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International Reports 11/2008

Russia´s Economy And Society Face New Challenges | Between Domestic-Policy Turbulences And the Lisbon Treaty. The Czech Republic Before its Presidency Of the EU Council In 2009 | The Journey To the Promised Land. Mexican Migration Movements | Democracies At Risk – The Carribean Under Venezuelan Influence | Conflict In the East Of the Democratic Republic Of Congo | International Hot Spots: From the Kosovo To Afghanistan. Books On International Politics

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  • Editorial

    Ausgabe 11/2008 der Auslandsinformationen der Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung

    by Gerhard Wahlers

  • Russia´s Economy and Society Face New Challenges

    The end of the Soviet era brought about fundamental changes in Russia’s economy and its conditions. The transformation from a command to a market economy was painful and caused numerous derivative problems. Privatization paved the way for the oligarchs, who were able to accumulate immense riches due to their connections with politicians and secret-service officials. The old structures in the country’s economic life dissolved but were not replaced.

    by Werner Gumpel

  • Between Domestic-Policy Turbulences and the Lisbon Treaty

    The Czech Republic Before its Presidency of the EU Council in 2009

    The current domestic and European policy of the Czech Republic is characterized by one person – the president and ’Euro-realist’ Vaclav Klaus. However, not all citizens of the country, which is currently facing many problems, share the view of this EU-critical head of state. These problems include domestic instability, the weakness of prime minister Mirek Topolanek, the controversial reform process, the deployment of US radar stations, and the Lisbon Treaty. This is the situation in which the Czech Republic, now confronted by the consequences of the financial crisis on top of everything, will take over the presidency of the Council of the European Union in January 2009.

    by Hubert Gehring, Manuel Lischka

  • The Journey to the Promised Land. Mexican Migration Movements

    The Mexicans’ relationship with their American neighbours is ambivalent, for they feel overshadowed as well as attracted by them. There is no other place in the world where the stream of migrants of one nation towards the other is bigger. Every year, more than 400,000 Mexicans seek to reach the Promised Land in the north. The figures speak for themselves: 98.7 percent of Mexican expatriates live in the US. One in three foreigners in the US is a Mexican. The remesas, the money migrants transfer back to their relatives in their home country, are Mexico’s second most important source of income, right after oil revenues.

    by Susanne Käss

  • Democracies at Risk – The Carribean Under Venezuelan Influence

    The English-speaking Caribbean is one of the very few regions in the developing world where supranational integration has been an ongoing topic. But other than for example the African Union, the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) has been successful in spurring economic integration. But due to the size of the territories in the region, its remote location and a large number of problems the region is facing (HIV/AIDS, climate change, globalization of the economies, etc.), integration has always been in peril. This would not only bring the achievements at risk, but could also damage the democratic societies in the region.

    by Andreas Zenthöfer

  • Conflict in the East of the Democratic Republic of Congo

    Another Challenge to Regional and International Crisis Diplomacy

    When rebels led by General Nkunda marched on Goma late in October 2008 and tens of thousands of civilians fled, the world was horrified. People were asking themselves whether the Congrés National pour la Défense du Peuple (CNDP) would actually occupy the town, and what this would lead to. The peace process initiated by the armistice agreement of January was on the rocks, and calls for strengthening the UN protection force, MONUC, were growing louder. In terms of security policy, the Congolese government as well as the international community are confronted by utter ruin. What is more, the warlord economy that is operating in the east of the DR Congo is impossible to dislodge; after all, militias as well as rebel forces, governmental as well as nongovernmental players equally benefit from it.

    by Andrea Ellen Ostheimer

  • International Hot Spots: From the Kosovo to Afghanistan

    Books on International Politics

    The large number of hot spots in today’s world is reflected in the publications of German publishing houses. The fact that the USA and Europe have recognized the Kosovo’s right of secession is one subject of discussion; others are Russia’s recognition of Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent states and the destabilizing potential of secession-related conflicts as such. It is all about the fate of Israel and the Arab-Israeli conflict, the USA and its fight against terrorism, the Balkan and the Caucasus, Iraq and Afghanistan.

    by Aschot Manutscharjan

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About this series

International Reports (IR) is the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung's periodical on international politics. It offers political analyses by our experts in Berlin and from more than 100 offices across all regions of the world. Contributions by named authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the editorial team.

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Dr. Gerhard Wahlers



Benjamin Gaul

Benjamin Gaul

Head of the Department International Reports and Communication +49 30 26996 3584

Dr. Sören Soika


Editor-in-Chief International Reports (Ai) +49 30 26996 3388