Members: the chief editor of the magazine "Arche" Valery Bulgakov from Minsk and Metropolitan Municipal Institute associate professor of international relations Kirill Koktysh from Moscow.
Myth or reality?
Valery Karbalevich: "Over the long years of the campaign entitled" Belarusian-Russian integration "it included a lot of events, scandals, legends, the opposite conclusion — the thesis of the inevitability of combining 2-states to the allegations that the draft of the union of the country died. So is it really this project is a myth or reality yet? "
Valery Bulgakov: "The Belarusian-Russian integration remains a reality, but there are some ghosts that accompany it. Some of them — is the Federal Government. Economically, this integration and happily there is a guarantee of the stability of the Lukashenko regime. First in Belarus the volume of export-import operations with Russian energy increased.
In the political sphere integration is stagnating. The Federal Government has received the status of a pending project. Although at first, the official representatives of Belarus made statements about willingness to consider a constitutional act. But this is a tactical move. Real shifts in the integration likely provided real progress from Moscow. "
Kirill Koktysh: "This issue has many dimensions. The economy has some integration. But this integration at the level of the elites. Faster there any point zone of cooperation, rather than real integration.
In political terms, this project formally exists and will exist. Denunciation unprofitable either party. Samples will be made to revive the project, especially in relation to the price of gas.
No request for integration at the level of mass consciousness. Citizens of both countries want to live in their own countries. "
Gas prices as a factor of integration
Karbalevich: "What about the gas prices. Indeed, it is now a bigger issue in the bilateral relations. Could this factor be a means of pressure on the part of the Russian Federation, Belarus to push the actual integration? Say, or the cost of gas in the coming year will be $ 200 per 1 thousand cubic meters, or confederate. "
Bulgakov: "These conditions are not nominated first year. Experience indicates that no bursts integration is not sprychynyala. Faster contrary, it provoked the current trend. Belarusian authorities do not go to the whip under the influence of convergence and other power tools.
But certain signals from the minor politicians in the Belarusian authorities, like Popov, an indication of willingness to Minsk to take some negotiating.
But the main question the prospects of integration is whether the new president Medvedev to continue Putin’s policies. Even with the continuation of this policy — I do not think that there will be prerequisites to destabilize the political situation in Belarus. "
Koktyish: "Gas prices are in a certain sense may be a prerequisite integration. Russian position is not to strengthen the alliance at any cost, and to ensure a smooth transit of oil and gas to Europe. Anyway, until that time, until North European gas pipeline built.
On the other hand, Our homeland wants to put some point. Either build a real union government — and then we can talk about domestic gas prices. Or Belarus remains to be independent — then you need to build strong bilateral affairs, which at the moment.
But at the Belarusian-Russian affairs may affect and global causes. For example, the global monetary crisis, rising global food prices at 50% per month. "
Geopolitical factor of bilateral relations
Karbalevich: "Belarus-Russian affairs may affect another geopolitical factor. I mean worsening of relations between Russia and the West because of placement of parts in Europe and the U.S. missile defense plans for Georgia and Ukraine to join NATO."
Bulgakov: "One should not overestimate the importance of these reasons. Involvement in Georgia plans no analyst will not utter that this prospect is real. Because Georgia does not keep under control his two areas. Because of these reasons, you are dubbed, will be in the official rhetoric, but less order.
Another factor may be harder to influence the affairs of Belarus and Russia. This is what the West has started take a harder line against Belarus. Specifically, this fear factor evident in the actions of the Belarusian administration last week. Mean repression against the civilian society and journalists. If the EU join in sanctions against "Belneftekhim", the Belarusian economy faces collapse.
Koktyish: "I agree that this is the problem that you have designated as virtual. After first here we litsezreem personal PR Bush. He was able to, as they say in the U.S.," lame duck. "After the failure in Iraq, Afghanistan, it needs at least some success . But other NATO members are taking a more skeptical position. This question recently and remains PR.
But those repression that began last week, the Belarusian authorities are not addressed to the Russian Federation and the West and the Third World. Minsk is striving to become the world’s favorite ideological anti-American and anti-globalization movement. Although I am skeptical as these plans.
The problem of in that it has no real strategy and policy towards the CIS. A revolt against NATO expansion — it’s just rhetoric. "
Tags: Our homeland, integration, Bulgakov, Koktyish