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The Limits of Partnership: U.S.-Russian Relations in the Twenty-First Century Hardcover – January 5, 2014
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"In her largely chronological account of U.S.-Russian relations since 1990, Ms. Stent gives a comprehensive overview of the obstacles that have prevented a closer relationship."--Yascha Mount, Wall Street Journal
"[L]ucid. . . . [R]eadable and sometimes surprising."--Kirkus Reviews
"[Stent's] compelling book provides perhaps the most comprehensive and sober--as well as sobering--assessment of relations across the past two decades."--Neil Buckley, Financial Times
"Stent . . . expertly condenses the past two decades of this tumultuous relationship with an insider's command of detail."--Elizabeth Cobbs Hoffman, Times Higher Education
"In The Limits of Partnership, Stent . . . clearly and carefully lays out the contentious issues that have divided the United States and Russia since the end of the Cold War."--Glenn C. Altschuler, Huffington Post
"Until now, there have been no broad-based studies of the vexed contemporary U.S.-Russian relationship in English--or, for that matter, in Russian. This volume fills that void admirably."--Foreign Affairs
"Truly outstanding."--Mark Adomanis, Forbes.com
"[An] insightful and balanced assessment of two decades of post-Soviet interaction between Washington and Moscow. . . . Stent draws many useful lessons from the ups-and-downs in the U.S.-Russian relationship."--Paul J. Saunders, National Interest
"In her magisterial new book The Limits of Partnership, Angela Stent performs a great service by showing that the end of the Obama Reset is only one part of a much broader pattern that goes back to the end of the Soviet Union."--Donald N. Jensen, Institute of Modern Russia
"Where Stent's narrative truly excels . . . is in presenting the Russian side of the story. It does not fall victim to the understandable temptation to mock Yeltsin or Putin, but rather treats Russia as a U.S. partner with legitimate grievances. This is a particularly worthwhile contribution."--Heather Williams, War Studies Publications
"The Limits of Partnership is a comprehensive and objective history and analysis. While dealing with the detailed complexity of the many issues involved, it does so in a clear, straightforward style. Although written before the present Ukrainian crisis, it is an indispensable source for understanding why this crisis has worsened our relationship with Russia."--Walter G. Moss, History News Network
"A descriptive and integrative type of work, The Limits of Partnership contributes to a renewed understanding of the legacy of the Cold war, of the cultural mechanisms underlying its practices, the ebb and flow, the meanderings and limitations of ideology, viewed in transnational perspective. Stent's is without doubt a particularly apt and timely undertaking, one whose pertinence is fully probed by the crisis in Ukraine that sparked a proliferation of discourse on the 'new Cold War.' This is certainly a cogent political analysis of the postcommunist architecture in Europe as it profiles itself at this juncture in the twenty-first century."--Adriana Neagu, American, British and Canadian Studies
"This is a remarkably even-handed account, in the best kind of way; it explains how each side has understood the serial breakdowns, and explains how the misperceptions on either side have allowed them to happen."--Robert Farley, Lawyers, Guns, & Money blog
"Stent, former staffer at the National Intelligence Council and Department of State, has written a masterful analysis of US-Russian relations since the breakup of the Soviet Union. . . . Written in a lively, engaging manner that is free of academic jargon, the book is accessible to readers from a variety of disciplines and academic levels. . . . This book provides a complete and definitive rendering of the key events that have taken place in that relationship and deserves to be widely read."--Choice
"[A] highly readable account of US foreign policy during the twenty-five years since the Berlin Wall came down, with respect not just to Russia, but the Eurasian continent generally."--David Warsh, Economic Principals
From the Back Cover
"Drawing on her depth of knowledge as a Russia scholar and sharp insights gained as an intelligence analyst, Angela Stent has written a page-turning book about U.S.-Russian relations since the end of the Cold War. A must-read for anyone engaged in the study or practice of this critical bilateral relationship."--John Negroponte, former U.S. deputy secretary of state
