In an Al Jazeera America op-ed titled “Two decades later, ex-Soviet republics reject absolute independence,” history associate professor Kate Brown writes that a combination of self-governance and economic integration is essential for former Soviet states in a global economy.
In the column, Brown cites the example of ongoing protests in Ukraine’s capital, Kiev, against the Ukrainian president’s refusal to sign European Union agreements that would facilitate trade.
“The anxiety over economic well-being is not limited to Ukraine. Citizens in almost all the ex–Soviet republics are registering displeasure with their states’ autonomy at a rate that just about matches the indebtedness of those countries,” she writes.
Brown also writes that citizens in ex-Soviet republics are becoming more international and populist than nationalist in their political beliefs and that “crowds on the street want to be a part of broader international associations, which would give them the right to travel, trade and express themselves freely.”
Referencing past experience of ex-Soviet republics, Brown writes that “international associations combined with local self-governance may just be the new formula for sovereignty in a global economy.”
You can read the full op-ed in Al Jazeera America here.