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Russian Nationalism 101

There is a huge amount of misinformation and disinformation about what is and what is not Russian nationalism.

As a ROG agent and evil Russian oppressor, it’s incumbent on me to set the record straight.

sputnik-i-pogrom-big-russia

Sputnik and Pogrom’s vision of “Russia for Russians.”

***

Platform: The 3 Principles

Western commentators love to designate every single frothing at the mouth bearded Russian maniac into the ranks of “Russian nationalists.” Even many Russians whose only sin is to oppose replacing ICBM parades with LGBT parades in Moscow qualify.

In their world of the ROG conspiracy, Putler is the “godfather of extreme nationalism.”

In the world of reality, however, the term “Russian nationalist” has much more precise boundaries and connotations, at least within Russia itself. It can be narrowed down to loyalty to a set of common principles, of which perhaps the three most critical ones are:

  1. The cessation of political prosecutions for “hate speech” under Article 282.
  2. An end to mass immigration from Central Asia.
  3. The regathering of the Russian lands, including Belorussia, North Kazakhstan, Novorossiya, and Malorossiya.

To be sure, just like the Alt Right in the West, we do have our own internal debates and disagreements on all sorts of issues – on Putin, on Navalny, on the Syria adventure, on whether Orthodoxy is part of implicit Russian identity, on whether Pussy Riot should be locked up, on the optimal levels of gun freedoms, even on whether or not some aspects of SJW culture should be accomodated for. It is a wide tent that is open to people from a wide variety of ideological and religious backgrounds, and you do not have to be an ethnic Russian to join in.

But we do not waver on those three big principles. Those who do, such as Anatoly Nesmiyan (El Murid), who in recent months started writing positively of a united Ukraine, get excommunicated.

What Russian nationalism is not about is dismembering Russia, transforming it into “Little Russia” around its old Novgorod heartlands, etc. This misconception centers around the frequently repeated propaganda trope that Russia is a multi-ethnic empire, which Russian ethnic nationalism will break apart. Only political prosecutions of nationalists and infinity Moslems from Central Asia can avert that.

Reality: 81% of the Russian population are ethnic Great Russians, and 83% are Slavs. This is far higher than the percentage of White Americans in the US, but for some reason the US survives just fine without any ethnic minority republics with special privileges. It is also hard to square with the very hardline positions of Russian nationalists on the Ukraine question, which match word for word the publicly stated positions of traditional Russian conservatives such as the anti-Soviet dissident Alexander Solzhenitsyn and the political philosopher Ivan Ilyin.

Incidentally, the reincorporation of the lost territories of the triune Russian nation will raise the percentage of Slavs in Russia to close to 90%, making problems with Muslims even less of a consideration.

***

People: Who’s In? Who’s Out?

Russian nationalists do include the following:

  • The “Committee of January 25″ (K25) movement under Igor Strelkov and many of the people who were or are at associated with it, such as Konstantin Krylov and Eduard Limonov. Its US equivalent might be something like Richard Spencer’s National Policy Institute.
  • The flagship magazine of Russian nationalism, Egor Prosvirnin’s Sputnik and Pogrom. Its Western equivalents would be higher tier Alt Right publications such as Radix Journal, Counter Currents, and Occidental Observer
  • Possibly Konstantin Malofeev’s Tsargrad TV, especially after Dugin’s recent ouster and replacement with Egor Kholmogorov. That said, it is more conservative than nationalist, with more than a passing resemblance to Breitbart.

Russian nationalists do not include the following:

  • Eurasianists, such as Alexander Dugin, a Warhammer 40k cosplayer who wants to replace Russia with Greater Turkestan.
  • Soviet nationalists, such as Alexander Prokhanov and Sergey Kurginyan, who want to resurrect the Soviet Union and its suppression of Russian identity.
  • Liberal nationalists, such as Alexey Navalny, who want to make Russia into a ZOG colony.
  • Ukrainian nationalists, which is what most liberal nationalists and Neo-Nazis functionally are.
  • Putin personality cultists, such as Nikolay Starikov and the (now defunct) Nashi youth movement.
  • Orthodox fundamentalist nutjobs such as Vsevolod Chaplin, who wants to legalize FGM and to replace Russia with Central Africa.

***

Putin: Putler or Putlet?

Attitudes towards Putin amongst Russian nationalists range from moderate support to outright hatred.

The more conservative and Orthodox elements of Russian nationalism tend to support him, while the more socially liberal, atheist, and/or racialist ones tend to oppose him. The most fervent Putin fans tend to be “patriots” (“putzriots“), they are not Russian nationalists, except in the loosest sense of the word. Their foreign equivalents would be the personality cults that have formed around “strong” charismatic leaders such as Trump and Erdogan.

Realistically speaking, Putin deserves neither the uncritical adulation nor the frothing condemnation of Russian nationalism. As I pointed out in my earlier article on whether or not Putin is “the godfather of extreme nationalism,” Putin is neither /ourguy/ nor (((theirguy))); he is a politician who needs to carry out a complex balancing act between various political-economic blocs and ideological strands in Russian society.

Let’s just briefly consider how Putin stacks up against Navalny and some Western politicians on the Three Principles:

(1) Russian nationalists do get imprisoned for hate speech, sometimes on remarkably spurious and illegitimate grounds. On the other hand, 282 is also wielded against Russophobes and Islamic extremists, which has made the Council of Europe very sad, so the situation here is perhaps not quite as bad as in the more “cucked” European countries. Still, its worth noting that Richard Spencer himself managed to get deported from Orban’s Hungary of all places, so there are few true nirvanas in this respect. Navalny would probably be an improvement on Putin here, assuming he does move to repeal Article 282; many of the Echo of Moscow liberals, who form part of his constituency, are big fans of it, and were instrumental in legislating it in the first place. On the plus side, there is far less political correctness in Russia than in Europe or the US, though this has little-to-nothing to do with Putin per se.

(2) Putin is very weak on immigration, though at least there are considerably fewer Third World immigrants per capita than in the UK, Germany, or Sweden; not exactly a high bar to clear, of course, but it’s still worth keeping in perspective. Navalny would almost certainly be an improvement, at least if he follows through on his platform. Putin is somewhat like American Republicans theorizing that socially conservative Latinos would be a solid support base for conservative politics, except that in Russia, this theory actually “works” – ethnic minority republics and Central Asians vote 90% for United Russia. Putin is also no match for Trump (2016 edition) on this question, though as we have recently seen, the Current Year has brought many unwelcome surprises on the God-Emperor’s true agenda.

(3) While Putin did not realize Russian nationalist aspirations to the extent that many hoped he would in the spring of 2014, it is difficult to imagine any other (viable) politician going as far as he did by bringing back Crimea and helping the LDNR survive. With Navalny, the Donbass will be left to the tender mercies of a vengeful and very Russophobic regime in Kiev, and even the long-term status of the Crimea will be put under question. On the other hand, Putin’s growing fondness for adventures in the Arab world – first Syria; soon, perhaps, Libya – is also a source of concern in some quarters of the Russian nationalist movement, who view it as a way of deflecting attention from the plight of Russia’s co-ethnics in the Donbass.

***

What is to be Done?

The only major political force in Russia that, at least on paper, satisfies all Three Principles is Zhirinovsky’s LDPR. It is against Article 282, against Central Asian immigration, and has a very strong line on Ukraine. However, there are many questions over both its competence and its independence from the Kremlin, so most Russian nationalists vote for it not so much out of ideological considerations as to move the Overton window in the right direction.

Russian nationalism as a political force is in a somewhat ironic situation. Theoretically, a good 80% or so of Russians are “vatniks” (whereas only perhaps 40% of Americans are “deplorables”), and more than half agree to some extent with the implicitly ethnonationalist slogan “Russia for Russians” (which makes half the Russian population either idiots or provocateurs, according to Putin himself). On the other hand, the main demands of Russian nationalism are either accomodated for or subverted by the Kremlin just enough to prevent a strong independent nationalist movement from emerging. For instance, Igor Strelkov, a potential figurehead for such a movement, was blacklisted by the MSM soon after his return from Ukraine.

There is currently no unity on strategy. The bulk of K25 advocates cautious cooperation with the Kremlin. Sputnik and Pogrom is more overtly oppositional. Tsargrad TV are basically regime loyalists who want it to take a harder line on the pursuit of Russian national interests, like America’s Breitbart or China’s Global Times.

My own modest aims are twofold. First, I want to help introduce the Alt Right to Russian nationalists, and vice versa. Second, I am trying to place Russian nationalism on a firmer, more scientific ideological footing, by importing useful concepts developed primarily in the West and applying them to Russian realities, such as IQ/HBD-realism.

Russian nationalism is extremely underdeveloped on these issues, thanks in part to the Soviet “blank slate” legacy, as well as to Eurasianism’s destructive promotion of “traditionalist” obscurantism (Dugin in particular denies the concept of race, period, which perhaps explains why he is so open to Central Asian population replacement). Moreover, to the extent that race is discussed at all amongst Russian nationalists, most of it happens amongst Neo-Nazis who unironically subscribe to Nazi era pseudoscience on the matter. (That said, it’s worth pointing out that European nationalisms aren’t much better. This is not surprising, since something like 80% of psychometrics and evopsych research takes place in the US, while European nationalists obssess over the intellectual miasma that is continental philosophy/Heideggerism).

This is a very sad and very stupid state of affairs – but it also represents some very low-hanging fruit. To this end, I and a couple of my friends here, Kirill Nesterov and @pigdog, have recently started up a podcast to discuss Russian politics from an Alt Right and HBD/IQ-realistic perspective in /pol/’s irreverent and semi-ironic style.

If you understand Russian, or are learning the language, you can check it out at ROGPR.com.

 
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  1. What’s so special about North Kazakhstan? Are there still a lot of Russians there?

    “This is far higher than the percentage of White Americans in the US, but for some reason the US survives just fine without any ethnic minority republics with special privileges.”

    Are you in favour of abolishing those republics or what’s your position on them?
    And finally: What’s the core of Russian identity for you? Is Orthodox Christianity necessarily a central element?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    What’s so special about North Kazakhstan? Are there still a lot of Russians there?
     
    Just a little over 4 million. The only region where they still form a solid majority is in the north, in what was once known as "South Siberia."

    One idea is to press for autonomy for the region, and if/when Nazarbaev dies and is replaced by Kazakh nationalists, send in the little green men.

    There's little point in playing for any other Kazakh regions; though the cities there were founded by Russians (e.g. Atyrau used to be Guriev), they are now 90%+ Kazakh.

    Are you in favour of abolishing those republics or what’s your position on them?
     
    The generally favored solution amongst Russian nationalists is to replace the current hodgepodge of oblasts, republics, krais, autonomous republics, okrugs, autonomous okrugs, and whatnot, with their varying levels of autonomy, with the Tsarist era guberniya system.

    What’s the core of Russian identity for you?
     
    Not sure there is one. Ultimately, all nationalities are social constructs to some degree or another, and are a matter of ticking off a certain number of checkmarks:
    * Ancestral homeland in Russia
    * Orthodox heritage
    * Slavic ancestry
    * Knowledge of Russian language
    * Last and least, RF passport

    Of course you can always write a long flowery essay about what constitutes being a Russian (or a German, or a Jew, or whatever), but in the end I think it all boils down to this.

    Is Orthodox Christianity necessarily a central element?
     
    Not really, though I do subscribe somewhat to Orthodox Christianity as being part of implicit Russian identity. (Much like Judaism is for Jews. Golda Meir: "I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people believe in God).
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  2. The regathering of the Russian lands, including Belorussia, North Kazakhstan, Novorossiya, and Malorossiya.

    Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone? In the case of at least Ukraine, it has its own language, history and political development and doesn’t need any leftover problems inherited from its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires. Russian nationalists need to be able to distinguish between a healthy dose of nationalism, often referred to as patriotism, and the unhealthy sort of nationalism tied to its imperial past. Other countries have dealt with this post-imperial syndrome, and I’m sure that Russia will be able to do so as well.

    If you think that neighboring Ukrainian nationalism is something brand new, or if you feel that it’s somehow contrived or unnatural, take a look at these photos taken 100 years ago, mostly in Kyiv, and explain to me the massive outpouring of local support? The photos don’t lie:

    http://www.istpravda.com.ua/artefacts/2011/01/22/17352/#18

    Where were the pro-Russian nationalist counter demonstrations when these were taking place?
    -0-

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone?
     
    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians - all three major branches of Russians - just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

    ...its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires
     
    There was nothing colonial about the relationship under either Tsarism or the USSR. The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).

    Russian nationalists need to be able to distinguish between a healthy dose of nationalism, often referred to as patriotism, and the unhealthy sort of nationalism tied to its imperial past.
     
    There is even less point to being patriotic wrt the Russian Federation than wrt the Soviet Union.

    ... at these photos taken 100 years ago
     
    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence. The Idel Ural Republic. Even "Green Ukraine" in the Far East!
  3. @German_reader
    What's so special about North Kazakhstan? Are there still a lot of Russians there?

    "This is far higher than the percentage of White Americans in the US, but for some reason the US survives just fine without any ethnic minority republics with special privileges."

    Are you in favour of abolishing those republics or what's your position on them?
    And finally: What's the core of Russian identity for you? Is Orthodox Christianity necessarily a central element?

    What’s so special about North Kazakhstan? Are there still a lot of Russians there?

    Just a little over 4 million. The only region where they still form a solid majority is in the north, in what was once known as “South Siberia.”

    One idea is to press for autonomy for the region, and if/when Nazarbaev dies and is replaced by Kazakh nationalists, send in the little green men.

    There’s little point in playing for any other Kazakh regions; though the cities there were founded by Russians (e.g. Atyrau used to be Guriev), they are now 90%+ Kazakh.

    Are you in favour of abolishing those republics or what’s your position on them?

    The generally favored solution amongst Russian nationalists is to replace the current hodgepodge of oblasts, republics, krais, autonomous republics, okrugs, autonomous okrugs, and whatnot, with their varying levels of autonomy, with the Tsarist era guberniya system.

    What’s the core of Russian identity for you?

    Not sure there is one. Ultimately, all nationalities are social constructs to some degree or another, and are a matter of ticking off a certain number of checkmarks:
    * Ancestral homeland in Russia
    * Orthodox heritage
    * Slavic ancestry
    * Knowledge of Russian language
    * Last and least, RF passport

    Of course you can always write a long flowery essay about what constitutes being a Russian (or a German, or a Jew, or whatever), but in the end I think it all boils down to this.

    Is Orthodox Christianity necessarily a central element?

    Not really, though I do subscribe somewhat to Orthodox Christianity as being part of implicit Russian identity. (Much like Judaism is for Jews. Golda Meir: “I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people believe in God).

    Read More
    • Replies: @German_reader
    Thank you, very informative.
    , @melanf

    The generally favored solution amongst Russian nationalists is to replace the current hodgepodge of oblasts, republics, krais, autonomous republics, okrugs, autonomous okrugs, and whatnot, with their varying levels of autonomy, with the Tsarist era guberniya system.
     
    Completely unrealistic idea. Attempts to implement this approach will lead to deep conflict and possible to civil war.

    A relatively realistic way is to gradually equalize all parts of Russia in rights (for example of the States of the USA)
    , @ussr andy
    I always suspected that the "multi-ethnic" (also, "friendship of the peoples") stuff was PC nonsense, and the Novgorod thing was a canard launched by opponents of RN.
    Still, don't you think that America's starting out basically as bi- or tri-racial settler colony, and the other race being SSAs instead of, say, Turkics, might have introduced distortions of its own into the American psyche and political process? Ones that wouldn't work (or worse) if transplanted uncritically?
    I'll be remaining suspicious of any race talk until identity politics is utterly destroyed. Because until then, what it would mean in practice is that Elena Khanga, say, gets to claim Pushkin as one of "her own people" and presume the right to teach the vatniks how to be more "tolerant."
    Perhaps just call it something else than "race"?
    , @bjondo
    slight correction:

    I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people are their own god
    , @Seraphim
    The origin of any nationalism is the 'cult of the ancestors' ("Honour thy father and thy mother"), the obligation to remember them (which entails the obligation to give thanks to what they did for us and hand over the patrimony - countries, languages, cultures, religions, economies - they left to us to our children and their children), to care for their resting places and defend them from desecration. I think it is extremely significant that the Victory Parades became the 'Marches of the Immortal Regiment'.
    Orthodoxy is central to Russian identity. All the Russians I met ('bigots' as well as 'atheists, agnostics') would point to it. Thousand years of Orthodoxy (I would argue that Orthodoxy is older in the Russian lands than the Baptism of Vladimir), of a polity built as protection and defense of Orthodoxy (even Bismarck - no friend Russia - tried to dissuade the German warmongers from attacking Russia because "the result of a war (against Russia) would never result in the destruction of the main power of Russia, which rests upon millions of Russians of the Greek confession), of a culture steeped in Orthodox concepts, images and sounds (why all the great Russian composers composed Church music?) should mean something more than a cultural veneer, ideological 'superstructure'.
    Dugin developed his theories under the influence of the 'traditionalist' esoterico-masonic thinking of Rene Guenon and Frithjof Schuon, who were in fact converts to Islam (with hefty doses of Kabbalism) and intrinsically hostile to the really traditional Christianity.
  4. @Anatoly Karlin

    What’s so special about North Kazakhstan? Are there still a lot of Russians there?
     
    Just a little over 4 million. The only region where they still form a solid majority is in the north, in what was once known as "South Siberia."

    One idea is to press for autonomy for the region, and if/when Nazarbaev dies and is replaced by Kazakh nationalists, send in the little green men.

    There's little point in playing for any other Kazakh regions; though the cities there were founded by Russians (e.g. Atyrau used to be Guriev), they are now 90%+ Kazakh.

    Are you in favour of abolishing those republics or what’s your position on them?
     
    The generally favored solution amongst Russian nationalists is to replace the current hodgepodge of oblasts, republics, krais, autonomous republics, okrugs, autonomous okrugs, and whatnot, with their varying levels of autonomy, with the Tsarist era guberniya system.

    What’s the core of Russian identity for you?
     
    Not sure there is one. Ultimately, all nationalities are social constructs to some degree or another, and are a matter of ticking off a certain number of checkmarks:
    * Ancestral homeland in Russia
    * Orthodox heritage
    * Slavic ancestry
    * Knowledge of Russian language
    * Last and least, RF passport

    Of course you can always write a long flowery essay about what constitutes being a Russian (or a German, or a Jew, or whatever), but in the end I think it all boils down to this.

    Is Orthodox Christianity necessarily a central element?
     
    Not really, though I do subscribe somewhat to Orthodox Christianity as being part of implicit Russian identity. (Much like Judaism is for Jews. Golda Meir: "I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people believe in God).

    Thank you, very informative.

    Read More
  5. @Mr. Hack
    '

    The regathering of the Russian lands, including Belorussia, North Kazakhstan, Novorossiya, and Malorossiya.
     
    Hmmm....isn't Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone? In the case of at least Ukraine, it has its own language, history and political development and doesn't need any leftover problems inherited from its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires. Russian nationalists need to be able to distinguish between a healthy dose of nationalism, often referred to as patriotism, and the unhealthy sort of nationalism tied to its imperial past. Other countries have dealt with this post-imperial syndrome, and I'm sure that Russia will be able to do so as well.

    If you think that neighboring Ukrainian nationalism is something brand new, or if you feel that it's somehow contrived or unnatural, take a look at these photos taken 100 years ago, mostly in Kyiv, and explain to me the massive outpouring of local support? The photos don't lie:

    http://www.istpravda.com.ua/artefacts/2011/01/22/17352/#18

    Where were the pro-Russian nationalist counter demonstrations when these were taking place?
    -0-

    Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone?

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

    …its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires

    There was nothing colonial about the relationship under either Tsarism or the USSR. The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).

    Russian nationalists need to be able to distinguish between a healthy dose of nationalism, often referred to as patriotism, and the unhealthy sort of nationalism tied to its imperial past.

    There is even less point to being patriotic wrt the Russian Federation than wrt the Soviet Union.

    … at these photos taken 100 years ago

    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence. The Idel Ural Republic. Even “Green Ukraine” in the Far East!

    Read More
    • Agree: Sergey Krieger
    • Replies: @Mr. Hack

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and theapartment Russian Federation.
     
    How so? All three nations have their own countries, and enough space within each to keep themselves busy at home, not prying into their neighbor's affairs. If you consider these three nations as being kin, then the analogy would be a simple one to make with familial relations. If you own your own home or even rent an apartment, you don't really want your siblings busting into your premise, unannounced at anytime and 'take back' some gifted china, now do you? Let's say that your going through a spat with your spouse, do you really want your brother barging into your home and taking sides in any arguments or misunderstandings. Ukraine belongs first to Ukrainians and not to any neighboring countries!

    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence. The Idel Ural Republic. Even “Green Ukraine” in the Far East!

     

    Here you're really being disingenuous in your reply, by trying to compare Ukrainian nationalism with some obscure, 'strange' movements that never had a basis in reality, and therefore never evolved into anything pragmatic. Kind of like the DNR and LNR today, being propped up by Russian funding and arms. I'm really surprised that somebody as smart as you seem to be, really seem to get your mind around the fact that the Ukrainian nation is a real one, with over 50,000,000 adherents around the globe - you're starting to sound a lot like one of those Russian nationalists (not many, thank god) that roamed mostly in Russia and the southern part of Ukraine during the early 20th century:
    y books

    The Black Hundreds denied the existence of a Ukrainian nation, defined Ukrainians as Russians,[5] and attracted the support of ethnic Ukrainian Russophiles who considered themselves Russian.[6] The Black Hundred movement actively campaigned against what it considered to be Ukrainian separatism, as well as against promoting Ukrainian culture and language in general, and against the works of Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko in particular.[7] In Odessa, the Black Hundreds shut down the local branch of the Ukrainian Prosvita society, an organization that was dedicated to spreading literacy in the Ukrainian language and Ukrainian cultural awareness.[6]

     

    Is it premature yet to ask you whether your thinking about Ukraine has in large part been formed by Russian nationalist writers like, Alexander Dubrovin, Vladimir Purishkevich, Nikolai Markov, A. I. Trishatny, or others? Looking over your book reviews, I fail to see any books whatsoever devoted to Ukrainian history or culture, and yet you posit yourself as some sort of expert on the topic?....
    , @AP

    "Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone?"

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.
     
    ..And all three major branches of Romans - Italians, Spaniards and Frenchmen - belong to each other. Not to mention Romanians and Portuguese.

    And perhaps all branches of the Spaniards - Afro Caribbeans, Mexican Mestizos, Spaniards - belong to each other also. Their speech is at least the same.

    In the real world, your idea of a unitary Slavic Rus state is mostly svidomist fantasy, admittedly backed historically up the Russian military. Ukraine spent more time with Poland than it did with Russia and for understandable reasons its culture is between the two.

    …its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires

    There was nothing colonial about the relationship under either Tsarism or the USSR
     
    Nonsense. I'm inclined to agree with Anatol Lieven, who concluded that in an analogy with Britain, Ukraine's relationship to Russia had elements both of a colony (as Ireland) and as a junior partnership (Scotland) with respect to Russia. It wasn't as simple as in Ukrainian and Russian nationalist discourse.

    The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).
     
    Even if true, this doesn't prove anything. Some colonies were objects of investment. The Japanese invested in Korea and Manchuria, and Germany invested in East Africa, for example.

    … at these photos taken 100 years ago

    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence
     
    Russian nationalism (that is, Great Russian nationalism as it would be understood in 19th and early 20th century terms) was even more strange and new in those lands.
    , @bb.
    Hey Anatoly,

    could you direct me to a source of ”The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).” I got interested in this topic lately for reasons of comparison with EU structural funds for a post doc friend. Thanks!!

    (ps-disregard the reply to AP, my mistake)
    , @CalDre

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.
     
    No, it doesn't, you imperial ignoramus. Only way Russia gets Ukraine is to take it by force. I suggest you "nationalist" (read: imperialist) Russians strap on your AK-47 and march to Kiev so that the Ukrainian nationalists can properly take care of business. (Yes, other countries have nationalists, too, something someone of your caliber of mental incompetence has an impossibility comprehending).

    PS: I've lived numerous years in Ukraine and know what I'm talking about, you know nothing except your repugnant, jingoistic chauvinism.

    AK: Looks like you "assimilated" well.
  6. @Anatoly Karlin

    Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone?
     
    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians - all three major branches of Russians - just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

    ...its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires
     
    There was nothing colonial about the relationship under either Tsarism or the USSR. The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).

    Russian nationalists need to be able to distinguish between a healthy dose of nationalism, often referred to as patriotism, and the unhealthy sort of nationalism tied to its imperial past.
     
    There is even less point to being patriotic wrt the Russian Federation than wrt the Soviet Union.

    ... at these photos taken 100 years ago
     
    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence. The Idel Ural Republic. Even "Green Ukraine" in the Far East!

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and theapartment Russian Federation.

    How so? All three nations have their own countries, and enough space within each to keep themselves busy at home, not prying into their neighbor’s affairs. If you consider these three nations as being kin, then the analogy would be a simple one to make with familial relations. If you own your own home or even rent an apartment, you don’t really want your siblings busting into your premise, unannounced at anytime and ‘take back’ some gifted china, now do you? Let’s say that your going through a spat with your spouse, do you really want your brother barging into your home and taking sides in any arguments or misunderstandings. Ukraine belongs first to Ukrainians and not to any neighboring countries!

    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence. The Idel Ural Republic. Even “Green Ukraine” in the Far East!

    Here you’re really being disingenuous in your reply, by trying to compare Ukrainian nationalism with some obscure, ‘strange’ movements that never had a basis in reality, and therefore never evolved into anything pragmatic. Kind of like the DNR and LNR today, being propped up by Russian funding and arms. I’m really surprised that somebody as smart as you seem to be, really seem to get your mind around the fact that the Ukrainian nation is a real one, with over 50,000,000 adherents around the globe – you’re starting to sound a lot like one of those Russian nationalists (not many, thank god) that roamed mostly in Russia and the southern part of Ukraine during the early 20th century:
    y books

    The Black Hundreds denied the existence of a Ukrainian nation, defined Ukrainians as Russians,[5] and attracted the support of ethnic Ukrainian Russophiles who considered themselves Russian.[6] The Black Hundred movement actively campaigned against what it considered to be Ukrainian separatism, as well as against promoting Ukrainian culture and language in general, and against the works of Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko in particular.[7] In Odessa, the Black Hundreds shut down the local branch of the Ukrainian Prosvita society, an organization that was dedicated to spreading literacy in the Ukrainian language and Ukrainian cultural awareness.[6]

    Is it premature yet to ask you whether your thinking about Ukraine has in large part been formed by Russian nationalist writers like, Alexander Dubrovin, Vladimir Purishkevich, Nikolai Markov, A. I. Trishatny, or others? Looking over your book reviews, I fail to see any books whatsoever devoted to Ukrainian history or culture, and yet you posit yourself as some sort of expert on the topic?….

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    • Replies: @iffen
    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/who-are-you-in-1917-russia/

    Who Are You in 1917 Russia?

    The (excellent) historical journal Arzamas has a quiz, now translated into English, about your political compass location in the context of 1917 Russia.

    My own (AK) result, probably unsurprisingly, was Black Hundreds.

     

  7. I get it, you are another Western missionary bringing the light to the Eastern savages. Just like the socialists in late 19th century brought Marxism, liberals in late 20th century brought “free market” libertarianism, you are bringing the good word of HBD-IQism.
    Your chances are good. It is, after all, traditional that Western ideologies rejected at home (just like actual workers rejected Marxism and actual capitalists rejected Libertarianism, actual smart people overwhelmingly reject HBDism) find their true home in Russia.

    AK: My two partners on the podcast are both Russians who have always lived in Russia. Troll harder.

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    • Replies: @iffen
    actual smart people overwhelmingly reject HBDism

    Keep telling yourself this. It won't actually make you any smarter though.
  8. Well, good luck with widening the debate in Russia.

    However, absorbing nationalities into Gubernayas is a step on the route to breakup. The Kazan Tatars for example have spent 500 years not being Russian. Some resistance might be provoked. They needed buying off.

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    • Replies: @Boris N

    The Kazan Tatars for example have spent 500 years not being Russian. Some resistance might be provoked.
     
    If I remember the numbers right 2/3 of Tatars live outside of Tatarstan. That is they're deprived of the rights they are supposed to get under the current regime of ethnic republics. That is for 2/3 of Tatars the abolition of Tatarstan will do only good. Right now according to the Constitution the only thing republics have in particular is their right to set up their own state language(s). That is, as I said, only 1/3 of Tatars enjoy that right. Without any republics but with universal language rights Tatars would rather gain than loose. I feel OK if the minorities will get their language rights everywhere where they live compactly, not only within their republics (and not every minority has its republic). That is it is much better to establish official languages on the level of districts or settlements rather than on the level of republics, where often the language is imposed on "non-titular" population. Like a half of Tatarstan are Russians but they have to learn Tatar, while Tatars outside of Tatarstan cannot do that, isn't that stupid?
  9. First, I want to help introduce the Alt Right to Russian nationalists, and vice versa. Second, I am trying to place Russian nationalism on a firmer, more scientific ideological footing, by importing useful concepts developed primarily in the West and applying them to Russian realities,

    When american * say he want to import some usefull concepts to Russia – russian must look for big stick :D Can’t resist. Event thought I often hate you, at lest you most of the time get things right.

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  10. I notice the map you include shades in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania.

    The map categorizes them as “Territories to be Returned”. (?)

    A Ctrl-F for ‘Baltic’, ‘Estonia’, ‘Latvia’, ‘Lithuania’ in your article all come up empty.

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Obviously I don't agree with Sputnik and Pogrom (or rather its individual authors) on everything.
    , @Anonymous
    He's just making rationalizations for Russian imperialism. Russia only even exists today because the US saved its ass in WW2. The US has a better claim to those lands than Russia does.
  11. @Hail
    I notice the map you include shades in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania.

    The map categorizes them as "Territories to be Returned". (?)

    A Ctrl-F for 'Baltic', 'Estonia', 'Latvia', 'Lithuania' in your article all come up empty.

    Obviously I don’t agree with Sputnik and Pogrom (or rather its individual authors) on everything.

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    • Replies: @Hail
    What is Zhirinovsky’s position on the Baltic republics issue?
  12. @Anatoly Karlin
    Obviously I don't agree with Sputnik and Pogrom (or rather its individual authors) on everything.

    What is Zhirinovsky’s position on the Baltic republics issue?

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  13. I don’t like that map. The person who drew it understands very little about the actual geography and the demographic profiles. Especially Kazakhstan. Actually he wants to bring in, along with ethnic Russians, a lot of ethnic Kazakhs. So that map might be drawn by Dugin himself.

    https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kazakhstan_European_2016_Rus.png

    And I’m not very sure about the western extend of Little Russia. If we follow HBD, we must accept that the Ukrainians west to Dnieper are the lost cause, hardly better than Central Asians. Moldovans as well. Better give them to Poland and Romania respectively.

    And of course, there is absolutely no need for the Baltic pugs, especially Lithuania, where few Russians are left.

    Apart from that silly Manilov’s imperialism I agree with their program.

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    • Replies: @guy
    If they want to annex the baltics and moldova, why not annex georgia, armenia, and romania too?(not finland) I'm assuming this is done by military conquest because the Russians can handle these areas using their military Quite honestly, the north kazakhstan annexations actually seem the MOST realistic out of all of these, because russian identity is strengthened by being around Kazakhs.
  14. [something like 80% of psychometrics and evopsych research takes place in the US]

    And not surprisingly, those things are crap.

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  15. @Anatoly Karlin

    Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone?
     
    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians - all three major branches of Russians - just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

    ...its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires
     
    There was nothing colonial about the relationship under either Tsarism or the USSR. The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).

    Russian nationalists need to be able to distinguish between a healthy dose of nationalism, often referred to as patriotism, and the unhealthy sort of nationalism tied to its imperial past.
     
    There is even less point to being patriotic wrt the Russian Federation than wrt the Soviet Union.

    ... at these photos taken 100 years ago
     
    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence. The Idel Ural Republic. Even "Green Ukraine" in the Far East!

    “Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone?”

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

    ..And all three major branches of Romans – Italians, Spaniards and Frenchmen – belong to each other. Not to mention Romanians and Portuguese.

    And perhaps all branches of the Spaniards – Afro Caribbeans, Mexican Mestizos, Spaniards – belong to each other also. Their speech is at least the same.

    In the real world, your idea of a unitary Slavic Rus state is mostly svidomist fantasy, admittedly backed historically up the Russian military. Ukraine spent more time with Poland than it did with Russia and for understandable reasons its culture is between the two.

    …its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires

    There was nothing colonial about the relationship under either Tsarism or the USSR

    Nonsense. I’m inclined to agree with Anatol Lieven, who concluded that in an analogy with Britain, Ukraine’s relationship to Russia had elements both of a colony (as Ireland) and as a junior partnership (Scotland) with respect to Russia. It wasn’t as simple as in Ukrainian and Russian nationalist discourse.

    The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).

    Even if true, this doesn’t prove anything. Some colonies were objects of investment. The Japanese invested in Korea and Manchuria, and Germany invested in East Africa, for example.

    … at these photos taken 100 years ago

    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence

    Russian nationalism (that is, Great Russian nationalism as it would be understood in 19th and early 20th century terms) was even more strange and new in those lands.

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    • Agree: Mr. Hack
    • Replies: @guy
    the prospect of portuguese-spanish unification is still being considered, and german-austrian unification ideas are not dead yet but severely weakened by historical events
  16. @Philip Owen
    Well, good luck with widening the debate in Russia.

    However, absorbing nationalities into Gubernayas is a step on the route to breakup. The Kazan Tatars for example have spent 500 years not being Russian. Some resistance might be provoked. They needed buying off.

    The Kazan Tatars for example have spent 500 years not being Russian. Some resistance might be provoked.

    If I remember the numbers right 2/3 of Tatars live outside of Tatarstan. That is they’re deprived of the rights they are supposed to get under the current regime of ethnic republics. That is for 2/3 of Tatars the abolition of Tatarstan will do only good. Right now according to the Constitution the only thing republics have in particular is their right to set up their own state language(s). That is, as I said, only 1/3 of Tatars enjoy that right. Without any republics but with universal language rights Tatars would rather gain than loose. I feel OK if the minorities will get their language rights everywhere where they live compactly, not only within their republics (and not every minority has its republic). That is it is much better to establish official languages on the level of districts or settlements rather than on the level of republics, where often the language is imposed on “non-titular” population. Like a half of Tatarstan are Russians but they have to learn Tatar, while Tatars outside of Tatarstan cannot do that, isn’t that stupid?

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    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    On a Friday night, the streets in the centre of Saratov are full of women in headscarves heading for the Mosque. On Moscow Street, one of the two main streets, there is a branch of the University of Tatarstan next to the Tatarstan cultural institute. Their banks are prominent. In the mafia era, two of the biggest gangs were Tatars as was the governor and the clans that supported him. Mostly, they were moved in to replace the Germans, who nevertheless fielded the richest mafia gang, although reduced in numbers by deportations.

    I am Welsh and I disagree with your language policy. It confines smaller languages and ethnic groups to oblivion. If Russian colonists in Estonia, the Donbass or Tatarstan chose to live there, they should learn the local language and observe the major local festivals and customs. When the colonies are large, there is no reason why the colonial language should not also be offered as a subject. Welsh language secondary schools offer English as a taught subject. As it happens, most schools are in any case English medium. Irish and English immigration to the southern coalfield from 1880 to 1926 (the same time as Russians arrived in Yusovka) was enormous, a million unskilled immigrants joined a million highly skilled locals.

    That said, there are parts of Russia with large Ukrainian ( at least Cossack) settlements yet there is not one Ukrainian language school in Russia. If the Ukrainians were recent migrants, then I would apply the language and cultural policies of the second paragraph. However, for example, in Western Saratov, the Ukrainians (Don Cossacks in this case) have been there longer than the Great Russians who arrived about 200 years ago. So in this case, the cultural rights should be theirs but not one village has a Ukrainian school.

    I feel that there should be a national language in the historical ethnic boundaries. Outside those areas, it is up to the immigrant communities to organize themselves. Russian speaking mothers in Cardiff in the UK run a Saturday school in the same building that the Japanese run theirs. The Yemeni's hold theirs in the mosque (the oldest in Britain). It is even reasonable that there should be some public support for this. The Welsh speaking Japanese joke of 1970's Welsh rugby supporters became real and has resulted in serious inward investment. There are Welsh language support centres in Ohio, Toronto, Auckland and the Chubut valley of Argentina which receive support from Wales like the Tatar centres in Saratov receive support from Tatarstan. (or the Germans when there were still young ones around).

    Too busy to write a short letter but you made an interesting point about state (RF) wide access.
    , @iffen
    If I remember the numbers right 2/3 of Tatars live outside of Tatarstan

    Now that it's part of Russia again, you could let all of the Tatars move back to Crimea. :)
  17. : Honestly, if Russia was somehow able to successfully annex all of Ukraine and Belarus, it would very likely weaken itself rather than strengthen itself. After all, such an annexation would very likely create a ticking time bomb within Russia due to the fact that tens of millions of people who have no desire to be a part of Russia will nevertheless be put inside of Russia. If you want an analogy to this, you can think of Thailand forcibly annexing Laos right now, but on a much larger scale.

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    • Replies: @Boris N

    If you want an analogy to this, you can think of Thailand forcibly annexing Laos right now, but on a much larger scale.
     
    No, it is like if the Allies cut out independent Bavaria and Swabia out of Germany after WWII and then created the Bavarian and Swabian languages and the Bavarian and Swabian national identities, but now "mainland" Germany wants a reunification. Reincorporating Ukraine and Belarus and Northern Kazakhstan has nothing to do with Russian imperialism, it is rather like Russian Reconquista or Risorgimento, it is Russian irredentism not imperialism. On the other hand if Russia wanted to conquer Uzbekistan or Armenia or Finland or Manchuria or Alaska, I would say it is indeed old good imperialism like Thailand conquering Laos or whatever. This is why, by the way, I think annexing also Moldova and the Baltics is not a good idea (the latter also because of an inevitable clash with NATO).
  18. : While we’re at it, why not talk about how Germans and Austrians should be in one country as well as how Kazakhs and Kyrgyz, Thai and Lao people, Romanians and Moldovans, Bulgarians and Macedonians, et cetera need to be unified?

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    • Replies: @AP
    Or Swedes, Danes and Norwegians. The languages are closer, and mutual history about as extensive.
  19. AK: My two partners on the podcast are both Russians who have always lived in Russia. Troll harder.

    BTW, why does Nesterov have such an ostentatious American accent when he says English words? Even his voice tone in Russian sounds foreign. I thought he’s lived for a long time in America like you. On the contrary your accent in English is very Russian, I couldn’t believe when I heard you, I thought after so many years you would speak flawless English. And you hardly have an English accent in Russian, only small mistakes here and there (mainly in word stresses), sometimes you pronounce some sounds wrong (like “sh” and “zh”) but most will consider you have a speech defect rather than an accent.

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Nesterov went to an English language immersion school in Moscow.

    Accents are a strange thing. Most people don't have any control over them.
  20. : Why exactly would Nazarbayev agree to grand autonomy to Northern Kazakhstan? After all, aren’t its demographics gradually changing in favor of the Kazakhs?

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  21. @Mr. XYZ
    @Mr. Hack: Honestly, if Russia was somehow able to successfully annex all of Ukraine and Belarus, it would very likely weaken itself rather than strengthen itself. After all, such an annexation would very likely create a ticking time bomb within Russia due to the fact that tens of millions of people who have no desire to be a part of Russia will nevertheless be put inside of Russia. If you want an analogy to this, you can think of Thailand forcibly annexing Laos right now, but on a much larger scale.

    If you want an analogy to this, you can think of Thailand forcibly annexing Laos right now, but on a much larger scale.

