28 March 2014
Moscow’s annexation of Crimea and continuing tensions over Ukraine are being felt primarily as a crisis in European and United States relations with Russia. Yet Russia’s challenge to the international order has global ramifications that extend to Asia. Implications for the region can be understood in terms of three broad categories: demonstration, distraction and disruption.
Some of Moscow’s Asian neighbours may be concerned about the direct threat that a revived, recidivist Russia could turn its focus towards them. The reality, however, is that Moscow is more concerned with maintaining its territory east of the Urals than expansionist adventures. Russia’s Far Eastern demographic decline is especially pronounced, while its borders are largely fixed.
… Euan Graham is a Senior Fellow at the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
GPO / IDSS / RSIS / Print
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