"Angela Stent has written a comprehensive, thoughtful, and tremendously useful study of post-Cold War relations between Russia and the United States. She uses interviews with key actors in Russia and the United States and a host of other fresh sources to examine the unpredictable ups and downs of what remains the most important bilateral relationship in international relations in the twenty-first century. This is a must-read for anyone concerned about global affairs now and in the future."--Kathryn Stoner, Stanford University
"Angela Stent has done the seemingly impossible: from the maelstrom of the past two decades she's distilled the essence of modern Russia and its complex relations with the United States. The Obama administration's 'reset,' she says, isn't new; there have been four 'resets' in this relationship, by Democratic and Republican administrations, with mixed results. Using her extraordinary decades-long experience as scholar and government insider, along with her trenchant analysis of what makes Russia's foreign and domestic policy tick, Stent explains what has worked, what has not--and why. The U.S.-Russian relationship will remain a limited partnership, she predicts, until the bonds of Cold War thinking--on both sides--can be broken."--Jill Dougherty, CNN's foreign affairs correspondent
"This is the first book to cover the full sweep and complexity of U.S.-Russian relations since the end of the Cold War. It is likely to remain the best work on the subject for a long time to come. Stent brings to the saga a narrative verve and personal knowledge of many of the main characters, amassed in her distinguished career as a scholar and government official. A triumph and a major contribution."--Strobe Talbott, Brookings Institution
"The Limits of Partnership offers a comprehensive overview of U.S.-Russian relations since the collapse of the Soviet Union. I know of no other book that explains why the post-Soviet bilateral relationship has never lived up to expectations."--Fiona Hill, Brookings Institution
"Stent's argument is richly developed, covering a wide swath of the U.S.-Russian bilateral policy agenda and buttressed by a great deal of historical detail, at least some of which will be new to most readers. The Limits of Partnership is clearly the product of assiduous research, and profits as well from Stent's personal experience in the politics of U.S. policymaking toward Russia."--Robert C. Nurick, Atlantic Council
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Top Customer Reviews
I was fortunate to have read The Limits of Partnership just before the Ukrainian situation heated up in late February 2014. Dr Stent describes US-Russian relations as having undergone four "resets", none of which worked for very long:
1. 1992: GHW Bush attempts to adjust to the demise of the USSR and to Boris Yeltsin’s leadership of Russia but is voted out of office before making much progress.
2. 1993: Clinton tries to team up with Yeltsin. Yeltsin's erratic policy changes and declining health doom this effort.
3. 2001: Putin calls GW Bush immediately after 9/11 and offers his support. Putin seeks to make Russia an equal partner with the US, but ends up feeling that his offer was not taken seriously.
4. 2009: Obama seeks another reset in the aftermath of Russia's war with Georgia.
From a Russian perspective, the most significant aspect of US-Russian relations has been the expansion of NATO. Since the demise of the Soviet Union, NATO's eastern border has moved ever closer to Moscow. Following the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the Soviet Union and Russia had the strong impression (promise may be too strong a word) that NATO would not expand eastward.
1. Having just escaped from Soviet control, the Poles, Czechs, and other former members of the Warsaw Pact desperately wanted US assurance that they would not be re-occupied by Russia. NATO membership was really the only tangible way of providing that assurance.
2. Next came NATO membership for the three Baltic states, all former Soviet Republics. Here again, membership could be justified since the US had always refused to recognize the Soviet occupation of these countries in 1939 under the Ribbentrop-Molotov Non-Aggression Treaty.
3. Finally, the US supported the color revolutions in Georgia and Ukraine, and spoke encouragingly of NATO membership for these historically Russian-controlled areas. Russia has pushed back with its war with Georgia and occupation of Crimea.
My point in describing NATO’s progressive expansion is to demonstrate that there are profound geopolitical conflicts between the national interests of Russia and the US. Partnership can go only as far as a congruence of national interests allows. Beyond that point, diplomacy, conflict management, and compromise must come into play.
World Studies courses.