    No, it is like if the Allies cut out independent Bavaria and Swabia out of Germany after WWII and then created the Bavarian and Swabian languages and the Bavarian and Swabian national identities, but now “mainland” Germany wants a reunification. Reincorporating Ukraine and Belarus and Northern Kazakhstan has nothing to do with Russian imperialism, it is rather like Russian Reconquista or Risorgimento, it is Russian irredentism not imperialism. On the other hand if Russia wanted to conquer Uzbekistan or Armenia or Finland or Manchuria or Alaska, I would say it is indeed old good imperialism like Thailand conquering Laos or whatever. This is why, by the way, I think annexing also Moldova and the Baltics is not a good idea (the latter also because of an inevitable clash with NATO).

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    • Replies: @German_reader
    "and the Baltics is not a good idea (the latter also because of an inevitable clash with NATO)."

    Annexing the Baltic states would be a clear case of imperialism, as far as I know most of the Russians there are post-1945 colonists, similar to Han Chinese in Tibet. It would undoubtedly destroy a lot of good will in Europe even among people who are in favour of better relations with Russia and accept e.g. the annexation of Crimea as de facto irreversible. I really hope it never comes to that.
    , @AP

    No, it is like if the Allies cut out independent Bavaria and Swabia out of Germany after WWII and then created the Bavarian and Swabian languages and the Bavarian and Swabian national identities, but now “mainland” Germany wants a reunification
     
    Someone cut Ukraine out of Russia (Great Russia) in the 13th century? That is the latest time that the speech of Russia and of Ukraine began to diverge.

    "National identity" was "Little Russian" (not Great Russian, which is what we call Russian) in the late 18th/early 19th century, Ukrainian by end of the 19th in Galicia and early 20th in the rest of Ukraine - not World War II times. There was never a widespread Great Russian identity among Little Russians/Ukrainians in Ukraine.

    Reincorporating Ukraine and Belarus and Northern Kazakhstan has nothing to do with Russian imperialism, it is rather like Russian Reconquista or Risorgimento, it is Russian irredentism not imperialism.
     
    Like if Romania decided to gather lands of the Roman Empire and annex Italy etc. Too bad for Romania, and I suppose good for Italy, that Romania did not somehow become a massive Eurasian land empire.
  22. I already wrote in some other article about Kazakhstan and chance Russia had to keep it in 1991 when 40% of Kazakhstan were Russians, plus you can add other Slavs and Europeans (Ukrainians, Germans etc.) and it would be about 50% of population. Now situation is different. Only about 1/4 of Kazakhstan is Russian or European.
    If Kazakhstan remained part of Russia after the collapse of USSR situation in that bigger Russia would be something like this – Russians 78% (instead of 81%), other Slavs and Europeans about 5%. Today if we combine Russia and Kazakhstan situation is like this – Russians 75% (instead of 81%), other Slavs and Europeans about 3%. Still reasonably ok, if you consider more land Russia could have.
    But your suggestion of taking only northern Kazakhstan is much better, but I’m not sure it will happen. Also I think Boris N is right about the map.
    Your number of over 4 million Russians…well it would be nice if that’s correct but I’m not sure (2009 Kazakhstan census – Russians about 3.8 million or 23.7% + 600k other Europeans).
    Baltic republics should be considered definitely gone, they are now part od EU and NATO and it would be foolish to fight for them. Only Belarus as a whole seems to perfectly fit in Great Russia. Ukraine unfortunately is going away, and it’s sad for two brotherly nation to became enemies (also map is unrealistic there, maybe eastern parts of Ukraine are still pro-Russian). That said I’m also Slav and I wish the best to both countries. It’s better to have two friendly countries than one where one big part of it would be antagonistic, that can’t be good in the long run. So stay away from Baltics, Ukraine (except Crimea ofc. and some eastern parts) and from a lot of Kazakhstan.

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    I agree with this.

    I stated the number of Russians from Kazakhstan off the top of my head, which was pretty close. The 600k other Europeans would be mostly Ukrainians, who are close to fully Russified. There's also some Germanic remnants but 90% of them have left for Germany by now.
  23. @Boris N

    If you want an analogy to this, you can think of Thailand forcibly annexing Laos right now, but on a much larger scale.
     
    No, it is like if the Allies cut out independent Bavaria and Swabia out of Germany after WWII and then created the Bavarian and Swabian languages and the Bavarian and Swabian national identities, but now "mainland" Germany wants a reunification. Reincorporating Ukraine and Belarus and Northern Kazakhstan has nothing to do with Russian imperialism, it is rather like Russian Reconquista or Risorgimento, it is Russian irredentism not imperialism. On the other hand if Russia wanted to conquer Uzbekistan or Armenia or Finland or Manchuria or Alaska, I would say it is indeed old good imperialism like Thailand conquering Laos or whatever. This is why, by the way, I think annexing also Moldova and the Baltics is not a good idea (the latter also because of an inevitable clash with NATO).

    “and the Baltics is not a good idea (the latter also because of an inevitable clash with NATO).”

    Annexing the Baltic states would be a clear case of imperialism, as far as I know most of the Russians there are post-1945 colonists, similar to Han Chinese in Tibet. It would undoubtedly destroy a lot of good will in Europe even among people who are in favour of better relations with Russia and accept e.g. the annexation of Crimea as de facto irreversible. I really hope it never comes to that.

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    • Replies: @Hail

    Annexing the Baltic states would be a clear case of imperialism
     
    My impression is that support for political integration into the Russian Federation by persons with four Estonian, Latvian, or Lithuanian grandparents (i.e. local ethnics with no 'Soviet' blood ties) would be at most, what, 1 or 2%.
    , @Boris N

    Annexing the Baltic states would be a clear case of imperialism, as far as I know most of the Russians there are post-1945 colonists
     
    But Russian nationalists have a point. You must know there is a significant Russian minority there, up to a third of the population in both Estonia and Latvia. You see, it is a strange thing to have a Russia with Chechnya, Ingushetia, Daghestan, where there are hardly 5% of Russians (Ingushetia is a record holder with less 1% of Russians) or even with Tuva (Russians 15%) and Chuvashia (Russians 25%), while Russia cannot have Estonia and Latvia where a third are Russians.

    But even with these considerations the Baltics are not worth it. It is an ultimate backwater from the point of view of both Europe and Russia. There are nothing useful there. Their ports are close to useless, they have little to no resources, climate is damp, and full of hostile people (though no as hostile as Chechens were, but why bother?) and if not for ethnic Russians there Russian nationalists may have as little interest to them as to Mongolia or Bhutan.

    And the only occasion when Russia could do any move towards them is when NATO ceases to exist, which is unlikely in the near future, and most importantly when Russia becomes a true Russian state, which is unlikely as well. What will happen in 50 or 100 years nobody knows.

    similar to Han Chinese in Tibet.
     
    Well, a self-contradicting example. Tibet is a part of China, the Baltics are not a part of Russia, this is why Russia dares not even thinking.

    It would undoubtedly destroy a lot of good will in Europe even among people who are in favour of better relations with Russia and accept e.g. the annexation of Crimea as de facto irreversible.
     
    Russians must stop to worry about what Europeans would think and how to appease them like a submissive slave, not to say to appease insignificant Russophile marginals. The Westerners understands only power. They understand any attempt to appease them as a sign that you are weak.
  24. @Boris N
    I don't like that map. The person who drew it understands very little about the actual geography and the demographic profiles. Especially Kazakhstan. Actually he wants to bring in, along with ethnic Russians, a lot of ethnic Kazakhs. So that map might be drawn by Dugin himself.
    https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Kazakhstan_European_2016_Rus.png

    And I'm not very sure about the western extend of Little Russia. If we follow HBD, we must accept that the Ukrainians west to Dnieper are the lost cause, hardly better than Central Asians. Moldovans as well. Better give them to Poland and Romania respectively.

    And of course, there is absolutely no need for the Baltic pugs, especially Lithuania, where few Russians are left.

    Apart from that silly Manilov's imperialism I agree with their program.

    If they want to annex the baltics and moldova, why not annex georgia, armenia, and romania too?(not finland) I’m assuming this is done by military conquest because the Russians can handle these areas using their military Quite honestly, the north kazakhstan annexations actually seem the MOST realistic out of all of these, because russian identity is strengthened by being around Kazakhs.

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    • Replies: @Boris N

    If they want to annex the baltics and moldova, why not annex georgia, armenia, and romania too?(not finland)
     
    The Baltics have a significant Russian population, while Georgia, Armenia and Romania do not (Armenia is 98% mono-ethnic Armenian). And Russian nationalists do not like southern non-Slavic and non-European people in general.
  25. @Mr. XYZ
    @AP: While we're at it, why not talk about how Germans and Austrians should be in one country as well as how Kazakhs and Kyrgyz, Thai and Lao people, Romanians and Moldovans, Bulgarians and Macedonians, et cetera need to be unified?

    Or Swedes, Danes and Norwegians. The languages are closer, and mutual history about as extensive.

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  26. @AP

    "Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone?"

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.
     
    ..And all three major branches of Romans - Italians, Spaniards and Frenchmen - belong to each other. Not to mention Romanians and Portuguese.

    And perhaps all branches of the Spaniards - Afro Caribbeans, Mexican Mestizos, Spaniards - belong to each other also. Their speech is at least the same.

    In the real world, your idea of a unitary Slavic Rus state is mostly svidomist fantasy, admittedly backed historically up the Russian military. Ukraine spent more time with Poland than it did with Russia and for understandable reasons its culture is between the two.

    …its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires

    There was nothing colonial about the relationship under either Tsarism or the USSR
     
    Nonsense. I'm inclined to agree with Anatol Lieven, who concluded that in an analogy with Britain, Ukraine's relationship to Russia had elements both of a colony (as Ireland) and as a junior partnership (Scotland) with respect to Russia. It wasn't as simple as in Ukrainian and Russian nationalist discourse.

    The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).
     
    Even if true, this doesn't prove anything. Some colonies were objects of investment. The Japanese invested in Korea and Manchuria, and Germany invested in East Africa, for example.

    … at these photos taken 100 years ago

    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence
     
    Russian nationalism (that is, Great Russian nationalism as it would be understood in 19th and early 20th century terms) was even more strange and new in those lands.

    the prospect of portuguese-spanish unification is still being considered, and german-austrian unification ideas are not dead yet but severely weakened by historical events

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    • Replies: @AP
    Germans and Austrians speak the same language.
  27. : Actually, I think that Thailand and Laos is a good analogy for this. After all, as far as I know, Laos was previously a part of Thailand and also has a language which is mutually intelligible to Thai. In this regard, Laos appears to be for Thailand something similar–but smaller (population-wise)–to what Ukraine is for Russia.

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    • Replies: @A Wandering Finn
    Very true. There actually existed (exists?) a "Pan-Thai" political movement, which was quite influential during and before WWII. It wanted to "return" Laos to Thailand. Laos was seen as a part of greater Thai nation (e.g. very similar language and same religion) that for forcibly cut out of national unity by the French.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thailand_in_World_War_II

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thailand#/media/File:ThailandWithFlags.gif
  28. : Yes; correct! Indeed, there are numerous counterexamples to the idea that similar peoples and ethnic groups must all live together in one country.

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  29. : Also, some version of a Ukrainian national identity existed even before the start of World War I. Indeed, this is why there was a separate census entry in the 1897 Imperial Russian census for “Little Russians” (as well as another one for “White Russians”). Plus, this is not to mention the Ukrainians in Austria-Hungary–indeed, Ukrainians whom Imperial Russian minister Pyotr Durnovo warned (in February 1914) against annexing to Russia due to his (accurate) fear that Ukrainian nationalism is “contagious.”

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    • Agree: AP, Philip Owen
    • Replies: @AP
    Russia had a decent, but far from certain, chance of assimilating Ukraine after the Napoleonic wars, if it had given Warsaw to Austria and instead taken Galicia. This would have denied Ukrainian nationalist exiles from the Russian Empire a friendly place populated by Ukrainians in which their ideas would develop a mass following. It might have made Ukrainians more like Belarusians, though there still would have been considerable differences. Little Russians/Ukrainians had a history of brief statehood and lengthy autonomy, as well as of warfare against Russians, that Belarus did not have, after all.

    By the 20th century it was clearly too late.
  30. @Boris N

    If you want an analogy to this, you can think of Thailand forcibly annexing Laos right now, but on a much larger scale.
     
    No, it is like if the Allies cut out independent Bavaria and Swabia out of Germany after WWII and then created the Bavarian and Swabian languages and the Bavarian and Swabian national identities, but now "mainland" Germany wants a reunification. Reincorporating Ukraine and Belarus and Northern Kazakhstan has nothing to do with Russian imperialism, it is rather like Russian Reconquista or Risorgimento, it is Russian irredentism not imperialism. On the other hand if Russia wanted to conquer Uzbekistan or Armenia or Finland or Manchuria or Alaska, I would say it is indeed old good imperialism like Thailand conquering Laos or whatever. This is why, by the way, I think annexing also Moldova and the Baltics is not a good idea (the latter also because of an inevitable clash with NATO).

    No, it is like if the Allies cut out independent Bavaria and Swabia out of Germany after WWII and then created the Bavarian and Swabian languages and the Bavarian and Swabian national identities, but now “mainland” Germany wants a reunification

    Someone cut Ukraine out of Russia (Great Russia) in the 13th century? That is the latest time that the speech of Russia and of Ukraine began to diverge.

    “National identity” was “Little Russian” (not Great Russian, which is what we call Russian) in the late 18th/early 19th century, Ukrainian by end of the 19th in Galicia and early 20th in the rest of Ukraine – not World War II times. There was never a widespread Great Russian identity among Little Russians/Ukrainians in Ukraine.

    Reincorporating Ukraine and Belarus and Northern Kazakhstan has nothing to do with Russian imperialism, it is rather like Russian Reconquista or Risorgimento, it is Russian irredentism not imperialism.

    Like if Romania decided to gather lands of the Roman Empire and annex Italy etc. Too bad for Romania, and I suppose good for Italy, that Romania did not somehow become a massive Eurasian land empire.

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    • Replies: @Anon
    Actually, Bavaria and Wuerttemberg make a good comparison. See https://bar.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boarisch and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swabian_German .
    , @Boris N

    Someone cut Ukraine out of Russia (Great Russia) in the 13th century? That is the latest time that the speech of Russia and of Ukraine began to diverge.
     
    The speech of Northern and Southern Germany began to diverge in the mid of the 1st millennium AD. The speech of the various parts of Italy began to diverge around the same time. Why the diversification of some East Slavic dialects 700 years ago is of an utmost fundamental importance can be understood only by Ukrainian ideologists who invented this criteria.

    “National identity” was “Little Russian” (not Great Russian, which is what we call Russian) in the late 18th/early 19th century,
     
    The identity was Russian. But when WWI started Russian suddenly becomes Ukrainian.
    http://politichanka.livejournal.com/181144.html

    (I know you'll say "Russian" meant "Ukrainian" and Tatar-Mongol-Moskals just stole the name of Rus, etc., your usual Ukrainian nonsense, but that sudden turn in those particular newspaper is indeed hilarious.)

    There was never a widespread Great Russian identity among Little Russians/Ukrainians in Ukraine.
     
    "Russian" was not confined to "Great Russian", you know this, it was inclusive not exclusive.

    Like if Romania decided to gather lands of the Roman Empire and annex Italy etc.
     
    Romania wants Moldova. Though Moldovans failed to create a Moldovan language different from Romanian. So, unlucky for Moldovans, they cannot bring in the language argument. Though, there is a close example, right there in the Balkans. Bulgarians have never accepted Macedonia and Macedonian and indeed would be happy to annex it. Though, you may claim that Macedonian was not created in 1944 as an opposite to Bulgarian, but existed from the time of Alexander the Great.
  31. Russian nationalist should be more humble here I think. They should consider themselves lucky if Belarus and parts of Kazakhstan join Russia. Other then that looks unrealistic and even impossible. Ukraine naturally would fit perfectly but today Ukrainians don’t want that, and it’s impossible that Russia can just take control of a country that size. And it would be immoral.
    Moldova???I didn’t notice Moldova is also included. I don’t understand why. Ok Priednostovie, but it’s far way, there is a whole of Ukraine between.
    Belarus and only parts of northern Kazakhstan joining Russia seems only possible and desirable outcome.

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  32. @Mr. XYZ
    @Boris N: Also, some version of a Ukrainian national identity existed even before the start of World War I. Indeed, this is why there was a separate census entry in the 1897 Imperial Russian census for "Little Russians" (as well as another one for "White Russians"). Plus, this is not to mention the Ukrainians in Austria-Hungary--indeed, Ukrainians whom Imperial Russian minister Pyotr Durnovo warned (in February 1914) against annexing to Russia due to his (accurate) fear that Ukrainian nationalism is "contagious."

    Russia had a decent, but far from certain, chance of assimilating Ukraine after the Napoleonic wars, if it had given Warsaw to Austria and instead taken Galicia. This would have denied Ukrainian nationalist exiles from the Russian Empire a friendly place populated by Ukrainians in which their ideas would develop a mass following. It might have made Ukrainians more like Belarusians, though there still would have been considerable differences. Little Russians/Ukrainians had a history of brief statehood and lengthy autonomy, as well as of warfare against Russians, that Belarus did not have, after all.

    By the 20th century it was clearly too late.

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    • Replies: @Mr. Hack

    By the 20th century it was clearly too late.
     
    Not if I understand Karlin's opinion on the matter. He still seems to think that there's still some time to apparently do some large scale, old fashioned assimilation (Russification) of the Ukrainians. But to be totally fair to Anatoly, outside of admitting that the Russians, Ukrainians and Byelorusians all constitute one larger Russian nation:

    The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians
     
    he actually is keeping his cards close to his vest, not wanting to divulge just how the Russian state intends to inculcate this feeling of mutuality between these three branches. Last that I heard, this thesis wasn't gaining any formidable strength within Ukraine :-)
  33. Only Belarus as a whole seems to perfectly fit in Great Russia. Ukraine unfortunately is going away, and it’s sad for two brotherly nation to became enemies (also map is unrealistic there, maybe eastern parts of Ukraine are still pro-Russian).

    Right bank fit as good as bellorussia. Current situation is not important because it’s current and map is fantasy . Balts just nope, I don’t think lot of russian will agree it belong here. I suppose they think landbridge but it not worth it. Some border redraw( if they want to include Narva for example) is sufficient.

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  34. @Boris N

    The Kazan Tatars for example have spent 500 years not being Russian. Some resistance might be provoked.
     
    If I remember the numbers right 2/3 of Tatars live outside of Tatarstan. That is they're deprived of the rights they are supposed to get under the current regime of ethnic republics. That is for 2/3 of Tatars the abolition of Tatarstan will do only good. Right now according to the Constitution the only thing republics have in particular is their right to set up their own state language(s). That is, as I said, only 1/3 of Tatars enjoy that right. Without any republics but with universal language rights Tatars would rather gain than loose. I feel OK if the minorities will get their language rights everywhere where they live compactly, not only within their republics (and not every minority has its republic). That is it is much better to establish official languages on the level of districts or settlements rather than on the level of republics, where often the language is imposed on "non-titular" population. Like a half of Tatarstan are Russians but they have to learn Tatar, while Tatars outside of Tatarstan cannot do that, isn't that stupid?

    On a Friday night, the streets in the centre of Saratov are full of women in headscarves heading for the Mosque. On Moscow Street, one of the two main streets, there is a branch of the University of Tatarstan next to the Tatarstan cultural institute. Their banks are prominent. In the mafia era, two of the biggest gangs were Tatars as was the governor and the clans that supported him. Mostly, they were moved in to replace the Germans, who nevertheless fielded the richest mafia gang, although reduced in numbers by deportations.

    I am Welsh and I disagree with your language policy. It confines smaller languages and ethnic groups to oblivion. If Russian colonists in Estonia, the Donbass or Tatarstan chose to live there, they should learn the local language and observe the major local festivals and customs. When the colonies are large, there is no reason why the colonial language should not also be offered as a subject. Welsh language secondary schools offer English as a taught subject. As it happens, most schools are in any case English medium. Irish and English immigration to the southern coalfield from 1880 to 1926 (the same time as Russians arrived in Yusovka) was enormous, a million unskilled immigrants joined a million highly skilled locals.

    That said, there are parts of Russia with large Ukrainian ( at least Cossack) settlements yet there is not one Ukrainian language school in Russia. If the Ukrainians were recent migrants, then I would apply the language and cultural policies of the second paragraph. However, for example, in Western Saratov, the Ukrainians (Don Cossacks in this case) have been there longer than the Great Russians who arrived about 200 years ago. So in this case, the cultural rights should be theirs but not one village has a Ukrainian school.

    I feel that there should be a national language in the historical ethnic boundaries. Outside those areas, it is up to the immigrant communities to organize themselves. Russian speaking mothers in Cardiff in the UK run a Saturday school in the same building that the Japanese run theirs. The Yemeni’s hold theirs in the mosque (the oldest in Britain). It is even reasonable that there should be some public support for this. The Welsh speaking Japanese joke of 1970′s Welsh rugby supporters became real and has resulted in serious inward investment. There are Welsh language support centres in Ohio, Toronto, Auckland and the Chubut valley of Argentina which receive support from Wales like the Tatar centres in Saratov receive support from Tatarstan. (or the Germans when there were still young ones around).

    Too busy to write a short letter but you made an interesting point about state (RF) wide access.

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    • Agree: Mr. Hack
    • Replies: @Boris N

    I disagree with your language policy. It confines smaller languages and ethnic groups to oblivion.
     
    On the contrary, the current policy confines small languages to oblivion, because if you have no republic your language is doomed. I only propose each district or settlement to decide what language to use and not to wait when the central republican government authoritatively decides. I see no logic when a Russian village in Tatarstan must comply with the demands of Kazan, while a Tatar village in Ulyanovsk region cannot set up its own local language policy. Anyway, my proposal is not unique: in Poland they can set a local language at the level of gmina (district), namely German and Kashubian. Or in Germany where Sorbs set their language at the local level. Nobody ever proposed to create a Kashubian republic within Poland, or a Sorbian republic within Germany, where Germans must learn Sorbian.

    If Russian colonists in Estonia, the Donbass or Tatarstan chose to live there, they should learn the local language and observe the major local festivals and customs.
     
    I do not see why Russian colonists are in any way different than Anglo or Spanish colonists; I never heard that Spanish-speakers in Latin America learn Amerindian languages en mass, neither Anglos in South Africa learn any African languages. It is always Russian who "must".

    When the colonies are large, there is no reason why the colonial language should not also be offered as a subject.
     
    Propose this to Estonians and Latvians. Or your beloved Ukrainians.

    Welsh language secondary schools offer English as a taught subject. As it happens, most schools are in any case English medium.
     
    Too bad. After centuries of oppression and assimilation, Anglos finally got the idea the Welsh have a right to speak and learn their language. And while Anglos banned Welsh and flogged Welsh pupils for even daring to utter a word in Welsh, in the Russian Empire missionaries opened schools in non-Russian languages, and then the Bolsheviks organized a full-scale de-Russification. Yet still Anglos do not feel they "must" and continue to learn in English, while Russians "must".

    the same time as Russians arrived in Yusovka
     
    You failed to mention how "Ukrainians" happened to live there.

    there is not one Ukrainian language school in Russia.
     
    I have not heard there are Bavarian language schools in Germany, or Neapolitan language schools in Italy, or Yorkshirean language schools in England, or Moravian language schools in the Czech republic. Or, for that matter, Macedonian schools in Bulgaria, or Portuguese language school in Spain (do you know that the Portuguese consider Galician to be a dialect of Portuguese?). Yet it is Russians who always "must".

    However, for example, in Western Saratov, the Ukrainians (Don Cossacks in this case) have been there longer than the Great Russians who arrived about 200 years ago.
     
    You know, you've always amused me. A Welshman living (?) in Saratov who embraces Ukrainian nationalist ideology and mythology and who pushes Ukrainian nationalist agenda. Unbelievable and very amusing. I wonder why you haven't made a step further and haven't said Saratov is primordial Ukrainian ethnic territory.

    If the Ukrainians were recent migrants, then I would apply the language and cultural policies of the second paragraph.
     
    I rather would apply the German, French, or Italian policies. No need for Russia to embrace an anti-Russian separatist ideology and their "language". "Ukrainians" in Russia live quite happy without it. They were lucky - they were spared from "korenizatsiya" and separatist brainwashing.

    but not one village has a Ukrainian school.
     
    Very good. When in Yorkshire the Londonite occupants open schools in Yorkshirean, then maybe Russians would consider opening Ukrainian schools in Saratov.
  35. @guy
    the prospect of portuguese-spanish unification is still being considered, and german-austrian unification ideas are not dead yet but severely weakened by historical events

    Germans and Austrians speak the same language.

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  36. What Russian nationalism is not about is dismembering Russia, transforming it into “Little Russia” around its old Novgorod heartlands, etc.’

    Say Anatoly, wasn’ the real original ‘heartland’ of Russia, Muscovy not Novgorod? This is where the old capital (and new one) was formed, the Russian language evolved, political and cultural attributes developed? In fact, wasn’t it Muscovy that almost totally destroyed old Novgorod in 1570, completely laying waste to this once powerful and independent city, slaughtering thousands of its inhabitants and merchants and nobility? The noble veche was dissolved too, something that’s still having a hard time reemerging within the new Russia.

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    • Replies: @AP
    Correct. Novgorod maybe could have eventually become a fourth East Slavic people but was basically completely destroyed and absorbed by Russia.
  37. : I agree with you that Russia’s best chance to thoroughly Russify Ukraine would have been after the Napoleonic Wars. However, even with a “point of departure” (from our timeline) in the early 20th century, Russia might have been able to partially Russify Ukraine–as in, to turn Ukraine into a Russian version of Scotland or Galicia. To elaborate on this, in such a scenario, Ukraine might have had a strong national identity but also a population whose majority prefer autonomy inside of Russia rather than total independence from Russia.

    Basically, I don’t think that Ukraine’s independence from Russia was pre-ordained. However, I also see absolutely no reason to oppose Ukraine’s decision to become independent in 1991 and beyond. After all, I am certainly a supporter of the principle of national self-determination.

    Finally, it is worth noting that joining the European Union is becoming more and more popular over time in Belarus as well:

    http://belarusdigest.com/story/do-belarusians-want-join-eu-13648

    Indeed, if I had to make a guess in regards to this, I would say that at least a large part of the reason for this is the belief that, due to its greater wealth, the European Union has more to offer Belarus than Russia has.

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    • Agree: Mr. Hack
    • Replies: @AP

    I agree with you that Russia’s best chance to thoroughly Russify Ukraine would have been after the Napoleonic Wars. However, even with a “point of departure” (from our timeline) in the early 20th century, Russia might have been able to partially Russify Ukraine–as in, to turn Ukraine into a Russian version of Scotland or Galicia
     
    By the early 20th century Ukrainian nationalism in Galicia was perhaps even more developed than Lithuanian or Latvian or Estonian nationalism were within the Russian Empire. Galicia could have been subdued, it was small enough, but probably not reconciled to such a fate. And it would have been a bad influence, from the Russian nationalist POV, on the rest of Ukraine. Galicia's Ukrainian nationalism was largely a product of Russian Empire-ruled Ukraine and the literary language in use was essentially renamed Little Russian.

    The only way some sort of reconciliation would have been possible in the early 20th century would have been through the type of massive bribery that the French have in Canada; in Canada almost every PM has been a Frenchman, French is a legal language throughout the country, within Quebec French is the primary language, etc. I can't imagine Russians tolerating this.
  38. @Mr. Hack
    '

    What Russian nationalism is not about is dismembering Russia, transforming it into “Little Russia” around its old Novgorod heartlands, etc.'
     
    Say Anatoly, wasn' the real original 'heartland' of Russia, Muscovy not Novgorod? This is where the old capital (and new one) was formed, the Russian language evolved, political and cultural attributes developed? In fact, wasn't it Muscovy that almost totally destroyed old Novgorod in 1570, completely laying waste to this once powerful and independent city, slaughtering thousands of its inhabitants and merchants and nobility? The noble veche was dissolved too, something that's still having a hard time reemerging within the new Russia.

    Correct. Novgorod maybe could have eventually become a fourth East Slavic people but was basically completely destroyed and absorbed by Russia.

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  39. Zhirinovsky and rest of Russia to leave Baltic States alone. Go meddle in other areas where may be wanted.

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  40. @AP
    Russia had a decent, but far from certain, chance of assimilating Ukraine after the Napoleonic wars, if it had given Warsaw to Austria and instead taken Galicia. This would have denied Ukrainian nationalist exiles from the Russian Empire a friendly place populated by Ukrainians in which their ideas would develop a mass following. It might have made Ukrainians more like Belarusians, though there still would have been considerable differences. Little Russians/Ukrainians had a history of brief statehood and lengthy autonomy, as well as of warfare against Russians, that Belarus did not have, after all.

    By the 20th century it was clearly too late.

    By the 20th century it was clearly too late.

    Not if I understand Karlin’s opinion on the matter. He still seems to think that there’s still some time to apparently do some large scale, old fashioned assimilation (Russification) of the Ukrainians. But to be totally fair to Anatoly, outside of admitting that the Russians, Ukrainians and Byelorusians all constitute one larger Russian nation:

    The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians

    he actually is keeping his cards close to his vest, not wanting to divulge just how the Russian state intends to inculcate this feeling of mutuality between these three branches. Last that I heard, this thesis wasn’t gaining any formidable strength within Ukraine :-)

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  41. @Mr. XYZ
    @AP: I agree with you that Russia's best chance to thoroughly Russify Ukraine would have been after the Napoleonic Wars. However, even with a "point of departure" (from our timeline) in the early 20th century, Russia might have been able to partially Russify Ukraine--as in, to turn Ukraine into a Russian version of Scotland or Galicia. To elaborate on this, in such a scenario, Ukraine might have had a strong national identity but also a population whose majority prefer autonomy inside of Russia rather than total independence from Russia.

    Basically, I don't think that Ukraine's independence from Russia was pre-ordained. However, I also see absolutely no reason to oppose Ukraine's decision to become independent in 1991 and beyond. After all, I am certainly a supporter of the principle of national self-determination.

    Finally, it is worth noting that joining the European Union is becoming more and more popular over time in Belarus as well:

    http://belarusdigest.com/story/do-belarusians-want-join-eu-13648

    Indeed, if I had to make a guess in regards to this, I would say that at least a large part of the reason for this is the belief that, due to its greater wealth, the European Union has more to offer Belarus than Russia has.

    I agree with you that Russia’s best chance to thoroughly Russify Ukraine would have been after the Napoleonic Wars. However, even with a “point of departure” (from our timeline) in the early 20th century, Russia might have been able to partially Russify Ukraine–as in, to turn Ukraine into a Russian version of Scotland or Galicia

    By the early 20th century Ukrainian nationalism in Galicia was perhaps even more developed than Lithuanian or Latvian or Estonian nationalism were within the Russian Empire. Galicia could have been subdued, it was small enough, but probably not reconciled to such a fate. And it would have been a bad influence, from the Russian nationalist POV, on the rest of Ukraine. Galicia’s Ukrainian nationalism was largely a product of Russian Empire-ruled Ukraine and the literary language in use was essentially renamed Little Russian.

    The only way some sort of reconciliation would have been possible in the early 20th century would have been through the type of massive bribery that the French have in Canada; in Canada almost every PM has been a Frenchman, French is a legal language throughout the country, within Quebec French is the primary language, etc. I can’t imagine Russians tolerating this.

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  42. In the early 20th century the Kuban was barely less Ukrainian than what is today South Ukraine.

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/0a/Ukrainian_in_Russian_Empire_1897.png

    Today, the Kuban is solidly Russian, actually probably more ostentatiously patriotic than the Russian average.

    Had Russification continued, all of Ukraine and Belarus would likewise be solidly Russian, just as the diversity of different French cultures became a monolithic France in the 19th century (rural areas were speaking regional languages up until the early 20th century, which were largely mutually unintelligible). China under the Communists is another example; Mao might have been crazy on economic matters, but at least he had the sanity not to promote the development of separate Chinese nations within his own country.

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    • Replies: @AP

    In the early 20th century the Kuban was barely less Ukrainian than what is today South Ukraine.
     
    That's because what is today Southern Ukraine included a large mostly-Russian city, Odessa, which skewed the overall Ukrainian percentage downward for the region as a whole (yet still leaving the region slightly more Ukrainian than Kuban).

    Had Russification continued, all of Ukraine and Belarus would likewise be solidly Russian,
     
    Wishful thinking. Other Ukrainian regions were far less Russian than Kuban.

    just as the diversity of different French cultures became a monolithic France in the 19th century (rural areas were speaking regional languages up until the early 20th century, which were largely mutually unintelligible).
     
    There were also key differences. These regions had been part of France far longer, and subject to intense French cultural pressure since the French Revolution. Ukraine west of the Dnipro river wasn't annexed until the 1770s, and the Russian government left it alone until the late 19th century - so the French had a 100 year head start. Native Little Russian/Ukrainian activists were already active before Russians came in, and there was a native Little Russian/Ukrainian elite with attitudes of superiority vis a vis the Russians.

    Already in the 1917 elections most Ukrainians voted for Ukrainian nationalist parties. Certainly their national idea was less developed than the one in Galicia, but it was already widespread.

    To equalize the situation to France, you would have had to have had intense Russification efforts beginning in the late 18th century, and no significant educated local elite to oppose them and to provide a counter-narrative. Russia could have, actually, done this in the late 18th century, had it been more liberal and Westernizing. The train left the station by the early 20th century.
    , @Philip Owen
    The Cossacks spoke Little Russian but they did not identify so much as Ukrainian as the mainstream population. Kuban Little Russian speakers have a large Cossack fraction which probably would be more tolerant of Russification than straight Ukrainians.
  43. : Doesn’t China still have various widely spoken regional languages (such as Cantonese) even today, though?

    Also, Russifying a couple of million Ukrainians is probably easier than doing the same thing to 40 million Ukrainians.

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    • Replies: @iffen
    same thing to 40 million Ukrainians

    How many millions out of that 40 million want to make this into a life or death matter?

    How many millions just want to get the best economic deal for the Ukraine?

    General knowledge tells me that the overwhelming millions would opt for the best deal and getting on with living rather that going the civil war route for who knows how many decades.

    Even the people in N. Ireland have decided that killing each other is not the route.

    Can you imagine Scots and English taking up killing each other again?

    , @RadicalCenter
    True, but unfortunately the population of Ukraine is plummeting.

    From 1994 to 2015, Ukraine's population fell from 52 million to 42 million.

    It's still in freefall: their total fertility rate is one of the lowest in the world.

    In 25 years, Russia could face the prospect of russifying merely twenty million Ukrainians.
  44. : I agree with you that Galicia might not have been reconciled to such a fate. Indeed, it is possible that Pyotr Durnovo’s prediction would have come true even without Bolshevism and Galicia’s Ukrainian nationalism would have spread to the other Ukrainian-majority parts of the Russian Empire if/after the Russian Empire would have annexed Galicia.

    However, I am simply stating that there was a chance for the Russian Empire to control the spread of Ukrainian nationalism had it played its cards right. Indeed, it is worth noting that, even in real life, Ukrainian nationalism is (or was) weaker in the more Russian-influenced southern and eastern Ukraine than it was in central and western Ukraine.

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    • Replies: @AP

    I agree with you that Galicia might not have been reconciled to such a fate. Indeed, it is possible that Pyotr Durnovo’s prediction would have come true even without Bolshevism and Galicia’s Ukrainian nationalism would have spread to the other Ukrainian-majority parts of the Russian Empire if/after the Russian Empire would have annexed Galicia.
     
    It was already spreading, as evidenced by the clear victory of Ukrainian parties in the 1917 elections. Ukrainian populists were very busy teaching peasant kids, etc. After 1917 there were hundreds of warlords, almost all of whom were to varying degrees some sort of Ukrainian nationalist. This wasn't the case with Belarus.

    Even the anarchist Makhno had as a wife a Ukrainian-language schoolteacher and kept a sort of truce with the nationalist Petliura while constantly fighting with the Whites and at times with the Reds.

    The window would have been the late 18th century.


    However, I am simply stating that there was a chance for the Russian Empire to control the spread of Ukrainian nationalism had it played its cards right. Indeed, it is worth noting that, even in real life, Ukrainian nationalism is (or was) weaker in the more Russian-influenced southern and eastern Ukraine than it was in central and western Ukraine.
     
    Yes, it could have totally been kept out of places such as Donbas, Kharkiv or Odessa. The center and even rural areas of the South were probably a lost cause even then. And Galicia - zero chance of it getting Russified after the early 20th century.
  45. @Anatoly Karlin
    In the early 20th century the Kuban was barely less Ukrainian than what is today South Ukraine.

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/0a/Ukrainian_in_Russian_Empire_1897.png

    Today, the Kuban is solidly Russian, actually probably more ostentatiously patriotic than the Russian average.

    Had Russification continued, all of Ukraine and Belarus would likewise be solidly Russian, just as the diversity of different French cultures became a monolithic France in the 19th century (rural areas were speaking regional languages up until the early 20th century, which were largely mutually unintelligible). China under the Communists is another example; Mao might have been crazy on economic matters, but at least he had the sanity not to promote the development of separate Chinese nations within his own country.

    In the early 20th century the Kuban was barely less Ukrainian than what is today South Ukraine.

    That’s because what is today Southern Ukraine included a large mostly-Russian city, Odessa, which skewed the overall Ukrainian percentage downward for the region as a whole (yet still leaving the region slightly more Ukrainian than Kuban).

    Had Russification continued, all of Ukraine and Belarus would likewise be solidly Russian,

    Wishful thinking. Other Ukrainian regions were far less Russian than Kuban.

    just as the diversity of different French cultures became a monolithic France in the 19th century (rural areas were speaking regional languages up until the early 20th century, which were largely mutually unintelligible).

    There were also key differences. These regions had been part of France far longer, and subject to intense French cultural pressure since the French Revolution. Ukraine west of the Dnipro river wasn’t annexed until the 1770s, and the Russian government left it alone until the late 19th century – so the French had a 100 year head start. Native Little Russian/Ukrainian activists were already active before Russians came in, and there was a native Little Russian/Ukrainian elite with attitudes of superiority vis a vis the Russians.

    Already in the 1917 elections most Ukrainians voted for Ukrainian nationalist parties. Certainly their national idea was less developed than the one in Galicia, but it was already widespread.

    To equalize the situation to France, you would have had to have had intense Russification efforts beginning in the late 18th century, and no significant educated local elite to oppose them and to provide a counter-narrative. Russia could have, actually, done this in the late 18th century, had it been more liberal and Westernizing. The train left the station by the early 20th century.

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    • Agree: Mr. Hack
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    These regions had been part of France far longer, and subject to intense French cultural pressure since the French Revolution. Ukraine west of the Dnipro river wasn’t annexed until the 1770s, and the Russian government left it alone until the late 19th century – so the French had a 100 year head start.
     
    There's a critical difference here - the French also had a 100 year head start on literacy rates (which is how about 75% of modern national consciousness is formed).

    Literacy rate in France in 1789 = ~25% (much higher around Paris, very low in regions such as the Vendee or the south, which could have potentially developed into separate French nations; it was not the French Revolution, but French schools during the 19th century, that made France truly France).

    Literacy rate in Russia Empire in 1913 = also ~25%
  46. I’m neither Russian nor a nationalist, so what follows is very much an outside observer’s perspective, offered in the same spirit as “whom would I like to win the French election”. I’m not French, so it’s really not my business, yet observers observe and form opinions, and what would the Internet be without idle talk?

    Surprise surprise, the late Soviet model of ethnic republics coupled with the propiska system looks best to me. In this way ethnic continuity can be preserved both for minorities and the majority. For those who don’t know, the propiska system limited population movements to a large extent.

