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Russia’s encouragement to separatists

12 Sep 2008, 09:53 UTC
Russia’s encouragement to separatists
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War-torn Chechnya
Russia’s recognition of the separatist regions within Georgia is unsurprisingly giving hope to separatist factions within its own borders. If a politically naive person like me could easily foresee that this would happen, there’s no way the politicians in Russia wouldn’t have realized what would happen. Are they just planning to oppress any attempts at separation in a far more brutal manner than Georgia tried with South Ossetia?
For that matter, given the way Russia has been trying to annex South Ossetia from Georgia, will the Ossetians have the same problem with Russia as they currently have with Georgia? I have the feeling that they’re gaining independence from one master just to lose it soon after to a far more oppressive and authoritarian master. The Russian government hasn’t completely lost its senses, though, since it rebuffed South Ossetia’s declaration that it would be joining Russia. They still have the presence of mind to keep up the thinly veiled appearance that they don’t have imperial ambitions.
And Russia won’t have to worry about something like China giving out Chinese passports to people in Tatarstan and have the region break away with support from China. At least the Chinese government ...

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