From Capitol Hill to Istanbul : The Origins of the Current CFE Deadlock

Kühn, Ulrich


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Dokumentart: Bericht / Forschungsbericht / Abhandlung
Institut: IFSH - Institut für Friedensforschung und Sicherheitspolitik
Schriftenreihe: CORE working papers
Bandnummer: 19
Sprache: Englisch
Erstellungsjahr: 2009
Publikationsdatum: 27.10.2010
Originalveröffentlichung: (2009)
DDC-Sachgruppe: Politik
BK - Basisklassifikation: 89.77 (Rüstungspolitik), 89.50 (Politische Prozesse: Allgemeines), 89.76 (Friedensforschung, Konfliktforschung)
Sondersammelgebiete: 3.6 Politik und Friedensforschung

Kurzfassung auf Englisch:

In December 2007 the most successful and comprehensive international conventional arms control agreement, the Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE), lost the support of its most relevant party – Russia. Moscow’s unilateral decision to suspend the treaty did not actually come as a surprise but merely marked the nadir of negative development that can be traced back to the 1999 Istanbul OSCE Summit where Russia agreed to withdraw its armed forces from independent Moldova and Georgia. Right up until today NATO States still refuse to ratify the Adapted CFE Treaty (ACFE), which was signed in Istanbul, because of Russia’s failure to fully withdraw its forces. Since NATO’s 2002 Prague Summit Declaration these so-called Istanbul Commitments of Russia are the sole justification for the Alliance not moving further in adapting the Cold War-style CFE Treaty to the current European security landscape. The present CORE Working Paper aims at highlighting the origins of the Istanbul Commitments in the U.S. Congress debate of the early and mid-nineties as well as their links to geostrategic and economic interests, structural anti-Russian and anti-arms control resentments within the Republican Party, and a deep mistrust between Capitol Hill and the Clinton Administration around handling NATO enlargement and Russia. The paper will not debate the question of Russia’s policy on the so-called near abroad. To overcome the current deadlock, however, harking back might be helpful in reminding possible future negotiators of the dangers of taking arms control ‘hostage’ to national agendas, which are to some degree confrontational.

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