    Making the Chuvash or Tatars or Ossetians disappear through assimilation or making their languages disappear by withdrawing state support for their schools – that’s evil to me. And importing Central Asians to Moscow looks evil to me too. Moscow should be a Russian city, London should English, Paris French, Tokyo Japanese, etc. Financial incentives can be given for migrants to go back.

    My attitude to the map above is negative. The Baltic peoples should be left alone. The Ukrainian-speaking parts of the Ukraine constitute a nation. Ideally that would be an independent state. The southeastern part, from Kharkov all the way through Odessa, can be re-absorbed into Russia without much drama. Same for the entirely of Belarus.

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    Surprise surprise, the late Soviet model of ethnic republics coupled with the propiska system looks best to me.
     
    This is the only realistic model for harmonious coexistence with Central Asia if it was to be unified with Russia, but otherwise, restrictions on internal labor mobility are hell for economic efficiency (not to mention a gross restriction on individual rights).

    Making the Chuvash or Tatars or Ossetians disappear through assimilation or making their languages disappear by withdrawing state support for their schools – that’s evil to me.
     
    Well, Boris N. gave a workable solution - devolve language policy to a truly local level, instead of having Tatarstan forcing Russians within it to learn Tatar while Tatars outside Tatarstan have no access to Tatar schooling resources.

    The Baltic peoples should be left alone. The Ukrainian-speaking parts of the Ukraine constitute a nation. Ideally that would be an independent state. The southeastern part, from Kharkov all the way through Odessa, can be re-absorbed into Russia without much drama. Same for the entirely of Belarus.
     
    Malorossiya is an instrinsic part of Russian civilization, though you are correct that the practicalities of reintegration might be insurmountable.

    The Baltics and the part of Ukraine once ruled by the Austro-Hungarian empire should definitely be left alone, just like the South Caucasus.
    , @Hector_St_Clare
    I largely agree with your rejection of the "Great Russia" concept. I don't like the concept of "great" nations in general: smaller countries usually tend to work better than big ones. I really don't get the concept of why Anatoly wants the Ukraine and Belarus incorporated into Russia. Sure, I understand why you might dislike Ukraine and Ukrainians, and I sympathize with much of his stuff regarding the need to stop mass migration, encourage more homogeneous societies, and so forth, but I don't get why "uniting all Russians", much less "uniting all East Slavs" under one national banner is such a goal for some people. Maybe that's just because I'm not a *nationalist* in the strict sense: my natural gut tendency is to divide rather than unite.

    A smaller, more ethnically "Russian" Russia would be much better than a large and diverse one. And this isn't a specific dislike against Russia: I think India and the US are much too large countries as well.

    Also, I like the way Belarus has been run under the neocommunist Lukashenko regime, and I have no desire to see it absorbed into Putin's plutocratic capitalist state. (In fairness to Putin, Russia's Gini index is slightly below America's, but given that we are one of the most unequal industrialized countries that's a very low bar). Belarus has arguably had better outcomes (on GDP growth, inequality and life expectancy for three) from 1991 to the present than Russia has had. From my point of view the independence of Belarus is something to be very strongly defended. (For similar reasons, because I'm hopeful that Novorussia might end up to the left of where Russia is, I'd like the LNR and DNR to be their own countries rather than being absorbed into Russia).
  47. : If one wants to put Russians, Ukrainians, and Belarusians into a single country nowadays, one’s best move might literally be to push for European Union entry for all of these countries and then to push to turn the European Union into a super-state.

    True, this single country would include many other ethnic groups (Germans, French, Italians, Spaniards, Poles, et cetera), but it would still have all of the East Slavic ethnic groups inside of it.

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    • Replies: @Hector_St_Clare
    This really satirizes brilliantly the stupidity of the "unitive" component of nationalism. (I'm quite sympathetic to the "divisive" component).
    , @aly
    I agree with this. But incorporation of Russia into EU looks very unrealistic for foreseeable future. Not only there is no desire for that on both sides, but Russia is maybe too big to be just another big EU-state. Russia will have difficulties accepting that role I think, not to mention Germany/France/Poland/others who would see their influence in EU greatly diminished in that case. But prospects for Ukraine and Belarus to join the EU are real, if not in the near future.
    I'm not that pessimistic about the EU future. Brexit could strengthen EU, not weaken it. To me it's more probable that the EU influence and attractiveness will only grow in Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, so time is running out for Russia.
    Also there seems that today Russia doesn't have any plan or desire to make Russia more Russian (or Slavic&European) with selective expansion. Instead they have this Eurasian Economic Union project whitch is not so good on demographic front for Russia. Let's hope at least Uzbekistan will not join with it's 30+ million (and fast growing) population. Georgia and Armenia are not Slavic nor European but they are at least Christian so I do not consider them as a threat.
    Demography is the most important factor, if there is more Russians it's easier to expand. But today Muslims are the ones who are growing.

    This is off topic but can someone tell me does Russian government provide more incentives (cash or something) in regions where demographic situation is more dire, where TFR is worse, typically Russian-majority regions in central, western and northern parts of european Russia? Couple of years ago i read something about that, that government is making change in demographic policy, with more emphasis to regions with very bad demographics, instead of one-size-fits-all policy. Can someone confirm this? And can we attribute this and last year fall in births in Northern Caucasus, and slight growth or stagnation in central,west and northern european Russia to that?
  48. @Mr. XYZ
    @AP: I agree with you that Galicia might not have been reconciled to such a fate. Indeed, it is possible that Pyotr Durnovo's prediction would have come true even without Bolshevism and Galicia's Ukrainian nationalism would have spread to the other Ukrainian-majority parts of the Russian Empire if/after the Russian Empire would have annexed Galicia.

    However, I am simply stating that there was a chance for the Russian Empire to control the spread of Ukrainian nationalism had it played its cards right. Indeed, it is worth noting that, even in real life, Ukrainian nationalism is (or was) weaker in the more Russian-influenced southern and eastern Ukraine than it was in central and western Ukraine.

    I agree with you that Galicia might not have been reconciled to such a fate. Indeed, it is possible that Pyotr Durnovo’s prediction would have come true even without Bolshevism and Galicia’s Ukrainian nationalism would have spread to the other Ukrainian-majority parts of the Russian Empire if/after the Russian Empire would have annexed Galicia.

    It was already spreading, as evidenced by the clear victory of Ukrainian parties in the 1917 elections. Ukrainian populists were very busy teaching peasant kids, etc. After 1917 there were hundreds of warlords, almost all of whom were to varying degrees some sort of Ukrainian nationalist. This wasn’t the case with Belarus.

    Even the anarchist Makhno had as a wife a Ukrainian-language schoolteacher and kept a sort of truce with the nationalist Petliura while constantly fighting with the Whites and at times with the Reds.

    The window would have been the late 18th century.

    However, I am simply stating that there was a chance for the Russian Empire to control the spread of Ukrainian nationalism had it played its cards right. Indeed, it is worth noting that, even in real life, Ukrainian nationalism is (or was) weaker in the more Russian-influenced southern and eastern Ukraine than it was in central and western Ukraine.

    Yes, it could have totally been kept out of places such as Donbas, Kharkiv or Odessa. The center and even rural areas of the South were probably a lost cause even then. And Galicia – zero chance of it getting Russified after the early 20th century.

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  49. : Wasn’t Occitania a part of France since the Middle Ages? Indeed, Ukraine might be better compared with Scotland (independent until 1707, albeit sharing a common king with England since 1603) and Aragon/Catalonia (independent until 1716, albeit sharing a common monarch with Castile since the late 1400s) than with Occitania.

    Also, do you know to what extent linguistic diversity in China decreased over the last seven decades? After all, don’t various southern Chinese languages still have tens of millions of speakers even right now?

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  50. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Hail
    I notice the map you include shades in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania.

    The map categorizes them as "Territories to be Returned". (?)

    A Ctrl-F for 'Baltic', 'Estonia', 'Latvia', 'Lithuania' in your article all come up empty.

    He’s just making rationalizations for Russian imperialism. Russia only even exists today because the US saved its ass in WW2. The US has a better claim to those lands than Russia does.

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    • Replies: @Hail
    Well that is a bit ridiculous. The Latvians and Estonians have centuries of ties to the Western-Germanic cultural-economic sphere, so today a firm place in a German-led EU makes most sense. As for security, there is no real EU security apparatus (outsourced to NATO) so there's that.

    This does bring up the old dilemma of nationalism. Some Russians are very concerned about the million or two Russians in the Baltic republics (almost all of which relatively recent migrants). What about the nationalism of the Latvians, Estonians? This is a dilemma I'd love to hear reasonable Russian nationalists like our host here discuss.
    , @German_reader
    "Russia only even exists today because the US saved its ass in WW2. "

    I'm no apologist for Russian imperialism (and strongly reject any Russian claims to the Baltic states, also believe most of Ukraine will never voluntarily join a union with Russia), but that statement is simply idiotic. Some of the lend-lease shipments sent to Russia may have been important (especially items like trucks), but face it, US ground troops first fought Germans (that is, a limited number of Germans, in a somewhat peripheral theatre of war) in late 1942/early 1943 - and got trashed. At about the same time the Soviets destroyed an entire German army at Stalingrad.
    , @5371
    This is your brain on Hollywood.
  51. @Anatoly Karlin

    What’s so special about North Kazakhstan? Are there still a lot of Russians there?
     
    Just a little over 4 million. The only region where they still form a solid majority is in the north, in what was once known as "South Siberia."

    One idea is to press for autonomy for the region, and if/when Nazarbaev dies and is replaced by Kazakh nationalists, send in the little green men.

    There's little point in playing for any other Kazakh regions; though the cities there were founded by Russians (e.g. Atyrau used to be Guriev), they are now 90%+ Kazakh.

    Are you in favour of abolishing those republics or what’s your position on them?
     
    The generally favored solution amongst Russian nationalists is to replace the current hodgepodge of oblasts, republics, krais, autonomous republics, okrugs, autonomous okrugs, and whatnot, with their varying levels of autonomy, with the Tsarist era guberniya system.

    What’s the core of Russian identity for you?
     
    Not sure there is one. Ultimately, all nationalities are social constructs to some degree or another, and are a matter of ticking off a certain number of checkmarks:
    * Ancestral homeland in Russia
    * Orthodox heritage
    * Slavic ancestry
    * Knowledge of Russian language
    * Last and least, RF passport

    Of course you can always write a long flowery essay about what constitutes being a Russian (or a German, or a Jew, or whatever), but in the end I think it all boils down to this.

    Is Orthodox Christianity necessarily a central element?
     
    Not really, though I do subscribe somewhat to Orthodox Christianity as being part of implicit Russian identity. (Much like Judaism is for Jews. Golda Meir: "I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people believe in God).

    The generally favored solution amongst Russian nationalists is to replace the current hodgepodge of oblasts, republics, krais, autonomous republics, okrugs, autonomous okrugs, and whatnot, with their varying levels of autonomy, with the Tsarist era guberniya system.

    Completely unrealistic idea. Attempts to implement this approach will lead to deep conflict and possible to civil war.

    A relatively realistic way is to gradually equalize all parts of Russia in rights (for example of the States of the USA)

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  52. @Anonymous
    He's just making rationalizations for Russian imperialism. Russia only even exists today because the US saved its ass in WW2. The US has a better claim to those lands than Russia does.

    Well that is a bit ridiculous. The Latvians and Estonians have centuries of ties to the Western-Germanic cultural-economic sphere, so today a firm place in a German-led EU makes most sense. As for security, there is no real EU security apparatus (outsourced to NATO) so there’s that.

    This does bring up the old dilemma of nationalism. Some Russians are very concerned about the million or two Russians in the Baltic republics (almost all of which relatively recent migrants). What about the nationalism of the Latvians, Estonians? This is a dilemma I’d love to hear reasonable Russian nationalists like our host here discuss.

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  53. @Anonymous
    He's just making rationalizations for Russian imperialism. Russia only even exists today because the US saved its ass in WW2. The US has a better claim to those lands than Russia does.

    “Russia only even exists today because the US saved its ass in WW2. ”

    I’m no apologist for Russian imperialism (and strongly reject any Russian claims to the Baltic states, also believe most of Ukraine will never voluntarily join a union with Russia), but that statement is simply idiotic. Some of the lend-lease shipments sent to Russia may have been important (especially items like trucks), but face it, US ground troops first fought Germans (that is, a limited number of Germans, in a somewhat peripheral theatre of war) in late 1942/early 1943 – and got trashed. At about the same time the Soviets destroyed an entire German army at Stalingrad.

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    • Replies: @biz

    US ground troops first fought Germans (that is, a limited number of Germans, in a somewhat peripheral theatre of war) in late 1942/early 1943 – and got trashed.
     
    Are you referring to Operation Torch in North Africa? Because far from getting trashed, that was a decisive Allied victory.
  54. @German_reader
    "and the Baltics is not a good idea (the latter also because of an inevitable clash with NATO)."

    Annexing the Baltic states would be a clear case of imperialism, as far as I know most of the Russians there are post-1945 colonists, similar to Han Chinese in Tibet. It would undoubtedly destroy a lot of good will in Europe even among people who are in favour of better relations with Russia and accept e.g. the annexation of Crimea as de facto irreversible. I really hope it never comes to that.

    Annexing the Baltic states would be a clear case of imperialism

    My impression is that support for political integration into the Russian Federation by persons with four Estonian, Latvian, or Lithuanian grandparents (i.e. local ethnics with no ‘Soviet’ blood ties) would be at most, what, 1 or 2%.

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    • Replies: @German_reader
    Of course, and there are good reasons for that, anybody with a shred of objectivity can't deny that a grave injustice was done to the Baltic states under Soviet rule. The Russians there are mostly post-1945 colonists and frankly, they should compare their lot with what has happened to colonists in other parts of the world (e.g. "suitcase or coffin" for the pieds noirs in Algeria) to put things into perspective. Having to learn Latvian may be inconvenient, but it's hardly a crime against humanity.
    , @A Wandering Finn
    If even that. Also quite a large proportion (probably a clear majority) of Est-Lat-Liths with one Russian/Slavic and one "native" parent support very much independence of their homelands. There are also many ethnic Russians, especially those who have been born in those countries, are relatively well off and/or educated and have local citizenship, who oppose very vocally - even to the point of overcompensation - the idea of annexing their countries to Russia.
  55. The Chechnya problem. Why keep Chechnya?

    Does anyone propose formally expelling Chechnya and making it a client state to keep an eye on it?

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    • Replies: @melanf

    Does anyone propose formally expelling Chechnya and making it a client state to keep an eye on it?
     
    And what's the point?
    Nationalists dream to expel Chechnya (and also Dagestan and Ingushetia) from Russia, to deport all the natives of these republics, and fenced off by a wall. This idea is quite crazy, but the logic is clear.

    But what's the point to create a "client state"?
    , @Anon

    Why keep Chechnya?
     
    Because Chechnya is not separated from the rest of Russia by an ocean/sea.
    A wall won't solve the problem either.
  56. @Hail

    Annexing the Baltic states would be a clear case of imperialism
     
    My impression is that support for political integration into the Russian Federation by persons with four Estonian, Latvian, or Lithuanian grandparents (i.e. local ethnics with no 'Soviet' blood ties) would be at most, what, 1 or 2%.

    Of course, and there are good reasons for that, anybody with a shred of objectivity can’t deny that a grave injustice was done to the Baltic states under Soviet rule. The Russians there are mostly post-1945 colonists and frankly, they should compare their lot with what has happened to colonists in other parts of the world (e.g. “suitcase or coffin” for the pieds noirs in Algeria) to put things into perspective. Having to learn Latvian may be inconvenient, but it’s hardly a crime against humanity.

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  57. @Anonymous
    He's just making rationalizations for Russian imperialism. Russia only even exists today because the US saved its ass in WW2. The US has a better claim to those lands than Russia does.

    This is your brain on Hollywood.

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  58. Realistically speaking , the Ukraine proper was to Russia what Scotland is to England. Take the comparison further and Belarus is Wales. This is not a perfect analogy but it serves as a good base. I tend to take Ukrainian standard argument about being colonized by the savage Moskali rather incredulously. Were peasants in those regions treated harshly? Yes, but so were most peasants in the old Russian Empire, there was a lot of injustice to go around and the Malorussian provinces were not singled out for particular oppression. Any comparison to Ireland is rather strained (Congress Poland would be the better example, Catholicism and all), because the Ukrainian elite and middle classes were well integrated into the Empire’s power structure, and repressions were meted out based on disloyalty to the central government, not a special racial animus towards destroying the Ukrainians as a people. There’s a chart floating around on this blog about the height and literacy rates of conscripts in the Imperial Army from the late 19th century, the Malorussian recruits were only behind the Baltic provinces in general health and education, in many cases far superior to that of central and eastern Russians. That is not the picture of a people crush by a foreign and hostile occupying power, regardless of the state of local culture, which managed to persist and even flourish when the Tsar did not feel it threatened his monopoly on political power.

    The Stalinist repressions of the Soviet period is the only time I can find where there was serious attempts to single out Ukrainians for punishment. However, both the Holodomor and the Executed Renaissance can be seen as local manifestations of a national program. It is strange how Ukrainians rarely talk about how two million Kazakhs died during the same period (that’s how Kazakhs became a minority in their own republic), or the famine did not effect other Russian regions like Tambov, Astrakhan, and Samara to name a few. Or all of the other ethnic intelligentsia murdered in order to destroy national identity in throughout the USSR. They would come off as a lot more sympathetic if the did.

    I think one major element of the current crisis is this question of identity and relevance. As has been pointed out, the Ukraine was often much wealthier than many regions of Great Russia, and it was the birthplace of many traditions core to the identity of the Russian state in its more abstract form. Remember, Moscow as we know it was first established by Grand Prince of Kiev Yuri Dolgoruky in the middle of the 12th century, and many regions of the Ukraine were repopulated by Russians from the ‘Forrest Zone’ after the devastation of the Mongol Conquest. It is hard to untangle the two from one another even if they have different cultural influences and were not always united under one ruler. In many ways the Ukrainians are angry that Moscow, a backwater that became the tax collector for the Khans, grew to eclipse them as the main and leading element of the Eastern Slav people. Hrushevsky, one of the intellectual godfathers of modern Ukranian national identity seemed to feel this way and developed his writings off of this feeling. I do not think that in some alternate reality where Kiev was still the capital of a greater Russian state and Moscow stood at best a provincial capital would produce much of the vindictiveness that we see now.

    There is this basic question of what Russia can provide the Ukraine at this point, and the answer is not inspiring. If the minds of the Ukrainians changed tomorrow and they decided they wanted to reintegrate with Russia, the question is how. I do not think Moscow had any good idea, and the leadership is in many ways afraid of a greater awakening of the Russian consciousness. Much of their power is rooted in keeping things exactly as they are now, which allows them to hold on to the assets they looted after the USSR fell. Any change in that may upset the equation and bring into question their already tenuous legitimacy.

    I hate to say this, because I’m a believer in the idea of the Greater Russian ideal, but I think the ship has sailed on the further expansion of Russia, especially in the Ukraine. While in 2014 a lot of possibilities seemed open, they are mostly shut at this point. You can put the blame on any number of factors, Putin’s political choices are but one aspect, but at the heart of it is that the Russian state has no coherent idea of what it wants to be. What is the Federation? At heart it is the arbitrarily defined boundaries of the old RSFSR, as set by Stalin in 1936. I sometimes wonder if the Kazakh ASSR had not been detached would it still be a part of Russia to the current day. As Anatoly said a few months ago in another comment, modern Russia is schizophrenic in its self-identity, which limits its ability to act and work towards unifying it political and ideological structure. I can argue this is an issue that goes back to the formation of the Russian ethos in the days of the Kievan Grand Princes, but that would be an essay in its own right. Needless to say, it has reached new heights in the fallout of the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    It would take the rise of a leader far more dynamic and bold than Putin and even more far-sighted to be able to to change the arc of current developments, and I do see one coming in the next few years. There is a danger that Navalny might cloak himself as such a figure in order to dethrone Putin, but would then promptly break things up even further through his incompetence and subservience to Western interests. As things stand, I just see stagnation and despair all around in Greater Rus’ for the foreseeable future.

    Hey, does anyone know how Kolya Lukashenko is doing these days? He might be the James VI the narod have been hoping for. Forgive me, I needed to inject some levity into this terse discourse.

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin

    Realistically speaking , the Ukraine proper was to Russia what Scotland is to England. Take the comparison further and Belarus is Wales.
     
    Scotland has a history of independent statehood stretching back to more than a millennium. They even tried to set up some colonies in America, though they failed, and agreed to union with England in 1707.

    I don't think its in any substantial way comparable to Russia/Ukraine.

    There’s a chart floating around on this blog about the height and literacy rates of conscripts in the Imperial Army from the late 19th century, the Malorussian recruits were only behind the Baltic provinces in general health and education, in many cases far superior to that of central and eastern Russians.
     
    Ukrainians did tend to be slightly taller, but I am skeptical about the education bit. Most Ukrainian provinces had low literacy rates.

    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/literacy-predicts-russian-iq/

    I agree with most of the rest.
    , @AP

    I tend to take Ukrainian standard argument about being colonized by the savage Moskali rather incredulously. Were peasants in those regions treated harshly? Yes, but so were most peasants in the old Russian Empire,
     
    When the Russians took over and centralized the state they worsened the plight of Ukrainian peasants, who had achieved relative freedom in the 1650s after they and Little Russian/Ukrainian gentry successfully overthrew the Polish state. So while the Ukrainian peasants were treated no worse than were Russian ones, they experienced a dramatic worsening of their own condition. At the same time, Little Russian/Ukrainian elite experienced a loss of traditional autonomy. They were well-compensated for that in terms of now having more authority over the peasants and having access to Imperial offices, but a subset resented the loss nevertheless and had romantic ideas of how things had been before. This is where Ukrainian nationalism originally came from.
  59. @Hail
    The Chechnya problem. Why keep Chechnya?

    Does anyone propose formally expelling Chechnya and making it a client state to keep an eye on it?

    Does anyone propose formally expelling Chechnya and making it a client state to keep an eye on it?

    And what’s the point?
    Nationalists dream to expel Chechnya (and also Dagestan and Ingushetia) from Russia, to deport all the natives of these republics, and fenced off by a wall. This idea is quite crazy, but the logic is clear.

    But what’s the point to create a “client state”?

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    • Replies: @Hail

    what’s the point to create a “client state”?
     
    For stability.

    A Chechnya with no Russian involvement would probably end up a regional base for ISIS-like groups. Am I wrong? What if Chechens got nuclear weapons?
    , @Anatoly Karlin

    Nationalists dream to expel Chechnya (and also Dagestan and Ingushetia) from Russia, to deport all the natives of these republics, and fenced off by a wall.
     
    This is one idea, though I certainly wouldn't say that's a Russian nationalist policy per se. I doubt that's even the majority opinion.

    However, as territories that were only definitively conquered in the 19th century, like Central Asia, they do have a point that a Russia with Chechnya but without, say, Belorussia is a fairly strange construct.
  60. @melanf

    Does anyone propose formally expelling Chechnya and making it a client state to keep an eye on it?
     
    And what's the point?
    Nationalists dream to expel Chechnya (and also Dagestan and Ingushetia) from Russia, to deport all the natives of these republics, and fenced off by a wall. This idea is quite crazy, but the logic is clear.

    But what's the point to create a "client state"?

    what’s the point to create a “client state”?

    For stability.

    A Chechnya with no Russian involvement would probably end up a regional base for ISIS-like groups. Am I wrong? What if Chechens got nuclear weapons?

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    • Replies: @melanf


    what’s the point to create a “client state”?
     
    For stability.
    A Chechnya with no Russian involvement would probably end up a regional base for ISIS-like groups. Am I wrong?
     
    For this (at least for the near future) it is better to leave Chechnya as part of Russia. Exterminate the Islamists, using brute force, is almost impossible in a foreign country
  61. @Hail

    what’s the point to create a “client state”?
     
    For stability.

    A Chechnya with no Russian involvement would probably end up a regional base for ISIS-like groups. Am I wrong? What if Chechens got nuclear weapons?

    what’s the point to create a “client state”?

    For stability.
    A Chechnya with no Russian involvement would probably end up a regional base for ISIS-like groups. Am I wrong?

    For this (at least for the near future) it is better to leave Chechnya as part of Russia. Exterminate the Islamists, using brute force, is almost impossible in a foreign country

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  62. I’m going to have to disagree with Anatoly about point #3:

    The regathering of the Russian lands, including Belorussia, North Kazakhstan, Novorossiya, and Malorossiya.

    -especially with regard to “Malorossiya”. There is no unity on this among nationalists at all. The reality at this point is that many ethnic Russians, including self-identified nationalists, feel nothing but contempt and disgust toward Ukraine and “Ukrainianness” as such. Personally, I don’t want to see Ukraine (even without the far western part) as part of Russia again, and I’ve lived in Ukraine. Frankly, the very thought of it makes me sick.

    As far as I’m concerned, there can’t be any serious discussion of incorporating millions of buffoonish Russophobes into Russia simply based on pre-Revolutionary ideas of a “triune Russian nation” and so on. I think most Russian nationalists understand that “core Ukraine” (not just the far west of Ukraine) is not a even realistic candidate for re absorption or “reunification” in the foreseeable future.

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  63. Anatoly, you usually like numbers. Are there any numbers indicating that a significant number of Byelorussians or “Little Russians” actually want to join a Russian ethnostate? Even if a majority of them do (I’d be surprised), there is certain to be an energetic minority who don’t, and I don’t see how parts of Byelorussia and Eastern and Southern Ukraine can be joined to a Russian ethnostate without significant blood-letting, which is ultimately going to be counter-productive to your nationalist project.

    It seems to me that a much better strategy for Russian nationalists would be to promote a home-coming movement. One place to start would be in educating the Russian diaspora (and even Russians living in the country) about present day Russia (“a whole lot of room for improvement, but already much better than you think”). You need an organization sponsoring trips to Russia for Russians living abroad, sponsoring semester-in-Russia programs for children of Russian emigres, providing legal advice to Russians abroad on investing in or returning to Russia, and so on. Basically, you need to do the smart things that the Israelis do without falling into the trap of letting radical elements derail the project with their own agendas.

    In another direction. After reading Riasanovsky on the varied successor states of Kiev Rus’, I came to better appreciate why there should be many distinct identities among Eastern slavs. At the same time, they are of course quite similar.

    The relationship between Ukraine and Russia seems to me similar to that between Canada and the United States. Those who live near each other (say North Dakotans and Southern Manitobans) are fairly similar and generally get along well, but you aren’t going to hear a Manitoban suggesting that North Dakota should absorbed into the more civilised country to its north, while you might very well hear a North Dakotan suggesting the reverse. And this explains the undercurrent of resentment towards Americans in Canadian culture. Ultimately, Canadians have to put up with Americans whether they like it or not, because it is in their self-interest to do so. Similar with Ukrainians and Russians. But in a situation of conflict, in-group/out-group identities are solidified and people act irrationally.

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    • Replies: @Hector_St_Clare
    "Anatoly, you usually like numbers. Are there any numbers indicating that a significant number of Byelorussians or “Little Russians” actually want to join a Russian ethnostate? Even if a majority of them do (I’d be surprised), there is certain to be an energetic minority who don’t, and I don’t see how parts of Byelorussia and Eastern and Southern Ukraine can be joined to a Russian ethnostate without significant blood-letting, which is ultimately going to be counter-productive to your nationalist project. "

    +1000. Also, especially given that Belarus has arguably been run better than Rusisa, why would unification be to their benefit?

    I like your idea about encouraging migraton of ethnic Russians to Russia however.
    , @AP

    Are there any numbers indicating that a significant number of Byelorussians or “Little Russians” actually want to join a Russian ethnostate?
     
    Here's a poll from 2014.

    Union of Ukraine with Russia was supported by 1% of western Ukrainians, 5% of central Ukrainians, 19% of southern Ukrainians, and 26% of eastern Ukrainians.

    Due to the war anti-Russian sentiment has grown; for example most in the center and west no longer want free trade with Russia.

    After reading Riasanovsky on the varied successor states of Kiev Rus’, I came to better appreciate why there should be many distinct identities among Eastern slavs. At the same time, they are of course quite similar.
     
    Keep in mind that as a Russian descendant of Whites his views might minimize the differences and experiences a bit.

    The relationship between Ukraine and Russia seems to me similar to that between Canada and the United States.
     
    Not a bad analogy. Canadians, like Ukrainians, also view themselves as more European and civilized than their larger wealthier neighbors. When visiting Ukraine from Russia the Ukrainians were often making comments or asking questions similar to those one hears from Canadians about the USA.

    However the differences are very much magnified. Canada was never actually occupied by the United States, with all that entailed. And of course the language situation. While the Russian spoken by urban central and eastern Ukrainians is no different from Russian in Russia as Canadian English is from American English, about half of Ukrainians (everyone in the West, and rural people in the Center and much of the East) speak Ukrainian rather than Russian.
  64. @Mr. XYZ
    @Boris N: Actually, I think that Thailand and Laos is a good analogy for this. After all, as far as I know, Laos was previously a part of Thailand and also has a language which is mutually intelligible to Thai. In this regard, Laos appears to be for Thailand something similar--but smaller (population-wise)--to what Ukraine is for Russia.

    Very true. There actually existed (exists?) a “Pan-Thai” political movement, which was quite influential during and before WWII. It wanted to “return” Laos to Thailand. Laos was seen as a part of greater Thai nation (e.g. very similar language and same religion) that for forcibly cut out of national unity by the French.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thailand_in_World_War_II

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thailand#/media/File:ThailandWithFlags.gif

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  65. @Boris N

    AK: My two partners on the podcast are both Russians who have always lived in Russia. Troll harder.
     
    BTW, why does Nesterov have such an ostentatious American accent when he says English words? Even his voice tone in Russian sounds foreign. I thought he's lived for a long time in America like you. On the contrary your accent in English is very Russian, I couldn't believe when I heard you, I thought after so many years you would speak flawless English. And you hardly have an English accent in Russian, only small mistakes here and there (mainly in word stresses), sometimes you pronounce some sounds wrong (like "sh" and "zh") but most will consider you have a speech defect rather than an accent.

    Nesterov went to an English language immersion school in Moscow.

    Accents are a strange thing. Most people don’t have any control over them.

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  66. @aly
    I already wrote in some other article about Kazakhstan and chance Russia had to keep it in 1991 when 40% of Kazakhstan were Russians, plus you can add other Slavs and Europeans (Ukrainians, Germans etc.) and it would be about 50% of population. Now situation is different. Only about 1/4 of Kazakhstan is Russian or European.
    If Kazakhstan remained part of Russia after the collapse of USSR situation in that bigger Russia would be something like this - Russians 78% (instead of 81%), other Slavs and Europeans about 5%. Today if we combine Russia and Kazakhstan situation is like this - Russians 75% (instead of 81%), other Slavs and Europeans about 3%. Still reasonably ok, if you consider more land Russia could have.
    But your suggestion of taking only northern Kazakhstan is much better, but I'm not sure it will happen. Also I think Boris N is right about the map.
    Your number of over 4 million Russians...well it would be nice if that's correct but I'm not sure (2009 Kazakhstan census - Russians about 3.8 million or 23.7% + 600k other Europeans).
    Baltic republics should be considered definitely gone, they are now part od EU and NATO and it would be foolish to fight for them. Only Belarus as a whole seems to perfectly fit in Great Russia. Ukraine unfortunately is going away, and it's sad for two brotherly nation to became enemies (also map is unrealistic there, maybe eastern parts of Ukraine are still pro-Russian). That said I'm also Slav and I wish the best to both countries. It's better to have two friendly countries than one where one big part of it would be antagonistic, that can't be good in the long run. So stay away from Baltics, Ukraine (except Crimea ofc. and some eastern parts) and from a lot of Kazakhstan.

    I agree with this.

    I stated the number of Russians from Kazakhstan off the top of my head, which was pretty close. The 600k other Europeans would be mostly Ukrainians, who are close to fully Russified. There’s also some Germanic remnants but 90% of them have left for Germany by now.

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    • Replies: @Anon

    I stated the number of Russians from Kazakhstan off the top of my head, which was pretty close. The 600k other Europeans would be mostly Ukrainians, who are close to fully Russified. There’s also some Germanic remnants but 90% of them have left for Germany by now.
     
    And Poles: http://astanatimes.com/2016/07/polish-village-in-kazakhstan-unique-place-of-ethnic-friendship/ - my mother's home village
    , @AP

    I stated the number of Russians from Kazakhstan off the top of my head, which was pretty close. The 600k other Europeans would be mostly Ukrainians, who are close to fully Russified.
     
    It depends on the Ukrainians. The ones whose ancestors settled in pre-Soviet times are almost fully assimilated; probably most of the kulaks' descendents who were settled in the 1930s are as well. On the other hand there are probably a few tens of thousands of Galicians who were sent after World War II. These have pretty much not assimilated. They've got several Greek Catholic parishes and operate Ukrainian Saturday schools and even have a daily school in the capital.

    I once met a Korean woman from Kazakhstan who spoke decent Ukrainian. She had grown up among a bunch of deported western Ukrainians
  67. @Hail

    Annexing the Baltic states would be a clear case of imperialism
     
    My impression is that support for political integration into the Russian Federation by persons with four Estonian, Latvian, or Lithuanian grandparents (i.e. local ethnics with no 'Soviet' blood ties) would be at most, what, 1 or 2%.

    If even that. Also quite a large proportion (probably a clear majority) of Est-Lat-Liths with one Russian/Slavic and one “native” parent support very much independence of their homelands. There are also many ethnic Russians, especially those who have been born in those countries, are relatively well off and/or educated and have local citizenship, who oppose very vocally – even to the point of overcompensation – the idea of annexing their countries to Russia.

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  68. @AP

    In the early 20th century the Kuban was barely less Ukrainian than what is today South Ukraine.
     
    That's because what is today Southern Ukraine included a large mostly-Russian city, Odessa, which skewed the overall Ukrainian percentage downward for the region as a whole (yet still leaving the region slightly more Ukrainian than Kuban).

    Had Russification continued, all of Ukraine and Belarus would likewise be solidly Russian,
     
    Wishful thinking. Other Ukrainian regions were far less Russian than Kuban.

    just as the diversity of different French cultures became a monolithic France in the 19th century (rural areas were speaking regional languages up until the early 20th century, which were largely mutually unintelligible).
     
    There were also key differences. These regions had been part of France far longer, and subject to intense French cultural pressure since the French Revolution. Ukraine west of the Dnipro river wasn't annexed until the 1770s, and the Russian government left it alone until the late 19th century - so the French had a 100 year head start. Native Little Russian/Ukrainian activists were already active before Russians came in, and there was a native Little Russian/Ukrainian elite with attitudes of superiority vis a vis the Russians.

    Already in the 1917 elections most Ukrainians voted for Ukrainian nationalist parties. Certainly their national idea was less developed than the one in Galicia, but it was already widespread.

    To equalize the situation to France, you would have had to have had intense Russification efforts beginning in the late 18th century, and no significant educated local elite to oppose them and to provide a counter-narrative. Russia could have, actually, done this in the late 18th century, had it been more liberal and Westernizing. The train left the station by the early 20th century.

    These regions had been part of France far longer, and subject to intense French cultural pressure since the French Revolution. Ukraine west of the Dnipro river wasn’t annexed until the 1770s, and the Russian government left it alone until the late 19th century – so the French had a 100 year head start.

    There’s a critical difference here – the French also had a 100 year head start on literacy rates (which is how about 75% of modern national consciousness is formed).

    Literacy rate in France in 1789 = ~25% (much higher around Paris, very low in regions such as the Vendee or the south, which could have potentially developed into separate French nations; it was not the French Revolution, but French schools during the 19th century, that made France truly France).

    Literacy rate in Russia Empire in 1913 = also ~25%

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    • Replies: @AP

    "These regions had been part of France far longer, and subject to intense French cultural pressure since the French Revolution. Ukraine west of the Dnipro river wasn’t annexed until the 1770s, and the Russian government left it alone until the late 19th century – so the French had a 100 year head start."

    There’s a critical difference here – the French also had a 100 year head start on literacy rates (which is how about 75% of modern national consciousness is formed).
     
    Absolutely right.

    Literacy rate in France in 1789 = ~25% (much higher around Paris, very low in regions such as the Vendee or the south, which could have potentially developed into separate French nations; it was not the French Revolution, but French schools during the 19th century, that made France truly France).
     
    The French Revolution introduced the idea of a united centralized France and the importance of rooting out and ending regional differences, seen as vestiges of monarchy and feudalism. So from the 18th century the pace was set. The Russian state, in contrast, was more conservative and left things alone. In Ukraine, Polish landowners retained a lot of power until their insurrections, and the local East Slavs were developing a Little Russian nationalism on their own. They standardized the Little Russian language, published textbooks, and began teaching it. Because Little Russianism was loyal to the Russian state and opposed to the Poles, the Russian state was ambivalent about it, enabling it to flourish, before adopting a rigid centralizing idea in the 1860s and banning efforts at Little Russian education at that time. The ban, however, didn't really replace Little Russian with Russian (not enough Russian teachers to go around) and when the ban was eased in 1905 the Little Russians, now called Ukrainians, continued their efforts.

    Literacy rate in Russia Empire in 1913 = also ~25%
     
    In Ukraine the little literacy that existed, was largely Little Russian/Ukrainian, with local nativists teaching the peasant children. Russia was struggling to raise its own literacy rates, it didn't seem capable at this early stage of sending large numbers of teachers into Ukraine. And Ukrainians, on their own, weren't interested in becoming Russified. So a rudimentary Ukrainian identify was already achieved, and by 1917 most Ukrainians voted for Ukrainian parties, during the revolution the local bands led by warlords (there were a couple hundred of them) were disorganized and therefore not effective, but had Ukrainian orientations.
  69. @Glossy
    I'm neither Russian nor a nationalist, so what follows is very much an outside observer's perspective, offered in the same spirit as "whom would I like to win the French election". I'm not French, so it's really not my business, yet observers observe and form opinions, and what would the Internet be without idle talk?

    Surprise surprise, the late Soviet model of ethnic republics coupled with the propiska system looks best to me. In this way ethnic continuity can be preserved both for minorities and the majority. For those who don't know, the propiska system limited population movements to a large extent.

    Making the Chuvash or Tatars or Ossetians disappear through assimilation or making their languages disappear by withdrawing state support for their schools - that's evil to me. And importing Central Asians to Moscow looks evil to me too. Moscow should be a Russian city, London should English, Paris French, Tokyo Japanese, etc. Financial incentives can be given for migrants to go back.

    My attitude to the map above is negative. The Baltic peoples should be left alone. The Ukrainian-speaking parts of the Ukraine constitute a nation. Ideally that would be an independent state. The southeastern part, from Kharkov all the way through Odessa, can be re-absorbed into Russia without much drama. Same for the entirely of Belarus.

    Surprise surprise, the late Soviet model of ethnic republics coupled with the propiska system looks best to me.

    This is the only realistic model for harmonious coexistence with Central Asia if it was to be unified with Russia, but otherwise, restrictions on internal labor mobility are hell for economic efficiency (not to mention a gross restriction on individual rights).

    Making the Chuvash or Tatars or Ossetians disappear through assimilation or making their languages disappear by withdrawing state support for their schools – that’s evil to me.

    Well, Boris N. gave a workable solution – devolve language policy to a truly local level, instead of having Tatarstan forcing Russians within it to learn Tatar while Tatars outside Tatarstan have no access to Tatar schooling resources.

    The Baltic peoples should be left alone. The Ukrainian-speaking parts of the Ukraine constitute a nation. Ideally that would be an independent state. The southeastern part, from Kharkov all the way through Odessa, can be re-absorbed into Russia without much drama. Same for the entirely of Belarus.

    Malorossiya is an instrinsic part of Russian civilization, though you are correct that the practicalities of reintegration might be insurmountable.

    The Baltics and the part of Ukraine once ruled by the Austro-Hungarian empire should definitely be left alone, just like the South Caucasus.

