BRATISLAVA, Slovakia — Schools give patriotic lessons and teach students how to assemble rifles, while textbooks have been rewritten to favor Russia’s view of history. Factories produce uniforms for soldiers fighting Ukraine. Summer camps run by state-owned conglomerates host children from occupied Ukrainian territory.
These by-now familiar scenes would hardly bear mention in wartime Russia, except that these were drawn recently from Belarus, an autocratic country of 9.4 million neighboring Russia, Ukraine and the NATO members Poland, Lithuania and Latvia. Long uneasily in the orbit of President Vladimir Putin of Russia, Belarus is increasingly doing his bidding, socially, militarily and economically.