The Baltic Region

2012 Issue №2(12)

The position of international community on the restoration of independence of the Baltic States

Abstract

The separation of the Baltics from the Soviet Uni on was a difficult process accompanied by both political and economic conflicts. The third party in the negotiation process was represented by Germany and the USA. This article sets out to identify the role of the USA and Germany in the restoration of Baltic independence. Historicism and objectivity principles serve as the methodological framework for the research. The regional approach was applied in order to integrate the features of regional development into the overall picture of world politics. The scientific and practical significance of the article lies in a scientific evaluation of the Soviet-Baltic relations in 1989—1991. This study can help understand the mechanisms of formulation of foreign policy by the USA, Germany, and the USSR, as well as the practice of political interaction between these countries and the Baltic States. The materials and conclusions of this article can be used for further research on the foreign policies of the USA, Germany, the USSR, and the Baltic republics. In the process of the Baltics gaining their independence, western countries showed an ambivalent position and hesitancy regarding support for the struggle for liberation. As a result of internal contradictions in the USSR, Baltic leaders managed to achieve independence without any effective support from western powers. The research significance of this study lies in a diverse sel ection of sources and a new formulation of the problem of Baltic independence. The practical significance of the article results lies in the applicability of its materials in the development of Russian foreign policy in the Baltic region, further research on the history of the Baltic region, Germany, and the USA, and preparation of lectures.

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The role of the river Rhine in the formation of spatial structure of the economy of European countries (1st century BC — 19th century AD)

Abstract

This article considers the main historical stages of formation of spatial economic structure of the European countries, parts of whose territories lie within the Rhine basin. The analysis covers a protracted chronological interval from the Roman colonization until the beginning of the 20th century. The author emphasizes the role of the River Rhine in the course of territorial structure formation. This study aims to retrace the historical sequence of the formation of territorial structure of economies of the Rhine basin countries. The research and practical significance of the work lies in the identification of the periods of increased activity in the formation of spatial structural communications of the states mentioned. The author applies the historical-descriptive approach and cartographical-geographical modelling to identify the main stages of this process. The author arrives at the following conclusions. The beginning of the formation of spatial structure of economies of the Rhine basin countries dates back to the Roman period of the history of European states rather than the industrial revolution. Similarly, it is possible to assume that primitive integration processes started to develop in the region in the same period. Throughout history, the River Rhine has served as the central axis for economic structure development. The practical significance of the article lies in identifying the early — previously insufficiently studied — stages of formation of territorial economic structure in the historical and geographical context.

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