Staunton, Oct. 2 – In previous versions of Tatarstan’s program for “the realization of state nationality policy,” Kazan committed itself to strengthening Tatarstan identity; but in the latest one that has just been released, it makes no mention of that idea, referring instead to plans to boost all-Russian identity “not less than by 80 percent” over the next three years.
While it is not clear exactly how that percentage increase in all-Russian identity will be measured, the absence of any commitment by Kazan to strengthening Tatarstan identity in Tatarstan represents a major victory for Moscow and defeat for the republic (milliard.tatar/news/v-tatarstane-perestanut-ukreplyat-tatarstanskuyu-identicnost-4207).
Given Tatarstan’s flagship role among the non-Russian republics, it is likely that the others will follow the same course, something that opens the way both to the further russification of the non-Russian republics in the coming years and to growing anger among non-Russians about Moscow’s intentions.
Indeed, this latest move, obviously originating in Moscow, may backfire on the center, with non-Russians viewing it as even more offensive that Putin’s attack on their national languages. And to the extent that is the case, this policy shift will likely exacerbate anti-Moscow feelings in many places