|Yekaterina Gubareva, foreign minister and first lady of the “Donetsk People’s Republic”|
|A pro-independence demonstrator in Catalonia.|
Madrid says “don’t hold your breath,” but Moscow thinks she’s got it in the bag.
It takes no expert to suggest that Belgium might divide—it is practically two states already—though it is a stretch to think, as Russia’s expert prophets do, that Flanders will join the Netherlands in a “Holland Union” while Wallonia becomes a tiny land-locked state and Alsace–Lorraine confederates with Germany as something called simply “Lorraine.” The experts here underestimate not only Alsatian pride but Germany’s appetite for expansion—after all, they already control Europe financially, so why change the map? Equally comical is the suggestion that Germany will retake Silesia, Pomerania, and East Prussia from Poland—and, incidentally, from Russia’s Kaliningrad Oblast exclave. Don’t these Russian “experts” realize that no Germans live there anymore?
The Russian map of 2035 in the Balkans (see map above) likewise reeks of Russia’s preoccupation with U.S. and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) hidden agendas in the Wars of Yugoslav Succession—especially the Kosovo War, in which Russia resolutely sided—and still does—with Serb nationalists who saw it as a Trojan horse for some sort of Islamization of Europe. The 2035 map’s whittled-down Serbia feeds the shared Serb and Russian ultranationalist feeling that the West has been cruelling paring down these once-mighty Slavic nations: Albania has swallowed up western Macedonia, Kosovo, and a juicy slice of southern Serbia proper (in reality, Kosovar and Albanian nationalists do indeed openly plan for a united “Greater Albania” within the European Union); Hungary now extends into western Romania’s Transylvania region as well as Serbia’s Vojvodina province; and the disappearance of Bosnia and Herzegovina as an independent state has, quite unrealistically, only meant its near-complete absorption into Croatia, including presumably subject Serbs in the former Bosnian subdivision of Republika Srpska. (Poor maligned Serbia doesn’t even manage to pull Montenegro back into its orbit.) Turkey and its bloodthirsty Saracens have also, apparently, by 2035 retaken the Rumelian and Pomak areas in the southeast of proud Slavic Bulgaria.
It is once we get to the former Soviet Union itself (see map below) that things really get wonky. First of all, the Russian experts see an independent Carpathian Ruthenia emerging from Ukraine’s Zakarpattia (Transcarpathia) oblast. This is the region—formerly the eastern tail of Czechoslovakia, where Slavic-speaking Ruthenians (Rusyns) are far outnumbered by ethnic Ukrainians—where alleged Kremlin provocateurs staged a declaration of independence in 2008 which came to nothing. Today, pro-Russian nationalists in Ukraine are envisioning a “Transcarpathian People’s Republic,” though the oblast is so far, in 2014, quiet. Romania, in 2035, will supposedly have swallowed up nearly all of Moldova, except for the tiny sliver of Bessarabia—i.e., the current Russian puppet state of Pridnestrovia (a.k.a. Transnistria, a.k.a. Transdniestria)—which the Russian geopolitical visionaries see absorbed into the Russian Federation along with Crimea (that part, in 2014, is a done deal) and the south and eastern region of Novorossiya and Donbas (those are, today (April 26, 2014), works in progress).
|Galicia (Halychyna) was its own kingdom briefly during the First World War,|
but today’s Galicians mostly want to be in a united Ukraine.
|These Belarussians, shown at an independence-day rally last month in Minsk,|
stand with Ukraine in its conflict with Russia. But, in Belarus, they are a minority.
|The Caucasus Emirate terrorist group’s map is slightly different.|
|Russia would like to draw the Artsakh Republic into its sphere of influence.|
But why stop there? Next: Legoland!
|“Greater Armenia” in the Armenian—and maybe also Russian—imagination|
|The Donetsk People’s Republic’s Yekaterina Gubareva whips out her foreign-policy agenda.|
|Members of the Ukrainian feminist political collective Femen demonstrating against Russia outside the Ukrainian peace talks in Geneva, Switzerland, on April 17th.|