Shibkova M. O.

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  • № 4, 2023

    • Conceptual Foundations of Italian Foreign Policy in the Greater Mediterranean Region

      The article is devoted to determining the role of the Greater (or, in its Italian version — Expanded) Mediterranean in Italian contemporary foreign policy doctrine. In the theoretical part of the study, a comprehensive analysis of the concept of the “Greater Mediterranean” is presented via consistently examining its interpretations, such as macro-region, regional security complex, space-time (place of development) and subsystem of international relations (international political region). The practical part opens with an excursion into the history of the penetration of this concept into Italian political thought, showing that it has undergone a significant evolution. The first attempts to consider the Mediterranean beyond its geographical boundaries were associated with the confrontation with Great Britain and searching for theoretical justifications for the “defensive imperialism” of Mussolini’s regime. During the Cold War an expanded Mediterranean was seen as a territory that Italy's national security directly depended on.

      The development of the geopolitical concept of the Expanded Mediterranean in its current form falls on the 1980s. Initially, the corresponding notion was used only within the expert community, but in the second decade of the 21st century it became entrenched in the country's military-strategic documents, more and more often replacing the wording “European-Mediterranean region”. These documents interpret the Expanded Mediterranean as a priority zone of national strategic interests, a geopolitical space where Italy should play a leading role in the fight against challenges and threats, as well as in establishing cooperation with regional players. However, such positioning of Rome is fraught with the difficulties of both economic and political nature, including those related to its membership in the EU and NATO.

      DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2023-111-4-94-112

      Pages: 94-112