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Is Russia an imperialist power? Part III: Continuities, reconstructions and ruptures

Claudio Katz :: 27.06.22

Many differences separate modern-day Russia from the tsarist era. Russia’s convergence with Western powers has been replaced by serious clashes. This confrontation has established expansive tendencies of a different kind. Comparisons with the USSR omit the absence of capitalism under that system. There were mechanisms of external oppression, but no Soviet imperialism. Russia’s secondary place in the imperialist hierarchy is not synonymous with sub-imperialism. Nor does an ambiguous relationship with the world’s dominators prevail. Internal colonialism has resurfaced, but it does not define imperial status, nor does it determine the nature of national movements in the post-Soviet sphere.

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