(Boston Globe) What is Vladimir Putin up to? The crisis in Ukraine, brought to a boil when Russia’s president sent troops into the Crimean peninsula, has created almost a cottage industry of guessing at the autocratic leader’s intentions from one day to the next.
When it comes to Putin’s long-term strategy, however, there is at least one concrete plan that offers some insight, and one specific date that Russia observers are looking ahead to. That date, Jan. 1, 2015, is expected to mark the birth of an important new organization linking Russia with an as-yet-undetermined constellation of its neighboring countries—an alliance Putin has dubbed the Eurasian Union. […]
“Ukraine is the big one,” said Alexander Cooley, a political science professor at Barnard College who studies post-Soviet countries. “The others are small and weak.” For this reason, he said, the success of the Eurasian Union “hinges on Ukraine’s participation and cooperation.”
See the full article "Putin’s long game? Meet the Eurasian Union" by Leon Neyfakh © The Boston Globe