* Two years ago, before my moving to Estonia, I thought that the people who has gone through so many radical and dramatic changes is ready for as difficult future. Since 2004 many Estonians have begun to think that they live on the other side of ‘the end of history,’ in a world where radical changes are impossible,” Paul Goble says in Eesti Päevaleht. “The changes coming from the East and having impacts on Estonia can actually be dramatic. The Russian Federation is suffering from the post-Soviet syndrome and is trying to cure itself of a state that broke up in the 90s. Many refuse to admit this, but the memorable speech by Russian President Vladimir Putin has forced them to admit the collapse of the USSR.
No doubt Russia will rise to its feet in the next 50 years and no doubt its neighbors like Estonia will have to overcome the related complexes and dangers.
”One can say that the tragedy of Russia is that the Russian state had become an empire long before the Russians became a nation. That’s why that regime has never been a national state. It was a state nation. On the other hand, the Russian Federation is not Russia. It is 22 peoples owning 53% of the territory. This annoys the Russians, who are facing demographic degradation. Many experts say that by mid-XXI Russia’s population will halve, the Russians will become a minority, while the Muslims a majority. The Russian Federation is not a federation. There is no agreement on who does what. This provokes conflicts between Moscow and ....
...... local elites. Russia does not even have a normal infrastructure. Russia is not just a failed state who is trying to rise to its feet but a new failed revisionist state and will remain one. Neither Moscow nor the Russians have so far recognized the events of 1991.
They are constantly speaking about restoring partial or full control over the former Soviet empire, discussing how Moscow should treat the so-called unrecognized states, which the Russian continue calling “near abroad.” Such positions are very dangerous. For the Baltic states these dramatic changes may be crucial. On the one hand, the US is getting increasingly less active in Europe, on the other hand, the EU of mid-XXI will be different from what it is now. And if nothing changes in Estonia, these two circumstances will pose plenty of problems to the Estonians. Meanwhile, Estonia may face quite dramatic changes: reducing population and growing wish to live better will create tensions the Estonians will not be able to overcome.
In 50 years the Estonian state may turn into three-four small towns, with the rest – just deserted land. The towns will be populated by immigrants from regions who will be far from the present cultural experience. Brain-drain to the West and dependence on external forces will also give them lots of problems unless they deal with this today. The Estonians should understand what challenges they may face in the future. In order to become successful they should react to these challenges rather than deny them." says Goble.