I just wanted to pass on this post my Registan. Much of it discusses the Core/Gap divide, but the perhaps the most interesting paragraph notes that Georgia was the best reformer in the world and that Kazakhstan and the UAE were ready to make a big investment on the Georgian Black Sea:
Meanwhile, Barnettâ€™s Non-Integrating Gap Georgia must now contemplate exactly how Russiaâ€™s invasion will shatter itâ€™s growing success story. Ras al-Khaimahâ€™s $100m plan to turn Poti into the â€œDubai of the Black Seaâ€ is almost certainly off the table, as is future investment from Kazakhstan. And it is unclear how Georgiaâ€™s rather stunning advances in economic reform and anti-corruption will fare with Russian troops trampling all over Gori.
Russia’s actions hurt the things that would have supported Russia as a new core state. By violently attacking neighbors, Moscow is violently asserting hegemony in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which is properly a way of China to organize her resource suppliers (including Russia). By attacking a reforming neighbor, Russia is helping to make her own government more obscure. By attacking sources of investment, Russia is helping to disconnect her own economy from the world.
Russia is a rogue state, a Gap dictatorship whose parasitic attacks on the Core not only endanger the peace, but whose destruction of a stable investment opportunities hurt the attempts of Seam states to invest wisely and build themselves up.
Russia is a Gap state. Russia is not a friend or a partner. Russia is a gap dictatorship that whose that slows down globalization and destroy wealth. The misery Russia causes is proportional to the power we give her.