The Soviet Union had been a model for China in terms of systemic develop-ment, even though international relations between China and the SovietUnion practically broke off in the 1960s. Thus, nothing could be more sweep-ing in Chinese mentality than the demise of its tutor, the Soviet Union.
Post-Soviet Russia’s Challenges
Tradition Breaks Reform
Russian society tends to form tiers of mafias through the actions of the princi-ples of hierarchy and rank-worship on the one hand, and adolescent group sol-idarity on the other, with the upper-ruling mafia as the occupational force.
Missing in Translation
The lack of real modernization policies of the last four to five years cannot becontinued without serious, negative, long-term consequences. The only goodthing about the current crisis is that no one can deny the necessity for acceler-ated change and the need for a larger, societal debate about the future of thecountry.
Russia’s Future: Nation or Civilization?
To build a real civic identity, a nation must have legitimate and, desirably, his-torically grounded borders, as well as stable and effective state institutions. Theall-Russian nation within the present borders of the Russian Federation is young, unstable and weak. Regular elections, political parties, common socialand economic problems, and politics could gradually become a shell for a newpolitical nation.
Where Is the “Pilot Region” Heading?
The Kaliningrad Region can be called a “war child.” Eastern Prussia with itscapital Koenigsberg would not have had such a knotty history if Germany hadnot lost World War II. After the breakup of the Soviet Union the region founditself in completely new and hitherto unseen geopolitical conditions.
Twenty Years of Drifting Apart
The logic of Realpolitik pushes Russia not towards defining for itself the limitsto restricting the sovereignty of neighbors, but towards taking as muchsovereignty from its neighbors as – using Yeltsin’s famous metaphor – it canswallow. This approach rules out long-term agreements.
RUSSIA IN GLOBAL AFFAIRS VOL. 7 • No. 4 •OCTOBER – DECEMBER • 2009