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    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    " instead of having Tatarstan forcing Russians within it to learn Tatar" Like moving to Paris and insisting on speaking American.
  70. @melanf

    Does anyone propose formally expelling Chechnya and making it a client state to keep an eye on it?
     
    And what's the point?
    Nationalists dream to expel Chechnya (and also Dagestan and Ingushetia) from Russia, to deport all the natives of these republics, and fenced off by a wall. This idea is quite crazy, but the logic is clear.

    But what's the point to create a "client state"?

    Nationalists dream to expel Chechnya (and also Dagestan and Ingushetia) from Russia, to deport all the natives of these republics, and fenced off by a wall.

    This is one idea, though I certainly wouldn’t say that’s a Russian nationalist policy per se. I doubt that’s even the majority opinion.

    However, as territories that were only definitively conquered in the 19th century, like Central Asia, they do have a point that a Russia with Chechnya but without, say, Belorussia is a fairly strange construct.

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    • Replies: @melanf

    However, as territories that were only definitively conquered in the 19th century, like Central Asia, they do have a point that a Russia with Chechnya but without, say, Belorussia is a fairly strange construct.
     
    The proclamation of the "Reconquista" is even more strange idea. The only result will be a rapid rapprochement of Belarus with NATO.

    It is necessary to solve the internal problems of Russia - then the integration with Russia ( for Belarus, Ukraine, etc.) will look better than rapprochement with the EU.

    Promotion of aggressive policies will only harm Russia (protection of the Russian population in the conditions of the neo-Nazi coup in Ukraine - a very different case)
  71. @Cicero
    Realistically speaking , the Ukraine proper was to Russia what Scotland is to England. Take the comparison further and Belarus is Wales. This is not a perfect analogy but it serves as a good base. I tend to take Ukrainian standard argument about being colonized by the savage Moskali rather incredulously. Were peasants in those regions treated harshly? Yes, but so were most peasants in the old Russian Empire, there was a lot of injustice to go around and the Malorussian provinces were not singled out for particular oppression. Any comparison to Ireland is rather strained (Congress Poland would be the better example, Catholicism and all), because the Ukrainian elite and middle classes were well integrated into the Empire's power structure, and repressions were meted out based on disloyalty to the central government, not a special racial animus towards destroying the Ukrainians as a people. There's a chart floating around on this blog about the height and literacy rates of conscripts in the Imperial Army from the late 19th century, the Malorussian recruits were only behind the Baltic provinces in general health and education, in many cases far superior to that of central and eastern Russians. That is not the picture of a people crush by a foreign and hostile occupying power, regardless of the state of local culture, which managed to persist and even flourish when the Tsar did not feel it threatened his monopoly on political power.

    The Stalinist repressions of the Soviet period is the only time I can find where there was serious attempts to single out Ukrainians for punishment. However, both the Holodomor and the Executed Renaissance can be seen as local manifestations of a national program. It is strange how Ukrainians rarely talk about how two million Kazakhs died during the same period (that's how Kazakhs became a minority in their own republic), or the famine did not effect other Russian regions like Tambov, Astrakhan, and Samara to name a few. Or all of the other ethnic intelligentsia murdered in order to destroy national identity in throughout the USSR. They would come off as a lot more sympathetic if the did.

    I think one major element of the current crisis is this question of identity and relevance. As has been pointed out, the Ukraine was often much wealthier than many regions of Great Russia, and it was the birthplace of many traditions core to the identity of the Russian state in its more abstract form. Remember, Moscow as we know it was first established by Grand Prince of Kiev Yuri Dolgoruky in the middle of the 12th century, and many regions of the Ukraine were repopulated by Russians from the 'Forrest Zone' after the devastation of the Mongol Conquest. It is hard to untangle the two from one another even if they have different cultural influences and were not always united under one ruler. In many ways the Ukrainians are angry that Moscow, a backwater that became the tax collector for the Khans, grew to eclipse them as the main and leading element of the Eastern Slav people. Hrushevsky, one of the intellectual godfathers of modern Ukranian national identity seemed to feel this way and developed his writings off of this feeling. I do not think that in some alternate reality where Kiev was still the capital of a greater Russian state and Moscow stood at best a provincial capital would produce much of the vindictiveness that we see now.

    There is this basic question of what Russia can provide the Ukraine at this point, and the answer is not inspiring. If the minds of the Ukrainians changed tomorrow and they decided they wanted to reintegrate with Russia, the question is how. I do not think Moscow had any good idea, and the leadership is in many ways afraid of a greater awakening of the Russian consciousness. Much of their power is rooted in keeping things exactly as they are now, which allows them to hold on to the assets they looted after the USSR fell. Any change in that may upset the equation and bring into question their already tenuous legitimacy.

    I hate to say this, because I'm a believer in the idea of the Greater Russian ideal, but I think the ship has sailed on the further expansion of Russia, especially in the Ukraine. While in 2014 a lot of possibilities seemed open, they are mostly shut at this point. You can put the blame on any number of factors, Putin's political choices are but one aspect, but at the heart of it is that the Russian state has no coherent idea of what it wants to be. What is the Federation? At heart it is the arbitrarily defined boundaries of the old RSFSR, as set by Stalin in 1936. I sometimes wonder if the Kazakh ASSR had not been detached would it still be a part of Russia to the current day. As Anatoly said a few months ago in another comment, modern Russia is schizophrenic in its self-identity, which limits its ability to act and work towards unifying it political and ideological structure. I can argue this is an issue that goes back to the formation of the Russian ethos in the days of the Kievan Grand Princes, but that would be an essay in its own right. Needless to say, it has reached new heights in the fallout of the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    It would take the rise of a leader far more dynamic and bold than Putin and even more far-sighted to be able to to change the arc of current developments, and I do see one coming in the next few years. There is a danger that Navalny might cloak himself as such a figure in order to dethrone Putin, but would then promptly break things up even further through his incompetence and subservience to Western interests. As things stand, I just see stagnation and despair all around in Greater Rus' for the foreseeable future.

    Hey, does anyone know how Kolya Lukashenko is doing these days? He might be the James VI the narod have been hoping for. Forgive me, I needed to inject some levity into this terse discourse.

    Realistically speaking , the Ukraine proper was to Russia what Scotland is to England. Take the comparison further and Belarus is Wales.

    Scotland has a history of independent statehood stretching back to more than a millennium. They even tried to set up some colonies in America, though they failed, and agreed to union with England in 1707.

    I don’t think its in any substantial way comparable to Russia/Ukraine.

    There’s a chart floating around on this blog about the height and literacy rates of conscripts in the Imperial Army from the late 19th century, the Malorussian recruits were only behind the Baltic provinces in general health and education, in many cases far superior to that of central and eastern Russians.

    Ukrainians did tend to be slightly taller, but I am skeptical about the education bit. Most Ukrainian provinces had low literacy rates.

    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/literacy-predicts-russian-iq/

    I agree with most of the rest.

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    • Replies: @AP

    Realistically speaking , the Ukraine proper was to Russia what Scotland is to England. Take the comparison further and Belarus is Wales.

    Scotland has a history of independent statehood stretching back to more than a millennium. They even tried to set up some colonies in America, though they failed, and agreed to union with England in 1707.

    I don’t think its in any substantial way comparable to Russia/Ukraine.
     

    The analogy doesn't work with respect to statehood but with respect to separate development. Ukraine had developed independently of Russia for centuries before being annexed in parts. Kiev and the Central-East was autonomous and de facto independent until 1709 (they recognized the Tsar as ruler but had their own army, laws, government) , everything west of the Dnipro River wasn't annexed until the 1770s. So Kiev and the Center-East were united with Russia around the same time as Scotland was with England, the Center-West a couple generations later.

    Malorossiya is an instrinsic part of Russian civilization
     
    Only according to Russian svidomite ideas. Ukraine integrated with Russia late, was autonomous during much of the relationship, and left when it had the chance.
    , @Philip Owen
    The Lowland Scots spoke a very distinct dialect of English until recently. But it was English. Belarus amounts to another Scotland.

    Welsh is a completely different language group from English, ditto ethnicity/history until Early Modern Times. Although Wales was conquered militarily in 1282, it was a union of crowns not of countries. Most of Wales continued to have distinct laws and taxes. The Wars of the Roses ended by Wales conquering England in 1485, with French help and a series of Acts of Union in the late 1530's united England and Wales. The Scots followed less than 200 years later. Union wasn't all that significant for a long time as most administration was done at County and Parish level by the local squirearchy. The Local Government and Education Acts of 1880 really started the move to uniformity in the UK.

    England & Wales is not a good model for most country pairs. The little one got to own the big one, if only fleetingly. The elite of the little one got to make out big. The East India Company was disproportionately staffed by 2nd sons of squires from both sides of the Welsh Marches (Clive was even a 2nd son, just a ruffian). There are huge country houses still there now. The EIC was still mostly English, numbers count. The Scots came later. There is nothing like that in Russian history. Moscow rubbed out Novgorod. The Mordavians never revived and put a Tsar on the throne in Moscow.
  72. @Anatoly Karlin

    These regions had been part of France far longer, and subject to intense French cultural pressure since the French Revolution. Ukraine west of the Dnipro river wasn’t annexed until the 1770s, and the Russian government left it alone until the late 19th century – so the French had a 100 year head start.
     
    There's a critical difference here - the French also had a 100 year head start on literacy rates (which is how about 75% of modern national consciousness is formed).

    Literacy rate in France in 1789 = ~25% (much higher around Paris, very low in regions such as the Vendee or the south, which could have potentially developed into separate French nations; it was not the French Revolution, but French schools during the 19th century, that made France truly France).

    Literacy rate in Russia Empire in 1913 = also ~25%

    “These regions had been part of France far longer, and subject to intense French cultural pressure since the French Revolution. Ukraine west of the Dnipro river wasn’t annexed until the 1770s, and the Russian government left it alone until the late 19th century – so the French had a 100 year head start.”

    There’s a critical difference here – the French also had a 100 year head start on literacy rates (which is how about 75% of modern national consciousness is formed).

    Absolutely right.

    Literacy rate in France in 1789 = ~25% (much higher around Paris, very low in regions such as the Vendee or the south, which could have potentially developed into separate French nations; it was not the French Revolution, but French schools during the 19th century, that made France truly France).

    The French Revolution introduced the idea of a united centralized France and the importance of rooting out and ending regional differences, seen as vestiges of monarchy and feudalism. So from the 18th century the pace was set. The Russian state, in contrast, was more conservative and left things alone. In Ukraine, Polish landowners retained a lot of power until their insurrections, and the local East Slavs were developing a Little Russian nationalism on their own. They standardized the Little Russian language, published textbooks, and began teaching it. Because Little Russianism was loyal to the Russian state and opposed to the Poles, the Russian state was ambivalent about it, enabling it to flourish, before adopting a rigid centralizing idea in the 1860s and banning efforts at Little Russian education at that time. The ban, however, didn’t really replace Little Russian with Russian (not enough Russian teachers to go around) and when the ban was eased in 1905 the Little Russians, now called Ukrainians, continued their efforts.

    Literacy rate in Russia Empire in 1913 = also ~25%

    In Ukraine the little literacy that existed, was largely Little Russian/Ukrainian, with local nativists teaching the peasant children. Russia was struggling to raise its own literacy rates, it didn’t seem capable at this early stage of sending large numbers of teachers into Ukraine. And Ukrainians, on their own, weren’t interested in becoming Russified. So a rudimentary Ukrainian identify was already achieved, and by 1917 most Ukrainians voted for Ukrainian parties, during the revolution the local bands led by warlords (there were a couple hundred of them) were disorganized and therefore not effective, but had Ukrainian orientations.

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  73. @Anatoly Karlin

    Nationalists dream to expel Chechnya (and also Dagestan and Ingushetia) from Russia, to deport all the natives of these republics, and fenced off by a wall.
     
    This is one idea, though I certainly wouldn't say that's a Russian nationalist policy per se. I doubt that's even the majority opinion.

    However, as territories that were only definitively conquered in the 19th century, like Central Asia, they do have a point that a Russia with Chechnya but without, say, Belorussia is a fairly strange construct.

    However, as territories that were only definitively conquered in the 19th century, like Central Asia, they do have a point that a Russia with Chechnya but without, say, Belorussia is a fairly strange construct.

    The proclamation of the “Reconquista” is even more strange idea. The only result will be a rapid rapprochement of Belarus with NATO.

    It is necessary to solve the internal problems of Russia – then the integration with Russia ( for Belarus, Ukraine, etc.) will look better than rapprochement with the EU.

    Promotion of aggressive policies will only harm Russia (protection of the Russian population in the conditions of the neo-Nazi coup in Ukraine – a very different case)

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  74. @Anatoly Karlin

    Realistically speaking , the Ukraine proper was to Russia what Scotland is to England. Take the comparison further and Belarus is Wales.
     
    Scotland has a history of independent statehood stretching back to more than a millennium. They even tried to set up some colonies in America, though they failed, and agreed to union with England in 1707.

    I don't think its in any substantial way comparable to Russia/Ukraine.

    There’s a chart floating around on this blog about the height and literacy rates of conscripts in the Imperial Army from the late 19th century, the Malorussian recruits were only behind the Baltic provinces in general health and education, in many cases far superior to that of central and eastern Russians.
     
    Ukrainians did tend to be slightly taller, but I am skeptical about the education bit. Most Ukrainian provinces had low literacy rates.

    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/literacy-predicts-russian-iq/

    I agree with most of the rest.

    Realistically speaking , the Ukraine proper was to Russia what Scotland is to England. Take the comparison further and Belarus is Wales.

    Scotland has a history of independent statehood stretching back to more than a millennium. They even tried to set up some colonies in America, though they failed, and agreed to union with England in 1707.

    I don’t think its in any substantial way comparable to Russia/Ukraine.

    The analogy doesn’t work with respect to statehood but with respect to separate development. Ukraine had developed independently of Russia for centuries before being annexed in parts. Kiev and the Central-East was autonomous and de facto independent until 1709 (they recognized the Tsar as ruler but had their own army, laws, government) , everything west of the Dnipro River wasn’t annexed until the 1770s. So Kiev and the Center-East were united with Russia around the same time as Scotland was with England, the Center-West a couple generations later.

    Malorossiya is an instrinsic part of Russian civilization

    Only according to Russian svidomite ideas. Ukraine integrated with Russia late, was autonomous during much of the relationship, and left when it had the chance.

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  75. @Glossy
    I'm neither Russian nor a nationalist, so what follows is very much an outside observer's perspective, offered in the same spirit as "whom would I like to win the French election". I'm not French, so it's really not my business, yet observers observe and form opinions, and what would the Internet be without idle talk?

    Surprise surprise, the late Soviet model of ethnic republics coupled with the propiska system looks best to me. In this way ethnic continuity can be preserved both for minorities and the majority. For those who don't know, the propiska system limited population movements to a large extent.

    Making the Chuvash or Tatars or Ossetians disappear through assimilation or making their languages disappear by withdrawing state support for their schools - that's evil to me. And importing Central Asians to Moscow looks evil to me too. Moscow should be a Russian city, London should English, Paris French, Tokyo Japanese, etc. Financial incentives can be given for migrants to go back.

    My attitude to the map above is negative. The Baltic peoples should be left alone. The Ukrainian-speaking parts of the Ukraine constitute a nation. Ideally that would be an independent state. The southeastern part, from Kharkov all the way through Odessa, can be re-absorbed into Russia without much drama. Same for the entirely of Belarus.

    I largely agree with your rejection of the “Great Russia” concept. I don’t like the concept of “great” nations in general: smaller countries usually tend to work better than big ones. I really don’t get the concept of why Anatoly wants the Ukraine and Belarus incorporated into Russia. Sure, I understand why you might dislike Ukraine and Ukrainians, and I sympathize with much of his stuff regarding the need to stop mass migration, encourage more homogeneous societies, and so forth, but I don’t get why “uniting all Russians”, much less “uniting all East Slavs” under one national banner is such a goal for some people. Maybe that’s just because I’m not a *nationalist* in the strict sense: my natural gut tendency is to divide rather than unite.

    A smaller, more ethnically “Russian” Russia would be much better than a large and diverse one. And this isn’t a specific dislike against Russia: I think India and the US are much too large countries as well.

    Also, I like the way Belarus has been run under the neocommunist Lukashenko regime, and I have no desire to see it absorbed into Putin’s plutocratic capitalist state. (In fairness to Putin, Russia’s Gini index is slightly below America’s, but given that we are one of the most unequal industrialized countries that’s a very low bar). Belarus has arguably had better outcomes (on GDP growth, inequality and life expectancy for three) from 1991 to the present than Russia has had. From my point of view the independence of Belarus is something to be very strongly defended. (For similar reasons, because I’m hopeful that Novorussia might end up to the left of where Russia is, I’d like the LNR and DNR to be their own countries rather than being absorbed into Russia).

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    • Replies: @Glossy
    On the one hand Lukashenko has done a lot of good, economically and socially. On the other hand there is a danger of him or his successors going further in the Ukrainian direction of creating a nationalism where none existed before for no other reason than to safeguard personal power.

    Years ago he hoped to succeed Yeltsin in the Kremlin, and he would have probably been better there than Putin, plus this would have reunited Belarus with Russia.

    The division between the two countries is phony and a political accident. I understand the Russians who're upset by the fact that Russia is divided and that there are people who want to make that division real by teaching the young generation phony history and a new language. Lukashenko isn't nearly as bad at this as the Kiev junta, but it's in his personal interest to exaggerate cultural and historic differences.

    The Ukraine is a collection of very different regions. The westernmost ones really do have their own language, culture and history. That part should be independent. The southeast is culturally Russian, and in contrast with Belarus, it's governed horribly by thieves and foreign-to-it nationalists. I'd love to see Russia take it back, but this should be done decisively, not in the 2014-2015 Donbass fashion. The junta can't resist a full-on, honest-to-goodness Russian intervention, so it would be pretty much a bloodless operation.

    Between the west and the southeast of the Ukraine there is a region which is mostly Russian-speaking, but politically anti-Russian. This includes Kiev. That region would be very difficult for Russia to absorb. The reason that Russian nationalists don't like Lukashenko is that they're afraid that he or his successors will turn Belarus into something like that, into another central Ukraine.
    , @Philip Owen
    I used to favour small country nationalism over big country nationalism until the break up of Yugoslavia. Now the only way is the European Union.

    The British Commonwealth is another much looser model (for example, develops uniform law on Bitcoins for common law countries to adopt) but too geographically widespread to mean much economically.

  76. @Mr. XYZ
    @Mr. Hack: If one wants to put Russians, Ukrainians, and Belarusians into a single country nowadays, one's best move might literally be to push for European Union entry for all of these countries and then to push to turn the European Union into a super-state.

    True, this single country would include many other ethnic groups (Germans, French, Italians, Spaniards, Poles, et cetera), but it would still have all of the East Slavic ethnic groups inside of it.

    This really satirizes brilliantly the stupidity of the “unitive” component of nationalism. (I’m quite sympathetic to the “divisive” component).

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  77. @The Big Red Scary
    Anatoly, you usually like numbers. Are there any numbers indicating that a significant number of Byelorussians or "Little Russians" actually want to join a Russian ethnostate? Even if a majority of them do (I'd be surprised), there is certain to be an energetic minority who don't, and I don't see how parts of Byelorussia and Eastern and Southern Ukraine can be joined to a Russian ethnostate without significant blood-letting, which is ultimately going to be counter-productive to your nationalist project.

    It seems to me that a much better strategy for Russian nationalists would be to promote a home-coming movement. One place to start would be in educating the Russian diaspora (and even Russians living in the country) about present day Russia ("a whole lot of room for improvement, but already much better than you think"). You need an organization sponsoring trips to Russia for Russians living abroad, sponsoring semester-in-Russia programs for children of Russian emigres, providing legal advice to Russians abroad on investing in or returning to Russia, and so on. Basically, you need to do the smart things that the Israelis do without falling into the trap of letting radical elements derail the project with their own agendas.

    In another direction. After reading Riasanovsky on the varied successor states of Kiev Rus', I came to better appreciate why there should be many distinct identities among Eastern slavs. At the same time, they are of course quite similar.

    The relationship between Ukraine and Russia seems to me similar to that between Canada and the United States. Those who live near each other (say North Dakotans and Southern Manitobans) are fairly similar and generally get along well, but you aren't going to hear a Manitoban suggesting that North Dakota should absorbed into the more civilised country to its north, while you might very well hear a North Dakotan suggesting the reverse. And this explains the undercurrent of resentment towards Americans in Canadian culture. Ultimately, Canadians have to put up with Americans whether they like it or not, because it is in their self-interest to do so. Similar with Ukrainians and Russians. But in a situation of conflict, in-group/out-group identities are solidified and people act irrationally.

    “Anatoly, you usually like numbers. Are there any numbers indicating that a significant number of Byelorussians or “Little Russians” actually want to join a Russian ethnostate? Even if a majority of them do (I’d be surprised), there is certain to be an energetic minority who don’t, and I don’t see how parts of Byelorussia and Eastern and Southern Ukraine can be joined to a Russian ethnostate without significant blood-letting, which is ultimately going to be counter-productive to your nationalist project. ”

    +1000. Also, especially given that Belarus has arguably been run better than Rusisa, why would unification be to their benefit?

    I like your idea about encouraging migraton of ethnic Russians to Russia however.

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  78. @The Big Red Scary
    Anatoly, you usually like numbers. Are there any numbers indicating that a significant number of Byelorussians or "Little Russians" actually want to join a Russian ethnostate? Even if a majority of them do (I'd be surprised), there is certain to be an energetic minority who don't, and I don't see how parts of Byelorussia and Eastern and Southern Ukraine can be joined to a Russian ethnostate without significant blood-letting, which is ultimately going to be counter-productive to your nationalist project.

    It seems to me that a much better strategy for Russian nationalists would be to promote a home-coming movement. One place to start would be in educating the Russian diaspora (and even Russians living in the country) about present day Russia ("a whole lot of room for improvement, but already much better than you think"). You need an organization sponsoring trips to Russia for Russians living abroad, sponsoring semester-in-Russia programs for children of Russian emigres, providing legal advice to Russians abroad on investing in or returning to Russia, and so on. Basically, you need to do the smart things that the Israelis do without falling into the trap of letting radical elements derail the project with their own agendas.

    In another direction. After reading Riasanovsky on the varied successor states of Kiev Rus', I came to better appreciate why there should be many distinct identities among Eastern slavs. At the same time, they are of course quite similar.

    The relationship between Ukraine and Russia seems to me similar to that between Canada and the United States. Those who live near each other (say North Dakotans and Southern Manitobans) are fairly similar and generally get along well, but you aren't going to hear a Manitoban suggesting that North Dakota should absorbed into the more civilised country to its north, while you might very well hear a North Dakotan suggesting the reverse. And this explains the undercurrent of resentment towards Americans in Canadian culture. Ultimately, Canadians have to put up with Americans whether they like it or not, because it is in their self-interest to do so. Similar with Ukrainians and Russians. But in a situation of conflict, in-group/out-group identities are solidified and people act irrationally.

    Are there any numbers indicating that a significant number of Byelorussians or “Little Russians” actually want to join a Russian ethnostate?

    Here’s a poll from 2014.

    Union of Ukraine with Russia was supported by 1% of western Ukrainians, 5% of central Ukrainians, 19% of southern Ukrainians, and 26% of eastern Ukrainians.

    Due to the war anti-Russian sentiment has grown; for example most in the center and west no longer want free trade with Russia.

    After reading Riasanovsky on the varied successor states of Kiev Rus’, I came to better appreciate why there should be many distinct identities among Eastern slavs. At the same time, they are of course quite similar.

    Keep in mind that as a Russian descendant of Whites his views might minimize the differences and experiences a bit.

    The relationship between Ukraine and Russia seems to me similar to that between Canada and the United States.

    Not a bad analogy. Canadians, like Ukrainians, also view themselves as more European and civilized than their larger wealthier neighbors. When visiting Ukraine from Russia the Ukrainians were often making comments or asking questions similar to those one hears from Canadians about the USA.

    However the differences are very much magnified. Canada was never actually occupied by the United States, with all that entailed. And of course the language situation. While the Russian spoken by urban central and eastern Ukrainians is no different from Russian in Russia as Canadian English is from American English, about half of Ukrainians (everyone in the West, and rural people in the Center and much of the East) speak Ukrainian rather than Russian.

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    • Replies: @iffen
    I can't discern AK's plan for "Ukrainians" within Greater Russia. Are they supposed to pretend to be Russians or will they be permanent 2nd class "others" ?
  79. @Cicero
    Realistically speaking , the Ukraine proper was to Russia what Scotland is to England. Take the comparison further and Belarus is Wales. This is not a perfect analogy but it serves as a good base. I tend to take Ukrainian standard argument about being colonized by the savage Moskali rather incredulously. Were peasants in those regions treated harshly? Yes, but so were most peasants in the old Russian Empire, there was a lot of injustice to go around and the Malorussian provinces were not singled out for particular oppression. Any comparison to Ireland is rather strained (Congress Poland would be the better example, Catholicism and all), because the Ukrainian elite and middle classes were well integrated into the Empire's power structure, and repressions were meted out based on disloyalty to the central government, not a special racial animus towards destroying the Ukrainians as a people. There's a chart floating around on this blog about the height and literacy rates of conscripts in the Imperial Army from the late 19th century, the Malorussian recruits were only behind the Baltic provinces in general health and education, in many cases far superior to that of central and eastern Russians. That is not the picture of a people crush by a foreign and hostile occupying power, regardless of the state of local culture, which managed to persist and even flourish when the Tsar did not feel it threatened his monopoly on political power.

    The Stalinist repressions of the Soviet period is the only time I can find where there was serious attempts to single out Ukrainians for punishment. However, both the Holodomor and the Executed Renaissance can be seen as local manifestations of a national program. It is strange how Ukrainians rarely talk about how two million Kazakhs died during the same period (that's how Kazakhs became a minority in their own republic), or the famine did not effect other Russian regions like Tambov, Astrakhan, and Samara to name a few. Or all of the other ethnic intelligentsia murdered in order to destroy national identity in throughout the USSR. They would come off as a lot more sympathetic if the did.

    I think one major element of the current crisis is this question of identity and relevance. As has been pointed out, the Ukraine was often much wealthier than many regions of Great Russia, and it was the birthplace of many traditions core to the identity of the Russian state in its more abstract form. Remember, Moscow as we know it was first established by Grand Prince of Kiev Yuri Dolgoruky in the middle of the 12th century, and many regions of the Ukraine were repopulated by Russians from the 'Forrest Zone' after the devastation of the Mongol Conquest. It is hard to untangle the two from one another even if they have different cultural influences and were not always united under one ruler. In many ways the Ukrainians are angry that Moscow, a backwater that became the tax collector for the Khans, grew to eclipse them as the main and leading element of the Eastern Slav people. Hrushevsky, one of the intellectual godfathers of modern Ukranian national identity seemed to feel this way and developed his writings off of this feeling. I do not think that in some alternate reality where Kiev was still the capital of a greater Russian state and Moscow stood at best a provincial capital would produce much of the vindictiveness that we see now.

    There is this basic question of what Russia can provide the Ukraine at this point, and the answer is not inspiring. If the minds of the Ukrainians changed tomorrow and they decided they wanted to reintegrate with Russia, the question is how. I do not think Moscow had any good idea, and the leadership is in many ways afraid of a greater awakening of the Russian consciousness. Much of their power is rooted in keeping things exactly as they are now, which allows them to hold on to the assets they looted after the USSR fell. Any change in that may upset the equation and bring into question their already tenuous legitimacy.

    I hate to say this, because I'm a believer in the idea of the Greater Russian ideal, but I think the ship has sailed on the further expansion of Russia, especially in the Ukraine. While in 2014 a lot of possibilities seemed open, they are mostly shut at this point. You can put the blame on any number of factors, Putin's political choices are but one aspect, but at the heart of it is that the Russian state has no coherent idea of what it wants to be. What is the Federation? At heart it is the arbitrarily defined boundaries of the old RSFSR, as set by Stalin in 1936. I sometimes wonder if the Kazakh ASSR had not been detached would it still be a part of Russia to the current day. As Anatoly said a few months ago in another comment, modern Russia is schizophrenic in its self-identity, which limits its ability to act and work towards unifying it political and ideological structure. I can argue this is an issue that goes back to the formation of the Russian ethos in the days of the Kievan Grand Princes, but that would be an essay in its own right. Needless to say, it has reached new heights in the fallout of the collapse of the Soviet Union.

    It would take the rise of a leader far more dynamic and bold than Putin and even more far-sighted to be able to to change the arc of current developments, and I do see one coming in the next few years. There is a danger that Navalny might cloak himself as such a figure in order to dethrone Putin, but would then promptly break things up even further through his incompetence and subservience to Western interests. As things stand, I just see stagnation and despair all around in Greater Rus' for the foreseeable future.

    Hey, does anyone know how Kolya Lukashenko is doing these days? He might be the James VI the narod have been hoping for. Forgive me, I needed to inject some levity into this terse discourse.

    I tend to take Ukrainian standard argument about being colonized by the savage Moskali rather incredulously. Were peasants in those regions treated harshly? Yes, but so were most peasants in the old Russian Empire,

    When the Russians took over and centralized the state they worsened the plight of Ukrainian peasants, who had achieved relative freedom in the 1650s after they and Little Russian/Ukrainian gentry successfully overthrew the Polish state. So while the Ukrainian peasants were treated no worse than were Russian ones, they experienced a dramatic worsening of their own condition. At the same time, Little Russian/Ukrainian elite experienced a loss of traditional autonomy. They were well-compensated for that in terms of now having more authority over the peasants and having access to Imperial offices, but a subset resented the loss nevertheless and had romantic ideas of how things had been before. This is where Ukrainian nationalism originally came from.

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  80. @Mr. XYZ
    @Mr. Hack: If one wants to put Russians, Ukrainians, and Belarusians into a single country nowadays, one's best move might literally be to push for European Union entry for all of these countries and then to push to turn the European Union into a super-state.

    True, this single country would include many other ethnic groups (Germans, French, Italians, Spaniards, Poles, et cetera), but it would still have all of the East Slavic ethnic groups inside of it.

    I agree with this. But incorporation of Russia into EU looks very unrealistic for foreseeable future. Not only there is no desire for that on both sides, but Russia is maybe too big to be just another big EU-state. Russia will have difficulties accepting that role I think, not to mention Germany/France/Poland/others who would see their influence in EU greatly diminished in that case. But prospects for Ukraine and Belarus to join the EU are real, if not in the near future.
    I’m not that pessimistic about the EU future. Brexit could strengthen EU, not weaken it. To me it’s more probable that the EU influence and attractiveness will only grow in Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, so time is running out for Russia.
    Also there seems that today Russia doesn’t have any plan or desire to make Russia more Russian (or Slavic&European) with selective expansion. Instead they have this Eurasian Economic Union project whitch is not so good on demographic front for Russia. Let’s hope at least Uzbekistan will not join with it’s 30+ million (and fast growing) population. Georgia and Armenia are not Slavic nor European but they are at least Christian so I do not consider them as a threat.
    Demography is the most important factor, if there is more Russians it’s easier to expand. But today Muslims are the ones who are growing.

    This is off topic but can someone tell me does Russian government provide more incentives (cash or something) in regions where demographic situation is more dire, where TFR is worse, typically Russian-majority regions in central, western and northern parts of european Russia? Couple of years ago i read something about that, that government is making change in demographic policy, with more emphasis to regions with very bad demographics, instead of one-size-fits-all policy. Can someone confirm this? And can we attribute this and last year fall in births in Northern Caucasus, and slight growth or stagnation in central,west and northern european Russia to that?

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    • Replies: @Anon

    I’m not that pessimistic about the EU future. Brexit could strengthen EU, not weaken it. To me it’s more probable that the EU influence and attractiveness will only grow in Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, so time is running out for Russia.
     
    Don't confuse unity with strength.
    Brexit will contribute to the former, but not necessarily to the latter because Great Britain was a major contributor to the Union.
    Is a more centralized, but poorer EUrope going to be more attractive to the countries you mentioned?
    I don't think so.
    , @Philip Owen
    A family can get free land for farming by moving to the Far East. Take up has been very low.
  81. @AP

    Are there any numbers indicating that a significant number of Byelorussians or “Little Russians” actually want to join a Russian ethnostate?
     
    Here's a poll from 2014.

    Union of Ukraine with Russia was supported by 1% of western Ukrainians, 5% of central Ukrainians, 19% of southern Ukrainians, and 26% of eastern Ukrainians.

    Due to the war anti-Russian sentiment has grown; for example most in the center and west no longer want free trade with Russia.

    After reading Riasanovsky on the varied successor states of Kiev Rus’, I came to better appreciate why there should be many distinct identities among Eastern slavs. At the same time, they are of course quite similar.
     
    Keep in mind that as a Russian descendant of Whites his views might minimize the differences and experiences a bit.

    The relationship between Ukraine and Russia seems to me similar to that between Canada and the United States.
     
    Not a bad analogy. Canadians, like Ukrainians, also view themselves as more European and civilized than their larger wealthier neighbors. When visiting Ukraine from Russia the Ukrainians were often making comments or asking questions similar to those one hears from Canadians about the USA.

    However the differences are very much magnified. Canada was never actually occupied by the United States, with all that entailed. And of course the language situation. While the Russian spoken by urban central and eastern Ukrainians is no different from Russian in Russia as Canadian English is from American English, about half of Ukrainians (everyone in the West, and rural people in the Center and much of the East) speak Ukrainian rather than Russian.

    I can’t discern AK’s plan for “Ukrainians” within Greater Russia. Are they supposed to pretend to be Russians or will they be permanent 2nd class “others” ?

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    • Replies: @AP
    They are supposed to pretend to be Russians, in which case they'll be treated just like other Russians. But if they don't pretend to be Russians they will be viewed as traitors, and as such would probably be treated worse than non-Russians.
    , @Zzz
    For russian nationalist it will sound like - is texican must pretend to be american or he is 2nd class other?
    , @Glossy
    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine. Many, many millions of them have Ukrainian surnames. Russians are very used to considering such people to be Russian.

    This wouldn't work between the French and Moroccans because of inborn differences, but in the Russian-Ukrainian case the hardware is basically the same, so if the software (culture, loyalties) aligns, then there is no difference.

    If the software doesn't allign and a person starts defending Bandera or the junta's shelling of Donetsk, there will likely be a conflict.
  82. @iffen
    I can't discern AK's plan for "Ukrainians" within Greater Russia. Are they supposed to pretend to be Russians or will they be permanent 2nd class "others" ?

    They are supposed to pretend to be Russians, in which case they’ll be treated just like other Russians. But if they don’t pretend to be Russians they will be viewed as traitors, and as such would probably be treated worse than non-Russians.

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    • Replies: @iffen
    in which case they’ll be treated just like other Russians.

    This is the big unknown, correct?
  83. @Mr. Hack

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and theapartment Russian Federation.
     
    How so? All three nations have their own countries, and enough space within each to keep themselves busy at home, not prying into their neighbor's affairs. If you consider these three nations as being kin, then the analogy would be a simple one to make with familial relations. If you own your own home or even rent an apartment, you don't really want your siblings busting into your premise, unannounced at anytime and 'take back' some gifted china, now do you? Let's say that your going through a spat with your spouse, do you really want your brother barging into your home and taking sides in any arguments or misunderstandings. Ukraine belongs first to Ukrainians and not to any neighboring countries!

    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence. The Idel Ural Republic. Even “Green Ukraine” in the Far East!

     

    Here you're really being disingenuous in your reply, by trying to compare Ukrainian nationalism with some obscure, 'strange' movements that never had a basis in reality, and therefore never evolved into anything pragmatic. Kind of like the DNR and LNR today, being propped up by Russian funding and arms. I'm really surprised that somebody as smart as you seem to be, really seem to get your mind around the fact that the Ukrainian nation is a real one, with over 50,000,000 adherents around the globe - you're starting to sound a lot like one of those Russian nationalists (not many, thank god) that roamed mostly in Russia and the southern part of Ukraine during the early 20th century:
    y books

    The Black Hundreds denied the existence of a Ukrainian nation, defined Ukrainians as Russians,[5] and attracted the support of ethnic Ukrainian Russophiles who considered themselves Russian.[6] The Black Hundred movement actively campaigned against what it considered to be Ukrainian separatism, as well as against promoting Ukrainian culture and language in general, and against the works of Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko in particular.[7] In Odessa, the Black Hundreds shut down the local branch of the Ukrainian Prosvita society, an organization that was dedicated to spreading literacy in the Ukrainian language and Ukrainian cultural awareness.[6]

     

    Is it premature yet to ask you whether your thinking about Ukraine has in large part been formed by Russian nationalist writers like, Alexander Dubrovin, Vladimir Purishkevich, Nikolai Markov, A. I. Trishatny, or others? Looking over your book reviews, I fail to see any books whatsoever devoted to Ukrainian history or culture, and yet you posit yourself as some sort of expert on the topic?....

    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/who-are-you-in-1917-russia/

    Who Are You in 1917 Russia?

    The (excellent) historical journal Arzamas has a quiz, now translated into English, about your political compass location in the context of 1917 Russia.

    My own (AK) result, probably unsurprisingly, was Black Hundreds.

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    • Replies: @Mr. Hack

    My own (AK) result, probably unsurprisingly, was Black Hundreds.

     

    Thanks for pointing this out to me. I was hoping that Karlin would have addressed his allegiance to the Black Hundred's philosophy in a reply to my original posting, but alas he was probably too embarrassed to do so. So, now it's clear what political philosophy underscores Karlin's exotic form of Russian nationalism!

    Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite too (the Black Hundreds were notorious for perpetrating pogroms within the Russian Empire too), so it's only fair to ask him if within his Russian nationalist weltanschauung he envisions any sort of 'final solution' for the Jewish element within Russian society? Just what level of violent confrontation would you, Mr. Karlin, stoop to in your quest to make Russians out of Ukrainians? Would you also burn down Ukrainian language libraries, like those whom you so admire did?...
     
  84. @AP
    They are supposed to pretend to be Russians, in which case they'll be treated just like other Russians. But if they don't pretend to be Russians they will be viewed as traitors, and as such would probably be treated worse than non-Russians.

    in which case they’ll be treated just like other Russians.

    This is the big unknown, correct?

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    • Replies: @The Big Red Scary
    Under the nightmare scenario that we are discussing here, nothing is known. But under the given status quo, Ukrainians who identify as such and live in Russia seem to be accepted just fine. If they have strong political opinions, then sure, they are going to get in some heated arguments. If they want to enjoy some good ol' Russian bashin', then they need to hang out with Moscow liberals, not vatniks. But they are not going to have serious problems unless they encounter extremists. I am afraid of those in all countries.

    My observations are based on an admittedly small but quite intimate sample of Ukrainians living in Russia.

  85. @Darin
    I get it, you are another Western missionary bringing the light to the Eastern savages. Just like the socialists in late 19th century brought Marxism, liberals in late 20th century brought "free market" libertarianism, you are bringing the good word of HBD-IQism.
    Your chances are good. It is, after all, traditional that Western ideologies rejected at home (just like actual workers rejected Marxism and actual capitalists rejected Libertarianism, actual smart people overwhelmingly reject HBDism) find their true home in Russia.

    AK: My two partners on the podcast are both Russians who have always lived in Russia. Troll harder.

    actual smart people overwhelmingly reject HBDism

    Keep telling yourself this. It won’t actually make you any smarter though.

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    • Replies: @Darin

    actual smart people overwhelmingly reject HBDism

    Keep telling yourself this. It won’t actually make you any smarter though.
     
    Keep telling yourself that the wor... inteligentsia just suffer from false consciousness, and need a vanguard party to lead them to the bright and glorious future. After all, it happened previously and could happen again (except for the glorious future part).
  86. @Boris N

    The Kazan Tatars for example have spent 500 years not being Russian. Some resistance might be provoked.
     
