Russia Abroad

Driving Regional Fracture in Post-Communist Eurasia and Beyond

Anna Ohanyan, Editor

"Russia Abroad is a welcome addition to the literature on Russia’s foreign policy and broader international relations."
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While we know a great deal about the benefits of regional integration, there is a knowledge gap when it comes to areas with weak, dysfunctional, or nonexistent regional fabric in political and economic life. Further, deliberate “un-regioning,” applied by actors external as well as internal to a region, has also gone unnoticed despite its increasingly sophisticated modern application by Russia in its peripheries.

This volume helps us understand what Anna Ohanyan calls “fractured regions” and their consequences for contemporary global security. Ohanyan introduces a theory of regional fracture to explain how and why regions come apart, consolidate dysfunctional ties within the region, and foster weak states. Russia Abroad specifically examines how Russia employs regional fracture as a strategy to keep states on its periphery in Eurasia and the Middle East weak and in Russia's orbit. It argues that the level of regional maturity in Russia’s vast vicinities is an important determinant of Russian foreign policy in the emergent multipolar world order.

Many of these fractured regions become global security threats because weak states are more likely to be hubs of transnational crime, havens for militants, or sites of protracted conflict.
The regional fracture theory is offered as a fresh perspective about the post-American world and a way to broaden international relations scholarship on comparative regionalism.

Table of Contents


Introduction: Margins Matter
Anna Ohanyan

Part I: Theory of Regional Fracture
1. Theory of Regional Fracture in International Relations: Beyond Russia
Anna Ohanyan
2. From Donbass to Damascus: Russia on the Move
Robert Nalbandov

Part II: Lenin’s Revenge: Regional Fracture in the Post-Soviet Space
3. Fractured Eurasian Borderlands: The Case of Ukraine
Vsevolod Samokhvalov
4. The South Caucasus: Fracture without End?
Laurence Broers
5. Small States and the Large Costs of Regional Fracture: The Case of Armenia
Richard Giragosian
6. Central Asia: Fractured Region, Illiberal Regionalism
David G. Lewis

Part III: Postcolonial Roots of Regional Fracture beyond the Post-Soviet Space
7. Stuck in Between: The Western Balkans as a Fractured Region
Dimitar Bechev
8. Syria and the Middle East: Fracture Meets Fracture
Mark N. Katz

Conclusion: Overcoming Regional Fracture
Anna Ohanyan

List of Contributors


"Russia Abroad is a welcome addition to the literature on Russia’s foreign policy and broader international relations."—The Russian Review

"The TRF offered in the book is a welcome advance in studying Eurasian politics...and opens crucial avenues for discussing why Russia’s neighborhood remains debilitated by a multitude of internal and external addressing the cost of regional fracture to global security, it opens pathways for ways to understand processes of “unregioning,” thereby also offering policy advice to those governments that seek to prevent regional fracture."—H-Diplo

"This is not just a book about Russian foreign policy.  The new conceptualization of regional fracture and the accompanying theoretical framework are broadly applicable and provide an important counterweight to the often exclusive focus on regional integration in the scholarly and policymaking communities."—Paul F. Diehl, Associate Provost and Director, Center for Teaching and Learning, Ashbel Smith Professor of Political Science, University of Texas-Dallas

"Regions in International Relations are already subject to intensive if contested analysis. Lacking in that ever-expanding literature, however, is attention to regional fracture. This volume’s impressive quality of contributors and cases provides empirically-rich understandings of Russian foreign policy and security issues concerning the former Soviet Union and further afield. It goes further still, offering valuable insights to the wider IR community about regional fracture as process."—Rick Fawn, Professor of International Relations, University of St Andrews, UK

"Russia Abroad a meaningful contribution to regionalism studies."—E-International Relations

"This slender but powerful volume offers new ways of appreciating Russia’s role in the world

today."—Terrorism and Political Violence


Supplemental Materials


About the Author

Anna Ohanyan is Richard B. Finnegan Distinguished Professor of Political Science and International Relations at Stonehill College. She is the author of Networked Regionalism as Conflict Management and NGOs, IGOs, and the Network Mechanisms of Post-Conflict Global Governance in Microfinance.

220 pp., 6 x 9
2 tables
ISBN: 978-1-62616-619-6
Oct 2018

220 pp., 6 x 9
2 tables
ISBN: 978-1-62616-620-2
Oct 2018

220 pp.
2 tables
ISBN: 978-1-62616-621-9
Oct 2018

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