Post-Soviet dependence with benefits? Critical geopolitics of Belarus’s and Tajikistan’s strategic alignment with Russia

Karolina Kluczewska*, Kristiina Silvan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The 2022 invasion of Ukraine has stimulated a debate on Russia’s relations with states which were part of the Soviet Union. Our article contributes to this discussion by focusing on Russia’s two ‘strategic partners’, Belarus and Tajikistan, and exploring these countries’ perspectives. We develop a critical geopolitics framework which accounts for time, multi-level power dynamics and culture. The article provides a new understanding of the dynamics of geopolitical knowledge beyond the West, analysing how Belarusian and Tajik political elites’ decision-making towards Russia has evolved from the late Soviet period until now. While both governments appear to be dependent on Russia and, consequently, generally supportive of its politics in the global arena, the article argues that this alignment has been highly strategic. Throughout the years, Belarusian and Tajik decision makers have skilfully navigated power and economic asymmetries with Russia by using their geographical location and Russia’s neo-imperial mindset to their benefit.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages38
JournalGeopolitics
VolumeLatest Articles
Early online date21 Jun 2024
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 Jun 2024

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Post-Soviet dependence with benefits? Critical geopolitics of Belarus’s and Tajikistan’s strategic alignment with Russia'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this