    If I remember the numbers right 2/3 of Tatars live outside of Tatarstan. That is they're deprived of the rights they are supposed to get under the current regime of ethnic republics. That is for 2/3 of Tatars the abolition of Tatarstan will do only good. Right now according to the Constitution the only thing republics have in particular is their right to set up their own state language(s). That is, as I said, only 1/3 of Tatars enjoy that right. Without any republics but with universal language rights Tatars would rather gain than loose. I feel OK if the minorities will get their language rights everywhere where they live compactly, not only within their republics (and not every minority has its republic). That is it is much better to establish official languages on the level of districts or settlements rather than on the level of republics, where often the language is imposed on "non-titular" population. Like a half of Tatarstan are Russians but they have to learn Tatar, while Tatars outside of Tatarstan cannot do that, isn't that stupid?

    If I remember the numbers right 2/3 of Tatars live outside of Tatarstan

    Now that it’s part of Russia again, you could let all of the Tatars move back to Crimea. :)

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    • Replies: @annamaria
    "...you could let all of the Tatars move back to Crimea"
    Cannot help yourself with producing this venom? You could try reading Leo Tolstoy on the topic, at least.
    , @Boris N

    Now that it’s part of Russia again, you could let all of the Tatars move back to Crimea.
     
    You seem to have little understanding of Russian demographics and ethnic profile and you certainly do not know a thing about the Tatars you've tried to speak about. Under any considerations it's out of understanding why Volga Tatars should move to the Crimea.
  87. @iffen
    in which case they’ll be treated just like other Russians.

    This is the big unknown, correct?

    Under the nightmare scenario that we are discussing here, nothing is known. But under the given status quo, Ukrainians who identify as such and live in Russia seem to be accepted just fine. If they have strong political opinions, then sure, they are going to get in some heated arguments. If they want to enjoy some good ol’ Russian bashin’, then they need to hang out with Moscow liberals, not vatniks. But they are not going to have serious problems unless they encounter extremists. I am afraid of those in all countries.

    My observations are based on an admittedly small but quite intimate sample of Ukrainians living in Russia.

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  88. @iffen
    I can't discern AK's plan for "Ukrainians" within Greater Russia. Are they supposed to pretend to be Russians or will they be permanent 2nd class "others" ?

    For russian nationalist it will sound like – is texican must pretend to be american or he is 2nd class other?

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    • Replies: @iffen
    AK is proposing a Greater Russia with the emphasis on "Russian."

    This is not the same for America. Americans can be and are descended from different ethnicities and races.

    The original Texicans suffered at first, but their descendants have done reasonably well.

    The issue in modern times is confounded by recent arrivals, not just from Mexico but Meso-America as well. The descendants of the original Texicans are pretty clear on their Americanism as far as I know.

    If we do get to draw new lines, I think we should consider Baja California as a worthwhile addition.

  89. @Mr. XYZ
    : Doesn't China still have various widely spoken regional languages (such as Cantonese) even today, though?

    Also, Russifying a couple of million Ukrainians is probably easier than doing the same thing to 40 million Ukrainians.

    same thing to 40 million Ukrainians

    How many millions out of that 40 million want to make this into a life or death matter?

    How many millions just want to get the best economic deal for the Ukraine?

    General knowledge tells me that the overwhelming millions would opt for the best deal and getting on with living rather that going the civil war route for who knows how many decades.

    Even the people in N. Ireland have decided that killing each other is not the route.

    Can you imagine Scots and English taking up killing each other again?

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  90. @Hector_St_Clare
    I largely agree with your rejection of the "Great Russia" concept. I don't like the concept of "great" nations in general: smaller countries usually tend to work better than big ones. I really don't get the concept of why Anatoly wants the Ukraine and Belarus incorporated into Russia. Sure, I understand why you might dislike Ukraine and Ukrainians, and I sympathize with much of his stuff regarding the need to stop mass migration, encourage more homogeneous societies, and so forth, but I don't get why "uniting all Russians", much less "uniting all East Slavs" under one national banner is such a goal for some people. Maybe that's just because I'm not a *nationalist* in the strict sense: my natural gut tendency is to divide rather than unite.

    A smaller, more ethnically "Russian" Russia would be much better than a large and diverse one. And this isn't a specific dislike against Russia: I think India and the US are much too large countries as well.

    Also, I like the way Belarus has been run under the neocommunist Lukashenko regime, and I have no desire to see it absorbed into Putin's plutocratic capitalist state. (In fairness to Putin, Russia's Gini index is slightly below America's, but given that we are one of the most unequal industrialized countries that's a very low bar). Belarus has arguably had better outcomes (on GDP growth, inequality and life expectancy for three) from 1991 to the present than Russia has had. From my point of view the independence of Belarus is something to be very strongly defended. (For similar reasons, because I'm hopeful that Novorussia might end up to the left of where Russia is, I'd like the LNR and DNR to be their own countries rather than being absorbed into Russia).

    On the one hand Lukashenko has done a lot of good, economically and socially. On the other hand there is a danger of him or his successors going further in the Ukrainian direction of creating a nationalism where none existed before for no other reason than to safeguard personal power.

    Years ago he hoped to succeed Yeltsin in the Kremlin, and he would have probably been better there than Putin, plus this would have reunited Belarus with Russia.

    The division between the two countries is phony and a political accident. I understand the Russians who’re upset by the fact that Russia is divided and that there are people who want to make that division real by teaching the young generation phony history and a new language. Lukashenko isn’t nearly as bad at this as the Kiev junta, but it’s in his personal interest to exaggerate cultural and historic differences.

    The Ukraine is a collection of very different regions. The westernmost ones really do have their own language, culture and history. That part should be independent. The southeast is culturally Russian, and in contrast with Belarus, it’s governed horribly by thieves and foreign-to-it nationalists. I’d love to see Russia take it back, but this should be done decisively, not in the 2014-2015 Donbass fashion. The junta can’t resist a full-on, honest-to-goodness Russian intervention, so it would be pretty much a bloodless operation.

    Between the west and the southeast of the Ukraine there is a region which is mostly Russian-speaking, but politically anti-Russian. This includes Kiev. That region would be very difficult for Russia to absorb. The reason that Russian nationalists don’t like Lukashenko is that they’re afraid that he or his successors will turn Belarus into something like that, into another central Ukraine.

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    • Replies: @Hector_St_Clare
    "On the other hand there is a danger of him or his successors going further in the Ukrainian direction of creating a nationalism where none existed before for no other reason than to safeguard personal power. "

    It might be less about personal power than about, you know, preserving the gains of the Belarussian "social state" and not wanting to see it absorbed into a very different social and economic order. A lot of the western criticism of Putin's Russia is ill founded, but one piece that's very well founded is that Russia today is a highly unequal capitalist country with large gaps between rich and poor, large concentrations of wealth and power in private hands, etc.. I don't want to see Belarus go down that route, apparently neither do you, and if drumming up an ersatz nationalism is the price one has to pay to preserve the gains of the last few decades and defend them against right-wing social order, then that's fine by me.

    All nationalisms are as Anatoly concedes, social constructs. Sometimes they serve good purposes, sometimes bad ones. I think cultivating a kind of Russian nationalism that preserves the distinct ethnic and cultural identity of Russians would be a very good thing. A kind of Russian (or American, or especially European) nationalism that's obsessed with greatness for its own sake would not be. Likewise, a Belarussian nationalism that centeres on preserving the gains of Lukashenko's neo-socialist state? Fine by me. In point of fact though Bat'ka doesn't strike me as all that culturally nationalistic. Isn't he the guy who says "There are only two great languages, English and Russian?"

    I was aware of Lukashenko's fleeting interest in becoming Yeltsin's successor. That would have been an interesting alternate history, and probably one preferable to what actually happened, as you correctly point out.

    It's also worth making clear that my bias here is towards the "small is beautiful" model of geopolitics. If I could divide up the US and India into smaller countries, I would. Likewise with England, Scotland and Wales.
  91. @Zzz
    For russian nationalist it will sound like - is texican must pretend to be american or he is 2nd class other?

    AK is proposing a Greater Russia with the emphasis on “Russian.”

    This is not the same for America. Americans can be and are descended from different ethnicities and races.

    The original Texicans suffered at first, but their descendants have done reasonably well.

    The issue in modern times is confounded by recent arrivals, not just from Mexico but Meso-America as well. The descendants of the original Texicans are pretty clear on their Americanism as far as I know.

    If we do get to draw new lines, I think we should consider Baja California as a worthwhile addition.

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    • Replies: @Zzz

    AK is proposing a Greater Russia with the emphasis on “Russian.” This is not the same for America.
     
    Well this some lost in translation kind of thing hard to comprehend for americans as far as I'm aware. So just take it as I put it. Is bavarians must pretend to be germans or they are 2nd class other?
  92. @iffen
    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/who-are-you-in-1917-russia/

    Who Are You in 1917 Russia?

    The (excellent) historical journal Arzamas has a quiz, now translated into English, about your political compass location in the context of 1917 Russia.

    My own (AK) result, probably unsurprisingly, was Black Hundreds.

     

    My own (AK) result, probably unsurprisingly, was Black Hundreds.

    Thanks for pointing this out to me. I was hoping that Karlin would have addressed his allegiance to the Black Hundred’s philosophy in a reply to my original posting, but alas he was probably too embarrassed to do so. So, now it’s clear what political philosophy underscores Karlin’s exotic form of Russian nationalism!

    Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite too (the Black Hundreds were notorious for perpetrating pogroms within the Russian Empire too), so it’s only fair to ask him if within his Russian nationalist weltanschauung he envisions any sort of ‘final solution’ for the Jewish element within Russian society? Just what level of violent confrontation would you, Mr. Karlin, stoop to in your quest to make Russians out of Ukrainians? Would you also burn down Ukrainian language libraries, like those whom you so admire did?…

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    • Replies: @German_reader
    "Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite too "

    AK already gave an answer to that accusation here (comment 26):
    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/open-thread-4/
    Pretty low blow to make such accusations without good reason.
    , @iffen
    Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite

    AK is not an anti-Semite.

    The Black Hundred reference is tongue in cheek.
  93. Anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Hail
    The Chechnya problem. Why keep Chechnya?

    Does anyone propose formally expelling Chechnya and making it a client state to keep an eye on it?

    Why keep Chechnya?

    Because Chechnya is not separated from the rest of Russia by an ocean/sea.
    A wall won’t solve the problem either.

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  94. @iffen
    AK is proposing a Greater Russia with the emphasis on "Russian."

    This is not the same for America. Americans can be and are descended from different ethnicities and races.

    The original Texicans suffered at first, but their descendants have done reasonably well.

    The issue in modern times is confounded by recent arrivals, not just from Mexico but Meso-America as well. The descendants of the original Texicans are pretty clear on their Americanism as far as I know.

    If we do get to draw new lines, I think we should consider Baja California as a worthwhile addition.

    AK is proposing a Greater Russia with the emphasis on “Russian.” This is not the same for America.

    Well this some lost in translation kind of thing hard to comprehend for americans as far as I’m aware. So just take it as I put it. Is bavarians must pretend to be germans or they are 2nd class other?

    Read More
    • Replies: @iffen
    Well this some lost in translation kind of thing hard to comprehend for americans as far as I’m aware.

    Yes, you are correct. I fully understand that we don't have anything analogous. That is why I am reading all of the comments. I want to get a handle on understanding the situation as best as I can. Not helped by the German reference. Do Prussians and Bavarians think of themselves as different nationalities? Does one group think they are "more" German? Are you suggesting that Ukrainians are to Russians as Bavarians are to Prussians?
  95. Anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Anatoly Karlin
    I agree with this.

    I stated the number of Russians from Kazakhstan off the top of my head, which was pretty close. The 600k other Europeans would be mostly Ukrainians, who are close to fully Russified. There's also some Germanic remnants but 90% of them have left for Germany by now.

    I stated the number of Russians from Kazakhstan off the top of my head, which was pretty close. The 600k other Europeans would be mostly Ukrainians, who are close to fully Russified. There’s also some Germanic remnants but 90% of them have left for Germany by now.

    And Poles: http://astanatimes.com/2016/07/polish-village-in-kazakhstan-unique-place-of-ethnic-friendship/ – my mother’s home village

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  96. Anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @aly
    I agree with this. But incorporation of Russia into EU looks very unrealistic for foreseeable future. Not only there is no desire for that on both sides, but Russia is maybe too big to be just another big EU-state. Russia will have difficulties accepting that role I think, not to mention Germany/France/Poland/others who would see their influence in EU greatly diminished in that case. But prospects for Ukraine and Belarus to join the EU are real, if not in the near future.
    I'm not that pessimistic about the EU future. Brexit could strengthen EU, not weaken it. To me it's more probable that the EU influence and attractiveness will only grow in Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, so time is running out for Russia.
    Also there seems that today Russia doesn't have any plan or desire to make Russia more Russian (or Slavic&European) with selective expansion. Instead they have this Eurasian Economic Union project whitch is not so good on demographic front for Russia. Let's hope at least Uzbekistan will not join with it's 30+ million (and fast growing) population. Georgia and Armenia are not Slavic nor European but they are at least Christian so I do not consider them as a threat.
    Demography is the most important factor, if there is more Russians it's easier to expand. But today Muslims are the ones who are growing.

    This is off topic but can someone tell me does Russian government provide more incentives (cash or something) in regions where demographic situation is more dire, where TFR is worse, typically Russian-majority regions in central, western and northern parts of european Russia? Couple of years ago i read something about that, that government is making change in demographic policy, with more emphasis to regions with very bad demographics, instead of one-size-fits-all policy. Can someone confirm this? And can we attribute this and last year fall in births in Northern Caucasus, and slight growth or stagnation in central,west and northern european Russia to that?

    I’m not that pessimistic about the EU future. Brexit could strengthen EU, not weaken it. To me it’s more probable that the EU influence and attractiveness will only grow in Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, so time is running out for Russia.

    Don’t confuse unity with strength.
    Brexit will contribute to the former, but not necessarily to the latter because Great Britain was a major contributor to the Union.
    Is a more centralized, but poorer EUrope going to be more attractive to the countries you mentioned?
    I don’t think so.

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    • Replies: @Philip Owen
    It's not going to be poorer. The price of oil is down until the 2030's on the ordinary raw materials cycle. The EU and Japan were the importers that paid for all those oil booms. That money is staying at home now. We are only two years in. In this phase, debt gets paid off in the PIIGS.
  97. @Mr. Hack

    My own (AK) result, probably unsurprisingly, was Black Hundreds.

     

    Thanks for pointing this out to me. I was hoping that Karlin would have addressed his allegiance to the Black Hundred's philosophy in a reply to my original posting, but alas he was probably too embarrassed to do so. So, now it's clear what political philosophy underscores Karlin's exotic form of Russian nationalism!

    Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite too (the Black Hundreds were notorious for perpetrating pogroms within the Russian Empire too), so it's only fair to ask him if within his Russian nationalist weltanschauung he envisions any sort of 'final solution' for the Jewish element within Russian society? Just what level of violent confrontation would you, Mr. Karlin, stoop to in your quest to make Russians out of Ukrainians? Would you also burn down Ukrainian language libraries, like those whom you so admire did?...
     

    “Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite too ”

    AK already gave an answer to that accusation here (comment 26):

    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/open-thread-4/

    Pretty low blow to make such accusations without good reason.

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    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    Look, you can't have it both ways. The Black Hundreds movement was known to instigate and take part in anti-Jewish pogroms. Karlin has self identified himself as an adherent to their political ideas. Maybe it's time for Karlin to continue his amazing ability to speak out of both sides of his mouth, at one time? :-)
  98. @Glossy
    On the one hand Lukashenko has done a lot of good, economically and socially. On the other hand there is a danger of him or his successors going further in the Ukrainian direction of creating a nationalism where none existed before for no other reason than to safeguard personal power.

    Years ago he hoped to succeed Yeltsin in the Kremlin, and he would have probably been better there than Putin, plus this would have reunited Belarus with Russia.

    The division between the two countries is phony and a political accident. I understand the Russians who're upset by the fact that Russia is divided and that there are people who want to make that division real by teaching the young generation phony history and a new language. Lukashenko isn't nearly as bad at this as the Kiev junta, but it's in his personal interest to exaggerate cultural and historic differences.

    The Ukraine is a collection of very different regions. The westernmost ones really do have their own language, culture and history. That part should be independent. The southeast is culturally Russian, and in contrast with Belarus, it's governed horribly by thieves and foreign-to-it nationalists. I'd love to see Russia take it back, but this should be done decisively, not in the 2014-2015 Donbass fashion. The junta can't resist a full-on, honest-to-goodness Russian intervention, so it would be pretty much a bloodless operation.

    Between the west and the southeast of the Ukraine there is a region which is mostly Russian-speaking, but politically anti-Russian. This includes Kiev. That region would be very difficult for Russia to absorb. The reason that Russian nationalists don't like Lukashenko is that they're afraid that he or his successors will turn Belarus into something like that, into another central Ukraine.

    “On the other hand there is a danger of him or his successors going further in the Ukrainian direction of creating a nationalism where none existed before for no other reason than to safeguard personal power. ”

    It might be less about personal power than about, you know, preserving the gains of the Belarussian “social state” and not wanting to see it absorbed into a very different social and economic order. A lot of the western criticism of Putin’s Russia is ill founded, but one piece that’s very well founded is that Russia today is a highly unequal capitalist country with large gaps between rich and poor, large concentrations of wealth and power in private hands, etc.. I don’t want to see Belarus go down that route, apparently neither do you, and if drumming up an ersatz nationalism is the price one has to pay to preserve the gains of the last few decades and defend them against right-wing social order, then that’s fine by me.

    All nationalisms are as Anatoly concedes, social constructs. Sometimes they serve good purposes, sometimes bad ones. I think cultivating a kind of Russian nationalism that preserves the distinct ethnic and cultural identity of Russians would be a very good thing. A kind of Russian (or American, or especially European) nationalism that’s obsessed with greatness for its own sake would not be. Likewise, a Belarussian nationalism that centeres on preserving the gains of Lukashenko’s neo-socialist state? Fine by me. In point of fact though Bat’ka doesn’t strike me as all that culturally nationalistic. Isn’t he the guy who says “There are only two great languages, English and Russian?”

    I was aware of Lukashenko’s fleeting interest in becoming Yeltsin’s successor. That would have been an interesting alternate history, and probably one preferable to what actually happened, as you correctly point out.

    It’s also worth making clear that my bias here is towards the “small is beautiful” model of geopolitics. If I could divide up the US and India into smaller countries, I would. Likewise with England, Scotland and Wales.

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    • Replies: @Glossy
    I pretty much agree with you about Belarus. The fact that it could be reabsorbed by Russia doesn't mean that it should be. In terms of social and econonic fairness, and with respect to ethnic policy (guestworkers) the current Russian state is worse.

    If Lukashenko's successors turn in the Maidanite/oligarchic direction and start looting and liberalizing, my attitude towards Belorussian independence will change.
    , @Philip Owen
    'It’s also worth making clear that my bias here is towards the “small is beautiful” model of geopolitics.' Agree but you still need an EU to prevent a lot of little Yugoslavias.
  99. @German_reader
    "Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite too "

    AK already gave an answer to that accusation here (comment 26):
    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/open-thread-4/
    Pretty low blow to make such accusations without good reason.

    Look, you can’t have it both ways. The Black Hundreds movement was known to instigate and take part in anti-Jewish pogroms. Karlin has self identified himself as an adherent to their political ideas. Maybe it’s time for Karlin to continue his amazing ability to speak out of both sides of his mouth, at one time? :-)

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    • Replies: @German_reader
    "Karlin has self identified himself as an adherent to their political ideas"

    Get a grip, he wrote he got that result when taking a quiz on "What would you have been in 1917?". iirc that quiz didn't have any questions about Jews, it was mostly about the situation at the time (e.g. should the war be continued or not?).
    You may criticize AK's nationalism, but it's a bit much to pretend he's out for pogroming Jews based on a semi-serious (at least that's how I took it) post about some quiz concerning the situation a century ago.

  100. : Wasn’t the literacy rate in the Russian Empire close to 40% (rather than 25%) in 1913?

    Also, wasn’t the literacy rate in eastern and southern Ukraine close to 50% in 1913?

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  101. @Mr. Hack
    Look, you can't have it both ways. The Black Hundreds movement was known to instigate and take part in anti-Jewish pogroms. Karlin has self identified himself as an adherent to their political ideas. Maybe it's time for Karlin to continue his amazing ability to speak out of both sides of his mouth, at one time? :-)

    “Karlin has self identified himself as an adherent to their political ideas”

    Get a grip, he wrote he got that result when taking a quiz on “What would you have been in 1917?”. iirc that quiz didn’t have any questions about Jews, it was mostly about the situation at the time (e.g. should the war be continued or not?).
    You may criticize AK’s nationalism, but it’s a bit much to pretend he’s out for pogroming Jews based on a semi-serious (at least that’s how I took it) post about some quiz concerning the situation a century ago.

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    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    Why don't we let Karlin himself explain just what sort of an attachment he has to the Black Hundreds movement? At least from the extremely chauvinistic way he treats Ukrainian national issues, I'd typecast him as a noveau-Blackshirt (like Zoro, he even seems to don a black mask). :-)
  102. : Don’t worry about the Eurasian Economic Union; after all, I doubt that political integration is realistic for it (since either Russia will oppose it if there are too many non-Slavs inside of it or the other peoples inside of it will oppose it if it is too dominated by Russia).

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  103. @German_reader
    "Karlin has self identified himself as an adherent to their political ideas"

    Get a grip, he wrote he got that result when taking a quiz on "What would you have been in 1917?". iirc that quiz didn't have any questions about Jews, it was mostly about the situation at the time (e.g. should the war be continued or not?).
    You may criticize AK's nationalism, but it's a bit much to pretend he's out for pogroming Jews based on a semi-serious (at least that's how I took it) post about some quiz concerning the situation a century ago.

    Why don’t we let Karlin himself explain just what sort of an attachment he has to the Black Hundreds movement? At least from the extremely chauvinistic way he treats Ukrainian national issues, I’d typecast him as a noveau-Blackshirt (like Zoro, he even seems to don a black mask). :-)

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  104. @Hector_St_Clare
    "On the other hand there is a danger of him or his successors going further in the Ukrainian direction of creating a nationalism where none existed before for no other reason than to safeguard personal power. "

    It might be less about personal power than about, you know, preserving the gains of the Belarussian "social state" and not wanting to see it absorbed into a very different social and economic order. A lot of the western criticism of Putin's Russia is ill founded, but one piece that's very well founded is that Russia today is a highly unequal capitalist country with large gaps between rich and poor, large concentrations of wealth and power in private hands, etc.. I don't want to see Belarus go down that route, apparently neither do you, and if drumming up an ersatz nationalism is the price one has to pay to preserve the gains of the last few decades and defend them against right-wing social order, then that's fine by me.

    All nationalisms are as Anatoly concedes, social constructs. Sometimes they serve good purposes, sometimes bad ones. I think cultivating a kind of Russian nationalism that preserves the distinct ethnic and cultural identity of Russians would be a very good thing. A kind of Russian (or American, or especially European) nationalism that's obsessed with greatness for its own sake would not be. Likewise, a Belarussian nationalism that centeres on preserving the gains of Lukashenko's neo-socialist state? Fine by me. In point of fact though Bat'ka doesn't strike me as all that culturally nationalistic. Isn't he the guy who says "There are only two great languages, English and Russian?"

    I was aware of Lukashenko's fleeting interest in becoming Yeltsin's successor. That would have been an interesting alternate history, and probably one preferable to what actually happened, as you correctly point out.

    It's also worth making clear that my bias here is towards the "small is beautiful" model of geopolitics. If I could divide up the US and India into smaller countries, I would. Likewise with England, Scotland and Wales.

    I pretty much agree with you about Belarus. The fact that it could be reabsorbed by Russia doesn’t mean that it should be. In terms of social and econonic fairness, and with respect to ethnic policy (guestworkers) the current Russian state is worse.

    If Lukashenko’s successors turn in the Maidanite/oligarchic direction and start looting and liberalizing, my attitude towards Belorussian independence will change.

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  105. @Mr. Hack

    My own (AK) result, probably unsurprisingly, was Black Hundreds.

     

    Thanks for pointing this out to me. I was hoping that Karlin would have addressed his allegiance to the Black Hundred's philosophy in a reply to my original posting, but alas he was probably too embarrassed to do so. So, now it's clear what political philosophy underscores Karlin's exotic form of Russian nationalism!

    Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite too (the Black Hundreds were notorious for perpetrating pogroms within the Russian Empire too), so it's only fair to ask him if within his Russian nationalist weltanschauung he envisions any sort of 'final solution' for the Jewish element within Russian society? Just what level of violent confrontation would you, Mr. Karlin, stoop to in your quest to make Russians out of Ukrainians? Would you also burn down Ukrainian language libraries, like those whom you so admire did?...
     

    Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite

    AK is not an anti-Semite.

    The Black Hundred reference is tongue in cheek.

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    • Replies: @Mr. Hack

    The Black Hundred reference is tongue in cheek.
     
    I don't think so, based on his treatment of Ukrainian nationalism.
    , @Mr. Hack

    AK is not an anti-Semite.
     
    He is, see his answer below - I don't make this stuff up!
  106. @iffen
    I can't discern AK's plan for "Ukrainians" within Greater Russia. Are they supposed to pretend to be Russians or will they be permanent 2nd class "others" ?

    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine. Many, many millions of them have Ukrainian surnames. Russians are very used to considering such people to be Russian.

    This wouldn’t work between the French and Moroccans because of inborn differences, but in the Russian-Ukrainian case the hardware is basically the same, so if the software (culture, loyalties) aligns, then there is no difference.

    If the software doesn’t allign and a person starts defending Bandera or the junta’s shelling of Donetsk, there will likely be a conflict.

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    • Replies: @iffen
    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine.

    Do the views of this group on the current situation in the Ukraine differ significantly from the Russians who do not have these historic ties to Ukraine?
  107. @Zzz

    AK is proposing a Greater Russia with the emphasis on “Russian.” This is not the same for America.
     
    Well this some lost in translation kind of thing hard to comprehend for americans as far as I'm aware. So just take it as I put it. Is bavarians must pretend to be germans or they are 2nd class other?

    Well this some lost in translation kind of thing hard to comprehend for americans as far as I’m aware.

    Yes, you are correct. I fully understand that we don’t have anything analogous. That is why I am reading all of the comments. I want to get a handle on understanding the situation as best as I can. Not helped by the German reference. Do Prussians and Bavarians think of themselves as different nationalities? Does one group think they are “more” German? Are you suggesting that Ukrainians are to Russians as Bavarians are to Prussians?

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    • Replies: @Anon

    Do Prussians and Bavarians think of themselves as different nationalities?
     
    The Austrians and the last remaining Prussians do.
  108. @iffen
    Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite

    AK is not an anti-Semite.

    The Black Hundred reference is tongue in cheek.

    The Black Hundred reference is tongue in cheek.

    I don’t think so, based on his treatment of Ukrainian nationalism.

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    • Replies: @iffen
    As a general rule most nationalists do not look favorably upon separatists of any sort. That does not make them Nazis or anti-Semites.

    My understanding is that AK thinks Ukraine is part of Russia and does not give legitimacy to Ukrainian separatists.

  109. @Glossy
    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine. Many, many millions of them have Ukrainian surnames. Russians are very used to considering such people to be Russian.

    This wouldn't work between the French and Moroccans because of inborn differences, but in the Russian-Ukrainian case the hardware is basically the same, so if the software (culture, loyalties) aligns, then there is no difference.

    If the software doesn't allign and a person starts defending Bandera or the junta's shelling of Donetsk, there will likely be a conflict.

    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine.

    Do the views of this group on the current situation in the Ukraine differ significantly from the Russians who do not have these historic ties to Ukraine?

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    • Replies: @Glossy
    I don't think so. Someone would have noticed this by now if it were true. Putin has joked about the number of Ukrainian surnames on the list of Russian officials sanctioned by Western countries for "Russian aggression against the Ukraine."
    , @AP

    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine.

    Do the views of this group on the current situation in the Ukraine differ significantly from the Russians who do not have these historic ties to Ukraine?
     
    Well, Navalny is half-Ukrainian and he is generally pro-Kiev.
  110. @iffen
    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine.

    Do the views of this group on the current situation in the Ukraine differ significantly from the Russians who do not have these historic ties to Ukraine?

    I don’t think so. Someone would have noticed this by now if it were true. Putin has joked about the number of Ukrainian surnames on the list of Russian officials sanctioned by Western countries for “Russian aggression against the Ukraine.”

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    • Replies: @iffen
    Not all Quislings are Norwegian.

    No accusation, just general observation.
  111. Anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @iffen
    Well this some lost in translation kind of thing hard to comprehend for americans as far as I’m aware.

    Yes, you are correct. I fully understand that we don't have anything analogous. That is why I am reading all of the comments. I want to get a handle on understanding the situation as best as I can. Not helped by the German reference. Do Prussians and Bavarians think of themselves as different nationalities? Does one group think they are "more" German? Are you suggesting that Ukrainians are to Russians as Bavarians are to Prussians?

    Do Prussians and Bavarians think of themselves as different nationalities?

    The Austrians and the last remaining Prussians do.

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  112. @Glossy
    I don't think so. Someone would have noticed this by now if it were true. Putin has joked about the number of Ukrainian surnames on the list of Russian officials sanctioned by Western countries for "Russian aggression against the Ukraine."

    Not all Quislings are Norwegian.

    No accusation, just general observation.

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    • Replies: @Glossy
    In that conflict, all the people who praise Nazi collaborators are on the side of the Kiev junta, so the Quisling analogy goes the other way.
  113. @Mr. Hack

    The Black Hundred reference is tongue in cheek.
     
    I don't think so, based on his treatment of Ukrainian nationalism.

    As a general rule most nationalists do not look favorably upon separatists of any sort. That does not make them Nazis or anti-Semites.

    My understanding is that AK thinks Ukraine is part of Russia and does not give legitimacy to Ukrainian separatists.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Hack

    My understanding is that AK thinks Ukraine is part of Russia and does not give legitimacy to Ukrainian separatists.
     
    I've never labeled Karlin as a Nazi, and have only questioned his adherence to anti-Semitic viewpoints. Let me remind you that it is Karlin himself that has pointed out his own affinities with the Black Hundreds movement, not I. And let me also remind you that Karlin's views regarding Ukrainian separatism are identical to those held by members of the Black Hundred's movement:

    The Black Hundred movement actively campaigned against what it considered to be Ukrainian separatism, as well as against promoting Ukrainian culture and language in general, and against the works of Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko in particular.[7] In Odessa, the Black Hundreds shut down the local branch of the Ukrainian Prosvita society, an organization that was dedicated to spreading literacy in the Ukrainian language and Ukrainian cultural awareness.[6]

     

    It's too bad that the real Anatoly Karlin doesn't weigh into this discussion and clear some things up?...
  114. We’ve got about 25 years before space lizards vaporize us to save RAM on the simulation we’re living in, or so I’ve been given to understand. Isn’t the morally correct thing for a Russian leader to do, to extract surplus capital from his solid, but stolid countrymen and give it to the Japs so they can make start making serious progress on the bionic man stuff?

    Or, to put it another way, more posts on the relationship between Russian nationalism and transhumanist futurism, please.

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  115. @iffen
    Not all Quislings are Norwegian.

    No accusation, just general observation.

    In that conflict, all the people who praise Nazi collaborators are on the side of the Kiev junta, so the Quisling analogy goes the other way.

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  116. @iffen
    actual smart people overwhelmingly reject HBDism

    Keep telling yourself this. It won't actually make you any smarter though.

    actual smart people overwhelmingly reject HBDism

    Keep telling yourself this. It won’t actually make you any smarter though.

    Keep telling yourself that the wor… inteligentsia just suffer from false consciousness, and need a vanguard party to lead them to the bright and glorious future. After all, it happened previously and could happen again (except for the glorious future part).

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  117. @iffen
    As a general rule most nationalists do not look favorably upon separatists of any sort. That does not make them Nazis or anti-Semites.

    My understanding is that AK thinks Ukraine is part of Russia and does not give legitimacy to Ukrainian separatists.

    My understanding is that AK thinks Ukraine is part of Russia and does not give legitimacy to Ukrainian separatists.

    I’ve never labeled Karlin as a Nazi, and have only questioned his adherence to anti-Semitic viewpoints. Let me remind you that it is Karlin himself that has pointed out his own affinities with the Black Hundreds movement, not I. And let me also remind you that Karlin’s views regarding Ukrainian separatism are identical to those held by members of the Black Hundred’s movement:

    The Black Hundred movement actively campaigned against what it considered to be Ukrainian separatism, as well as against promoting Ukrainian culture and language in general, and against the works of Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko in particular.[7] In Odessa, the Black Hundreds shut down the local branch of the Ukrainian Prosvita society, an organization that was dedicated to spreading literacy in the Ukrainian language and Ukrainian cultural awareness.[6]

    It’s too bad that the real Anatoly Karlin doesn’t weigh into this discussion and clear some things up?…

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    • Replies: @Anonymous

    -I'm looked at chinesse horoscope and I'm pink dragon
    -Hitler was pink dragon, do you like to gas jews?
    -why would he?
    -he said he endorse Hitler.

     

    Well, not realy, it's not what he pointed out. (even if he is). Your way of trolling is obnoxious
    , @Anatoly Karlin
    I would score 6/11 on the ADL 100's test of whether someone is an anti-Semite or not, which officially makes me an anti-Semite (even if a marginal one).

    This would make me more anti-Semitic than the average German or Russian, though less anti-Semitic than the average Greek or Armenian, to say nothing of the average Arab.

    Then again, even some rabbis are anti-Semites by ADL standards, so I suppose it's ultimately a question of semantics and boundary-drawing, like most things.
  118. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Mr. Hack

    My understanding is that AK thinks Ukraine is part of Russia and does not give legitimacy to Ukrainian separatists.
     
    I've never labeled Karlin as a Nazi, and have only questioned his adherence to anti-Semitic viewpoints. Let me remind you that it is Karlin himself that has pointed out his own affinities with the Black Hundreds movement, not I. And let me also remind you that Karlin's views regarding Ukrainian separatism are identical to those held by members of the Black Hundred's movement:

    The Black Hundred movement actively campaigned against what it considered to be Ukrainian separatism, as well as against promoting Ukrainian culture and language in general, and against the works of Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko in particular.[7] In Odessa, the Black Hundreds shut down the local branch of the Ukrainian Prosvita society, an organization that was dedicated to spreading literacy in the Ukrainian language and Ukrainian cultural awareness.[6]

     

    It's too bad that the real Anatoly Karlin doesn't weigh into this discussion and clear some things up?...

    -I’m looked at chinesse horoscope and I’m pink dragon
    -Hitler was pink dragon, do you like to gas jews?
    -why would he?
    -he said he endorse Hitler.

    Well, not realy, it’s not what he pointed out. (even if he is). Your way of trolling is obnoxious

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  119. @iffen
    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine.

    Do the views of this group on the current situation in the Ukraine differ significantly from the Russians who do not have these historic ties to Ukraine?

    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine.

    Do the views of this group on the current situation in the Ukraine differ significantly from the Russians who do not have these historic ties to Ukraine?

    Well, Navalny is half-Ukrainian and he is generally pro-Kiev.

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    • Replies: @AP
    Speaking of Navalny, apparently he has really angered the Uzbek who is one of Russia's richest men:

    https://themoscowtimes.com/articles/russian-billionaire-says-alexei-navalny-crossed-a-red-line-57697

    From the article:

    Comparing Navalny to a drunk and likening himself to a king, Usmanov concluded by saying Navalny is like an alcoholic once arrested for insulting Tsar Alexander III: “[The tsar] ordered the poor guy’s release, but he also passed along a note telling the drunk that he didn’t like him much, either.”
     
    That's who is like a Tsar in Putin's Russia:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alisher_Usmanov
    , @Mr. Hack
    Actually, I was more interested in the similarities between your own Ukrainophobic ideas and those of your Black shirted predecessors. You're getting close to answering, I can sense it...


    Recently, groups laying claim to the Black Hundreds legacy have reemerged over the turmoil in Ukraine, backing the position of Ukrainian re-union with Russia and blaming the current crisis on Jews in the Ukrainian government. How similar they are to the actual Black Hundreds of the past I cannot be certain.
     
    Perhaps, you would be kind enough to help the 'Mad Monarchist' and myself out by answering his questions?
  120. @Mr. Hack

    My understanding is that AK thinks Ukraine is part of Russia and does not give legitimacy to Ukrainian separatists.
     
    I've never labeled Karlin as a Nazi, and have only questioned his adherence to anti-Semitic viewpoints. Let me remind you that it is Karlin himself that has pointed out his own affinities with the Black Hundreds movement, not I. And let me also remind you that Karlin's views regarding Ukrainian separatism are identical to those held by members of the Black Hundred's movement:

    The Black Hundred movement actively campaigned against what it considered to be Ukrainian separatism, as well as against promoting Ukrainian culture and language in general, and against the works of Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko in particular.[7] In Odessa, the Black Hundreds shut down the local branch of the Ukrainian Prosvita society, an organization that was dedicated to spreading literacy in the Ukrainian language and Ukrainian cultural awareness.[6]

     

    It's too bad that the real Anatoly Karlin doesn't weigh into this discussion and clear some things up?...

    I would score 6/11 on the ADL 100′s test of whether someone is an anti-Semite or not, which officially makes me an anti-Semite (even if a marginal one).

    This would make me more anti-Semitic than the average German or Russian, though less anti-Semitic than the average Greek or Armenian, to say nothing of the average Arab.

    Then again, even some rabbis are anti-Semites by ADL standards, so I suppose it’s ultimately a question of semantics and boundary-drawing, like most things.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    Actually, I was more interested in the similarities between your own Ukrainophobic ideas and those of your Black shirted predecessors. You’re getting close to answering, I can sense it…

    Recently, groups laying claim to the Black Hundreds legacy have reemerged over the turmoil in Ukraine, backing the position of Ukrainian re-union with Russia and blaming the current crisis on Jews in the Ukrainian government. How similar they are to the actual Black Hundreds of the past I cannot be certain.
     
    Perhaps, you would be kind enough to help the ‘Mad Monarchist’ and myself out by answering his questions?
  121. @Anatoly Karlin
    I agree with this.

    I stated the number of Russians from Kazakhstan off the top of my head, which was pretty close. The 600k other Europeans would be mostly Ukrainians, who are close to fully Russified. There's also some Germanic remnants but 90% of them have left for Germany by now.

    I stated the number of Russians from Kazakhstan off the top of my head, which was pretty close. The 600k other Europeans would be mostly Ukrainians, who are close to fully Russified.

    It depends on the Ukrainians. The ones whose ancestors settled in pre-Soviet times are almost fully assimilated; probably most of the kulaks’ descendents who were settled in the 1930s are as well. On the other hand there are probably a few tens of thousands of Galicians who were sent after World War II. These have pretty much not assimilated. They’ve got several Greek Catholic parishes and operate Ukrainian Saturday schools and even have a daily school in the capital.

    I once met a Korean woman from Kazakhstan who spoke decent Ukrainian. She had grown up among a bunch of deported western Ukrainians

    Read More
    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    In addition to 9 Ukrainian Catholic churches in Kazakhstan,

    In an effort to differentiate the Ukrainian and Russian communities in Kazakhstan, the Kazakh government has actively supported Ukrainian cultural aspirations.[3] It has funded a Ukrainian newspaper. Ukrainian organizations operate freely in Kazakhstan, and currently there are 20 Ukrainian cultural centers that sponsor Sunday schools, choirs, and folk dancing groups. Kazakhstan's capital, Astana, has a Ukrainian high school and Sunday school.[4] The shared sufferings of the Kazakh and Ukrainian peoples at the hands of the Soviets are emphasized by Kazakh-Ukrainian activists.[3]
     
    Since I'm new to this blog, perhaps you can bring me up to speed and inform me as to whether or not the complete lack of Ukrainian language schools and Ukrainian churches that are lacking in Russia has ever been brought up here? It appears that Kazakhstan is a more open and free society than Russia, wouldn't you agree? (Also, there are quite a few more Ukrainians within Russia than in Kazakhstan).
  122. @AP

    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine.

