05 November 2010

Without Siberia, What Will Become of Russia?

With an area of over 3,727,000 square miles, Siberia makes up roughly 75 percent of the total territory of Russia. If Siberia were to secede from Russia, it would be the world's second-largest country, with only Canada being larger. Major geographical zones include the West Siberian Plain and the Central Siberian Plateau. _Source
The population of ethnic Russians in Russia has been collapsing in a morass of high death rates and low birth rates. The Nicholas Eberstadt video below goes into much more detail in explaining the what of ethnic Russia's collapse.
Growing numbers of Russian children are being abandoned to the streets, where drugs, violence, alcoholism, TB, and HIV hold sway.

It should be obvious that Russia's time as a grand empire is running out. It is uncertain how long Russia can hold onto the resource rich but relatively unpopulated regions of Siberia -- with a shrinking number of Russians to project power into what are essentially colonies of Moscow.

When will Siberia secede from Russia? Siberian separatism has been simmering below the surface for many years, and the centrifugal forces pulling Siberia away from Moscow can only grow stronger as the number of Russians shrinks.

The recent trial of Mikhail Khodorkovsky, former chairman of Yukos Oil, highlights the problem of perennial recurrent Russian autocracy and tyranny -- and much of the reason for a pessimistic view of Russia's economic future. Russia's "one trick pony" reliance on energy to prop up an otherwise crumbling economy, is a fool's game. The stupidity of the strategy will be made painfully clear when Siberia finally does break away from Moscow, taking most of Russia's energy wealth with it.

Who has the most to gain from Siberian secession? Clearly China will be in a dominant position to control Siberia's destiny, assuming China does not collapse or lose its economic shine first. International energy companies will likewise have much to gain from access to Siberia's rich oil and gas fields. The US is also likely to find many opportunities for advantage within a nascent independent Siberia.

In addition, Alaskan and Northern Canadian secessionists would find much to celebrate in a free Siberia. If destructive US central government autocratic policies are not reined in, more and more Alaskans will view separation more positively. Likewise, many Northern Canadians will consider breaking away from Ottawa should the leftists regain control and resume the destructive policies of earlier leftist governments.

Governments can be overthrown very precipitously, as was demonstrated in Eastern Europe of the late 1980s and early 1990s. They can fall like dominoes in a row, should conditions shift in certain directions. Watch and learn.

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Blogger Kinuachdrach said...

Not sure I buy the line that Siberians might break away from Mother Russia. There are not many Siberians, and they are severely divided along ancient tribal & ethinic lines.

If Siberia does break away, it will be as a front to a Chinese plot. And the first thing "Free Siberia" will do is invite the Chinese People's Liberation Army to cross the border and secure their "independence".

Surely the underlying point is that time is not on Russia's side? Russia currently has Europe by the short & curlies -- the EU is by far the world's largest fossil fuel importer. Europe is now mostly effectively unarmed, and Obama's America can not be relied upon to come to Europe's rescue a third time.

Russia may feel an increasing need to act before its power slips away. That seems more likely than a "Free Siberia" movement.

Saturday, 06 November, 2010  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would guess that the region will have a future of chaos, lawlessness and further decay of infrastructure with little success for either invaders (including Moscow's forces) or investors. Any separatist movements will only be united as long as there is something to resist their goal of independence at which point it will devolve into power struggles and territorial disputes.

But then, that might be everyone's future eventually. Places like Russia are just well ahead of the curve. Is there one region on earth where the percentage of private wealth being consumed by the state is consistently declining over the decades?

Saturday, 06 November, 2010  

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