TheInterpreter – For Vladimir Putin, Viktor Kaspruk argues, “Ukraine is the key to a future Russia or more precisely a future Russian Empire,” and consequently, even if he has lowered the temperature in the Donbass in recent weeks, the Kremlin leader is likely to renew his attacks on Ukraine next year having first moved to annex Belarus.
In a commentary for Radio Liberty’s Belarusian Service, Kaspruk argues that “if Putin begins thinking about opening a second front for an attack on Ukraine, then it would not be possible for him to find a better place d’armes for that than a Belarus occupied by Russia.”
Such a move, the Ukrainian political analyst says, would be extremely popular in Russia. “On a wave of hurrah patriotism, euphoria from ‘getting up from its knees,’ and the PR bombing in Syria, the consciousness of Russians has completely atrophied. Therefore it would support with joy the next political adventure of Putin – the return of Belarus ‘home’ to Russia.” MORE