Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Putin Offers Updated Version of Brezhnev Doctrine for Post-Soviet States

Paul Goble

            Staunton, April 12 – In 1968, Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev said that Moscow would not allow any challenges to communist regimes to succeed. Now, 49 years later, his Russian successor, Vladimir Putin, says that he will not allow any “color revolutions” to occur not only in Russia but also in Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.

            Those are the members of the Organization of the Collective Security Agreement, and the Kremlin leader said yesterday that Moscow will not allow any destabilization in any of these countries but instead will “in every possible way support our partners” in that grouping (

            And just as was the case with communist leaders in Eastern Europe half a century ago, some of the leaders of these countries said they too would do everything they could to prevent such “color revolutions” on their territory, implicitly welcoming Putin’s offer of Russian support in this effort.

            Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev called such revolutions “foreign interference” and noted that the best methods of countering them had been discussed at joint exercises of the security forces of the Organization in the past.

            Belarusian leader Alyaksandr Lukashenka said that he was responding to Western criticism of his regime’s human rights record by pointing to shortcomings in the West, and Kyrgyzstan President Almazbek Atambayev said that the West was trying to impose its way of doing things on people “without taking account the mentality of the people involved.”

            This approach, Atambayev suggested, “is leading to the situation which we see today in Iraq, Syria and Libya.”

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