    Do the views of this group on the current situation in the Ukraine differ significantly from the Russians who do not have these historic ties to Ukraine?
     
    Well, Navalny is half-Ukrainian and he is generally pro-Kiev.

    Speaking of Navalny, apparently he has really angered the Uzbek who is one of Russia’s richest men:

    https://themoscowtimes.com/articles/russian-billionaire-says-alexei-navalny-crossed-a-red-line-57697

    From the article:

    Comparing Navalny to a drunk and likening himself to a king, Usmanov concluded by saying Navalny is like an alcoholic once arrested for insulting Tsar Alexander III: “[The tsar] ordered the poor guy’s release, but he also passed along a note telling the drunk that he didn’t like him much, either.”

    That’s who is like a Tsar in Putin’s Russia:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alisher_Usmanov

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  123. @AP

    A large share of self-identified Russians in modern Russia have relatively recent (20th or 19th century) roots in the Ukraine.

    Do the views of this group on the current situation in the Ukraine differ significantly from the Russians who do not have these historic ties to Ukraine?
     
    Well, Navalny is half-Ukrainian and he is generally pro-Kiev.

    Actually, I was more interested in the similarities between your own Ukrainophobic ideas and those of your Black shirted predecessors. You’re getting close to answering, I can sense it…

    Recently, groups laying claim to the Black Hundreds legacy have reemerged over the turmoil in Ukraine, backing the position of Ukrainian re-union with Russia and blaming the current crisis on Jews in the Ukrainian government. How similar they are to the actual Black Hundreds of the past I cannot be certain.

    Perhaps, you would be kind enough to help the ‘Mad Monarchist’ and myself out by answering his questions?

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  124. @Anatoly Karlin
    I would score 6/11 on the ADL 100's test of whether someone is an anti-Semite or not, which officially makes me an anti-Semite (even if a marginal one).

    This would make me more anti-Semitic than the average German or Russian, though less anti-Semitic than the average Greek or Armenian, to say nothing of the average Arab.

    Then again, even some rabbis are anti-Semites by ADL standards, so I suppose it's ultimately a question of semantics and boundary-drawing, like most things.

    Actually, I was more interested in the similarities between your own Ukrainophobic ideas and those of your Black shirted predecessors. You’re getting close to answering, I can sense it…

    Recently, groups laying claim to the Black Hundreds legacy have reemerged over the turmoil in Ukraine, backing the position of Ukrainian re-union with Russia and blaming the current crisis on Jews in the Ukrainian government. How similar they are to the actual Black Hundreds of the past I cannot be certain.

    Perhaps, you would be kind enough to help the ‘Mad Monarchist’ and myself out by answering his questions?

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  125. @iffen
    Karlin must be a severe anti-Semite

    AK is not an anti-Semite.

    The Black Hundred reference is tongue in cheek.

    AK is not an anti-Semite.

    He is, see his answer below – I don’t make this stuff up!

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    • Replies: @iffen
    so I suppose it’s ultimately a question of semantics and boundary-drawing, like most things.

    I decided for myself by reading his articles and comments that he is not anti-Semitic. The views expressed there and the language that he uses doesn't fit my definition of anti-Semite. If he is, he doesn't put very much of that into his writing.

    I have never seen that survey attributed to the ADL. I do not accept it as a valid test of whether someone is anti-Semitic. It is rather retarded. I do not accept that someone is an anti-Semite just because a Jew, a group of Jews or an official Jew-hater identifying organization says that someone is.

    Jews run Hollywood. I know that and anyone with a brain knows that. Stating this does not make me an anti-Semite.
    , @iffen
    From Wiki on the Black Hundreds

    Nationalism (Russian),
    Monarchism,
    Antisemitism
    Anti-communism

    In my opinion AK's ranking would be nationalism (Russian), anti-communism, monarchism (or some sort of elite rule). Sometimes it is hard to determine if someone hates Jews because many of the Bolsheviks were Jews or if they hate Bolsheviks because many of them were Jews.
  126. @AP

    I stated the number of Russians from Kazakhstan off the top of my head, which was pretty close. The 600k other Europeans would be mostly Ukrainians, who are close to fully Russified.
     
    It depends on the Ukrainians. The ones whose ancestors settled in pre-Soviet times are almost fully assimilated; probably most of the kulaks' descendents who were settled in the 1930s are as well. On the other hand there are probably a few tens of thousands of Galicians who were sent after World War II. These have pretty much not assimilated. They've got several Greek Catholic parishes and operate Ukrainian Saturday schools and even have a daily school in the capital.

    I once met a Korean woman from Kazakhstan who spoke decent Ukrainian. She had grown up among a bunch of deported western Ukrainians

    In addition to 9 Ukrainian Catholic churches in Kazakhstan,

    In an effort to differentiate the Ukrainian and Russian communities in Kazakhstan, the Kazakh government has actively supported Ukrainian cultural aspirations.[3] It has funded a Ukrainian newspaper. Ukrainian organizations operate freely in Kazakhstan, and currently there are 20 Ukrainian cultural centers that sponsor Sunday schools, choirs, and folk dancing groups. Kazakhstan’s capital, Astana, has a Ukrainian high school and Sunday school.[4] The shared sufferings of the Kazakh and Ukrainian peoples at the hands of the Soviets are emphasized by Kazakh-Ukrainian activists.[3]

    Since I’m new to this blog, perhaps you can bring me up to speed and inform me as to whether or not the complete lack of Ukrainian language schools and Ukrainian churches that are lacking in Russia has ever been brought up here? It appears that Kazakhstan is a more open and free society than Russia, wouldn’t you agree? (Also, there are quite a few more Ukrainians within Russia than in Kazakhstan).

    Read More
    • Replies: @AP

    Since I’m new to this blog, perhaps you can bring me up to speed and inform me as to whether or not the complete lack of Ukrainian language schools and Ukrainian churches that are lacking in Russia has ever been brought up here?
     
    I don't know. However there is at least one Russian-language secondary school in Lviv and zero in Russia (not including Crimea - have those been shut down there? I don't know), so from the perspective of language schools Russia is more anti-Ukrainian than western Ukraine is anti-Russian.
  127. @Mr. Hack

    AK is not an anti-Semite.
     
    He is, see his answer below - I don't make this stuff up!

    so I suppose it’s ultimately a question of semantics and boundary-drawing, like most things.

    I decided for myself by reading his articles and comments that he is not anti-Semitic. The views expressed there and the language that he uses doesn’t fit my definition of anti-Semite. If he is, he doesn’t put very much of that into his writing.

    I have never seen that survey attributed to the ADL. I do not accept it as a valid test of whether someone is anti-Semitic. It is rather retarded. I do not accept that someone is an anti-Semite just because a Jew, a group of Jews or an official Jew-hater identifying organization says that someone is.

    Jews run Hollywood. I know that and anyone with a brain knows that. Stating this does not make me an anti-Semite.

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  128. Thanks to all the commenters who have taken the time to provide good comments.

    My opinion at this point is that very likely only a very small number of people on both sides wanted to take this to the point of killing each other. I guess this is a little late for this advice. I think that if I was involved on either side, I would want to move in the direction of a non-violent solution.

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    • Replies: @JL

    only a very small number of people on both sides wanted to take this to the point of killing each other.
     
    Thankfully, I agree. As tragic as the war in Ukraine is, its scale for a country that size is still pretty small. Syria has, what, half the population, and orders of magnitude more casualties.
  129. @Mr. Hack

    AK is not an anti-Semite.
     
    He is, see his answer below - I don't make this stuff up!

    From Wiki on the Black Hundreds

    Nationalism (Russian),
    Monarchism,
    Antisemitism
    Anti-communism

    In my opinion AK’s ranking would be nationalism (Russian), anti-communism, monarchism (or some sort of elite rule). Sometimes it is hard to determine if someone hates Jews because many of the Bolsheviks were Jews or if they hate Bolsheviks because many of them were Jews.

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  130. @Mr. Hack
    In addition to 9 Ukrainian Catholic churches in Kazakhstan,

    In an effort to differentiate the Ukrainian and Russian communities in Kazakhstan, the Kazakh government has actively supported Ukrainian cultural aspirations.[3] It has funded a Ukrainian newspaper. Ukrainian organizations operate freely in Kazakhstan, and currently there are 20 Ukrainian cultural centers that sponsor Sunday schools, choirs, and folk dancing groups. Kazakhstan's capital, Astana, has a Ukrainian high school and Sunday school.[4] The shared sufferings of the Kazakh and Ukrainian peoples at the hands of the Soviets are emphasized by Kazakh-Ukrainian activists.[3]
     
    Since I'm new to this blog, perhaps you can bring me up to speed and inform me as to whether or not the complete lack of Ukrainian language schools and Ukrainian churches that are lacking in Russia has ever been brought up here? It appears that Kazakhstan is a more open and free society than Russia, wouldn't you agree? (Also, there are quite a few more Ukrainians within Russia than in Kazakhstan).

    Since I’m new to this blog, perhaps you can bring me up to speed and inform me as to whether or not the complete lack of Ukrainian language schools and Ukrainian churches that are lacking in Russia has ever been brought up here?

    I don’t know. However there is at least one Russian-language secondary school in Lviv and zero in Russia (not including Crimea – have those been shut down there? I don’t know), so from the perspective of language schools Russia is more anti-Ukrainian than western Ukraine is anti-Russian.

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  131. @Anatoly Karlin
    In the early 20th century the Kuban was barely less Ukrainian than what is today South Ukraine.

    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/0a/Ukrainian_in_Russian_Empire_1897.png

    Today, the Kuban is solidly Russian, actually probably more ostentatiously patriotic than the Russian average.

    Had Russification continued, all of Ukraine and Belarus would likewise be solidly Russian, just as the diversity of different French cultures became a monolithic France in the 19th century (rural areas were speaking regional languages up until the early 20th century, which were largely mutually unintelligible). China under the Communists is another example; Mao might have been crazy on economic matters, but at least he had the sanity not to promote the development of separate Chinese nations within his own country.

    The Cossacks spoke Little Russian but they did not identify so much as Ukrainian as the mainstream population. Kuban Little Russian speakers have a large Cossack fraction which probably would be more tolerant of Russification than straight Ukrainians.

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    • Replies: @Mr. Hack
    The indigenous Ukrainian Cossack ethnos that originally settled the Kuban has most definately felt the heavy hand of Russification over the last two centuries. In their hearts, as you seem to know, they still think warmly of their Ukrainian roots. Wherever their magnificent choirs put on concerts, at least a third of the songs are sung in their ancestral Ukrainian language. The following clip shows that the Kuban Cossacks still try to keep the language going with their very youngest members. Teenagers, speaking Russian, are quite open to having the Ukrainian language taught in their schools. To this day, there are no schools that teach in the Ukrainian language, this being the ugly side of Russian imperial nationalism. I'm not quite sure about the church situation there. It's telling how the Slavic 'older brother' shows his love for his 'younger brother' by not allowing the free practice of the Ukrainian language in any civic associations, whereas, the situation in Kazakhstan is much freer in this respect.

    https://youtu.be/oeRY4vtBliM

  132. @Anatoly Karlin

    Surprise surprise, the late Soviet model of ethnic republics coupled with the propiska system looks best to me.
     
    This is the only realistic model for harmonious coexistence with Central Asia if it was to be unified with Russia, but otherwise, restrictions on internal labor mobility are hell for economic efficiency (not to mention a gross restriction on individual rights).

    Making the Chuvash or Tatars or Ossetians disappear through assimilation or making their languages disappear by withdrawing state support for their schools – that’s evil to me.
     
    Well, Boris N. gave a workable solution - devolve language policy to a truly local level, instead of having Tatarstan forcing Russians within it to learn Tatar while Tatars outside Tatarstan have no access to Tatar schooling resources.

    The Baltic peoples should be left alone. The Ukrainian-speaking parts of the Ukraine constitute a nation. Ideally that would be an independent state. The southeastern part, from Kharkov all the way through Odessa, can be re-absorbed into Russia without much drama. Same for the entirely of Belarus.
     
    Malorossiya is an instrinsic part of Russian civilization, though you are correct that the practicalities of reintegration might be insurmountable.

    The Baltics and the part of Ukraine once ruled by the Austro-Hungarian empire should definitely be left alone, just like the South Caucasus.

    ” instead of having Tatarstan forcing Russians within it to learn Tatar” Like moving to Paris and insisting on speaking American.

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  133. @Anatoly Karlin

    Realistically speaking , the Ukraine proper was to Russia what Scotland is to England. Take the comparison further and Belarus is Wales.
     
    Scotland has a history of independent statehood stretching back to more than a millennium. They even tried to set up some colonies in America, though they failed, and agreed to union with England in 1707.

    I don't think its in any substantial way comparable to Russia/Ukraine.

    There’s a chart floating around on this blog about the height and literacy rates of conscripts in the Imperial Army from the late 19th century, the Malorussian recruits were only behind the Baltic provinces in general health and education, in many cases far superior to that of central and eastern Russians.
     
    Ukrainians did tend to be slightly taller, but I am skeptical about the education bit. Most Ukrainian provinces had low literacy rates.

    http://www.unz.com/akarlin/literacy-predicts-russian-iq/

    I agree with most of the rest.

    The Lowland Scots spoke a very distinct dialect of English until recently. But it was English. Belarus amounts to another Scotland.

    Welsh is a completely different language group from English, ditto ethnicity/history until Early Modern Times. Although Wales was conquered militarily in 1282, it was a union of crowns not of countries. Most of Wales continued to have distinct laws and taxes. The Wars of the Roses ended by Wales conquering England in 1485, with French help and a series of Acts of Union in the late 1530′s united England and Wales. The Scots followed less than 200 years later. Union wasn’t all that significant for a long time as most administration was done at County and Parish level by the local squirearchy. The Local Government and Education Acts of 1880 really started the move to uniformity in the UK.

    England & Wales is not a good model for most country pairs. The little one got to own the big one, if only fleetingly. The elite of the little one got to make out big. The East India Company was disproportionately staffed by 2nd sons of squires from both sides of the Welsh Marches (Clive was even a 2nd son, just a ruffian). There are huge country houses still there now. The EIC was still mostly English, numbers count. The Scots came later. There is nothing like that in Russian history. Moscow rubbed out Novgorod. The Mordavians never revived and put a Tsar on the throne in Moscow.

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  134. @Hector_St_Clare
    I largely agree with your rejection of the "Great Russia" concept. I don't like the concept of "great" nations in general: smaller countries usually tend to work better than big ones. I really don't get the concept of why Anatoly wants the Ukraine and Belarus incorporated into Russia. Sure, I understand why you might dislike Ukraine and Ukrainians, and I sympathize with much of his stuff regarding the need to stop mass migration, encourage more homogeneous societies, and so forth, but I don't get why "uniting all Russians", much less "uniting all East Slavs" under one national banner is such a goal for some people. Maybe that's just because I'm not a *nationalist* in the strict sense: my natural gut tendency is to divide rather than unite.

    A smaller, more ethnically "Russian" Russia would be much better than a large and diverse one. And this isn't a specific dislike against Russia: I think India and the US are much too large countries as well.

    Also, I like the way Belarus has been run under the neocommunist Lukashenko regime, and I have no desire to see it absorbed into Putin's plutocratic capitalist state. (In fairness to Putin, Russia's Gini index is slightly below America's, but given that we are one of the most unequal industrialized countries that's a very low bar). Belarus has arguably had better outcomes (on GDP growth, inequality and life expectancy for three) from 1991 to the present than Russia has had. From my point of view the independence of Belarus is something to be very strongly defended. (For similar reasons, because I'm hopeful that Novorussia might end up to the left of where Russia is, I'd like the LNR and DNR to be their own countries rather than being absorbed into Russia).

    I used to favour small country nationalism over big country nationalism until the break up of Yugoslavia. Now the only way is the European Union.

    The British Commonwealth is another much looser model (for example, develops uniform law on Bitcoins for common law countries to adopt) but too geographically widespread to mean much economically.

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  135. @aly
    I agree with this. But incorporation of Russia into EU looks very unrealistic for foreseeable future. Not only there is no desire for that on both sides, but Russia is maybe too big to be just another big EU-state. Russia will have difficulties accepting that role I think, not to mention Germany/France/Poland/others who would see their influence in EU greatly diminished in that case. But prospects for Ukraine and Belarus to join the EU are real, if not in the near future.
    I'm not that pessimistic about the EU future. Brexit could strengthen EU, not weaken it. To me it's more probable that the EU influence and attractiveness will only grow in Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, so time is running out for Russia.
    Also there seems that today Russia doesn't have any plan or desire to make Russia more Russian (or Slavic&European) with selective expansion. Instead they have this Eurasian Economic Union project whitch is not so good on demographic front for Russia. Let's hope at least Uzbekistan will not join with it's 30+ million (and fast growing) population. Georgia and Armenia are not Slavic nor European but they are at least Christian so I do not consider them as a threat.
    Demography is the most important factor, if there is more Russians it's easier to expand. But today Muslims are the ones who are growing.

    This is off topic but can someone tell me does Russian government provide more incentives (cash or something) in regions where demographic situation is more dire, where TFR is worse, typically Russian-majority regions in central, western and northern parts of european Russia? Couple of years ago i read something about that, that government is making change in demographic policy, with more emphasis to regions with very bad demographics, instead of one-size-fits-all policy. Can someone confirm this? And can we attribute this and last year fall in births in Northern Caucasus, and slight growth or stagnation in central,west and northern european Russia to that?

    A family can get free land for farming by moving to the Far East. Take up has been very low.

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  136. @Anon

    I’m not that pessimistic about the EU future. Brexit could strengthen EU, not weaken it. To me it’s more probable that the EU influence and attractiveness will only grow in Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, so time is running out for Russia.
     
    Don't confuse unity with strength.
    Brexit will contribute to the former, but not necessarily to the latter because Great Britain was a major contributor to the Union.
    Is a more centralized, but poorer EUrope going to be more attractive to the countries you mentioned?
    I don't think so.

    It’s not going to be poorer. The price of oil is down until the 2030′s on the ordinary raw materials cycle. The EU and Japan were the importers that paid for all those oil booms. That money is staying at home now. We are only two years in. In this phase, debt gets paid off in the PIIGS.

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  137. @Hector_St_Clare
    "On the other hand there is a danger of him or his successors going further in the Ukrainian direction of creating a nationalism where none existed before for no other reason than to safeguard personal power. "

    It might be less about personal power than about, you know, preserving the gains of the Belarussian "social state" and not wanting to see it absorbed into a very different social and economic order. A lot of the western criticism of Putin's Russia is ill founded, but one piece that's very well founded is that Russia today is a highly unequal capitalist country with large gaps between rich and poor, large concentrations of wealth and power in private hands, etc.. I don't want to see Belarus go down that route, apparently neither do you, and if drumming up an ersatz nationalism is the price one has to pay to preserve the gains of the last few decades and defend them against right-wing social order, then that's fine by me.

    All nationalisms are as Anatoly concedes, social constructs. Sometimes they serve good purposes, sometimes bad ones. I think cultivating a kind of Russian nationalism that preserves the distinct ethnic and cultural identity of Russians would be a very good thing. A kind of Russian (or American, or especially European) nationalism that's obsessed with greatness for its own sake would not be. Likewise, a Belarussian nationalism that centeres on preserving the gains of Lukashenko's neo-socialist state? Fine by me. In point of fact though Bat'ka doesn't strike me as all that culturally nationalistic. Isn't he the guy who says "There are only two great languages, English and Russian?"

    I was aware of Lukashenko's fleeting interest in becoming Yeltsin's successor. That would have been an interesting alternate history, and probably one preferable to what actually happened, as you correctly point out.

    It's also worth making clear that my bias here is towards the "small is beautiful" model of geopolitics. If I could divide up the US and India into smaller countries, I would. Likewise with England, Scotland and Wales.

    ‘It’s also worth making clear that my bias here is towards the “small is beautiful” model of geopolitics.’ Agree but you still need an EU to prevent a lot of little Yugoslavias.

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  138. @iffen
    Thanks to all the commenters who have taken the time to provide good comments.

    My opinion at this point is that very likely only a very small number of people on both sides wanted to take this to the point of killing each other. I guess this is a little late for this advice. I think that if I was involved on either side, I would want to move in the direction of a non-violent solution.

    only a very small number of people on both sides wanted to take this to the point of killing each other.

    Thankfully, I agree. As tragic as the war in Ukraine is, its scale for a country that size is still pretty small. Syria has, what, half the population, and orders of magnitude more casualties.

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  139. @Anatoly Karlin

    What’s so special about North Kazakhstan? Are there still a lot of Russians there?
     
    Just a little over 4 million. The only region where they still form a solid majority is in the north, in what was once known as "South Siberia."

    One idea is to press for autonomy for the region, and if/when Nazarbaev dies and is replaced by Kazakh nationalists, send in the little green men.

    There's little point in playing for any other Kazakh regions; though the cities there were founded by Russians (e.g. Atyrau used to be Guriev), they are now 90%+ Kazakh.

    Are you in favour of abolishing those republics or what’s your position on them?
     
    The generally favored solution amongst Russian nationalists is to replace the current hodgepodge of oblasts, republics, krais, autonomous republics, okrugs, autonomous okrugs, and whatnot, with their varying levels of autonomy, with the Tsarist era guberniya system.

    What’s the core of Russian identity for you?
     
    Not sure there is one. Ultimately, all nationalities are social constructs to some degree or another, and are a matter of ticking off a certain number of checkmarks:
    * Ancestral homeland in Russia
    * Orthodox heritage
    * Slavic ancestry
    * Knowledge of Russian language
    * Last and least, RF passport

    Of course you can always write a long flowery essay about what constitutes being a Russian (or a German, or a Jew, or whatever), but in the end I think it all boils down to this.

    Is Orthodox Christianity necessarily a central element?
     
    Not really, though I do subscribe somewhat to Orthodox Christianity as being part of implicit Russian identity. (Much like Judaism is for Jews. Golda Meir: "I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people believe in God).

    I always suspected that the “multi-ethnic” (also, “friendship of the peoples”) stuff was PC nonsense, and the Novgorod thing was a canard launched by opponents of RN.
    Still, don’t you think that America’s starting out basically as bi- or tri-racial settler colony, and the other race being SSAs instead of, say, Turkics, might have introduced distortions of its own into the American psyche and political process? Ones that wouldn’t work (or worse) if transplanted uncritically?
    I’ll be remaining suspicious of any race talk until identity politics is utterly destroyed. Because until then, what it would mean in practice is that Elena Khanga, say, gets to claim Pushkin as one of “her own people” and presume the right to teach the vatniks how to be more “tolerant.”
    Perhaps just call it something else than “race”?

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  140. Anatoly,

    Excellent piece. Could you please describe the pressures on Putin to be lax on Central Asian immigration, including the rationale they articulate? Cheap labor? Pacification of Central Asian countries? Not stirring up the Muslim pot without having secured a stable “partnership” with the West?

    Surely, it’s a different game than the massive population replacement project underway in the West?

    Many thanks.

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  141. @German_reader
    "Russia only even exists today because the US saved its ass in WW2. "

    I'm no apologist for Russian imperialism (and strongly reject any Russian claims to the Baltic states, also believe most of Ukraine will never voluntarily join a union with Russia), but that statement is simply idiotic. Some of the lend-lease shipments sent to Russia may have been important (especially items like trucks), but face it, US ground troops first fought Germans (that is, a limited number of Germans, in a somewhat peripheral theatre of war) in late 1942/early 1943 - and got trashed. At about the same time the Soviets destroyed an entire German army at Stalingrad.

    US ground troops first fought Germans (that is, a limited number of Germans, in a somewhat peripheral theatre of war) in late 1942/early 1943 – and got trashed.

    Are you referring to Operation Torch in North Africa? Because far from getting trashed, that was a decisive Allied victory.

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    • Replies: @German_reader
    In the end, yes, but in their first encounters with German troops (Kasserine pass) US forces performed pretty badly.
  142. @biz

    US ground troops first fought Germans (that is, a limited number of Germans, in a somewhat peripheral theatre of war) in late 1942/early 1943 – and got trashed.
     
    Are you referring to Operation Torch in North Africa? Because far from getting trashed, that was a decisive Allied victory.

    In the end, yes, but in their first encounters with German troops (Kasserine pass) US forces performed pretty badly.

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  143. @Philip Owen
    The Cossacks spoke Little Russian but they did not identify so much as Ukrainian as the mainstream population. Kuban Little Russian speakers have a large Cossack fraction which probably would be more tolerant of Russification than straight Ukrainians.

    The indigenous Ukrainian Cossack ethnos that originally settled the Kuban has most definately felt the heavy hand of Russification over the last two centuries. In their hearts, as you seem to know, they still think warmly of their Ukrainian roots. Wherever their magnificent choirs put on concerts, at least a third of the songs are sung in their ancestral Ukrainian language. The following clip shows that the Kuban Cossacks still try to keep the language going with their very youngest members. Teenagers, speaking Russian, are quite open to having the Ukrainian language taught in their schools. To this day, there are no schools that teach in the Ukrainian language, this being the ugly side of Russian imperial nationalism. I’m not quite sure about the church situation there. It’s telling how the Slavic ‘older brother’ shows his love for his ‘younger brother’ by not allowing the free practice of the Ukrainian language in any civic associations, whereas, the situation in Kazakhstan is much freer in this respect.

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  144. Anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @AP

    No, it is like if the Allies cut out independent Bavaria and Swabia out of Germany after WWII and then created the Bavarian and Swabian languages and the Bavarian and Swabian national identities, but now “mainland” Germany wants a reunification
     
    Someone cut Ukraine out of Russia (Great Russia) in the 13th century? That is the latest time that the speech of Russia and of Ukraine began to diverge.

    "National identity" was "Little Russian" (not Great Russian, which is what we call Russian) in the late 18th/early 19th century, Ukrainian by end of the 19th in Galicia and early 20th in the rest of Ukraine - not World War II times. There was never a widespread Great Russian identity among Little Russians/Ukrainians in Ukraine.

    Reincorporating Ukraine and Belarus and Northern Kazakhstan has nothing to do with Russian imperialism, it is rather like Russian Reconquista or Risorgimento, it is Russian irredentism not imperialism.
     
    Like if Romania decided to gather lands of the Roman Empire and annex Italy etc. Too bad for Romania, and I suppose good for Italy, that Romania did not somehow become a massive Eurasian land empire.

    Actually, Bavaria and Wuerttemberg make a good comparison. See https://bar.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boarisch and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swabian_German .

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    • Replies: @AP
    One of the factors differentiating Ukrainian from Russian is the heavy import of Polish and to a lesser extent Latin loanwords into Ukrainian (due to centuries of having been part of Poland and of Polish being the language of the upper classes), such that the Ukrainian language has more words in common than it does with Polish. An analogy here can be drawn to English and importation of massive number of French words due to the Norman conquest, a key difference of course being that Polish is, like Ukrainian and Russian, a Slavic language so the end product is not as starkly different as is English in comparison to German or Dutch.*

    So if Bavaria had somehow managed to have been ruled by Denmark for centuries and in addition to the current differences there was a large-scale Danish vocabulary such that Bavarian had more words in common with Danish than it had with standard High German, the analogy would be correct.

    *Two sources about Ukrainian vs. Polish vs. Russian vocabulary:

    Scroll down to page 323 here.


    This chart.

  145. Interesting article, and I’m mostly very sympathetic to Russian Nationalism, as AK describes it, but I wish he could say something more forthright against the idea of Russia reclaiming the Baltic states.

    This:

    “Obviously I don’t agree with Sputnik and Pogrom (or rather its individual authors) on everything…”

    is a little too vague.

    On the other hand, the absorption of the Baltic states into the monstrosity that is NATO today is almost equally awful.

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    • Replies: @Cicero
    I am sympathetic to the Baltic States to an extant, but let us not forget some of the more unpleasant aspects of those countries in the present day. After constantly appealing to Western nations to help them in their struggle against Soviet occupation, large numbers of the citizenry decamped to Western Europe and North America in the two decades after independence, devastating their homelands by striping it of brainpower and labor. Many of them were also dodging military conscription, which makes their pleas for NATO to defend their nations from the Russians smack of hypocrisy. The jobs they took up in the countries they immigrated to were often menial or semi-skilled, but payed better than what they found at home. I personally find it rather pathetic to abandon the land of your forefathers to get a job as an electrician in Boston or pick strawberries in the English countryside simply because you might be able to own a larger house or buy an iPhone sooner. This was not like the 19th century where dispossession or even famine were real threats to the lower classes on a regular basis.

    What was the point of centuries of 'National Resistance' if you jolt off for an easy paycheck from some American or Western European labor headhunter looking for scabs? And it is not getting better. The populations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania drop every year, and it cannot simply be written off as the Russian colonists repatriating. It's especially striking in Lithuania, where the vast majority of the population was of native stock even before 1991.

    http://osp.stat.gov.lt/en/statistiniu-rodikliu-analize?portletFormName=visualization&hash=cdc90d9c-f8a1-4964-9ce5-dc01d5f75a10

    I could get into other issues as well. The Estonian government seems to have turned its country into a giant shell bank for money laundering. Groups that celebrate Nazi collaboration are allowed to parade with impunity in the capitals of all three nations. Troops from NATO are pouring in with each passing year to set up permanent military bases; maybe the people of the Baltic States do not think their 'protectors' are staying for the long haul, but in another ten years it may dawn on them the Americans and their allies can be even more tenacious than the Russians when it comes to establishing a military footprint, and will not be dislodged easily.

    I really wish a policy of neutrality had been established in these countries after the Cold War ended, and some sort of border control and meaningful economic development program to prevent half of their under-40 population from deserting. For narrow short term gain, I fear the lands of the Baltic have mortgaged away their future as independent entities once and for all.

  146. @vinteuil
    Interesting article, and I'm mostly very sympathetic to Russian Nationalism, as AK describes it, but I wish he could say something more forthright against the idea of Russia reclaiming the Baltic states.

    This:

    "Obviously I don’t agree with Sputnik and Pogrom (or rather its individual authors) on everything..."

    is a little too vague.

    On the other hand, the absorption of the Baltic states into the monstrosity that is NATO today is almost equally awful.

    I am sympathetic to the Baltic States to an extant, but let us not forget some of the more unpleasant aspects of those countries in the present day. After constantly appealing to Western nations to help them in their struggle against Soviet occupation, large numbers of the citizenry decamped to Western Europe and North America in the two decades after independence, devastating their homelands by striping it of brainpower and labor. Many of them were also dodging military conscription, which makes their pleas for NATO to defend their nations from the Russians smack of hypocrisy. The jobs they took up in the countries they immigrated to were often menial or semi-skilled, but payed better than what they found at home. I personally find it rather pathetic to abandon the land of your forefathers to get a job as an electrician in Boston or pick strawberries in the English countryside simply because you might be able to own a larger house or buy an iPhone sooner. This was not like the 19th century where dispossession or even famine were real threats to the lower classes on a regular basis.

    What was the point of centuries of ‘National Resistance’ if you jolt off for an easy paycheck from some American or Western European labor headhunter looking for scabs? And it is not getting better. The populations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania drop every year, and it cannot simply be written off as the Russian colonists repatriating. It’s especially striking in Lithuania, where the vast majority of the population was of native stock even before 1991.

    http://osp.stat.gov.lt/en/statistiniu-rodikliu-analize?portletFormName=visualization&hash=cdc90d9c-f8a1-4964-9ce5-dc01d5f75a10

    I could get into other issues as well. The Estonian government seems to have turned its country into a giant shell bank for money laundering. Groups that celebrate Nazi collaboration are allowed to parade with impunity in the capitals of all three nations. Troops from NATO are pouring in with each passing year to set up permanent military bases; maybe the people of the Baltic States do not think their ‘protectors’ are staying for the long haul, but in another ten years it may dawn on them the Americans and their allies can be even more tenacious than the Russians when it comes to establishing a military footprint, and will not be dislodged easily.

    I really wish a policy of neutrality had been established in these countries after the Cold War ended, and some sort of border control and meaningful economic development program to prevent half of their under-40 population from deserting. For narrow short term gain, I fear the lands of the Baltic have mortgaged away their future as independent entities once and for all.

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    • Replies: @Hibernian
    "I personally find it rather pathetic to abandon the land of your forefathers to get a job as an electrician in Boston or pick strawberries in the English countryside simply because you might be able to own a larger house or buy an iPhone sooner."

    Please get off your high horse. These countries were almost totally destroyed in WW2 and then hobbled by Communism for 45 years. The people of whom you are speaking escaped real poverty.
    , @Anonymous

    large numbers of the citizenry decamped to Western Europe and North America in the two decades after independence, devastating their homelands by striping it of brainpower and labor
     
    Not many Balts went to North America, but mostly to Ireland, the UK and Scandinavia. Many of those who left were Russians (the proportion of Russians has decreased due to many reasons, incl. the age structure). The Baltic states were the only former USSR states that got a visa free regime with the West in the 1990s, and the EU membership since 2004. If Russia, Ukraine and Moldova had had the visa free, their migration would probably be even bigger. It is a very negative trend, but despite it the economies of the Baltic countries have grown, the living standards have risen and social metrics have improved (life expectancy increasing, abortion rate falling, etc). It is not accurate that the Baltic people only work menial jobs in the West. They are over represented in Western opera houses and on university sports teams, do business in the West, etc.

    The populations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania drop every year

     

    The population of Estonia no longer seems to be falling - the last couple of years has seen positive migration (return of Estonian emigres and influx of Finns and Russians). TFRs in Latvia and Lithuania have improved and are now slightly above the European average - yes, that's not a high benchmark but it is an improvement compared to 10 years ago and these are 99% white populations, with no non-European immigrants.

    The membership in the volunteer National guard (Home guard) has risen since 2014. In a recent study in Latvia, 40% of the whole population would be willing to defend the country and this number is about the same as in the US and other Western countries (in similar studies). 55% believe that it would be acceptable to "suffer immense physical losses" just to defend the Latvian state. When it comes to NATO, most troops in the Baltics are not American, they are British, Canadian and Polish, along with a few other European nationalities. There should be a referendum or at least a vote in the parliament, to decide whether the Anglo troops should stay permanently (the Polish troops should anyway). You also mention neutrality - the Baltic states were neutral in the 1939, in 1920 they signed a non-aggression treaty with Russia. Finlandization is not something that can happen just like that, there need to be preconditions. Finland gave up a huge chunk of its land (Karelia) plus lately Finland's been edging closer to the US (and even signed some sort of a cooperation agreement). Let's be honest - Sweden is not a neutral country either, they are sitting on two chairs and are totally allied with the US in practice.

  147. @Anon
    Actually, Bavaria and Wuerttemberg make a good comparison. See https://bar.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boarisch and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swabian_German .

    One of the factors differentiating Ukrainian from Russian is the heavy import of Polish and to a lesser extent Latin loanwords into Ukrainian (due to centuries of having been part of Poland and of Polish being the language of the upper classes), such that the Ukrainian language has more words in common than it does with Polish. An analogy here can be drawn to English and importation of massive number of French words due to the Norman conquest, a key difference of course being that Polish is, like Ukrainian and Russian, a Slavic language so the end product is not as starkly different as is English in comparison to German or Dutch.*

    So if Bavaria had somehow managed to have been ruled by Denmark for centuries and in addition to the current differences there was a large-scale Danish vocabulary such that Bavarian had more words in common with Danish than it had with standard High German, the analogy would be correct.

    *Two sources about Ukrainian vs. Polish vs. Russian vocabulary:

    Scroll down to page 323 here.

    This chart.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Boris N

    One of the factors differentiating Ukrainian from Russian is the heavy import of Polish and to a lesser extent Latin loanwords into Ukrainian
     
    You just said Ukrainian is a result of the Polish occupation and Polonization of western Rus. It is absolute haram for Ukrainian nationalists.

    So if Bavaria had somehow managed to have been ruled by Denmark for centuries
     
    Only in your universe languages need some external intervention to become different. Bavarian is a language/dialect (whatever) on its own, it did not need any occupation to become different from both Low Saxon or Hochdeutsch. I bet you've never ever seen Bavarian and have no idea how it looks. I bet you've even never ever studied any language apart from your native English and limited Ukrainian/Russian. Another dumb ignorant arrogant American. Why don't you raise your opinion only about the things you understand, like baseball?

    Scroll down to page 323 here.

    This chart.
     
    Quite enough time has passed but you still fails to understand why you say silly nonsense and you failed at least learn something. I'll give you a secret. These numbers represent a comparison according to Swadesh lists, that is 100 or 200 words. No language ever has such a limited vocabulary. And Swadesh invented his lists to compare obscure and little known languages of the Americas to make a classification. One does not need them to compare well-known idioms. There is so much material about Slavic languages that it is silly to confine oneself to Swadesh lists. Everything else says Russian, Ukrainian and Belorussian are as close as it can get, yet you choose only what fits you. And again you cite science freak Tyshchenko, holy moly, how hopelessly dumb you are. I must ignore such a halfwit like you altogether, you are hopeless.
  148. I’m trying to figure out the claim of a Putin, a Navalny, a Zhirinovsky, or a Karlin, to all the territories once ruled by the British Royals’ cousin Nicholas. The Novogorod business is a real thing; a lot of the territory you’re talking about, thoroughly Russian way back in the day, was highly affected by long periods of Islamic and/or Polish Catholic rule, which the Novogorod/Moscow area did not undergo. In Chicago no Ukrainian would call himself a Russian, and in Chicago you can call yourself anything you want. (As to what a Belorussian in Chicago would call himself, I’m not sure.) Full disclosure: I am an Irish-American of 25% Polish heritage.

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  149. @Cicero
    I am sympathetic to the Baltic States to an extant, but let us not forget some of the more unpleasant aspects of those countries in the present day. After constantly appealing to Western nations to help them in their struggle against Soviet occupation, large numbers of the citizenry decamped to Western Europe and North America in the two decades after independence, devastating their homelands by striping it of brainpower and labor. Many of them were also dodging military conscription, which makes their pleas for NATO to defend their nations from the Russians smack of hypocrisy. The jobs they took up in the countries they immigrated to were often menial or semi-skilled, but payed better than what they found at home. I personally find it rather pathetic to abandon the land of your forefathers to get a job as an electrician in Boston or pick strawberries in the English countryside simply because you might be able to own a larger house or buy an iPhone sooner. This was not like the 19th century where dispossession or even famine were real threats to the lower classes on a regular basis.

    What was the point of centuries of 'National Resistance' if you jolt off for an easy paycheck from some American or Western European labor headhunter looking for scabs? And it is not getting better. The populations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania drop every year, and it cannot simply be written off as the Russian colonists repatriating. It's especially striking in Lithuania, where the vast majority of the population was of native stock even before 1991.

    http://osp.stat.gov.lt/en/statistiniu-rodikliu-analize?portletFormName=visualization&hash=cdc90d9c-f8a1-4964-9ce5-dc01d5f75a10

    I could get into other issues as well. The Estonian government seems to have turned its country into a giant shell bank for money laundering. Groups that celebrate Nazi collaboration are allowed to parade with impunity in the capitals of all three nations. Troops from NATO are pouring in with each passing year to set up permanent military bases; maybe the people of the Baltic States do not think their 'protectors' are staying for the long haul, but in another ten years it may dawn on them the Americans and their allies can be even more tenacious than the Russians when it comes to establishing a military footprint, and will not be dislodged easily.

    I really wish a policy of neutrality had been established in these countries after the Cold War ended, and some sort of border control and meaningful economic development program to prevent half of their under-40 population from deserting. For narrow short term gain, I fear the lands of the Baltic have mortgaged away their future as independent entities once and for all.

