Thursday, March 27, 2014
President Putin's Ambitions
Vladimir Putin is easy to understand. He don't need a gypsy fortune teller to foretell his future. He has the DNA of the five centuries of tzars and commissars who preceded him. They all possessed the common goals of land expansion and a warm water port. They have all been patient. President Putin is accused of acting like in a 19th Century way. Look at the 19th Century Russian Empire. Putin’s goal is not, as often commented, the resurrection of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. It is rather the rebirth of the Russian Empire built by the tzars and destroyed by World War I and the Bolsheviks. It was the third largest empire by land in history, exceeded only by the British Empire and the Mongol Empire. Here’s what that list includes: Crimea Eastern Ukraine The Ukraine Georgia (what’s left of Georgia after Russia seized Abkhazia and Ossetia in 2008) Poland Finland The Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania Azerbaijan Armenia Mongolia Belarus Moldova President Putin may want to reacquire the “stans,” Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Uzbekistan, but only if he wishes more conflict as in Chechnya. He may have eyes on parts of Turkey (Kars, Ardahan, and Igdir), previously part of Armenia. The tzars and Stalin wanted control of the Turkish Straits (The Dardanelles and Bosporus and the Sea of Marmara), but never succeeded on securing the access from the Mediterranean to the Black Sea and their naval bases in Sevastopol and the Crimea.. Finally, one more piece of the Russian Empire exists: Alaska, which is already a red state in President Obama's eyes.