This article was first published in Russian on
In a report published by the
American research center Stratfor
, it was noted that recent events in the United States and Europe, in particular Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential elections and Brexit, are enabling Russia to recover lost positions in the post-Soviet space, including the South Caucasus.
“Armenia has already demonstrated its unwavering loyalty to Moscow”, notes the report, although, according to analytics at Stratfor, this loyalty “was seriously tested during the April war”. And the war, according to the report’s author, was possible because of the fact that Russia “was busy with the crises in Ukraine and Syria”.
At the same time, the report notes that in recent years Moscow and Baku have rolled out active cooperation in the military technology sector. “For example, Azerbaijan has acquired millions of dollars of weapons from Russia, which still further strengthens the cooperation between these two countries”.
“If, because of internal problems, the West’s influence is weakened, Russia will restore its position in Azerbaijan, in Armenia, and in Georgia. Even those countries that have pursued a more neutral foreign politics are today deepening their relations with Russia, in particular Azerbaijan and Uzbekistan”, note the American analysts.
Additionally, Trump’s victory in the US presidential elections made possible reconciliation in Russian-American relations, which, in the opinion of several experts, might even create a situation wherein Western sanctions towards Russia will be removed. “If there will be a reconciliation in relations between Moscow and Washington, Moscow will receive additional time in which to strengthen its influence in the post-Soviet space”.
“The process has already started”, says the report, and provides the example of the presidential elections which took place in Moldova. The pro-Russian candidate, Igor Dodon, emerged victorious in the elections which took place in Moldova in November. He already stated that he will deepen political and economic relations with Russia.
Georgia’s political elite have also changed their attitude towards Russia: a softer position has taken the place of harsh rhetoric.
The Stratfor analysts note: “It is impossible to say how long Brussels and Washington will continue providing Ukraine with assistance”.
The report’s authors conclude that, despite advantageous conditions, Russia is unlikely to be able to reestablish the influence that it had in the former Soviet republics previous to 2010.