We are most likely at the outset of a crisis that will take time to resolve. It is apparent that Ukraine is just the starting point of a bigger crisis and observing how it unfolds is crtical.
Why should every Russian and Ukrainian be concerned about Russian-Ukrainian relations? To some sense, what is taking place is a delayed civil war, which could have occurred in the early 1990s with the dissolution of the Soviet Union, when the first generation of Russian and Ukrainian leaders claimed that they had escaped a brutal divorce like Yugoslavia, writes Andrey Sushentsov in Russia Today.
Everyone in Russia has relations in the adjacent country, so what is going on there is primarily a domestic political issue. If the Ukrainian government, for example, shuts Russian Orthodox churches or outlaws a pro-Russian opposition political organization, the news is broadcast on state television almost immediately, and Russian politicians give responses.
Each of the post-Soviet governments acquired independence on the same day, and each of them is an experiment in state-building and creating international and internal political policies in some fashion.
The following challenge highlights the uniqueness of the Ukrainian state experiment: how can the two cornerstones of Ukrainian statehood — Galician Ukraine and the eastern Russian population – be reconciled? The latest Maidan was won because individuals from the western regions had a stick in their hands and began to wield it in their discourse with those representing the east. The trajectory of the Ukrainian experiment demonstrates a progressive reduction in the existence and importance of Russian identity.