Our Analytics 12 november — 16:27

One fragment of Aliyev in Shusha (Notes on the margins of our author)



One of the iconic, deeply symbolic fragments of the celebrations in Shusha was the meeting of Ilham Aliyev with the former presidents of a number of states of the European Union and the CIS.

A rather motley club has gathered in Baku for the Global Forum, where presidents from small European countries that have long cooled down after global transformations -- ethnic wars and colour revolutions, interethnic and religious conflicts -- have gathered. In these states, the president is a rather nominal, bureaucratic function, which successful, intelligent politicians of their level manage to lead.

These are not necessarily fighters and leaders, far from oligarchs. The highest levels of global politics do not concern these states, but they are already under the dome, inside the largest mega-integration projects.

Another thing is a president of a post-Soviet state. He has a huge responsibility in terms of transformation and choice of the path. Even if such a politician is destined for a short term of office and strong pressure from domestic political life, a critical mass of actions nevertheless depends on him.

It is in his hands how to act -- to radicalise the situation, exacerbate or seek a compromise. Of course, a lot also depends on the character of the leader. But the notorious 'multiplication and saving of the state' is rather obtained not only by a stronger one, but by a more subtle and skilful one, capable of managing a large system, than just a 'good guy' in the memory of the people...

It is even more difficult for those who are at the junction of geopolitical platforms.

Here, there are polyphonic challenges. Literally half of the issues of socio-economic life, and even more so macroeconomics, depend on the relationship with the main centres of power.

The strongest centre in the CIS is Moscow.

In this situation, the main role is played by the correct choice of balance. Subtle manoeuvring in relations with Putin. Ability to look at the problem 'through his eyes,' and then correlate it with your national interests, and in such a way that the interests of your country find support in Moscow.

But many in the CIS risked betting on the Euro-Atlantic centre of power. The point is not even this step, but the fact that for some reason it meant a sharp break with Moscow for these capitals: alienation, ignorance, giving rise to a lack of understanding in Moscow.

Yes, many states can adhere to such a line without any problems. But at least those who are far beyond the geographical boundaries of the former USSR. Or those who just don't make such mistakes.

This turned out to be Azerbaijan with Ilham Aliyev. He took a risk exactly when this risk could and should have been taken. All these years, Aliyev has managed to maintain a balance in relations with Putin and Erdogan regarding the Euro-Atlantic bloc. He managed to resist the illusions of risky actions and the temptations of some fragile coalitions.

Therefore, in the end, on the Jidir Duzu plateau, we saw this meeting of worthy politicians and good people.

A meeting of officials, ordinary politicians, and the largest figure in post-Soviet history. Shusha showed the true scale of Aliyev. He showed how to run a state in the modern world...

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