the US market.

The positive outcome of the talks paved the way for the start of the US-Cuban dialogue at the level of representatives of the leadership of foreign ministries. Thus, after the meeting of the Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs R. Jacobson and Director of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Cuba J. Vidal (the first meeting at such a high level over the last 35 years) an agreement was reached on the resumption of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

The decision on this issue was confirmed during the informal talks between the US President B. Obama and the President of the State Council and the Council of Ministers of Cuba Raul Castro during the VII Summit of the Americas April 10-11 of this year in Panama. Speaking at the summit, Raul Castro expressed his gratitude to B. Obama and took off responsibility from him for the USA's previous policy toward Cuba.

The result of these efforts was the beginning of the resumption of bilateral relations between the USA and Cuba, in particular, opening of diplomatic missions in July 2015.

Russia does not reduce its attention to Cuba either. Thus, in mid-2014, in order to maintain allied relations with Cuba and to bring Russia's presence (included military) closer to the United States, Russia wrote off 90% of Cuba's debt (about 32 billion US dollars). But keep in mind that it was just a “goodwill gesture” on the part of Russia, as this debt Russia(and before it- the USSR) could not (and won't be able to!) get under any circumstances. That is, the writing-off of the bad debt was a great symbolic gesture and, at the same time, Russia's significant contribution (including at the expense of other post-Soviet countries!) into further development of relations between Russia and Cuba.

 

Quite different is the USA's policy towards Venezuela, which is defined by Washington as a country constituting a threat to the interests of the United States. Given this, the USA continues to put pressure on Venezuela in the most sensitive for it issues, including the introduction of sanctions against representatives of the state leadership of the country, as well as the increasing competition to Venezuelan oil exports (the main source of profits for Venezuela).

Thus, at the summit of the Caribbean countries in March 2015, US President B. Obama put forward a number of proposals within the framework of the American Initiative for the Caribbean Energy Security, which is implemented as opposed to the Venezuelan program “Petrocaribe”, providing for the supply of Venezuelan oil to Caribbean countries at low prices.

In particular, B. Obama announced the launch of a new program of assistance to countries in the region in the transition to clean and affordable energy by creating a Fund to mobilize private investments into clean energy projects. The US First payment to the Fund is 20 million US dollars.

At the same time the United States do not give up a dialogue with Venezuela. This is evidenced by B. Obama's having agreed to a meeting with Venezuelan President N. Maduro during the summit of Caribbean countries.

Besides, Washington is using in its favor Venezuela's substantial dependence on the US market. Thus, despite the difficult relations between the two countries, the US remains Venezuela's main trading partner (40% of the total Venezuelan exports and 26% — of its imports, which is much higher than this figure in Venezuela's trade with Russia).

At the same time, the most severe economic crisis is forcing Venezuela to seek ways to normalize relations with the USA. Against the backdrop of the resumption of diplomatic relations between the USA and Cuba, President N. Maduro is looking for all possibilities for dialogue with Washington, which is confirmed by the Chairman of the International Affairs Committee of the US Senate, Robert Corker's visit to Caracas.

 

3.3. Middle East

The USA's policy to undermine Russia's international positions is most pronounced in the Middle East, where the prerequisites have been created for the actual solution of Iran's nuclear issue. Under the pressure from the United States and other Western countries, and with Russia's tacit consent, Tehran made essential concessions on issues of the uranium enrichment to weapons-grade level and the transfer of its nuclear facilities under the IAEA's control in exchange for lifting of international sanctions.

As a result, on the basis of rather complex and long-term negotiations between Iran and the “International Six” (Great Britain, China, Russia, USA, France, Germany), July 14, 2015 in Vienna (Austria) a Joint Comprehensive Action Plan (JCAP) was signed for final resolving of the situation around the Iranian nuclear program.

The document provides for Iran's significant reducing the number of working centrifuges used to enrich uranium, and carrying out the works on enrichment only for research purposes and to no higher than 3.67% (does not make possible creation of nuclear weapons). Monitoring Tehran's implementation of the provisions of the JCAP rests with the IAEA. At the same time international inspectors will have access to all Iranian nuclear facilities.

July 20 this year, the UN Security Council unanimously adopted a Resolution in support of the JCAP which confirms the above-mentioned limitations in the development of Iran's nuclear program over the next 10 years and defines a mechanism for lifting of sanctions from Iran. In particular, it provides for the removal of the embargo on the export of Iranian oil and unblocking of Iranian assets worth about 100 billion US dollars.

The above-mentioned decisions are important in terms of strengthening strategic stability in the world as a result of reducing the threat of uncontrolled nuclear proliferation. At the same time there appear opportunities for long-term solution of the conflict between Iran and the EU, which make possible the resumption of cooperation between the parties, as well as the Iranian energy carriers coming out onto European and world markets.

All this will inevitably lead to a further decline in world prices for oil and gas, and will also help Europe's access to the Caspian and Central Asian energy resources bypassing Russia. In particular, already now is being considered the question of Iran's joining the “South Energy Transport Corridor”.

At this, Russia's achievements in expanding trade and military-technical cooperation with Iran in no way will be able to compensate for its losses. With this in mind, completely groundless are allegations of certain Russian experts regarding secret agreements between Russia and the USA to “exchange” Iran for Ukraine.

 

Extremely important for the USA's policy for strengthening its positions and undermining Russia's positions in the Middle East, will be the Strategic Dialogue Egypt — the USA, which was held in the Egyptian capital on August 2 this year (by the way, for the first time since 2009). The US delegation at the talks with Egyptian politicians and diplomats was headed by the Secretary of State, John Kerry, from the Egyptian side his partner in the talks was the Foreign Minister of Egypt Sameh Shoukry.

