The Soviet nationality front: some implications for U.S. foreign and security policy

by Jeremy R. Azrael


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Until recently, U.S. policymakers assumed that the Soviet Union would enter the twenty-first century as a unified country. However, this scenario now appears unlikely, given the rising national self-consciousness and self-assertiveness of the Soviet republics, as well as the disintegration of the governmental infrastructure throughout the Soviet Union. The author examines some of the adverse outcomes that might occur--and the steps that the United States might take to reduce the likelihood of these outcomes--as the formerly captive states strive for their independence. The most significant threats to U.S. interests would include nuclear proliferation, Russian fascism, Islamic fundamentalism, and/or Balkanization.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

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