Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Poo no more?

I have been poo-pooing all the articles asking whether Kazakhstan will become the next Ukraine. But this week it has started to look like maybe my poo-poo was premature. First, there was Putin's answer to a question about Kazakh nationalism that has caused all kinds of alarm bells to ring for people who follow Central Asian politics, and now there are these military maneuvers.It really makes me wonder what exactly Putin thinks he is doing.

Maybe Max Fisher is right and Putin is merely trying to play to Russian nationalism to maintain his hold on power and he doesn't really have an endgame. That thesis seemed unbelievable to me when I first watched Fisher's video, but why else would he threaten Kazakhstan, one of Russia's few actual friends in the world?