It looks like I am going to owe Vladimir Putin a debt. How so? My co-author, Bill Ayres, and I just signed a contract with Columbia University Press to write a new introduction to a paperback version of the 2008 For Kin or Country: Xenophobia, Nationalism and War. In that book, we sought to explain the irredentism (the efforts by countries to annex "lost" kin in neighboring territories) that did and did not occur in the 1990s.
Well, Russia was in the
"did not" category in the 1990s and is now in the "did" category since
then--clearly with Crimea, less clearly with hunks of Georgia. Of the
cases we focused on most clearly, Russia is the one that went from
silent dog to barking dog. Romania? Had some nationalist dynamics but
no real effort to reclaim Moldova. Hungary? Has become authoritarian
with increased nationalism and moving beyond the optimally obnoxious
stage. Armenia has kept its hunks of Azerbaijan. Croatian and Serbian
irredentism remain quelled by external intervention. Whether their
democratization also reduces their bad neighborly ways is something we
have to think about.
Anyhow, our goal is to finish our
side of this soon with the aim for a new paperback edition of For Kin
or Country by sometime in 2015. Look for it online (either the
paperback or e-book) soon-ish.