Over the past several years, much attention has been given to Russia’s renewed interest in expanding its footprint in Africa, usually couched in a fearmongering framework of competition. That makes it worthwhile to examine Russia’s “return” to Africa, as well as contemporary relations with Russia, more closely.
The unrest this week in Kazakhstan underlines a fundamental predicament that comes with strict authoritarian rule. The more power is invested in an individual, the more uncertain and insecure the transition to a successor inevitably becomes. Cautionary examples of this truth abound, and yet few authoritarians heed them.