Strategic objectives contextual understanding of the expanded Russian--Venezuelan relationship
Rightsell, Nathaniel David.
Giraldo, Jeanne K.
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The rise to power of Vladimir Putin and Hugo ChaÌ vez in the beginning of this century was accompanied by steady commodity price increases. Both leaders benefited enormously from the increased profit produced, as the gross domestic product of both countries is closely tied to the energy market, and especially to oil. The course of the recent relationship between Russia and Venezuela is marked by a steady increase in cooperation as these two countries grow increasingly close. The relationship is touted by Russian and Venezuelan leaders as rejection of U.S. hegemony and establishment of a multipolar world through openness and international cooperation. Thus far, U.S. reaction has focused on non-confrontationally expressing the U.S. position on specific actions of each country, while paying little attention to potential strategic aims. To date, the serious analysis has been centered on arms deals and other agreements resulting from the relationship instead of on the long-term goals of the parties involved. As Russia and Venezuela use the relationship to reject U.S. influence, achieve strategic goals, and interact internationally with other countries, however, U.S. policy decisions and international relations would be better served to acquire a deeper understanding of, and appreciation for, the relationship and its future.
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