The article is based on the comparative analysis of all the fifteen former Soviet republics from the point of view of their successes or failures to the criteria of an American political scientist S. Huntington, worked out specially for the new emerged democraties. Examining one country after another, B. Makarenko places them on the scale of «decreasing democracy» from Baltic states on the top to Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan on the bottom.
According to the author, in the course of development of relatively successful «protodemocraties» there have appeared an embranchment which leaves out a possibility of both slipping down to authoritatrianism and further evolution towards full-fledged democracy.
The article of the editor-in-chief of the Ukrainian journal «Politichna Dumka» analyzes the elections to the Vehovnaya Rada. The author studies them not only through the prism of the election returns, particularities of the election campaign, the electoral technologies that had been used, etc., but also as a reflection and a catalyst of the crisis changes in Ukrainian society. A. Dergachev states particularly that there is a deteorisation of long-termes perspectives for the existing regime, although the power is still capable of getting the needed tactical results in the majority of cases.
The work broaches both western and Russian factors, the prospects of Russian-Ukrainian relationship are estimated.
Fedralism and State Government: Some Aspects of Canadian Experience
The author thinks that theoretically optimal federal structure is the one in which central and regional governments possess constitutionally stated and, therefore, stable and clearly delineated authority spheres. It is through the prism of this postulate that the author analyses the problems that appeared during the process of creation and development of the Canadian federation and studies the state of federative relations in modem Canada. The article considers the territorial configuration of the federative model, the different provinces’ different capabilities to realize certain authority functions.
The author focuses attention on the critical question of Canadian federalism – the Quebec problem, which can otherwise be called a problem of combined federalism and ethnicity. According to F.Roche, the country would have never appeared if not the federative model. Yet the very circumstance that Canada is a federative state contributed to the aggravation of tensions between the national majority and the national minority. As the article states, federalism is unable to settle and liquidate conflicts forever. However, correctly understood and applied, it can diminish them. Anyway, ethnically complex societies should not aim at the elimination of diversity.
Vincent Della Sala
The author thinks that on the whole federalism based on the aspiration for the optimal combination of unity and variety constitutes the most acceptable form of government in the era of progressing globalization. Yet, globalization contributes to the appearance of new forms of conflicts and competition between regional governments, as well as between these governments and the central power. The article examines possible ways of smoothening the appearing problems. Among such ways is to introduce a system of consultations between the federation and regional governments even on such questions as concluding international agreements concerning regional interests. Another mechanism could provide the regional governments with an opportunity to participate in the work of international advisory and authoritative bodies.
The article traces the development of a concept of historical mission of the reconstructed Greek state, which was put forward in the mid 19th century. The meaning of the «great idea» amounted to three components: the necessity to unite the Greek nation politically, the historical formation of this unity and the historical mission of Greece as a mediator between the cultures of the West and the East. The author notes that practically straight away on the basis of philosophico-historical «great idea» several political programs have been formed, which are often fundamentally different in the understanding of national objectives and the ways and instruments of their realization (from openly chauvinistic to moderate patriotic). O. Petrunina discovers the presence of the «great idea», though often in a latent form, in the programs of most parties of today’s Greece. During the last decades the focus point has shifted from the priority of external expansion (on the modem stage – stmggle for Cyprus) to economic, informational and cultural measures.
Politics and Religion
The article studies the peculiarity of relationship between the Polish Catholic Church and the state power for more than half a century, including the post-socialist period. The author considers the forms, pace and methods of secularization, its fluxes and refluxes. I.Yazhborovskaya provides the explanation of the reasons for a more successful survival of the Church in comparison to adjacent states. The attention is also focused on the processes of transformation in the Catholic Churchitself, its relations with the left, with «Solidarity», its participation in reorganizing the political system of the country.
The journal «Politeia» opens a new, experimental rubric «Antithesis». The editors office often receives the materials that do not fit into the genre or stylistic framework of our edition. At the same time we think that the state of the political science in Russia not only permits but demands for the expansion of the parameters of discussing the bases of the contemporary political knowledge and the ways of interpreting the things that are happening in our country and in the world. In view of this the journal is ready to provide from time to time its pages to the authors of such texts – sketches, memoirs, even literary works on condition that they focus on the problems of political philosophy and the sociology of politics. As an experiment we publish in this issue of «Politeia» two works, which can be united only because they belong to the same genre of politico-philosophical essay in the broadest understanding of the term. Their authors are the members of the editorial board of the journal who agreed to fulfill the request of the editorial board and run the risk of undergoing the first practical test of the new rubric.
The author reflects upon the book of a famous politician, ex-president of Finland Mauno Koyvisto. N. Plevako characterizes this work as historico-publicistic sketches. They did not, of course, set the objective to write the history of Russia, but the author made an attempt to give his proper interpretation of certain events and phenomena of Russian history, linked by the common understanding of the historical process. This review evaluates the opinion of Koyvisto on the role that such factors as Byzantine tradition, longtime submission to Tatar despotims, dramatic turns in the Russian history of the early 20th century and in the very end of it played for Russia.
The author of the review highly appraises the first volume of the three-volume edition E.Bazhanov, a researcher and at the same time an expert in the sphere of international relations. Providing comments on the chapters of the book concerning the collapse of the former system of international relations based on the balance of power between the two superpowers, he particularly makes common cause with the Bazhanov’s doubt concerning whether the US is capable of turning the world into a unipolar system. What for Russia, according to the author, in order to solve the problems it faces the country should consolidate its grip on the flexible and balanced foreign policy, implying cooperation in all directions – with the West, the East and the South.
The traditional review of «Politeia» presents a chronicle of the main events in the life of Russian political parties in the summer-autumn 2002. As usual, the chronicle is supplemented by the analysis of the alignment of political forces in Russia during this period. Y.Korgunyuk step by step considers the situation on theright wing («The Union of the Right forces» («Soyuz pravyh sil»), «Yabloko», «Liberal Russia»), in the center («The United Russia» («Edinaya Rossiya»)), andamong the left. He ascertains in particularly the existence of sure signs of gradually beginning election campaign.