May 6, 2016


The April edition of Diplomaatia tries to see the world in a larger setting than usual. First, historian and diplomat Mikael Laidre writes about the concept of liberal democracy in the 21st century.

“Liberal democracy and its values do not grow out of everything organically and inevitability, developed by a hypothetical linear progress axis,” Laidre says. “What we are dealing with is radical innovation that always pushes the borders creating new ‘normals’, e.g. it is never satisfied – having achieved something, it immediately sets a new threshold.”
His article is commented on by three experts – Tiit Kärner, Hille Hanso and Milvi Martina Piir.
Magnus Christiansson, a Swedish defence analyst, is worried about security in the Baltic Sea region. “After 9/11 the EU played a junior strategic role on the world stage, as the United States gradually developed other priorities beyond Europe. Thus, it was not only deeply ironic (for several reasons) when the EU was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2012, but also profoundly misleading about what conditions made the EU possible: the triumph rested on peace in Europe and Russian weakness,” he writes.
Diplomaatia has an interview with warfare specialist professor Martin van Creveld, who visited Estonia recently.
Merle Maigre, security adviser to the President of Estonia, Toomas Hendrik Ilves, explains how the term “Suwalki Gap” came into being. It was invented by the president, and has developed a life of its own, increasingly being used internationally.
Estonian diplomat Priit Pallum explains why the Free Trade Agreement between the European Union and the US is taking so long. According to Pallum, the two sides are still negotiating, and the subsequent processes of ratification and translation will be very lengthy. Consequently, it would be very premature to expect the agreement to be completed in the near future.
Karl-Gerhard Lille, an Estonian humanities student, writes about the phenomenon that is Donald Trump. “It is unclear whether Trump will get the chance to make America great again. The future of the Republican Party is also uncertain. Staunch conservatism will not save it, but a certain television star might just prove to be their saving grace. Trump is certainly not the most honourable, most cordial or most pleasant, but he is the only shot [at the presidency] the Republicans have,” Lille is convinced.
Kaarel Piirimäe, an Estonian historian, reviews a collection of articles of wartime Estonian general Nikolai Reek.


This article was published in ICDS Diplomaatia magazine.

Filed under: Commentary