    “I personally find it rather pathetic to abandon the land of your forefathers to get a job as an electrician in Boston or pick strawberries in the English countryside simply because you might be able to own a larger house or buy an iPhone sooner.”

    Please get off your high horse. These countries were almost totally destroyed in WW2 and then hobbled by Communism for 45 years. The people of whom you are speaking escaped real poverty.

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  150. @Anatoly Karlin

    Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone?
     
    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians - all three major branches of Russians - just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

    ...its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires
     
    There was nothing colonial about the relationship under either Tsarism or the USSR. The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).

    Russian nationalists need to be able to distinguish between a healthy dose of nationalism, often referred to as patriotism, and the unhealthy sort of nationalism tied to its imperial past.
     
    There is even less point to being patriotic wrt the Russian Federation than wrt the Soviet Union.

    ... at these photos taken 100 years ago
     
    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence. The Idel Ural Republic. Even "Green Ukraine" in the Far East!

    Hey Anatoly,

    could you direct me to a source of ”The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).” I got interested in this topic lately for reasons of comparison with EU structural funds for a post doc friend. Thanks!!

    (ps-disregard the reply to AP, my mistake)

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    From this article: http://www.kp.ru/daily/26422/3295723/

    http://s13.stc.all.kpcdn.net/share/i/4/1054489/wx1080.jpg

    Source: Newspaper "Soviet Russia," 1992.

    (Secondary source, so not optimal, but has face validity so assuming this is true unless there's evidence otherwise).
  151. @bb.
    Hey Anatoly,

    could you direct me to a source of ”The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).” I got interested in this topic lately for reasons of comparison with EU structural funds for a post doc friend. Thanks!!

    (ps-disregard the reply to AP, my mistake)

    From this article: http://www.kp.ru/daily/26422/3295723/

    http://s13.stc.all.kpcdn.net/share/i/4/1054489/wx1080.jpg

    Source: Newspaper “Soviet Russia,” 1992.

    (Secondary source, so not optimal, but has face validity so assuming this is true unless there’s evidence otherwise).

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    • Replies: @AP
    The Baltics look like enormous leeches, which seems hard to believe. Might those figures include money spent on the military? I imagine border territories and ports received a lot of military spending. And it looks like Ukraine was almost breaking even.
    , @Sergey Krieger
    I lived both in Ukraine and Uzbekistan and can testify that much of what Kholmogorov written is a truth. Ironically, while Russia is free from sharing with former republics and not to be forgotten foreign brotherly states, Russia has a huge monkey on her back. It is result of so called privatization of 90's and it is the cause of the most Russia issues including demographic. Without addressing this cause other problems cannot be resolved. While Communists committed mistakes for ideological reasons they also were right on many other issues . Current elites are commiting numerous mistakes of their own and creating conditions for possible another severe crisis down the road. This whole privatization along with everything that came with it must be addressed. Unfortunately Putin for all his gifts is economic liberal and is being driven by ideological considerations considering that failure and injustice of these policies toward Russian people is obvious.
  152. @Anatoly Karlin
    From this article: http://www.kp.ru/daily/26422/3295723/

    http://s13.stc.all.kpcdn.net/share/i/4/1054489/wx1080.jpg

    Source: Newspaper "Soviet Russia," 1992.

    (Secondary source, so not optimal, but has face validity so assuming this is true unless there's evidence otherwise).

    The Baltics look like enormous leeches, which seems hard to believe. Might those figures include money spent on the military? I imagine border territories and ports received a lot of military spending. And it looks like Ukraine was almost breaking even.

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    My impression is that it was common knowledge that the Baltics had higher quality of life relative to the rest of the Soviet Union.

    Had to keep up appearances in the "vitrine of socialism," after all.
  153. by importing useful concepts developed primarily in the West and applying them to Russian realities, such as IQ/HBD-realism

    We remember of those who imported to Russia in 1917 some concepts developed in the West and how well it worked out for Russian and Russia. The bearer of the plague came to Russia. Poor Russians and Russia.

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    • Replies: @Sergey Krieger
    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.
    , @Sergey Krieger
    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.
  154. @Anatoly Karlin

    Hmmm….isn’t Russia large enough for the population it possesses to be able to leave neighboring countries alone?
     
    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians - all three major branches of Russians - just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

    ...its colonial (or semi-colonial) past within the former Russian or Soviet empires
     
    There was nothing colonial about the relationship under either Tsarism or the USSR. The UkSSR was a net recipient of Soviet funds (the RFSR and BSSR were the only donors).

    Russian nationalists need to be able to distinguish between a healthy dose of nationalism, often referred to as patriotism, and the unhealthy sort of nationalism tied to its imperial past.
     
    There is even less point to being patriotic wrt the Russian Federation than wrt the Soviet Union.

    ... at these photos taken 100 years ago
     
    Sure, the collapse of the old order temporarily brought all sorts of strange new political formations into existence. The Idel Ural Republic. Even "Green Ukraine" in the Far East!

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

    No, it doesn’t, you imperial ignoramus. Only way Russia gets Ukraine is to take it by force. I suggest you “nationalist” (read: imperialist) Russians strap on your AK-47 and march to Kiev so that the Ukrainian nationalists can properly take care of business. (Yes, other countries have nationalists, too, something someone of your caliber of mental incompetence has an impossibility comprehending).

    PS: I’ve lived numerous years in Ukraine and know what I’m talking about, you know nothing except your repugnant, jingoistic chauvinism.

    AK: Looks like you “assimilated” well.

    Read More
    • Replies: @CalDre
    @AK

    I haven't "assimilated" the way you insinuate. I loathe the ultra-nationalist Ukrainians and don't count any among my friends. They despise Russians and think you are Mongols and inferior to them, about the same as Russian chauvinists think of Ukrainians. I despise their mentality even more than I do yours (as you appear not quite as extreme as some of them, though you may have toned it down for publication)..

    Due to the totalitarian Russian occupation of Ukraine for 70+ years, at least they have a reason for their bitterness. Your combined mentality will lead only to war amongst people who should be brothers. Learn to respect them (maybe not the crazies) and eventually they may join your economic union and have peace; keep penning aggressive chauvinistic imperialistic threats like this article and they will remain enemies forever. Nobody likes to be forced into marriage. Eventually they will tire of their Jew oligarch masters and then you can rejoin the community, voluntarily.

  155. Russia is still facing demographic crisis which has gone nowhere. A lot of issues stem from this fact that Russian birth rates are Bellow replacement levels even during supposedly best times of all in Russian history.i have strong hunch that this problem cannot be resolved within current economic system in Russia. Food for thought is that every developed capitalistic country has similar demographic issues which is the main course of suicidal immigration policies. In layman terms I have serious doubts family can pay mortgages and other expenses which did not exist on Soviet times and afford more than 2kids on average. The system is inhuman hence people fail to procreate. In Soviet times RF was adding around one million annually every single year since after WW2 untill USSR fall. Food for thought

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  156. @utu

    by importing useful concepts developed primarily in the West and applying them to Russian realities, such as IQ/HBD-realism
     
    We remember of those who imported to Russia in 1917 some concepts developed in the West and how well it worked out for Russian and Russia. The bearer of the plague came to Russia. Poor Russians and Russia.

    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.

    Read More
    • Replies: @AP

    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.
     
    Nonsense. "Progress" in Soviet Russia was either built on what had been started and rapidly expanded by pre-Soviet Russia (mass industrialization, mass literacy) or consisted of universal global progress (spread of electricity, plumbing, antibiotics). Soviets successfully and directly cost Russia tens of millions of people (victims of starvation, purges, etc. plus the many children and grandchildren these dead people didn't have), provoked/inspired Nazism and fascism, indirectly costing another few tens of millions of people (the millions lost during war and occupation and the children and grandchildren they didn't have). As a bonus, they killed Russia's cultural Silver Age. Russia entered the 20th century as the rising power, seen inevitably as a superpower. It ended it as a broken wreck. Stunning progress, indeed.
  157. @utu

    by importing useful concepts developed primarily in the West and applying them to Russian realities, such as IQ/HBD-realism
     
    We remember of those who imported to Russia in 1917 some concepts developed in the West and how well it worked out for Russian and Russia. The bearer of the plague came to Russia. Poor Russians and Russia.

    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.

    Read More
  158. @iffen
    If I remember the numbers right 2/3 of Tatars live outside of Tatarstan

    Now that it's part of Russia again, you could let all of the Tatars move back to Crimea. :)

    “…you could let all of the Tatars move back to Crimea”
    Cannot help yourself with producing this venom? You could try reading Leo Tolstoy on the topic, at least.

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  159. @Anatoly Karlin
    From this article: http://www.kp.ru/daily/26422/3295723/

    http://s13.stc.all.kpcdn.net/share/i/4/1054489/wx1080.jpg

    Source: Newspaper "Soviet Russia," 1992.

    (Secondary source, so not optimal, but has face validity so assuming this is true unless there's evidence otherwise).

    I lived both in Ukraine and Uzbekistan and can testify that much of what Kholmogorov written is a truth. Ironically, while Russia is free from sharing with former republics and not to be forgotten foreign brotherly states, Russia has a huge monkey on her back. It is result of so called privatization of 90′s and it is the cause of the most Russia issues including demographic. Without addressing this cause other problems cannot be resolved. While Communists committed mistakes for ideological reasons they also were right on many other issues . Current elites are commiting numerous mistakes of their own and creating conditions for possible another severe crisis down the road. This whole privatization along with everything that came with it must be addressed. Unfortunately Putin for all his gifts is economic liberal and is being driven by ideological considerations considering that failure and injustice of these policies toward Russian people is obvious.

    Read More
  160. Anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment

    American is extreme nationalist, but they are terrified by other people’s nationalism, it’s called American Exceptionalsim.

    Read More
  161. “The regathering of the Russian lands, including Belorussia, North Kazakhstan, Novorossiya, and Malorossiya.”

    I found the sentence above misleading, probably intentionally, at least as addressed to Americans. I’m more familiar with Russian history than the average American and I had to look them up. The last two, of course, refer to all of Ukraine. It would have been more honest to just say so, and then explain why you think Ukraine should be part of Russia.

    The whole issue, of course, is that very large numbers of people in Ukraine do not believe it is or should be part of Russia. That it is “a Russian land” is not a fact, it is an opinion, probably held by many Russians, with most Ukrainians disagreeing.

    But it would be a lot more honest if, when speaking to Americans, you would simply admit your goal is conquer, absorb or whatever you might want to call it, the once and present independent Ukraine.

    I’m not even unsympathetic to the idea, if you can convince most Ukrainians to go along, and thought the re-annexation of Crimea probably justified.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Ondrej
    Let's try this:

    Commnunist were bad and oppressive and Tsarist Russia was then what?

    If Tsarist Russia was OK that in would be logical to give back to Russia back gubernies, including now independent Estonia, Latvia, Finlandia most of Poland and Ukraine and most of other soviet republic/gubernies with their Monarch and princes - because it was this horrible communist Lenin let them have independence.

    Wait there was some intervention of UK, France, Italia before Germany, was it really against bolshevism or against Russian state?

    So, we - in West will always talk about soviet/russian imperial ambition, we will use terms like former soviet space and not former Russian gubernia and not taking in account Russian population who maybe lived there longer before USA or some African colonies were established ?

  162. @Anatoly: Thank you for this informative piece. I would call this Russian Nationalism 102, perhaps. I am interested in understanding more, but an even more elementary discussion would help me. I’m also interested in longer term history on issues such as Crimea.

    AK: Agreed, I really should write a glossary of terms that I use frequently.

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  163. @Sergey Krieger
    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.

    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.

    Nonsense. “Progress” in Soviet Russia was either built on what had been started and rapidly expanded by pre-Soviet Russia (mass industrialization, mass literacy) or consisted of universal global progress (spread of electricity, plumbing, antibiotics). Soviets successfully and directly cost Russia tens of millions of people (victims of starvation, purges, etc. plus the many children and grandchildren these dead people didn’t have), provoked/inspired Nazism and fascism, indirectly costing another few tens of millions of people (the millions lost during war and occupation and the children and grandchildren they didn’t have). As a bonus, they killed Russia’s cultural Silver Age. Russia entered the 20th century as the rising power, seen inevitably as a superpower. It ended it as a broken wreck. Stunning progress, indeed.

    Read More
    • Replies: @utu

    Russia entered the 20th century as the rising power, seen inevitably as a superpower.
     
    And this was one of the reasons why Bolsheviks were unleashed on Russia.
    , @Sergey Krieger
    I have no enough fingers to point at every nonsense you posted.

    In the beginning of 20th century Russia was backward, semi feudal and illiterate country with maximum available literacy rates of 25% of the population and possibly lower. if you can read in Russian please read this, if not, translate via google
    http://istmat.info/node/86

    Super power to be lost Russo / Japanese war to the country which was 100% feudal just 50 years prior.
    When WWI started Russian army had serious shortage of shells and bullets as per this
    http://vpk-news.ru/articles/14869

    Among all major powers Russia was the least developed at the time.
    Now, it is quite obvious you have swallowed too many memes and articles by hacks who are on payrolls of those who would love to smear Soviet Union achievements in rising population out of illiteracy and poverty. Considering that current Russian regime is capitalistic one and Putin quite obviously is trying to perpetuate massive theft of people's property which was built by the whole Soviet / Russian people effort over 70 years it is no wonder they are trying to smear everything related to Soviet Union.

    Now, you claim USSR was built on what Czarist Russia left behind.
    You are showing obvious and quite clear ignorance of Russian history. There was nothing left after WWI and Civil war. Russia was laying in ruins.
    Regarding Civil war it was not started by Bolsheviks but by so called White movement that refused to accept result of October revolution and trying to take power by force.
    Russian revolution itself which consisted of two parts and which was already second Russian revolution was purely Russian affair not as some ignoramuses are trying to depict as imported.
    One who knows Russian history and literature of 19th century can clearly see progression of revolutionary anti Czarist movement in Russia starting from as early as the early 19th century.
    Within short 20 years after the end of Civil war , Soviet Russia under leadership of Lenin/ Stalin managed to do within this short period what others cannot do within 100 years.

    Now you also claim that Communist take over of the power provoked Nazis to appear. What a nonsense. Hitler ascendance to power was not caused by Russian revolution but rather by what Allies were doing to Germany. It was pure German phenomena caused by Germany internal problems.
    Hence comes conclusion. Nazis were coming with or without Russian revolution and Hitler stated his goal quite clearly to get living space at the expense of Russia.
    So, one has to ask a question how could rotten and inefficient Czarist or even capitalistic system stand up to Nazi military machine which in 1941 had no equals. If to be frank Socialist revolution and what followed saved Russia from certain death.

    Regarding your speculation about Czarist Russia further development it is pure speculation as in Russian :"Если бы да кабы, во рту выросли грибы". Shoulda woulda and so forth. Japan was supposed to be next big thing and 21st century should have been another American century.

    You clearly should not talk about things you have no clue about.
    I myslef do not express my ignorant opinion on such matters I have no idea about. I am listening and reading knowledgeable people and you are not one of them.
    , @Sergey Krieger
    One more thing for you. Russian Empire fell apart after February revolution of 1917. It were Bolsheviks that put Russia together. Without Bolsheviks there would not be one Russia or USSR as it was called. People somehow forget about this. Hence, no super power for you.
    February revolution was not caused by Bolsheviks FYI. Internal issues and revolutionary situation aka people fed up.
  164. The flagship magazine of Russian nationalism, Egor Prosvirnin’s Sputnik and Pogrom.

    That’s great thinking, the name.

    Read More
  165. This is a good read from FEBRUARY 23, 2017 A Budget Without Russians

    The Empire’s Nightmare

    Methinks the insane hysteria over Russia needs to stop. It probably will not. For reasons of domestic and imperial politics the American public is again being manipulated into a war frenzy by Washington and New York. It is stupid, without justification, and dangerous.

    http://www.unz.com/freed/a-budget-without-russians/

    Sep 9, 2016 US-funded Ukrainian army is terrorizing civilians

    Russell Bentley is a former US marine, that now fights for the Donbass, Eastern Ukraine, against the US-funded Ukrainian army.

    Read More
  166. @Mr. XYZ
    : Doesn't China still have various widely spoken regional languages (such as Cantonese) even today, though?

    Also, Russifying a couple of million Ukrainians is probably easier than doing the same thing to 40 million Ukrainians.

    True, but unfortunately the population of Ukraine is plummeting.

    From 1994 to 2015, Ukraine’s population fell from 52 million to 42 million.

    It’s still in freefall: their total fertility rate is one of the lowest in the world.

    In 25 years, Russia could face the prospect of russifying merely twenty million Ukrainians.

    Read More
    • Replies: @AP
    The part of Ukraine with the plummeting population post 1994 has been the Russian-speaking part.
  167. FYI folk’s 25.12. 2015 NATO: Seeking Russia’s Destruction Since 1949

    In 1990, after the fall of the Berlin Wall, U.S. president George H. W. Bush through his secretary of state James Baker promised Soviet premier Mikhail Gorbachev that in exchange for Soviet cooperation on German reunification, the Cold War era NATO alliance would not expand “one inch” eastwards towards Russia.

    http://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2015/12/25/nato-seeking-russia-destruction-since-1949.html

    Nov 29, 2016 The Map That Shows Why Russia Fears War With USA

    Read More
  168. @Anatoly Karlin

    What’s so special about North Kazakhstan? Are there still a lot of Russians there?
     
    Just a little over 4 million. The only region where they still form a solid majority is in the north, in what was once known as "South Siberia."

    One idea is to press for autonomy for the region, and if/when Nazarbaev dies and is replaced by Kazakh nationalists, send in the little green men.

    There's little point in playing for any other Kazakh regions; though the cities there were founded by Russians (e.g. Atyrau used to be Guriev), they are now 90%+ Kazakh.

    Are you in favour of abolishing those republics or what’s your position on them?
     
    The generally favored solution amongst Russian nationalists is to replace the current hodgepodge of oblasts, republics, krais, autonomous republics, okrugs, autonomous okrugs, and whatnot, with their varying levels of autonomy, with the Tsarist era guberniya system.

    What’s the core of Russian identity for you?
     
    Not sure there is one. Ultimately, all nationalities are social constructs to some degree or another, and are a matter of ticking off a certain number of checkmarks:
    * Ancestral homeland in Russia
    * Orthodox heritage
    * Slavic ancestry
    * Knowledge of Russian language
    * Last and least, RF passport

    Of course you can always write a long flowery essay about what constitutes being a Russian (or a German, or a Jew, or whatever), but in the end I think it all boils down to this.

    Is Orthodox Christianity necessarily a central element?
     
    Not really, though I do subscribe somewhat to Orthodox Christianity as being part of implicit Russian identity. (Much like Judaism is for Jews. Golda Meir: "I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people believe in God).

    slight correction:

    I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people are their own god

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    LOL, that's even better.

    ROG really should take lessons from ZOG.
  169. @AP

    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.
     
    Nonsense. "Progress" in Soviet Russia was either built on what had been started and rapidly expanded by pre-Soviet Russia (mass industrialization, mass literacy) or consisted of universal global progress (spread of electricity, plumbing, antibiotics). Soviets successfully and directly cost Russia tens of millions of people (victims of starvation, purges, etc. plus the many children and grandchildren these dead people didn't have), provoked/inspired Nazism and fascism, indirectly costing another few tens of millions of people (the millions lost during war and occupation and the children and grandchildren they didn't have). As a bonus, they killed Russia's cultural Silver Age. Russia entered the 20th century as the rising power, seen inevitably as a superpower. It ended it as a broken wreck. Stunning progress, indeed.

    Russia entered the 20th century as the rising power, seen inevitably as a superpower.

    And this was one of the reasons why Bolsheviks were unleashed on Russia.

    Read More
  170. @Logan
    "The regathering of the Russian lands, including Belorussia, North Kazakhstan, Novorossiya, and Malorossiya."

    I found the sentence above misleading, probably intentionally, at least as addressed to Americans. I'm more familiar with Russian history than the average American and I had to look them up. The last two, of course, refer to all of Ukraine. It would have been more honest to just say so, and then explain why you think Ukraine should be part of Russia.

    The whole issue, of course, is that very large numbers of people in Ukraine do not believe it is or should be part of Russia. That it is "a Russian land" is not a fact, it is an opinion, probably held by many Russians, with most Ukrainians disagreeing.

    But it would be a lot more honest if, when speaking to Americans, you would simply admit your goal is conquer, absorb or whatever you might want to call it, the once and present independent Ukraine.

    I'm not even unsympathetic to the idea, if you can convince most Ukrainians to go along, and thought the re-annexation of Crimea probably justified.

    Let’s try this:

    Commnunist were bad and oppressive and Tsarist Russia was then what?

    If Tsarist Russia was OK that in would be logical to give back to Russia back gubernies, including now independent Estonia, Latvia, Finlandia most of Poland and Ukraine and most of other soviet republic/gubernies with their Monarch and princes – because it was this horrible communist Lenin let them have independence.

    Wait there was some intervention of UK, France, Italia before Germany, was it really against bolshevism or against Russian state?

    So, we – in West will always talk about soviet/russian imperial ambition, we will use terms like former soviet space and not former Russian gubernia and not taking in account Russian population who maybe lived there longer before USA or some African colonies were established ?

    Read More
  171. Anatoly,

    Do Russian Nationalists wish to preserve unique ethnic identities such as Estonians, Latvians, Lithuanians, etc within a Greater Russia? Do Russian Nationalists support Tatars having their own unique culture within Russia?

    Read More
    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    I don't think there is a unified position on this. My preference would be a strong yes, while making Russification easy and attractive.

    I also disagree with some of the specifics on that map, as I said above.
  172. @AP

    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.
     
    Nonsense. "Progress" in Soviet Russia was either built on what had been started and rapidly expanded by pre-Soviet Russia (mass industrialization, mass literacy) or consisted of universal global progress (spread of electricity, plumbing, antibiotics). Soviets successfully and directly cost Russia tens of millions of people (victims of starvation, purges, etc. plus the many children and grandchildren these dead people didn't have), provoked/inspired Nazism and fascism, indirectly costing another few tens of millions of people (the millions lost during war and occupation and the children and grandchildren they didn't have). As a bonus, they killed Russia's cultural Silver Age. Russia entered the 20th century as the rising power, seen inevitably as a superpower. It ended it as a broken wreck. Stunning progress, indeed.

    I have no enough fingers to point at every nonsense you posted.

    In the beginning of 20th century Russia was backward, semi feudal and illiterate country with maximum available literacy rates of 25% of the population and possibly lower. if you can read in Russian please read this, if not, translate via google

    http://istmat.info/node/86

    Super power to be lost Russo / Japanese war to the country which was 100% feudal just 50 years prior.
    When WWI started Russian army had serious shortage of shells and bullets as per this

    http://vpk-news.ru/articles/14869

    Among all major powers Russia was the least developed at the time.
    Now, it is quite obvious you have swallowed too many memes and articles by hacks who are on payrolls of those who would love to smear Soviet Union achievements in rising population out of illiteracy and poverty. Considering that current Russian regime is capitalistic one and Putin quite obviously is trying to perpetuate massive theft of people’s property which was built by the whole Soviet / Russian people effort over 70 years it is no wonder they are trying to smear everything related to Soviet Union.

    Now, you claim USSR was built on what Czarist Russia left behind.
    You are showing obvious and quite clear ignorance of Russian history. There was nothing left after WWI and Civil war. Russia was laying in ruins.
    Regarding Civil war it was not started by Bolsheviks but by so called White movement that refused to accept result of October revolution and trying to take power by force.
    Russian revolution itself which consisted of two parts and which was already second Russian revolution was purely Russian affair not as some ignoramuses are trying to depict as imported.
    One who knows Russian history and literature of 19th century can clearly see progression of revolutionary anti Czarist movement in Russia starting from as early as the early 19th century.
    Within short 20 years after the end of Civil war , Soviet Russia under leadership of Lenin/ Stalin managed to do within this short period what others cannot do within 100 years.

    Now you also claim that Communist take over of the power provoked Nazis to appear. What a nonsense. Hitler ascendance to power was not caused by Russian revolution but rather by what Allies were doing to Germany. It was pure German phenomena caused by Germany internal problems.
    Hence comes conclusion. Nazis were coming with or without Russian revolution and Hitler stated his goal quite clearly to get living space at the expense of Russia.
    So, one has to ask a question how could rotten and inefficient Czarist or even capitalistic system stand up to Nazi military machine which in 1941 had no equals. If to be frank Socialist revolution and what followed saved Russia from certain death.

    Regarding your speculation about Czarist Russia further development it is pure speculation as in Russian :”Если бы да кабы, во рту выросли грибы”. Shoulda woulda and so forth. Japan was supposed to be next big thing and 21st century should have been another American century.

    You clearly should not talk about things you have no clue about.
    I myslef do not express my ignorant opinion on such matters I have no idea about. I am listening and reading knowledgeable people and you are not one of them.

    Read More
    • Replies: @AP

    In the beginning of 20th century Russia was backward, semi feudal and illiterate country with maximum available literacy rates of 25% of the population and possibly lower. if you can read in Russian please read this, if not, translate via google

    http://istmat.info/node/86
     

    Your Sovok fan-boy website doesn't tell the whole story:

    http://www.socionauki.ru/journal/articles/137487/

    " In 1914 almost 11 million people studied in educational establishments, unstructured schools and at home or 80 % of school-aged children."

    We see the rapidly expanding rate of literacy in terms of military recruits:

    Kharkovskaya Guberniya statistical survey contains the following data: in 1900 the number of literate recruits was 45.1 %, by 1910 the percentage had risen up to 66.7 % (Kharkovskaya Guberniya 1911). Samarskaya Guberniya zemsko-statistical reference book for 1914 contains the same data: 1899 – 35 %, 1912 – 65 % (Samarskaya Guberniya 1914). In Mogilevskaya Guberniya: 1897 – 39 %, at the early 20th century – about 50 %, in 1912 – 76 %, and in 1913 – 79 % (Mogilevskaya Guberniya 1914). Besides, the number of literate recruits was over 80 %.

    In summary - rapid expansion of literacy was already occurring prior to Bolshevik rule. Attributing it to Bolshevism is simply ignorance.


    There was nothing left after WWI and Civil war
     
    There was plenty left after World War I, which did not touch most of Russia. Civil War was of course the fault of the Bolsheviks.

    Regarding Civil war it was not started by Bolsheviks but by so called White movement that refused to accept result of October revolution and trying to take power by force.
     
    LOL, so October Revolution was not taking power by force?

    Bolsheviks had about 25% support. They took power by force, and the majority resisted, but were too divided, split up, and neither competent nor ruthless enough to succeed.


    Within short 20 years after the end of Civil war , Soviet Russia under leadership of Lenin/ Stalin managed to do within this short period what others cannot do within 100 years.
     
    Kill off 15 million or so of their own people? Well, Mao surpassed them. And in per capita terms Pol Pot outdid them all. So much to be proud of.

    Now you also claim that Communist take over of the power provoked Nazis to appear. What a nonsense. Hitler ascendance to power was not caused by Russian revolution
     
    I didn't claim that Communists provoked Nazis to appear. I stated, correctly, that they led to Nazis coming to power. Nazis won the election by a slim margin and fear of Communism (that was extremely deadly and scary at the time) was enough to take them to victory. The contrast with Communism also made Nazism acceptable to Western elites, as a sort of lesser evil, and perhaps a defense against the horrors occurring in the East.

    So, one has to ask a question how could rotten and inefficient Czarist or even capitalistic system stand up to Nazi military machine which in 1941 had no equals.
     
    One reason why Germany was willing to fight Russia in 1914 was because it was commonly understood that doing so would probably not have been possible in 1934, given late Tsarist Russian industrial expansion and modernization (in addition to population growth). This is of course a "what if", but German strategists of 1910-1914 probably knew much more about these things than you do.

    I myslef do not express my ignorant opinion on such matters I have no idea about.
     
    We've just seen that you do. :-)
  173. @AP

    Why? It worked pretty well. Unfortunately no historical process comes without some price. Or you think other countries history is less bloody?
    Compare Czarist Russia to Soviet Russia and even Modern Russia. The progress is stunning. without those changes Russia would not survive.
     
    Nonsense. "Progress" in Soviet Russia was either built on what had been started and rapidly expanded by pre-Soviet Russia (mass industrialization, mass literacy) or consisted of universal global progress (spread of electricity, plumbing, antibiotics). Soviets successfully and directly cost Russia tens of millions of people (victims of starvation, purges, etc. plus the many children and grandchildren these dead people didn't have), provoked/inspired Nazism and fascism, indirectly costing another few tens of millions of people (the millions lost during war and occupation and the children and grandchildren they didn't have). As a bonus, they killed Russia's cultural Silver Age. Russia entered the 20th century as the rising power, seen inevitably as a superpower. It ended it as a broken wreck. Stunning progress, indeed.

    One more thing for you. Russian Empire fell apart after February revolution of 1917. It were Bolsheviks that put Russia together. Without Bolsheviks there would not be one Russia or USSR as it was called. People somehow forget about this. Hence, no super power for you.
    February revolution was not caused by Bolsheviks FYI. Internal issues and revolutionary situation aka people fed up.

    Read More
    • Replies: @AP

    One more thing for you. Russian Empire fell apart after February revolution of 1917. It were Bolsheviks that put Russia together.
     
    Hmm...Bolsheviks took over in November 1917. This caused Finland to declare independence in December 1917. Ukraine followed by declaring its independence in January 1918. They hadn't done so against Kerensky. Estonia declared independence in February 1918, Georgia in May 1918, Latvia declared independence in November 1918.

    None of those places had left the Russian Empire prior to the Bolshevik takeover.

    And then of course - the Russian Civil War, with millions of dead and mass destruction. The Bolshevik revolution completed the disintegration of the Russian Empire.

    Bolshevik agitation among the troops did manage to destroy the initially successful Kerensky Offensive against Germany and Austria-Hungary.

    Without Bolsheviks there would not be one Russia or USSR as it was called.
     
    Without the Bolsheviks, Russia would have had a seat at the table at Versailles. This would have meant a larger Russia than before World War I.
  174. In the past, Karlin deleted any response to what he posted which touched upon his ‘holocaust’ fantasies, but here goes.

    *snip*

    AK: When I make a post specifically about the Holocaust, feel free to spam it to your heart’s content. Otherwise, plz BTFO.

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  175. @RadicalCenter
    True, but unfortunately the population of Ukraine is plummeting.

    From 1994 to 2015, Ukraine's population fell from 52 million to 42 million.

    It's still in freefall: their total fertility rate is one of the lowest in the world.

    In 25 years, Russia could face the prospect of russifying merely twenty million Ukrainians.

    The part of Ukraine with the plummeting population post 1994 has been the Russian-speaking part.

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  176. Reality: 81% of the Russian population are ethnic Great Russians, and 83% are Slavs. This is far higher than the percentage of White Americans in the US, but for some reason the US survives just fine without any ethnic minority republics with special privileges.

    I just find this–the hey, it ain’t a big deal aspect–naive.

    What it ignores is time or trend-line. Yeah the US “survives” but the “just fine” is essentially because the US is running on the stock of capital–physical, financial, skills, social capital–built during its time of utter white dominance. Late boomers like me, Steve Sailer, Ron Unz were born into a 90% white nation. The leadership and skilled labor of America is from people of my cohort, and the following GenX cohorts all born before the “apocalypse” set off as chain migration of post-65 immigrants and the winners of the 1985 amnesty. We late boomers are headed into retirement in the next five-ten and the GenXers will filter in over the following 20. Yet, while the actual American *nation* continues to exist, already the American state and its people does not actually feel very much like a real “nation”, but a collection of quarrelling tribes. And we don’t yet have much of a muslim population, who punch at least 10X above mestizos in creating conflict and discord per capita.

    Trend matters. And what is the Russian trend. Anatoly has written informative posts on the turn around in “Russian” fertility. But what i don’t know, is who in Russia is having those kids? How does the fertility break down along ethnic lines? religious lines?

    If 83% Russian is just peachy and no biggie, then the UK which is 85% white Britsh is in high cotton right? Yet no one in their right mind thinks that. (Ok, no one in their right mind who actually wants good things for native Britons.) Their capital is infested with the other. The feel is of a people being defenstrated from their happy island.

    Sorry, not buying the happy talk.

    Hey this is for the Russian people to work out, not me. But if i was Russian, i’d be more than happy to cut loose every possible non-Russian–or at least Muslim–territory i could. Russia doesn’t lack for territory. It’s got the biggest territory in the world by far to expand its *own* people into. No need for Chechyna and the like. Tartarstan and the like are obviously tougher nuts, but if population swaps were possible, i’d do those. And obviously send all the Central Asias home. And i’d ban Islam from the capital and historic Russian core. If folks want to live in Russian … be Russian.

    What matters to a nation is what sort of a nation your kids and grandkids will have. Sometimes less really is more.

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    The difference is that virtually all of Britain's non-white minorities are immigrants, whereas the vast majority of Russia's non-Russians are indigenous to Russia.

    So the only comparable element is the influx of Central Asians. I am hardly a fan of that (LOL), but in practice, in per capita terms, it is still far less intense than non-white immigration flows into the UK.
  177. @Sergey Krieger
    One more thing for you. Russian Empire fell apart after February revolution of 1917. It were Bolsheviks that put Russia together. Without Bolsheviks there would not be one Russia or USSR as it was called. People somehow forget about this. Hence, no super power for you.
    February revolution was not caused by Bolsheviks FYI. Internal issues and revolutionary situation aka people fed up.

    One more thing for you. Russian Empire fell apart after February revolution of 1917. It were Bolsheviks that put Russia together.

    Hmm…Bolsheviks took over in November 1917. This caused Finland to declare independence in December 1917. Ukraine followed by declaring its independence in January 1918. They hadn’t done so against Kerensky. Estonia declared independence in February 1918, Georgia in May 1918, Latvia declared independence in November 1918.

    None of those places had left the Russian Empire prior to the Bolshevik takeover.

    And then of course – the Russian Civil War, with millions of dead and mass destruction. The Bolshevik revolution completed the disintegration of the Russian Empire.

    Bolshevik agitation among the troops did manage to destroy the initially successful Kerensky Offensive against Germany and Austria-Hungary.

    Without Bolsheviks there would not be one Russia or USSR as it was called.

    Without the Bolsheviks, Russia would have had a seat at the table at Versailles. This would have meant a larger Russia than before World War I.

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    • Agree: utu
    • Replies: @anon
    Kerensy advocated a 'peace without annexations'. So the russians soldiers were dying for nothing. No wonder they have turned against the pathetic Kerensky.
  178. @Sergey Krieger
    I have no enough fingers to point at every nonsense you posted.

    In the beginning of 20th century Russia was backward, semi feudal and illiterate country with maximum available literacy rates of 25% of the population and possibly lower. if you can read in Russian please read this, if not, translate via google
    http://istmat.info/node/86

    Super power to be lost Russo / Japanese war to the country which was 100% feudal just 50 years prior.
    When WWI started Russian army had serious shortage of shells and bullets as per this
    http://vpk-news.ru/articles/14869

    Among all major powers Russia was the least developed at the time.
    Now, it is quite obvious you have swallowed too many memes and articles by hacks who are on payrolls of those who would love to smear Soviet Union achievements in rising population out of illiteracy and poverty. Considering that current Russian regime is capitalistic one and Putin quite obviously is trying to perpetuate massive theft of people's property which was built by the whole Soviet / Russian people effort over 70 years it is no wonder they are trying to smear everything related to Soviet Union.

    Now, you claim USSR was built on what Czarist Russia left behind.
    You are showing obvious and quite clear ignorance of Russian history. There was nothing left after WWI and Civil war. Russia was laying in ruins.
    Regarding Civil war it was not started by Bolsheviks but by so called White movement that refused to accept result of October revolution and trying to take power by force.
    Russian revolution itself which consisted of two parts and which was already second Russian revolution was purely Russian affair not as some ignoramuses are trying to depict as imported.
    One who knows Russian history and literature of 19th century can clearly see progression of revolutionary anti Czarist movement in Russia starting from as early as the early 19th century.
    Within short 20 years after the end of Civil war , Soviet Russia under leadership of Lenin/ Stalin managed to do within this short period what others cannot do within 100 years.

    Now you also claim that Communist take over of the power provoked Nazis to appear. What a nonsense. Hitler ascendance to power was not caused by Russian revolution but rather by what Allies were doing to Germany. It was pure German phenomena caused by Germany internal problems.
    Hence comes conclusion. Nazis were coming with or without Russian revolution and Hitler stated his goal quite clearly to get living space at the expense of Russia.
    So, one has to ask a question how could rotten and inefficient Czarist or even capitalistic system stand up to Nazi military machine which in 1941 had no equals. If to be frank Socialist revolution and what followed saved Russia from certain death.

    Regarding your speculation about Czarist Russia further development it is pure speculation as in Russian :"Если бы да кабы, во рту выросли грибы". Shoulda woulda and so forth. Japan was supposed to be next big thing and 21st century should have been another American century.

    You clearly should not talk about things you have no clue about.
    I myslef do not express my ignorant opinion on such matters I have no idea about. I am listening and reading knowledgeable people and you are not one of them.

    In the beginning of 20th century Russia was backward, semi feudal and illiterate country with maximum available literacy rates of 25% of the population and possibly lower. if you can read in Russian please read this, if not, translate via google

    http://istmat.info/node/86

    Your Sovok fan-boy website doesn’t tell the whole story:

    http://www.socionauki.ru/journal/articles/137487/

    ” In 1914 almost 11 million people studied in educational establishments, unstructured schools and at home or 80 % of school-aged children.”

    We see the rapidly expanding rate of literacy in terms of military recruits:

    Kharkovskaya Guberniya statistical survey contains the following data: in 1900 the number of literate recruits was 45.1 %, by 1910 the percentage had risen up to 66.7 % (Kharkovskaya Guberniya 1911). Samarskaya Guberniya zemsko-statistical reference book for 1914 contains the same data: 1899 – 35 %, 1912 – 65 % (Samarskaya Guberniya 1914). In Mogilevskaya Guberniya: 1897 – 39 %, at the early 20th century – about 50 %, in 1912 – 76 %, and in 1913 – 79 % (Mogilevskaya Guberniya 1914). Besides, the number of literate recruits was over 80 %.

    In summary – rapid expansion of literacy was already occurring prior to Bolshevik rule. Attributing it to Bolshevism is simply ignorance.

    There was nothing left after WWI and Civil war

    There was plenty left after World War I, which did not touch most of Russia. Civil War was of course the fault of the Bolsheviks.

    Regarding Civil war it was not started by Bolsheviks but by so called White movement that refused to accept result of October revolution and trying to take power by force.

    LOL, so October Revolution was not taking power by force?

    Bolsheviks had about 25% support. They took power by force, and the majority resisted, but were too divided, split up, and neither competent nor ruthless enough to succeed.

    Within short 20 years after the end of Civil war , Soviet Russia under leadership of Lenin/ Stalin managed to do within this short period what others cannot do within 100 years.

    Kill off 15 million or so of their own people? Well, Mao surpassed them. And in per capita terms Pol Pot outdid them all. So much to be proud of.

    Now you also claim that Communist take over of the power provoked Nazis to appear. What a nonsense. Hitler ascendance to power was not caused by Russian revolution

    I didn’t claim that Communists provoked Nazis to appear. I stated, correctly, that they led to Nazis coming to power. Nazis won the election by a slim margin and fear of Communism (that was extremely deadly and scary at the time) was enough to take them to victory. The contrast with Communism also made Nazism acceptable to Western elites, as a sort of lesser evil, and perhaps a defense against the horrors occurring in the East.

    So, one has to ask a question how could rotten and inefficient Czarist or even capitalistic system stand up to Nazi military machine which in 1941 had no equals.

    One reason why Germany was willing to fight Russia in 1914 was because it was commonly understood that doing so would probably not have been possible in 1934, given late Tsarist Russian industrial expansion and modernization (in addition to population growth). This is of course a “what if”, but German strategists of 1910-1914 probably knew much more about these things than you do.

