The political state of Russia emerged following the expansion of the principality of Muscovy - emerging from Mongol domination to conquer and absorb the surrounding principalities. The Romanov dynasty continued this expansionist policy. Peter I extended Muscovy's rule to the Baltic Sea, and the Russian Empire came into being. The dramatic fall of the Romanov dynasty, the formation of the USSR under Lenin, the brutal dictatorship of Stalin and the Cold War placed the USSR at the forefront of world politics. The USSR dissolved under Gorbachev, and 15 separate republics were formed in 1991. Although vastly reduced territorially, Russia remains a vast and powerful state, retaining political influence in the region and worldwide.To be updated

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