As it becomes clear that Russia is forging a new geopolitical landscape in Eastern Europe, Europe and the United States have grappled with the question of their response to this unexpected development. AICGS Non-Resident Fellow Ulrich Speck argues that the West must first accept that, despite two decades spent with open arms, Russia is not interested in relations on postmodern terms: negotiation, joint institutions, interconnectedness, and mutual benefit.

In response to Russia’s re-emergent imperialist behavior, the EU can either allow this behavior to persist—tacitly or openly accepting it—or it can defend the international order more actively. Each path has its own short and long-term positive and negative consequences.

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