The Global Russian World project would unite not only compatriots but all Russophiles on a global scale. This project should be based not on political loyalty or ideology but on the cultural and linguistic self-identification of people who want to feel part of the great culture of Leo Tolstoy and Pyotr Tchaikovsky.
Even the announced desire for change from the new forces in power in Georgia is gratifying to Russia. A thoughtful analysis shows that the values of Georgia and Russia are actually identical. Understandably, the key principles – refusal to recognize the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia and NATO membership – will not be revised, but subtle changes are possible.
The recent decision by Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan to set up a Eurasian Union is a step on from previous integration attempts on post-Soviet territory. The Eurasian Union, while still in the making, already looks increasingly attractive for new aspiring members.
20,000 Kosovo Serbs made the headlines by collectively applying for Russian citizenship. Hardly any of the 20,000 applicants are actually planning to move to Russia, however pleasing such a development would be for some of Russia’s politicians, who are already gloating over what they see as a triumph for Russia – and a moment of shame for Europe and newly-independent Kosovo.
Three recent developments seem bound to go down in history as major milestones of international relations: the completion of NATO’s military operation in Libya, Palestine’s accession to UNESCO and the guilty verdict handed down to Viktor Bout, a Russian citizen, by a US court.
The choice of specific issues may differ, but there are some essential concerns that voters in both the United States and Russia tend to share, such as gasoline prices, public security and the prevention of intolerance and discrimination.
The West has been mirroring militants’ intransigence in its handling of the Middle Eastern affairs lately. This is exactly the approach that Russia once tried to implement vis-à-vis Chechnya: no dealing with the rogues, no compromises with your opponents, no tolerance for those who do not agree to have it your way.