The Post-Soviet Reemergence of the Russian Empire

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The 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union signified an end to Russia’s control over its Middle Eastern Empire. Many of its states seceded and founded new nations and Russia lost significant power over the region. The new Russian Federation, in an effort to reestablish Soviet supremacy, has launched a neo-imperialistic campaign to once again have political, economic and security control over the area today known as the Caucasus. Principally, Russia wants to have political control over the area consisting of the lands of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Georgia and Chechnya as well as the Caspian Sea. Furthermore, it is an objective to reap profit from this resource-rich area to stabilize Russia’s economy. Additionally, Russia wants to ensure the security of its power in the Middle East. In order to achieve these motives the Russian Government has used various strategies involving political legerdemain, economic exaction and military operations.

After years of weakness following the breakdown of the Soviet Socialist government, Russia has once again sought to expand its empire over all of its successor states. The Russian government has used various tactics to assert power over the Caspian region as well as to achieve its political motives. Russia’s position in the economic sphere has been a valuable strategy to obtain political ends. “Moscow’s main lever of power, then as now, was its pipeline system, a remnant of the centralized Soviet economy in which all oil and natural gas from the Caspian first traversed Russia before passing on to the West.” (LeVinne, 1999) Russia’s control over this pipeline has meant that it has direct control over the Caspian nation’s resources and can use this to their advantage. One such example was...

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...influence within the space of the former Soviet Union a determining aspect in the future of Russian statehood. The entities surrounding the Caspian Sea are also the focus of many vital economic prospects which would contribute to Russia’s hegemony over the Southern Tier region. In a textbook example of neo-imperialism Russia has covered all its bases included the impending threat of enemies resulting from Moscow’s political and economic exploitation. Russia has proved that it will use any means possible such as military conquest and political and economic hegemony to its advantage to extend its control over the territory, political systems and economic profits of the nations forming the Caucasus. The Russian government has certainly demonstrated its resurgent imperial ability and resolute determination to ultimately see the reemergence of a powerful Russian empire.
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