Understanding Ukraine

With intensifying Russian involvement in what started out as a popular democratic protest against the Ukrainian government, the entire world is anxiously watching as the newest crisis in the region unfolds. Below is a compilation of scholarly articles published in International Studies Quarterly that might give readers a better understanding of the current situation.

When will the Ukraine crisis be resolved?

1. Militarized disputes between democracies do not go away easily – the majority of the disputes between democracies in the post-WWII are not resolved. [Mitchell &  Prins, 1999] 

Why did Russia get involved?

2. Global peace is supported by international bargains and by domestic financial bargains. Yet, non-tax revenues might encourage a country to challenge the global peace [McDonald, 2011]

Will the USA, EU, and/or other parties get involved?

3. Great powers’ involvement in regional conflicts depend on the intensity of the conflict and likelihood of successful resolution. [Miller & Kagan, 1997] explain the process through the example of the Balkans in the post-Cold War Era.

4. Economic relations between countries, especially economic interdependence, between countries willing to support Ukraine and Russia are likely to be influential in a country’s decision. [Papayoanou, 1997]

5. Diplomatic relations among the actors help them coordinate their actions and reveal information about their strategies. [Ramsay, 2011] discusses the role of bargaining on the probability of war.

6. The decision to support the Ukraine in this specific case might be influenced by earlier EU/USA-Ukraine relations.  [Zagare & Kilgour, 2003] present a game theory approach to crisis bargaining. [Crescenzi et al, 2012] argue for the role of prior alliance relations.

7. Western leaders might get punished by their electorate if they fail to defend an ally. [Clare, 2013] argues that the public will react only if they care about the issue at stake, therefore, alliances are only important if the other country is deemed as having a great strategic importance.

Will there be further military action? 

8. [Harvey, 1999] closely examines the concept of “deterrence” in international relations and lists relevant variables. 

9. “Deterrence” from a military action depends on the involvement of all the actors in the international system. [Lupovici, 2010] argues that an actor should be away of the deterrence processes if it is to be discouraged from a certain action. 

10. [Abrahams, 2013] argues that violence gives credibility to the threat but does not necessarily produce gains. 


Discuss this Article
There are currently no comments, be the first to post one.
Start the Discussion...
Only registered users may post comments.
ISQ On Twitter