When the Soviet Union dissolved some 24 years ago, the Cold War supposedly ended with it, and yet looking at European politics today, you’d be forgiven for thinking it’s business as usual. Anybody who doubts that the ideological tête–à-tête still rages on need only look at the ongoing Ukrainian crisis, born directly out of internal struggle over whether to move closer to the West (the U.S., NATO, and the EU), or East (Russia and Co.).
As we’ve seen, this internal struggle metastasised into something not unlike a civil war, complete with militias, secessions, accusations of war crimes, and dodgy referendums. Predictably, Ukraine has become something of a proxy war between East and West, not totally unlike how Afghanistan was in the 1980’s, with Russia now sending in troops to protect ethnic Russians and vital ports in Crimea, and the U.S. musing over whether to train and arm the Ukrainian army.
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