Paul A Goble
There is only one thing more unpleasant to the ears of many Russians than the suggestion that their country may fall apart. That is to hear others suggest that when it does, they stand ready to reclaim what is rightfully theirs. And Russians are especially angry and alarmed when the author of such suggestions is Chinese or Polish.
Now, a Beijing publication, Sohu, has done just that, saying that Russia faces some of the same problems the USSR did in 1991, will therefor disintegrate, and that this time around its neighbors, including China, need to be ready to seize the parts that used to belong to them (see in Chinese at sohu.com or in Russian at inosmi.ru).
The Chinese article compounded its offense by resting its arguments on a lecture a Polish legal specialist recently gave in which he suggested that by 2025, Russia would again fall apart or – alternatively – grow into a new and threatening Soviet Union. If the former, then its neighbors need to be ready to take back their own.
Casimir Fritskevich, the Chinese outlet said, predicted that Russia would fall into dozens of “petty states,” some of which might work out a new modus vivendi of cooperation but others would fall under the influence or even complete control of neighbors, something that will trigger new geopolitical conflicts much like those in the Middle East today.
Sohu suggested that much of the Polish lawyer’s argument seemed based more on emotions than on reality, but at the same time, it continued,
“Russia today really is somewhat similar to the ancient empires in the history of China.” And, the Chinese outlet concludes that it faces disintegration just as the USSR did.
The reasons for that, Sohu says, are the following:
- out-of-date thinking among the leaders,
- a powerful but inefficient bureaucracy,
- economic problems,
- and “too strong” a commitment to being a hegemonic state.
“For many Russians, getting out from under the central government would be profitable.”
China, Europe and the US do not want Russia to grow strong but neither do they want to see it disintegrate, the article continues, an attitude that resembles that in their capitals 35 years ago. But Russia has no chance to recover as an industrial power, Sohu says; and “from that point of view, the future disintegration of Russia seems inevitable.”
“Russia faces some of the same problems the USSR did in 1991, will therefor disintegrate, and that this time around its neighbors, including China, need to be ready to seize the parts that used to belong to them”
Muscovy can hardly complain either. It’s the same excuse they used to annex Crimea.
You’re right, there’s plenty of historical evidence to “reunify” regions all the way from the Kuril islands to Kaliningrad.
I also think Russia will disintegrate. I think with a very big boom. I think there are two scenarios: the economic conditions will get worse, the population will protest. This won’t be successful. The Russian government will blame the West, and start a war against a NATO member.
The second scenario is a scenario in which the government will lose control. Several mini states will appear, led by some local maffia, some others are democratic and successfull, for example Kaliningrad and the area near Finland. Some fascist leaders will take power in some countries, and will seek to re-establish Russia or even the Soviet Union, and will frequently attack weaker parts of Russia. Those with nuclear weapons will survive, those without are fucked.
The states around big cities will be at war frequently, as they will inherit small militaries as bases are usually outside the city, but they have money and production means, so they will be prime target of the new Russian states.
In both cases, it will become a bloody mess. For Ukraine both will be very positive, as Ukraine will no longer be on its own against Russia, while Ukraine will be stronger than any individual piece of Russia.
I think a breakup is inevitable, as even without corona, the corruption, lack of innovation, aging and unhealthy workforce, isolation and military overspending will certainly lead to a collapse sooner or later.
Lastly, Poland nor China will invade Siberia. They don’t want to upset the West, as their economy is based on selling stuff to Europe and the U.S.
They will deal with the new authorities in Siberia, which will be on their knees as they need Chinese money and resources.
De facto they will own Siberia, as they will buy lands and they will strongly influence local politics, but they are not sending in the troops. The Chinese love power and prestige, but not as much as they love money.
I meant just China, I only wanted to say there is no way Poland will take over Kaliningrad. It is of no use for them.
“Observe calmly; secure our position; cope with affairs calmly; hide our capacities and bide our time; be good at maintaining a low profile, and never claim leadership.”
Over the years, I’ve said it numerous times already; Mafia land focuses on the West and concurrently ignores the REAL danger lurking beneath its belly. But, I don’t really care. Let China do to mafia land what mafia land did to Ukraine.