    I myslef do not express my ignorant opinion on such matters I have no idea about.

    We’ve just seen that you do. :-)

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    • Agree: utu
    • Replies: @Seraphim
    Wouldn't you think that the amazing tenacity with which some people adhere to the Cominterno-Masonic myths about Russia's backwardnes, about the incapacity of Nicholas II, and the equally tenacious denial of historical realities, are the desperate attempts of guilty consciences to shirk responsibility for the crime of 'regicide' (the only real one that happened in the context of WWI) and the genocidal orgy of mass-murder perpetrated against the Russian people, not by Russians?
    , @Anatoly Karlin

    There was plenty left after World War I, which did not touch most of Russia. Civil War was of course the fault of the Bolsheviks.
     
    My dad visited a cotton weaving factory as a schoolboy as part of some industrial outreach program around 1970. The oldest machines there - still in active usage - were stamped with 1905 as the year of manufacture.

    He recalled being somewhat puzzled by that, since according to the history textbooks, the Russian Empire had been an agrarian backwater with no industry.
  179. @Anatoly Karlin

    What’s so special about North Kazakhstan? Are there still a lot of Russians there?
     
    Just a little over 4 million. The only region where they still form a solid majority is in the north, in what was once known as "South Siberia."

    One idea is to press for autonomy for the region, and if/when Nazarbaev dies and is replaced by Kazakh nationalists, send in the little green men.

    There's little point in playing for any other Kazakh regions; though the cities there were founded by Russians (e.g. Atyrau used to be Guriev), they are now 90%+ Kazakh.

    Are you in favour of abolishing those republics or what’s your position on them?
     
    The generally favored solution amongst Russian nationalists is to replace the current hodgepodge of oblasts, republics, krais, autonomous republics, okrugs, autonomous okrugs, and whatnot, with their varying levels of autonomy, with the Tsarist era guberniya system.

    What’s the core of Russian identity for you?
     
    Not sure there is one. Ultimately, all nationalities are social constructs to some degree or another, and are a matter of ticking off a certain number of checkmarks:
    * Ancestral homeland in Russia
    * Orthodox heritage
    * Slavic ancestry
    * Knowledge of Russian language
    * Last and least, RF passport

    Of course you can always write a long flowery essay about what constitutes being a Russian (or a German, or a Jew, or whatever), but in the end I think it all boils down to this.

    Is Orthodox Christianity necessarily a central element?
     
    Not really, though I do subscribe somewhat to Orthodox Christianity as being part of implicit Russian identity. (Much like Judaism is for Jews. Golda Meir: "I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people believe in God).

    The origin of any nationalism is the ‘cult of the ancestors’ (“Honour thy father and thy mother”), the obligation to remember them (which entails the obligation to give thanks to what they did for us and hand over the patrimony – countries, languages, cultures, religions, economies – they left to us to our children and their children), to care for their resting places and defend them from desecration. I think it is extremely significant that the Victory Parades became the ‘Marches of the Immortal Regiment’.
    Orthodoxy is central to Russian identity. All the Russians I met (‘bigots’ as well as ‘atheists, agnostics’) would point to it. Thousand years of Orthodoxy (I would argue that Orthodoxy is older in the Russian lands than the Baptism of Vladimir), of a polity built as protection and defense of Orthodoxy (even Bismarck – no friend Russia – tried to dissuade the German warmongers from attacking Russia because “the result of a war (against Russia) would never result in the destruction of the main power of Russia, which rests upon millions of Russians of the Greek confession), of a culture steeped in Orthodox concepts, images and sounds (why all the great Russian composers composed Church music?) should mean something more than a cultural veneer, ideological ‘superstructure’.
    Dugin developed his theories under the influence of the ‘traditionalist’ esoterico-masonic thinking of Rene Guenon and Frithjof Schuon, who were in fact converts to Islam (with hefty doses of Kabbalism) and intrinsically hostile to the really traditional Christianity.

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    • Replies: @Anatoly Karlin
    Reasonable viewpoint.

    Dugin's Orthodoxy strikes me as being very LARPy.
  180. @AP

    In the beginning of 20th century Russia was backward, semi feudal and illiterate country with maximum available literacy rates of 25% of the population and possibly lower. if you can read in Russian please read this, if not, translate via google

    http://istmat.info/node/86
     

    Your Sovok fan-boy website doesn't tell the whole story:

    http://www.socionauki.ru/journal/articles/137487/

    " In 1914 almost 11 million people studied in educational establishments, unstructured schools and at home or 80 % of school-aged children."

    We see the rapidly expanding rate of literacy in terms of military recruits:

    Kharkovskaya Guberniya statistical survey contains the following data: in 1900 the number of literate recruits was 45.1 %, by 1910 the percentage had risen up to 66.7 % (Kharkovskaya Guberniya 1911). Samarskaya Guberniya zemsko-statistical reference book for 1914 contains the same data: 1899 – 35 %, 1912 – 65 % (Samarskaya Guberniya 1914). In Mogilevskaya Guberniya: 1897 – 39 %, at the early 20th century – about 50 %, in 1912 – 76 %, and in 1913 – 79 % (Mogilevskaya Guberniya 1914). Besides, the number of literate recruits was over 80 %.

    In summary - rapid expansion of literacy was already occurring prior to Bolshevik rule. Attributing it to Bolshevism is simply ignorance.


    There was nothing left after WWI and Civil war
     
    There was plenty left after World War I, which did not touch most of Russia. Civil War was of course the fault of the Bolsheviks.

    Regarding Civil war it was not started by Bolsheviks but by so called White movement that refused to accept result of October revolution and trying to take power by force.
     
    LOL, so October Revolution was not taking power by force?

    Bolsheviks had about 25% support. They took power by force, and the majority resisted, but were too divided, split up, and neither competent nor ruthless enough to succeed.


    Within short 20 years after the end of Civil war , Soviet Russia under leadership of Lenin/ Stalin managed to do within this short period what others cannot do within 100 years.
     
    Kill off 15 million or so of their own people? Well, Mao surpassed them. And in per capita terms Pol Pot outdid them all. So much to be proud of.

    Now you also claim that Communist take over of the power provoked Nazis to appear. What a nonsense. Hitler ascendance to power was not caused by Russian revolution
     
    I didn't claim that Communists provoked Nazis to appear. I stated, correctly, that they led to Nazis coming to power. Nazis won the election by a slim margin and fear of Communism (that was extremely deadly and scary at the time) was enough to take them to victory. The contrast with Communism also made Nazism acceptable to Western elites, as a sort of lesser evil, and perhaps a defense against the horrors occurring in the East.

    So, one has to ask a question how could rotten and inefficient Czarist or even capitalistic system stand up to Nazi military machine which in 1941 had no equals.
     
    One reason why Germany was willing to fight Russia in 1914 was because it was commonly understood that doing so would probably not have been possible in 1934, given late Tsarist Russian industrial expansion and modernization (in addition to population growth). This is of course a "what if", but German strategists of 1910-1914 probably knew much more about these things than you do.

    I myslef do not express my ignorant opinion on such matters I have no idea about.
     
    We've just seen that you do. :-)

    Wouldn’t you think that the amazing tenacity with which some people adhere to the Cominterno-Masonic myths about Russia’s backwardnes, about the incapacity of Nicholas II, and the equally tenacious denial of historical realities, are the desperate attempts of guilty consciences to shirk responsibility for the crime of ‘regicide’ (the only real one that happened in the context of WWI) and the genocidal orgy of mass-murder perpetrated against the Russian people, not by Russians?

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  181. Well.
    It started right after February events.
    On March 4 (17), 1917, the creation of the Ukrainian Central Rada was announced at a meeting of representatives of political, public, cultural and professional organizations in Kiev. The Central Rada, whose task its creators determined the coordination of the national movement, at first positioned itself as a territorial body conducting the revolutionary policy of the Provisional Government in Ukraine [8] .

    On March 16 ( 29 ), 1917 , the Provisional Government of Russia recognized Poland’s right to independence under the condition of a “free military alliance” with Russia. [4] The structures of the Polish military organization created in 1914 operate in Russia , and in June of the same year the congress of the Union of Military Poles in Russia was held in Petrograd [2] . A little later, in August, the Polish National Committee (Polish) was founded by the leaders of a number of Polish parties . (PNA), the purpose of which was the creation of an independent Polish state. The PNA received diplomatic support from France , Britain , Italy and the United States [5] . From the turn of 1917-18, one can speak of recognition by the international community of the right to revive an independent Polish state [2] .

    The abdication of Nicholas II from the throne on March 2, 1917 automatically terminated a personal union with the Grand Duchy of Finland . On March 7 (20), 1917, the Provisional Government issued an Act approving the Constitution of the Grand Duchy of Finland, restoring all rights to the times of autonomy to Finland and repealing all restrictions of the Russification period.

    On March 13 (26), 1917, the new Finnish Senate of Tokoy was replaced by the new Russified Senate Borovitinov . The Chairman of the Finnish Senate was still the Russian Governor-General of Finland . The interim government on March 31 appointed Mikhail Stakhovich to this post .

    At the height of the July crisis, the Finnish parliament declared the independence of the Grand Duchy of Finland from Russia in internal affairs and limited the competence of the Provisional Government of Russia to military and foreign policy issues. On July 5 (18), when the outcome of the insurrection of the Bolsheviks in Petrograd was still not clear, the Finnish parliament approved a social-democratic project on transferring to itself the supreme power. However, this law on the restoration of Finland’s autonomous rights was rejected by the Provisional Government of Russia, the Parliament of Finland dissolved, and its building was occupied by Russian troops.

    The process started well before November 7.

    Regarding your shoulda woulda speculations.

    Know this. In 1917 Russians did not want to continue fighting. That was not their war. People were starving and dying and wanted out. Provisional government ignored people’s will and desire.
    Lenin got it right and promised to get Russia out of that catastrophic war. Which he did.

    All blame must be put on Nikolai II who took Russia into that war.

    Woulda shoulda.
    Hitler was coming anyway and Russia without Lenin and what followed namely massive industrialization, spirit building and educational rise would have been easy target.

    Cheers.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Seraphim
    But it was not Nicholas II who took Russia into that war. Germany declared war on Russia.
    , @AP
    I'm glad to see you have stopped repeating the nonsense about how the Soviets are responsible for literacy in Russia. Now as to your other nonsense:

    Well.
    It started right after February events.
    On March 4 (17), 1917, the creation of the Ukrainian Central Rada was announced at a meeting of representatives of political, public, cultural and professional organizations in Kiev. The Central Rada, whose task its creators determined the coordination of the national movement, at first positioned itself as a territorial body conducting the revolutionary policy of the Provisional Government in Ukraine [8] .
     

    The process started well before November 7.
     
    After February 1917 Ukraine and Finland reverted to the how they had been under the 18th century Tsars, autonomous entities that were part of Russia. After November 1917 they became independent. Do you feel the difference?

    Know this. In 1917 Russians did not want to continue fighting. That was not their war. People were starving and dying and wanted out. Provisional government ignored people’s will and desire.
    Lenin got it right and promised to get Russia out of that catastrophic war. Which he did.
     
    By recognizing the independence and separation from Russia of Ukraine, Finland, the Baltics, etc. And of course giving up any claims at Versailles, thus nullifying all the sacrifices made in the previous few years. I don't mind these things, but these facts make someone who lauds the Soviets as a force of keeping Russia together a fool. Soviets were lucky that Germany collapsed, they got Ukraine back (though as its own Republic), but never Finland.

    All blame must be put on Nikolai II who took Russia into that war.
     
    That was a mistake and a crime. Bolsheviks compounded it.
  182. @Sergey Krieger
    Well.
    It started right after February events.
    On March 4 (17), 1917, the creation of the Ukrainian Central Rada was announced at a meeting of representatives of political, public, cultural and professional organizations in Kiev. The Central Rada, whose task its creators determined the coordination of the national movement, at first positioned itself as a territorial body conducting the revolutionary policy of the Provisional Government in Ukraine [8] .

    On March 16 ( 29 ), 1917 , the Provisional Government of Russia recognized Poland's right to independence under the condition of a "free military alliance" with Russia. [4] The structures of the Polish military organization created in 1914 operate in Russia , and in June of the same year the congress of the Union of Military Poles in Russia was held in Petrograd [2] . A little later, in August, the Polish National Committee (Polish) was founded by the leaders of a number of Polish parties . (PNA), the purpose of which was the creation of an independent Polish state. The PNA received diplomatic support from France , Britain , Italy and the United States [5] . From the turn of 1917-18, one can speak of recognition by the international community of the right to revive an independent Polish state [2] .

    The abdication of Nicholas II from the throne on March 2, 1917 automatically terminated a personal union with the Grand Duchy of Finland . On March 7 (20), 1917, the Provisional Government issued an Act approving the Constitution of the Grand Duchy of Finland, restoring all rights to the times of autonomy to Finland and repealing all restrictions of the Russification period.

    On March 13 (26), 1917, the new Finnish Senate of Tokoy was replaced by the new Russified Senate Borovitinov . The Chairman of the Finnish Senate was still the Russian Governor-General of Finland . The interim government on March 31 appointed Mikhail Stakhovich to this post .

    At the height of the July crisis, the Finnish parliament declared the independence of the Grand Duchy of Finland from Russia in internal affairs and limited the competence of the Provisional Government of Russia to military and foreign policy issues. On July 5 (18), when the outcome of the insurrection of the Bolsheviks in Petrograd was still not clear, the Finnish parliament approved a social-democratic project on transferring to itself the supreme power. However, this law on the restoration of Finland's autonomous rights was rejected by the Provisional Government of Russia, the Parliament of Finland dissolved, and its building was occupied by Russian troops.


    The process started well before November 7.

    Regarding your shoulda woulda speculations.


    Know this. In 1917 Russians did not want to continue fighting. That was not their war. People were starving and dying and wanted out. Provisional government ignored people's will and desire.
    Lenin got it right and promised to get Russia out of that catastrophic war. Which he did.

    All blame must be put on Nikolai II who took Russia into that war.

    Woulda shoulda.
    Hitler was coming anyway and Russia without Lenin and what followed namely massive industrialization, spirit building and educational rise would have been easy target.

    Cheers.

    But it was not Nicholas II who took Russia into that war. Germany declared war on Russia.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Sergey Krieger
    Russia had choice. Nikolai started mobilization before Germany declared war on Russia. Get your facts straight and do not put horse before the cart. It is amazing how people stick to some invented historical narrative. French killed their king and millions died in Napoleonic wars. Brits killed their king and many died there. 30 years war in the middle of Europe which was unmitigated Carnage. History is smered in blood. Nikolai , his surrounding and those before him brought Russia towards crisis and situation when pressure resulted in massive outburst. The lesson for everyone who wants to avoid it is to do necessary reforms on time and heed people. I would say that color revolution definitely happen because there is underlying issues that push people to the edge. It is different matter that those movements are often directed by ulterior forces. Grievances of those who participate are quite real. Happy person won't go there with risk to his life and health. Without positive guidance it is just a mob. Lenin was that positive guidance and results followed . Russia never was as strong and prosperous as after revolution and subsequent industrialization under Lenin and Stalin. Personalities indeed matter in history.
  183. @Seraphim
    But it was not Nicholas II who took Russia into that war. Germany declared war on Russia.

    Russia had choice. Nikolai started mobilization before Germany declared war on Russia. Get your facts straight and do not put horse before the cart. It is amazing how people stick to some invented historical narrative. French killed their king and millions died in Napoleonic wars. Brits killed their king and many died there. 30 years war in the middle of Europe which was unmitigated Carnage. History is smered in blood. Nikolai , his surrounding and those before him brought Russia towards crisis and situation when pressure resulted in massive outburst. The lesson for everyone who wants to avoid it is to do necessary reforms on time and heed people. I would say that color revolution definitely happen because there is underlying issues that push people to the edge. It is different matter that those movements are often directed by ulterior forces. Grievances of those who participate are quite real. Happy person won’t go there with risk to his life and health. Without positive guidance it is just a mob. Lenin was that positive guidance and results followed . Russia never was as strong and prosperous as after revolution and subsequent industrialization under Lenin and Stalin. Personalities indeed matter in history.

    Read More
    • Replies: @Seraphim
    Russia had the choice to let Germany attack or to fight back. Russia knew that the decision to go to war was made in 1912 at the German Imperial War Council of 8 December 1912. Let me remind you some incontrovertible facts relating to the events in discussion. No need to jump to the killing of the French king to explain them:

    [Kaiser Wilhelm] opinion was that Austria-Hungary should attack Serbia that December, and if “Russia supports the Serbs, which she evidently does…then war would be unavoidable for us, too,” and that this would be better now than later, after completion of (the just begun) massive modernization and expansion of the Russian army and railway system toward Germany. Moltke agreed. In his professional military opinion "a war is unavoidable and the sooner the better". Moltke "wanted to launch an immediate attack."
    Both Wilhelm II and the Army leadership agreed that if a war were necessary it were best launched soon. Admiral Tirpitz, however, asked for a “postponement of the great fight for one and a half years” because the Navy was not ready for a general war that included Britain as an opponent. He insisted that the completion of the construction of the U-boat base at Heligoland and the widening of the Kiel Canal were the Navy’s prerequisites for war. The British historian John Röhl has pointed out the coincidence that the date for completion of the widening of the Kiel Canal was the summer of 1914, but a reading of the report of the conference shows no agreement as to a war in 1914. However, Tirpitz did say that the Navy wanted to wait until the Kiel Canal was ready in summer 1914 before any war could start. Though Moltke objected to the postponement of the war as unacceptable, Wilhelm sided with Tirpitz. Moltke yielded "only reluctantly."

    It is beyond belief that the Russians did not know what was 'cooking', Russian espionage being then as good as in the time of the Little Father Stalin. They could not have been unaware of the plans of the 'revolutionaries' to use an external war for fomenting the revolution and the bringing down of the Tsar.
    Already plans to partition Russia were submitted to the Kaiser by the Zionists in 1902 when "Max Bodenheimer petitioned the Kaiser to form a league of Eastern European states in Poland, Lithuania and other areas. This would, he believed, fit in with German East European Policy, which was to detach these lands from Russia and thereby reduce the Russian threat. He persuaded himself, and tried to persuade the German government, that the Jews would have a natural affinity for Germany, as they spoke Yiddish. To an extent, this was undeniably true, since young Jews in Russia compared their miserable condition to the splendor of German Jewry, and since they very often came to Germany to complete their studies". The plan was immediately activated in August 1914 and amplified in 1915 with the plan of the millionaire Socialist arms dealer Alexander Parvus (a mentor of Trotsky) who finally obtained the money from the Germans (to the tenor of millions of gold marks). Trotsky was working to obtain money from the American branches of the German banks.

    As to the 'prosperity' of Russia under Lenin I leave it to you.
  184. anon says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @AP

    One more thing for you. Russian Empire fell apart after February revolution of 1917. It were Bolsheviks that put Russia together.
     
    Hmm...Bolsheviks took over in November 1917. This caused Finland to declare independence in December 1917. Ukraine followed by declaring its independence in January 1918. They hadn't done so against Kerensky. Estonia declared independence in February 1918, Georgia in May 1918, Latvia declared independence in November 1918.

    None of those places had left the Russian Empire prior to the Bolshevik takeover.

    And then of course - the Russian Civil War, with millions of dead and mass destruction. The Bolshevik revolution completed the disintegration of the Russian Empire.

    Bolshevik agitation among the troops did manage to destroy the initially successful Kerensky Offensive against Germany and Austria-Hungary.

    Without Bolsheviks there would not be one Russia or USSR as it was called.
     
    Without the Bolsheviks, Russia would have had a seat at the table at Versailles. This would have meant a larger Russia than before World War I.

    Kerensy advocated a ‘peace without annexations’. So the russians soldiers were dying for nothing. No wonder they have turned against the pathetic Kerensky.

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    • Replies: @anon
    The best portrait of Kerensky was made by Eisentein in the movie "October":

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hWWDl3_8iOM

  185. @AP
    The Baltics look like enormous leeches, which seems hard to believe. Might those figures include money spent on the military? I imagine border territories and ports received a lot of military spending. And it looks like Ukraine was almost breaking even.

    My impression is that it was common knowledge that the Baltics had higher quality of life relative to the rest of the Soviet Union.

    Had to keep up appearances in the “vitrine of socialism,” after all.

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    • Replies: @Anonymous

    My impression is that it was common knowledge that the Baltics had higher quality of life relative to the rest of the Soviet Union.

    Had to keep up appearances in the “vitrine of socialism,” after all.
     
    The Baltics had a higher quality of life already before the incorporation into the USSR so this has nothing to do with the "vitrina" of USSR which is just another myth. Prior to the war, the Balts made photo cameras and other electronics and exported tons of butter and bacon to Britain. The brands VEF and Dzintars (Amber) which were successful during the Soviet times were founded in early 1900s.

    The truth is that without Latvians and Estonians those countries would turn into dumps.
    , @AP

    My impression is that it was common knowledge that the Baltics had higher quality of life relative to the rest of the Soviet Union.
     
    They did. I just expressed surprise that this was due to some sort of leeching from Russia, rather than a reflection of the fact that the Baltic Republics were better off prior to the Soviet occupation.
  186. @bjondo
    slight correction:

    I believe in the Jewish people, and the Jewish people are their own god

    LOL, that’s even better.

    ROG really should take lessons from ZOG.

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  187. @JerseyGuy
    Anatoly,

    Do Russian Nationalists wish to preserve unique ethnic identities such as Estonians, Latvians, Lithuanians, etc within a Greater Russia? Do Russian Nationalists support Tatars having their own unique culture within Russia?

    I don’t think there is a unified position on this. My preference would be a strong yes, while making Russification easy and attractive.

    I also disagree with some of the specifics on that map, as I said above.

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  188. @AP

    In the beginning of 20th century Russia was backward, semi feudal and illiterate country with maximum available literacy rates of 25% of the population and possibly lower. if you can read in Russian please read this, if not, translate via google

    http://istmat.info/node/86
     

    Your Sovok fan-boy website doesn't tell the whole story:

    http://www.socionauki.ru/journal/articles/137487/

    " In 1914 almost 11 million people studied in educational establishments, unstructured schools and at home or 80 % of school-aged children."

    We see the rapidly expanding rate of literacy in terms of military recruits:

    Kharkovskaya Guberniya statistical survey contains the following data: in 1900 the number of literate recruits was 45.1 %, by 1910 the percentage had risen up to 66.7 % (Kharkovskaya Guberniya 1911). Samarskaya Guberniya zemsko-statistical reference book for 1914 contains the same data: 1899 – 35 %, 1912 – 65 % (Samarskaya Guberniya 1914). In Mogilevskaya Guberniya: 1897 – 39 %, at the early 20th century – about 50 %, in 1912 – 76 %, and in 1913 – 79 % (Mogilevskaya Guberniya 1914). Besides, the number of literate recruits was over 80 %.

    In summary - rapid expansion of literacy was already occurring prior to Bolshevik rule. Attributing it to Bolshevism is simply ignorance.


    There was nothing left after WWI and Civil war
     
    There was plenty left after World War I, which did not touch most of Russia. Civil War was of course the fault of the Bolsheviks.

    Regarding Civil war it was not started by Bolsheviks but by so called White movement that refused to accept result of October revolution and trying to take power by force.
     
    LOL, so October Revolution was not taking power by force?

    Bolsheviks had about 25% support. They took power by force, and the majority resisted, but were too divided, split up, and neither competent nor ruthless enough to succeed.


    Within short 20 years after the end of Civil war , Soviet Russia under leadership of Lenin/ Stalin managed to do within this short period what others cannot do within 100 years.
     
    Kill off 15 million or so of their own people? Well, Mao surpassed them. And in per capita terms Pol Pot outdid them all. So much to be proud of.

    Now you also claim that Communist take over of the power provoked Nazis to appear. What a nonsense. Hitler ascendance to power was not caused by Russian revolution
     
    I didn't claim that Communists provoked Nazis to appear. I stated, correctly, that they led to Nazis coming to power. Nazis won the election by a slim margin and fear of Communism (that was extremely deadly and scary at the time) was enough to take them to victory. The contrast with Communism also made Nazism acceptable to Western elites, as a sort of lesser evil, and perhaps a defense against the horrors occurring in the East.

    So, one has to ask a question how could rotten and inefficient Czarist or even capitalistic system stand up to Nazi military machine which in 1941 had no equals.
     
    One reason why Germany was willing to fight Russia in 1914 was because it was commonly understood that doing so would probably not have been possible in 1934, given late Tsarist Russian industrial expansion and modernization (in addition to population growth). This is of course a "what if", but German strategists of 1910-1914 probably knew much more about these things than you do.

    I myslef do not express my ignorant opinion on such matters I have no idea about.
     
    We've just seen that you do. :-)

    There was plenty left after World War I, which did not touch most of Russia. Civil War was of course the fault of the Bolsheviks.

    My dad visited a cotton weaving factory as a schoolboy as part of some industrial outreach program around 1970. The oldest machines there – still in active usage – were stamped with 1905 as the year of manufacture.

    He recalled being somewhat puzzled by that, since according to the history textbooks, the Russian Empire had been an agrarian backwater with no industry.

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  189. @AnotherDad

    Reality: 81% of the Russian population are ethnic Great Russians, and 83% are Slavs. This is far higher than the percentage of White Americans in the US, but for some reason the US survives just fine without any ethnic minority republics with special privileges.
     
    I just find this--the hey, it ain't a big deal aspect--naive.

    What it ignores is time or trend-line. Yeah the US "survives" but the "just fine" is essentially because the US is running on the stock of capital--physical, financial, skills, social capital--built during its time of utter white dominance. Late boomers like me, Steve Sailer, Ron Unz were born into a 90% white nation. The leadership and skilled labor of America is from people of my cohort, and the following GenX cohorts all born before the "apocalypse" set off as chain migration of post-65 immigrants and the winners of the 1985 amnesty. We late boomers are headed into retirement in the next five-ten and the GenXers will filter in over the following 20. Yet, while the actual American *nation* continues to exist, already the American state and its people does not actually feel very much like a real "nation", but a collection of quarrelling tribes. And we don't yet have much of a muslim population, who punch at least 10X above mestizos in creating conflict and discord per capita.

    Trend matters. And what is the Russian trend. Anatoly has written informative posts on the turn around in "Russian" fertility. But what i don't know, is who in Russia is having those kids? How does the fertility break down along ethnic lines? religious lines?

    If 83% Russian is just peachy and no biggie, then the UK which is 85% white Britsh is in high cotton right? Yet no one in their right mind thinks that. (Ok, no one in their right mind who actually wants good things for native Britons.) Their capital is infested with the other. The feel is of a people being defenstrated from their happy island.

    Sorry, not buying the happy talk.

    Hey this is for the Russian people to work out, not me. But if i was Russian, i'd be more than happy to cut loose every possible non-Russian--or at least Muslim--territory i could. Russia doesn't lack for territory. It's got the biggest territory in the world by far to expand its *own* people into. No need for Chechyna and the like. Tartarstan and the like are obviously tougher nuts, but if population swaps were possible, i'd do those. And obviously send all the Central Asias home. And i'd ban Islam from the capital and historic Russian core. If folks want to live in Russian ... be Russian.

    What matters to a nation is what sort of a nation your kids and grandkids will have. Sometimes less really is more.

    The difference is that virtually all of Britain’s non-white minorities are immigrants, whereas the vast majority of Russia’s non-Russians are indigenous to Russia.

    So the only comparable element is the influx of Central Asians. I am hardly a fan of that (LOL), but in practice, in per capita terms, it is still far less intense than non-white immigration flows into the UK.

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  190. @Seraphim
    The origin of any nationalism is the 'cult of the ancestors' ("Honour thy father and thy mother"), the obligation to remember them (which entails the obligation to give thanks to what they did for us and hand over the patrimony - countries, languages, cultures, religions, economies - they left to us to our children and their children), to care for their resting places and defend them from desecration. I think it is extremely significant that the Victory Parades became the 'Marches of the Immortal Regiment'.
    Orthodoxy is central to Russian identity. All the Russians I met ('bigots' as well as 'atheists, agnostics') would point to it. Thousand years of Orthodoxy (I would argue that Orthodoxy is older in the Russian lands than the Baptism of Vladimir), of a polity built as protection and defense of Orthodoxy (even Bismarck - no friend Russia - tried to dissuade the German warmongers from attacking Russia because "the result of a war (against Russia) would never result in the destruction of the main power of Russia, which rests upon millions of Russians of the Greek confession), of a culture steeped in Orthodox concepts, images and sounds (why all the great Russian composers composed Church music?) should mean something more than a cultural veneer, ideological 'superstructure'.
    Dugin developed his theories under the influence of the 'traditionalist' esoterico-masonic thinking of Rene Guenon and Frithjof Schuon, who were in fact converts to Islam (with hefty doses of Kabbalism) and intrinsically hostile to the really traditional Christianity.

    Reasonable viewpoint.

    Dugin’s Orthodoxy strikes me as being very LARPy.

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    • Replies: @Seraphim
    It is more than reasonable. It is true and well documented. His mentor was the Romanian-French Jean Parvulesco, personage little known in the Anglosphere, but a small celebrity in France, where he was considered a "heir of Tradition's thought in the perennialist line of René Guénon, but also and especially that of Julius Evola, an atypical Catholic close to the 'Nouvelle Droite', close to a telluric pantheism. He is best known for his numerous novels and his style of writing new and poetic, mingled with intuitions and mystical enigmas". He was alighting from a circle of Romanian writers, poets, philosophers, who in the interval between the wars, stumbled upon the writings of Guenon who became better known in Romania than in France, creating a sort of 'cult' of 'Guenonism". They coquetted with the Orthodox Church in search of 'spiritual initiations', but actually rejecting the narrow way of the authentic spirituality of Orthodoxy choosing instead the large way of the mish-mash spirituality of 'perennialism', sufism, hermetism, tantrism, indulging in a Quijotesc political elitism (a la Evola) and in grandiose geopolitical schemes. Parvulesco was the proponent of a "géopolitique du grand gaullisme" and of an "axe Paris-Berlin -Moscou".
  191. @CalDre

    Irrelevant. The Ukraine belongs to Russians – all three major branches of Russians – just as surely as does the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation.
     
    No, it doesn't, you imperial ignoramus. Only way Russia gets Ukraine is to take it by force. I suggest you "nationalist" (read: imperialist) Russians strap on your AK-47 and march to Kiev so that the Ukrainian nationalists can properly take care of business. (Yes, other countries have nationalists, too, something someone of your caliber of mental incompetence has an impossibility comprehending).

    PS: I've lived numerous years in Ukraine and know what I'm talking about, you know nothing except your repugnant, jingoistic chauvinism.

    AK: Looks like you "assimilated" well.

    @AK

    I haven’t “assimilated” the way you insinuate. I loathe the ultra-nationalist Ukrainians and don’t count any among my friends. They despise Russians and think you are Mongols and inferior to them, about the same as Russian chauvinists think of Ukrainians. I despise their mentality even more than I do yours (as you appear not quite as extreme as some of them, though you may have toned it down for publication)..

    Due to the totalitarian Russian occupation of Ukraine for 70+ years, at least they have a reason for their bitterness. Your combined mentality will lead only to war amongst people who should be brothers. Learn to respect them (maybe not the crazies) and eventually they may join your economic union and have peace; keep penning aggressive chauvinistic imperialistic threats like this article and they will remain enemies forever. Nobody likes to be forced into marriage. Eventually they will tire of their Jew oligarch masters and then you can rejoin the community, voluntarily.

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    • Replies: @Seraphim
    @They despise Russians and think you are Mongols and inferior to them, about the same as Russian chauvinists think of Ukrainians.

    It is very amusing that the 'Ukrainians' think of themselves as...Khazars, as it was emphatically announced to the whole world in the "first state constitution in Europe, known as the Constitution of Pylyp Orlyk or the Bendery Constitution" of 1710 which "preceded those of the United States, France and Poland, and attested to the democratic thinking of the Ukrainian Cossack elite", "the first and most progressive constitution of its kind at the time"!!!
    To wit:

    "TREATY AND COVENANT OF LAWS AND LIBERTIES OF THE ZAPOROZHIAN HOST, AGREED UPON BETWEEN HIS HIGHNESS PYL YP ORL YK, THE NEWLY ELECTED HETMAN OF THE ZAPOROZHIAN HOST, AND THE GENERALS, COLONELS, AND ALSO THE SAID ZAPOROZHIAN HOST, DULY PROMUL­GATED BY BOTH SIDES AND AFFIRMED BY A FORMAL OATH IN A FREE ELECTION BY THE SAID HETMAN AT BENDERY ON THE FIFTH DAY OF APRIL, IN THE YEAR OF OUR LORD 1710 ...

    In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, God glorified in the Holy Trinity. Let it be to the eternal glory and memory of the Zapo­rozhian Host and the Ruthenian [Rossiacae] (The passages in square brackets, some quoting the Latin original and some clarifying it, are pro­vided by the translator), people.
    God, who is wondrous and unfathomable in his judgments, merciful in forbearance, just in punishment, has ever since the beginning of this visible> world elevated some kingdoms and peoples according to his most equitable judgment and humiliated others because of their offences and iniquities, ­reduced some to slavery and liberated others, exalted some and cast down others. In the same way, the valiant and ancient Cossack people, formerly called KHAZAR was at first exalted by immortal glory, spacious territory, and heroic exploits which inspired fear both at sea and on land not only among neighbouring peoples but even in the Eastern Empire, so much so that the Eastern emperor, wishing to make lasting peace with it, joined his son in matrimony to the daughter of the KHAGAN, that is to say, the Cossack ­prince....
    But though God, unfathomable and incomprehensible in his righteous judgments, had punished our ancestors with innumerable calamities, he was not unceasingly angry or bearing ill will for ever, for, wishing to restore the aforementioned Cossack people to its original free­dom from the heavy Polish yoke, he brought forth a fervent defender of the Orthodox religion and of the rights and liberties of our fatherland, the valiant Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky of eternal memory, who, with divine help, with the invincible assistance of His Most Serene Majesty Charles X, King of Sweden, of immortal and glorious memory, and with the support of the Crimean state and the military might of the Zaporozhian Host, as well as through his own astute diligence, care, labour, and magnitude of spirit, liberated the Zaporozhian Host and the oppressed Ruthenian [Rossiaca] people from Polish servitude. He also vol­untarily submitted himself and his people to the authority of the Muscovite tsardom in the hope that, being of the same religious faith with us, it would abide by the obligations contained in treaties and covenants and confirmed by oath, and would for ever preserve inviolably under its protection the rights and liberties of the Zaporozhian Host and the free Ruthenian [Rossi­acam] people. However, after the death of Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky of blessed memory, the Muscovite tsardom attempted by many ingenious means to weaken and utterly destroy the liberties of the Zaporozhian Host that it itself had confirmed and to place the yoke of slavery on the free people whom it itself had never subdued by force of arms...etc

    And you hear repeted endlessly the question: where did the Khazars disappear? Where did they really? Why Mrs. Nuland-Kagan was so interested in freeing Ukraine of the Muscovite yoke?

  192. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Anatoly Karlin
    My impression is that it was common knowledge that the Baltics had higher quality of life relative to the rest of the Soviet Union.

    Had to keep up appearances in the "vitrine of socialism," after all.

    My impression is that it was common knowledge that the Baltics had higher quality of life relative to the rest of the Soviet Union.

    Had to keep up appearances in the “vitrine of socialism,” after all.

    The Baltics had a higher quality of life already before the incorporation into the USSR so this has nothing to do with the “vitrina” of USSR which is just another myth. Prior to the war, the Balts made photo cameras and other electronics and exported tons of butter and bacon to Britain. The brands VEF and Dzintars (Amber) which were successful during the Soviet times were founded in early 1900s.

    The truth is that without Latvians and Estonians those countries would turn into dumps.

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  193. Anonymous says:     Show CommentNext New Comment
    @Cicero
    I am sympathetic to the Baltic States to an extant, but let us not forget some of the more unpleasant aspects of those countries in the present day. After constantly appealing to Western nations to help them in their struggle against Soviet occupation, large numbers of the citizenry decamped to Western Europe and North America in the two decades after independence, devastating their homelands by striping it of brainpower and labor. Many of them were also dodging military conscription, which makes their pleas for NATO to defend their nations from the Russians smack of hypocrisy. The jobs they took up in the countries they immigrated to were often menial or semi-skilled, but payed better than what they found at home. I personally find it rather pathetic to abandon the land of your forefathers to get a job as an electrician in Boston or pick strawberries in the English countryside simply because you might be able to own a larger house or buy an iPhone sooner. This was not like the 19th century where dispossession or even famine were real threats to the lower classes on a regular basis.

    What was the point of centuries of 'National Resistance' if you jolt off for an easy paycheck from some American or Western European labor headhunter looking for scabs? And it is not getting better. The populations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania drop every year, and it cannot simply be written off as the Russian colonists repatriating. It's especially striking in Lithuania, where the vast majority of the population was of native stock even before 1991.

    http://osp.stat.gov.lt/en/statistiniu-rodikliu-analize?portletFormName=visualization&hash=cdc90d9c-f8a1-4964-9ce5-dc01d5f75a10

    I could get into other issues as well. The Estonian government seems to have turned its country into a giant shell bank for money laundering. Groups that celebrate Nazi collaboration are allowed to parade with impunity in the capitals of all three nations. Troops from NATO are pouring in with each passing year to set up permanent military bases; maybe the people of the Baltic States do not think their 'protectors' are staying for the long haul, but in another ten years it may dawn on them the Americans and their allies can be even more tenacious than the Russians when it comes to establishing a military footprint, and will not be dislodged easily.

    I really wish a policy of neutrality had been established in these countries after the Cold War ended, and some sort of border control and meaningful economic development program to prevent half of their under-40 population from deserting. For narrow short term gain, I fear the lands of the Baltic have mortgaged away their future as independent entities once and for all.

    large numbers of the citizenry decamped to Western Europe and North America in the two decades after independence, devastating their homelands by striping it of brainpower and labor

    Not many Balts went to North America, but mostly to Ireland, the UK and Scandinavia. Many of those who left were Russians (the proportion of Russians has decreased due to many reasons, incl. the age structure). The Baltic states were the only former USSR states that got a visa free regime with the West in the 1990s, and the EU membership since 2004. If Russia, Ukraine and Moldova had had the visa free, their migration would probably be even bigger. It is a very negative trend, but despite it the economies of the Baltic countries have grown, the living standards have risen and social metrics have improved (life expectancy increasing, abortion rate falling, etc). It is not accurate that the Baltic people only work menial jobs in the West. They are over represented in Western opera houses and on university sports teams, do business in the West, etc.

    The populations of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania drop every year

    The population of Estonia no longer seems to be falling – the last couple of years has seen positive migration (return of Estonian emigres and influx of Finns and Russians). TFRs in Latvia and Lithuania have improved and are now slightly above the European average – yes, that’s not a high benchmark but it is an improvement compared to 10 years ago and these are 99% white populations, with no non-European immigrants.

    The membership in the volunteer National guard (Home guard) has risen since 2014. In a recent study in Latvia, 40% of the whole population would be willing to defend the country and this number is about the same as in the US and other Western countries (in similar studies). 55% believe that it would be acceptable to “suffer immense physical losses” just to defend the Latvian state. When it comes to NATO, most troops in the Baltics are not American, they are British, Canadian and Polish, along with a few other European nationalities. There should be a referendum or at least a vote in the parliament, to decide whether the Anglo troops should stay permanently (the Polish troops should anyway). You also mention neutrality – the Baltic states were neutral in the 1939, in 1920 they signed a non-aggression treaty with Russia. Finlandization is not something that can happen just like that, there need to be preconditions. Finland gave up a huge chunk of its land (Karelia) plus lately Finland’s been edging closer to the US (and even signed some sort of a cooperation agreement). Let’s be honest – Sweden is not a neutral country either, they are sitting on two chairs and are totally allied with the US in practice.

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