Armenian Studies Program
Ingrid Peterson, Administrator
University of Michigan
1080 S. University, Suite 3633
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1106
Phone: 734.763.0622; Fax: 734.763.4918
email: [email protected]

The Caucasus: Old Conflict and New Geopolitical Design

The University of Michigan Armenian Studies speaker discusses the
Russian-Georgian War

ANN ARBOR, MICH., Jan. , 2011 -
On Monday, January 10, 2011 Moscow-based researcher and author
Dr. Sergey Markedonov presented an analysis of the brief August 2008
war between Georgia and Russia in the context of geo-political
rivalries in the region. The speaker argued that a new status quo has
emerged in South Ossetia and Abkhazia following that conflict. The
elements of that status quo, argued Dr. Markedonov, include a new
agenda for Abkhazia and South Ossetia; new roles for Russia, Turkey,
and Iran; and new challenges and motivations for violence in the
Caucasus. Elaboration on these points can be found in Markedonov's
2009 book, The Big Caucasus: Consequences of the "Five Day War," New
Challenges and Prospects (International Centre for Black Sea Studies).

Markedonov contextualized the post-2008 consequences by describing
previous policies and dynamics. Using the collapse of the Soviet Union
as a point of entry, this first stage is characterized as a time of
frozen conflict, attempts to reconsider the status quo, the search for
resources and the internationalization of the Caucasus. The fall out
of the August 2008 war included the definitive abolition of old
political-legal agreements between Georgia and Russia, the first
post-Soviet violation of inter-state borders, a change in the presence
of international organizations, emergence of semi of partial
recognized entities, and parallel geopolitical and political-legal

Sergey Markedonov completed his Ph.D. in 1999 at Rostov-on-Don State
Pedagogical University. Currently a Visiting Fellow at the Center of
Strategic and International Studies, Markedonov has published
extensively on the Black Sea and the Caucasus. A recording of this
lecture is available on the Armenian Studies website:

Armenian Studies Program
The University of Michigan's Armenian Studies Program promotes the
study of Armenian history, culture, and society. A member of the
University of Michigan International Institute, the program organizes
educational opportunities for students, faculty and the community.
For more information, contact the Armenian Studies Program at (734)
763-0622 or visit

University of Michigan International Institute
The University of Michigan International Institute houses 18 centers
and programs focused on world regions and global themes. The institute
develops and supports international teaching, research, and public
affairs programs to promote global understanding across the campus and
to build connections with intellectuals and institutions
worldwide. For more information, visit

From: A. Papazian