- Oct 2013
Well, Ukraine and Bielorussia are bit of a special cases: both languages are extremely close to Russian. In other contexts, they could (even would) be considered dialects of Russian.Makes sense.
BTW, it's interesting that the Kuban was very thoroughly Russified in the 1930s as a result of Stalin forcing the Ukrainians there to identify as Russians. This ended up sticking and that's why the Ukrainians in the Kuban still overwhelmingly identify as Russians even right now.
At the end of the 19th, Cossacks were largely Russian native speakers, AFAIK.Wasn't the Kuban more of a Cossack region?
We can consider them a different ethnicity, but like Germans and Austrians, or Australians and Americans: different ethnicities speaking the same language.