Russia has annexed Crimea, and is making noises about regions of other countries, based on the premise that those regions have a majority population that is ethnic Russian. This makes me wonder, are there regions within Russia that have a majority population that is not ethnic Russian? If this racial/nationalist argument was taken to its extreme, how much territory would Russia stand to lose?
This makes me wonder, are there regions within Russia that have a majority population that is not ethnic Russian?
Answer is yes, according to 2010 Russian Census, there are several smaller or bigger regions where Russian ethnicity is minority.
If this racial/nationalist argument was taken to its extreme, how much territory would Russia stand to lose?
Pretty big territories. Sakha Republic is one massive land of 3103200 sqKm with 958528 of population. But the rest of territories would sum up bigger than Belarus with more inhabitants than Sakha Republic.
Wikipedia is pretty detailed in this topic
And I recommend this map to check out:
This is a reasonable question, given the geographic and demographic spread of the largest country in the world. But Russian policy tends to focus on citizenship rather than language and ethnicity. The Russian government gave out passports to large numbers of Ossetians and Akhazians, as well as stationing troops in Transnistria. Significant numbers of people given Russian passports are not generally considered ethnically Russian, but they do politically align with Russia and it provides a useful pretext for invasion.
While the Nazi government in the mid-20th century focused primarily on ethnicity and some sort of natural homeland for a German nation, thus justifying incursions into Danzig, Bohemia, etc., the Russians are focusing more legalistically (or imperialistically?) on citizenship. This is also more grounded in international law (though still basically just a rhetorical fig leaf) and more flexible with regard to ethnicity. Russian expansionism leans more towards nationalism (a nation is a group of people who wished to be governed in concert) rather than ethnicity (people of a common cultural identity). So it may be less divisive for internal non-Russian groups. It also does not clash with the passport-centric view of borders and interests, since their internal minorities are citizens.