There are now huge changes happening in the world power structure. Russia is on a roll, strategically, at the same time as its underpinning economy is struggling.
2016 has been a successful year for Russia in the military-diplomatic realm. Its support for the Assad government of Syria has proven decisive. The rebel forces have been all but vanquished and Russia sits for now unchallenged in Syria and, thus, in the most strategic part of the Middle East and the Eastern Mediterranean.
It scarcely matters that, on paper, Russia’s economy is not prospering. Stalin built up the Soviet Union to be a world power while the Russian and other peoples under his rule suffered under socio-economic conditions that make today’s Russia look like a land of plenty in a fairy tale.
At the same time, Donald Trump’s victory in the United States is a victory for Russia and (I hope) for peace between Russia and the USA. If Russia helped to procure Trump’s election via “active measures”, then so much the better. It makes a change from the Israel lobby pulling all the strings and, even if Trump is (as he may be) entirely unsuited for the role of head of government or head of state, at least Israel-controlled warmonger Hillary Clinton was prevented from exercizing power and fomenting more war.
In the Far East, traditionally one of Russia’s weakest areas, influence is felt in the latest sayings of the president of the Philippines. American influence is waning fast in a region where Chinese power is waxing.
As for Europe, the rise of populism and, to a lesser extent, social nationalism, plays to Russia’s strengths: tradition, white European culture and history, shared values, shared hopes for a better future (and against globalism, multiracialism, China, Zionism, Islamism, Americanism).
In France, Marine le Pen has every chance of becoming President in 2017. In Austria, the Freedom Party narrowly missed in its Presidential bid but is well ahead of all rivals and looks like winning the general election of 2018 (in theory also may be but unlikely to be in 2017). Even in Germany, the more nationalistic forces are increasing in influence.
All of the above leads to a situation in 2017-2018 in which the broadly social-nationalist agenda can be carried forward.