Saturday, September 17, 2022

The end of the Pax Russiya?

While you could argue whether Russia was really a global power since the fall of the Soviet Union, there is no question it has consistently been a regional power since 1991. Russia has enormous influence over the former Soviet space. Russian influence is enormous in most of the now-independent countries that were formerly part of the Soviet Union, and Russian mediation and peacekeeping efforts have suppressed conflicts, or frozen conflicts in place in several places for the past few decades.

I think it is revealing that just after the Russian military is showing itself to be a paper tiger in Ukraine, conflicts have broken out between Azerbaijan and Armenia, and between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. No one thinks that Russia will paratroop in and enforce the peace in the Caucuses or Central Asia while it is desperate for troops in its faltering invasion of Ukraine.