Medvedev's Foreign Policy Takes Indefinite Shape

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Baev, Pavel K. (2008) Medvedev's Foreign Policy Takes Indefinite Shape, Eurasia Daily Monitor. 21 July.

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President Dmitry Medvedev, after completely ignoring foreign policy issues on the election trail, has performed a high-intensity campaign of visits, speeches and meetings since late May, wrapping up this season last week with the adoption of a new Foreign Policy Concept.

The flurry of external activity was centered on two seemingly incompatible tasks: to demonstrate consistency with Putin’s course, and to show that the current president is firmly in charge of charting a new one. Medvedev may feel satisfied with his self-introductions to peers and partners, but his politeness and skill in talking himself out of trouble have only prolonged his trial period. He is a perfect spokesperson for those of Putin’s followers who seek more recognition in the West; others, however, thrive on conflict and feed on insecurity. They are also testing Medvedev, and Putin can shield him only so far.

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