On the edge: Serbia presents a quandary for the West


The time has come to openly regard the Republic of Serbia for what it is: A stalwart Russian and Chinese ally run by a semi-authoritarian government that proactively pursues ideologically irredentist territorial expansion in the Western Balkans, says Richard Kraemer, a Fellow of FPRI’s Eurasia Program and formerly senior program officer for Afghanistan, Iran, and Turkey at the National Endowment for Democracy (NED).

Contemporary Serbia presents a quandary for U.S. and European strategists and policymakers, he writes for the Foreign Policy Research Institute (FPRI):

A genuinely democratic and Euro-Atlantic-oriented Serbia has been sought by Brussels and Washington alike. Yet, decades after Yugoslavia’s violent dissolution and related North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) interventions in the 1990s, most Serbians reject NATO cooperation and are lukewarm towards the European Union (EU). Consequently, the U.S. and its democratic allies in Europe are less able to leverage prospective memberships as a means of transatlantic integration. Further complicating relations with Serbia is Aleksandar Vučić’s overt embrace of Beijing and Moscow. 


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