The main topics of the resumed meetings were the most pressing issues on the regional agenda: combating the IS, the crisis in Libya, Iraq, Yemen, Syria, and the struggle of the Egyptian army against the terrorists in the Northern Sinai. J. Kerry announced the provision of comprehensive support to Egypt in its struggle against terrorism in the North of Sinai. They also discussed the resumption of discontinued in 2011 Egyptian-American military trainings “Bright Star.”

In fact, this dialogue was an attempt to restore trust between the two countries and a trial balloon in the resumption of relations between the two countries to the level of strategic and allied partnership, that is, to the relations as they had been between Cairo and Washington before the revolution of “January 25,” which overthrew Hosni Mubarak.

At this, deserves attention the fact that the meeting took place a day after the United States had supplied Egypt with eight F-16s as part of the renewal of military and military-technical assistance to this Middle Eastern country.

Russia is very attentively and meticulously watching the resumption of Egypt's strategic relations with the USA, preserving hopes to strengthen its positions in this important (for the implementation of issues of regional security and the resumption of large-scale business) country in the Middle East.

 

3.4. Post-Soviet Territories

The main instrument of the USA's actions to weaken Russian integration structures on post-Soviet territories, primarily the Eurasian Economic Union and the Collective Security Treaty Organization, is the use of political and economic sanctions against Russia, which also weaken its allies.

At the same time the USA works individually with each of the post-Soviet countries, using different forms of influence on their leaderships — from providing assistance in the issues important to them — to putting direct or indirect pressure.

 

In particular, since the late summer of 2014, against the backdrop of worsening of Russian-American relations, the United States have begun the process of improving relations with Belarus — as Russia's main ally in the former Soviet space. Evidence of this was the held in New York on September 22, 2014, the first American-Belarusian Investment Forum with the participation of Prime Minister of Belarus Mikhail Myasnikovich. During the event, the parties expressed their mutual interest in the development of trade and economic cooperation between the two countries.

As part of the continuing US-Belarus dialogue on trade and economic sphere, in May of this year, a governmental delegation of Belarus headed by the Minister of Agriculture and Food of the country L. Zayets, visited the USA. Following the talks with the leadership of the Ministry of Agriculture and Trade of the United States and American businessmen, a preliminary agreement was reached on a number of joint trade and investment projects.

However, the USA maintains sanctions against the certain list of Belarusian government officials involved in human rights violations in Belarus. In June this year the sanctions were continued for another year.

 

Similar is the USA's policy towards Armenia. Thus, Washington has shown willingness to develop cooperation with Armenia, as evidenced by the visit of Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan to the United States in May 2015 at the time of the USA and Russia's actual transition to a new “cold war”. At this, quite demonstrative was the meeting of the Armenian leader with US Senator J. McCain, who takes the most open and firm anti-Russian position. At the same time, the United States warned Armenia about a possible revision of the US-Armenian relations and termination of financial assistance to Yerevan if it supports Russia's actions against Ukraine.

 

 

The United States is paying great attention to Azerbaijan, which plays an important role in providing alternative oil and gas supplies to Europe. Thus, the US is actively involved in the implementation of joint energy projects in the territory of Azerbaijan, in particular, in the production and transportation of oil through the Baku — Tbilisi — Ceyhan oil pipeline.

The USA's efforts in the direction of Azerbaijan received a boost this summer after activation of Russia's actions to involve Azerbaijan in the Eurasian Economic Union, which will lead to a rapprochement between Baku and Moscow. In July this year, the US State Department's delegation headed by the Special Representative — the coordinator for international energy matters A. Hokstan visited Azerbaijan. During the meeting with Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliev, the US official expressed Washington's willingness to bring the bilateral cooperation to a qualitatively new level, both in the energy and military-technical spheres. These intentions of the US side were confirmed by the Assistant Secretary of State R. Hoagland.

 

As for the USA's measures to strengthen its influence in the Central Asian Region, they are based, mostly, on the granting of credit and financial aid, cooperation in the investment sphere, as well as assistance in ensuring their safety in the face of rising threats from Islamic extremism from Afghanistan (including through the supply of arms and equipment for the protection of borders and participation in training military experts).

 

Conclusions

So, the Russian Federation's transition to actually direct confrontation with the West because of its military aggression against Ukraine causes intensification and increased hardness and scale of the USA's foreign policy to constrain V. Putin's regime. Today, such a policy of the United States takes on a new geopolitical dimension and includes both political and economic pressure on Russia, and taking targeted measures for its international isolation.

To achieve its goals, the USA uses new aspects of its geopolitical strategy, which in today's environment virtually transforms it into a comprehensive strategy of actions — from the development of its relations with Russia's partners and providing them with all sorts of preferences to the direct or indirect coercion of the leadership of individual countries and their businesses to refuse to cooperate with Russia.

The USA pays special attention to Russia's key partners and controlled by it international organizations having vital importance for Moscow, which has a negative effect on Russia's plans and significantly reduces Russia's chances to “compensate” for international political and economic sanctions, and contributes to further weakening of the Kremlin's political positions, and inflicts a crushing impact on Russia's economic and trade (including energy) interests.

Today, the United States continues to coordinate and sequentially build up the targeting of measures and effectiveness of practical actions for the international isolation of V. Putin's regime, which depend on peculiarities of the regions and countries — subjects to the Russia's power bids.

 

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