Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Russsian Empire Guilty of Imperialism - 954 Words

From a century to another and from regime to regime Russians have been accused of empire-building and imperialism. It is not always without a reason, since the Tsarist Russian Empire was clearly and undeniably imperialistic. (Beissinger 1995) However, the case of Soviet Union and especially their rule over Central Asia is more ambiguous and unique. It is highly disputable whether Soviet actions were actions of state-building or actions of empire-building. In this essay I examine Soviet rule in Central Asia in order to find out if it was imperialistic, and if so, to what extent. I argue that there are several facts that support the idea of Soviet imperialism in Central Asia and therefore it is correct to define it as imperialistic. Yet at the same time there are several facts that demonstrate how Soviet Union was very different from earlier Western Empires such as the British Empire. Some evidence even makes Soviet actions to be seen as actions of state-building. Therefore it is to be noticed, that the Soviet Union was not entirely imperialistic and when it was, it was imperialistic in a very unique way. Soviet leaders themselves never saw Soviet ambitions as imperialistic. They explicitly declared themselves as anti-imperialistic. They argued that they were building a state, not an empire. (Beissinger 1995) Central Asian states were seen as having been illegitimately oppressed by the Tsarist Empire. Soviet leaders sympathized those states because of the injustice they had

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