Stretching from the Baltic to the Pacific, Russia is hard to ignore. They hold the record for largest land area of a country, and have a long and colorful history. Russia has history of containing the only Jewish nation ever to exist outside of the Holy Land, as well as being hte homeland of almost all of the Mongol Empire's longer lasting successor states. Russia the country began with the Duchy of Moscowy, a small city-state north of the steppe. It united all of European Russia in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, and in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries colonized Siberia and the northernmost Far East. Russia had a history of colonialism in Alaska and the northwest, and even started a couple of settlements in California. After WW1, Russia became the first and debatably most succesful Communist nation. It finally reverted into a republic in the 1990s. Because of its massive effect on history as “that big hulking superpower-to-be”, the AH potential of Russia is huge.
Points of divergence concerning alternate historical developments within the modern day territory of Russia.
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