Aleksandar Saša Gajić

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Institute for European Studies, Belgrade



Contemporary study of the possibilities of small states to resist security threats has come a long way from the understanding that it comes down to the classical policy of balancing and developing their own military potentials. This was contributed by the "expansion of the field of security", a detailed observation of security (as a state, organization and function). A positive contemporary definition of security means freedom from fear and freedom from poverty; in the objective sense, it is defined as the absence of threats to adopted values, and in the subjective sense as the absence of fear that these values will be attacked, as well as "freedom from harmful threats". Introductory part of the Paper studies the nature of states which, due to common features and ways of acting in international relations, are divided into two groups: small and great states (small and great powers). The first part of the Paper deals with the topics of defining small states according to standard criteria (quantitative, qualitative and relational). Quantitative criteria include the number of state`s citiziens, the area of ​​the state territory, economic strength and military power. Qualitative criteria determine whether a state is small or not, primarily dealing with the possibilities, behavior and perception that the state has about itself. Qualitative criteria include the moral condition of the population, its educational structure, economic and technological development, etc. Relational criteria relate the behavior of small states with the nature of the international system and the relative position of the state in it. According to this approach, the criterion of whether a state is small or not is the (in) ability to project the influence of a state in the international system. In its second part of the Paper, the main strategies used by small states in dealing with security threats are explained. Those are: balancing through association against a potential threat, joining a great power (bandwagoning), declaring neutrality or resorting to a “hedging strategy”. Joining forces to balance against a threatening force more often occurs in cases where this threat is immediate, usually due to geographical proximity and the direct execution of offensive activities or the emphasis on such intentions. In the second case - that of bandwagoning - small states choose to associate with the dominant great power instead of opposing it through balancing because they estimate that, overall, it is less harmful to submit (and gain, in return, some benefits) than to suffer significant damage due to opposition to it. The third option facing small countries is to declare a policy of neutrality. This strategic option is provided in case that some small countries are not willing to side with any of the great powers or mutually confronting alliances and have the opportunity to do so due to their specific geopolitical and cultural-historical position. The fourth possible strategy of small states is the so-called "hedging strategy". The essence of this strategy is that it avoids taking a strictly binding policy towards other countries and their alliances, with the aim to develop (with each of them) such relations as it deems useful, while minimizing the risk of confrontation with any of the great powers. In the third part of the Paper, this theoretical knowledge is applied to the case of Serbia, its exposure as a small country to a series of security threats from the end of the Cold War to the present day, all in order to draw conclusions about the security strategic opportunities that are facing Serbia and what they can bring to it.



The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) is an important regional security organization, above all that of a defense-military type, operating in the turbulent post-Soviet space. As such, the CSTO seeks co-operation with other related regional organizations operating in the area. The paper looks at the relationship of the CSTO with NATO and the SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organization), their differences, interests, forms of cooperation and/or their absence, as well as the reasons for this. It also provides a summary of these relationships and their possible future perspectives.



Democratic cosmopolitanism is a contemporary political theory of transferring the model of representative democracy from the national to the global level in order to transform the fundamental institutional framework of the international community. It is a new, minimal approach that revitalizes the formation of a global rule, that is, a world state in a modern democratic framework. The model advocated by cosmopolitan democrats is decentralized global rule without a global government, without a world state in the full sense of the term as conceived by the original world federalists. The main proponents of contemporary theory of cosmopolitan democracy аre polititical thinkers like David Held, Daniel Archibugi, Mary Kaldor and Richard Falk. The Paper provides basic conceptual frameworks for the theory of democratic cosmopolitanism through the work of one of its most prominent proponents, Professor Danielе Archibugi of the University of London. It discusses in detail its normative frameworks as well as institutional proposals for reforms of the contemporary international community. In the historical evolution of democratic ideas about supranational association, Archibugi identifies three major contemporary forms, the "ideal - types" of these endeavors. The first form that Archibugi sees was "confederation", "intergovernmental democratic multilateralism"; second form is “world federation” and the third one is “global governance” or “democratic policentrism”. Archibugi is zelous advocate of third concept. He identifies goals and areas of action that, according to him, is necessary to prioritize and direct activities in line with the ideas of cosmopolitan democracy. These are: 1) control over the use of force (reducing political violence to a minimum within and outside nation states, while force is used as the last resort); 2) convergence of methods of government and even lifestyles not by force, but by free choice 3) strengthening people's self-determination (which should encompass the internal dimension of effective participation and the external dimension that is, in fact, reflected in the absence of domination) 4) oversight of internal affairs (absence of authoritarian behavior within political communities towards individuals and sub-communities) 5) participatory management of global problems (strengthening political equality in global affairs by expanding it from the state level to the global level). Then, Archibugi turns his concept of cosmopolitan democracy to concrete, detailed proposals for reforms of individual institutions within the United Nations system. The Paper concludes with a principle critique of both cosmopolitan democracy theory and its Archibugi’s version, and points to the connections of his proposals with the earlier pre-modern and modern proponents of the world state, which Arkibugi, in a new outfit and with several original additions, seeks to revitalize.


The Role of Information War in the Strengthening of Stereotypes about Russia in the Western Political Space

Negative perceptions of Russia as “the Other” in societies belonging to the Western political tradition have been shaped in a long historical perspective and have their own cultural and geopolitical matrix. These stereotypes mostly perceive Russia and its population through collectivism, authoritarianism and impulsiveness. Media and information policies play an indispensable role in shaping stereotypes in the modern and postmodern era. Therefore, the aim of this research is to point at the role of media discourse in supporting and forming negative stereotypes about contemporary Russia. In the introductory part of the Paper, the problem of stereotyping the notions of Russia and the Russians in the Western political space is contextualized, and then the case study on the empirical basis describes the role of the so-called Western media in supporting the established stereotypes in modern times. The main narratives of the information war between the European Union and the Russian Federation were used for media mediation and interpretation of events on the international scene in which the Russian Federation was the main actor during the year of sanctions (2014) and immediately afterwards (2015). We conclude that in the observed period there was a mutual deterioration of the images among the citizens of the EU and RF, while the leading media sacrificed the principle of impartiality of reporting.


EU Security Policy in North Africa and in the Middle East

The EU is a major trading power in the world and formally the largest economy. Yet, its security and foreign policy have minor weight in global affairs. The EU is trying to accommodate its economic interests, partnership with the USA and the promotion of the global political and economic policies aimed at the promotion and application of good governance, respect of human rights and democratisation. Although its documents contain popular proclamations and articulated aims towards a more assertive presence in world security, it has achieved modest results in the Middle East and North Africa, where it failed to provide unified action of its member states. Instead, NATO and the Franco-British entante frugale are indirectly taking over the functionality and efficiency of EU Common Security and Defense Policy in this region.